Norman – Mother: 20 Feb 1918

Pvt N.R.Smith
Dear Mother,
The biscuits have just come through the post and they are simply lovely. They are as fresh and crisp as if they had just been packed and every one who has tried them has remarked how slendidly they have kept. I am afraid they will spoil my taste for the biscuits we get over here for a while. The day before yesterday was quite an eventful day for me. Up to then the only letter from N.Z. that I had received since Dec 7th was one dated Dec 3rd from Gorrie. The day before yesterday the mail brought me 19 letters – 7 from home – 3 from Neil – and some others which were quite unexpected. One surprise was a letter from Beatrice Bluck who gave me Reggie’s and Vivian’s addressess so I will now be able to look them up. I was glad to get some news of Neil as as he now has my correct address I will be able to keep in close touch with him and me may possibly get together again before very long. (This last ‘sentence’ is how he wrote it) I heard from Vic, who is still in England, some time ago and we are now writing regularly.

Another Star (the 5th so far) arrived last week also the Christmas numbers of the “Weekly News” and “Britts”. The “News” annual was good but I think Britts beat it this time as some of their views were really spendid.

I got the coupons from Beresford St School and a letter from Ponsonby school stating that a parcel was being sent but so far it has not arrived. I suppose it was come along soon. You asked me in your last letter to tell you how Vic was looking. The last time I saw him he was looking just like his old self – perhaps a little fatter than he used to be. There was certainly nothing wrong with his spirits as he seemed to be having a thoroughly good time all round.

I think that I mentioned in previous letters that both Neil and I received the two tins of butter each alright. Tell Gorrie that I hope he had a splendid time on the Wanganui. I received his letter stating that his holidays were starting on Feb 18th on that very date. Rather peculiar isn’t it. Don’t bother about sending any money to Neil as I can keep him supplied if he runs short. One spends very little over here and I now have £7 to my credit in my pay book and a little in my pocket as well. (I am chewing biscuits all the time I am writing this. They are “some” good.)

The finger that you were enquiring after was a very trivial affair – just a bit of a jam in the port hole. It has been alright for such a long time now that it took me some time to think out what you meant. It shows how serious it was – doesn’t it?

When we come to sum it up the whole three of us have been uncommonly lucky all through the past winter. Never once has any one of us had worse than a wooden floor to sleep on with either a tent or a roof over our heads. We get warm baths regularly with issues o clean woollen underclothes, socks and towel.

I had trouble with lice last week, but I got rid of them by going to the baths and getting a complete change.

We have had another cold snap during the past few days and everything was frozen up but today is milder again. It is quite a while since we have seen snow now, and the spring is getting nearer all the time.

I see by the paper that Russia is into the war again so that may bring it to an end quicker than it seemed last month. Let us hope so at any rate. Cheerio and good bye till next letter.


The bisquits were unbroken as well as being fresh. I was surprised at their carrying so well. I am going to a Y.M.C.A. concert tonight.

Last night was spent in the Divisional theatre listening to the 4th Brigade Pierrots. So you can see we have a good time sometimes.