Neil – Mother: 12 Aug 1918

(This letter is typewritten)
Hornchurch, ESSEX.
Dear Mother,
I got a mail from N.Z. a couple of days ago.- two from you and one from Mat, and one from Gorrie. But I can’t find Gorrie’s anywhere now. I’ll deal with Mat’s collection of personal insults separately later on.

Your first is dated 4-6-18. I have not seen Henry Kennedy, and I should hardly recollect him just from having seen his photograph, but I’ll keep my eye open for his name on the lists in case he comes here. I rather like the way you were telling Trot that your letters to me will probably pass me on my way home, when he is the one who is the lucky devil all the time. Roy also informs Trot that he is not writing to me because I am on my way home. I’d tell him a few home truths that print is not emphatic enough for, if I did come home. They’ll come harder learned from experience. He says something about being a private in a machine gun push before long. There is only one advantage attached to that corps, – that you return to N.Z. quickly if you return at all. But I suppose he finds it hard to help being a silly sausage, – most two pip artist do. Leslie Matheson, I think, has arrived by this time, but I have not heard from him yet.

Your next, written to catch the mail, is dated 14-6-18. There is not much to reply to in it.

I have an idea there was something in Gorries, but I’m afraid I left it in the train yesterday. I was up in London seeing Isaac Phillips and Trot yesterday (Sunday),- Trot has leave for another week. I think I shall be able to work it to get a day in London at the army’s expense during this week, so I shall be seeing Trot again before he clears out and leaves me to wipe up Fritz on my own. There is nothing definite regards my instructorship yet. I am still carrying on temporarily with the English. They have had a lot of trouble of course in getting a man as good as yours truly, but I understand that they have managed to find someone who comes near fitting the idea at last. If I get on to the Arithmetic and Mathematics stunt, I shall endeavour to make myself indispensable as quickly as possible. Don’t show that bit to Roy,- treat his patriotism tenderly.

I don’t think there is much more to say,- one typed page is equal to about four written. There is no more news and the weather is too oppressive to write Tommy-rot. I can type in less than two minutes now what it takes me five minutes to write readibly.

Ever yours