19 January 1916

Ward 18
Aust. Aux. Hosp.

Dear Mum & Dad & Sisters & Brothers,
I received a fine batch of letters this morning (eleven) & consequently am feeling ever so much better _ _ _. I’ve given Viola all the news in her letter so this will only be in answer to yours.

There were two from you mum. 15/11/15 & 23/11/15. I hope Paul & his bride have every happiness in their union & that his orchard at Murwillumbah prospers.

Vivie must be in Egypt this good while now. I expected he & Vernie & very likely Percy have all met long before this.

Yes I think Clytie is a real soldiers wife too & I’m proud of her. I’m viewing the prospect of being an uncle in the near future with feelings of great pleasure & I only hope we will all be back to greet him (or her) on his (or her) attaining the age of 1 year.

Trust me for hanging out in Eng as long as I can. When I got back you may rest assured it is not cos I went on my knees & begged to be sent back _ _ _.
I hope you and Dad do not feel too lonely when the youngsters go away for their holidays. When this is all over you both will have to come to Tassie with me for a holiday.

This not having a letter for 8 weeks from me is a bit too hot, cos I’ve written once a week almost without fail. It’s too bad. By the way it wasn’t in Alexandria that I was in hospital – it was Lemnos Island. Of course I couldn’t say that in the letter.

Good Gracious Mum surely you didn’t cut me off my xmas box just cos I was sent to Eng? And I was looking forward to it too. But never mind it will do for Easter, so please take the hint _ _ _.

Dad your very welcome xmas card to hand. Yes thanks I’m getting fit fast – too fast for my liking _ _ _.

Yes I think that it will all be over next xmas & that we will all be home in dear old Australia again. By Jingo I do hope we are anyway. I hope that the shop is doing a lot better now & also that you take things steady. I think Dad that both you & Mum have done quite enough work. I’m glad that Mum & the girls are looking well & I hope that you are OK too – you do not say.

Thank you so much Eric & Gordon for that lovely pr of boots, also for the compliment that such a small pair convey. I notice too that they are the Austn Military boots, I’m sorry to say that I will not be able to wear them coz they’re far too small. I take a broad six & not a small 2. Please note that for future reference.

To You Rita also I must send my thanks & warmest appreciation of your very nice & welcome little card. I hope that you has as good & as happy a xmas as you wished for me. It’s a bonny little card & so appropriate. I don’t think that you’ll have to post xmas greetings to me next xmas, you’ll probably be able to give them first hand.

As for you Ida, I read your card with very mixed feelings. I don’t quite understand why a sister that I’ve loved & cherished every day of her 16 years, hoping her brother is soon back in the firing line! And then you have no sooner got that off your chest than you tell me to keep my pecker up! How the ___ can I. My word my girl I’ll scruff you when I get back. I’ll drag you all over Kogarah & up & down the steps in the GPO by the hair for half a day. Thanks all the same. My great love for you & those adorable freckles on your nose that I’m so fond of kissing, compel me against my better judgment to forgive you, so I’ll let you continue corresponding with me.

Your very nice card also to hand Viola & is duly appreciated. I really do not know what I can say about it. I’ve used up all my eloquence on E & G, R & I. I feel in far too good a humor to say nasty things & I’m afraid of repeating myself if I say nice things. In short I was ### pleased to get it.

I ought to get mail from you all fairly regularly now that you are sending them here care of the H.C. I wish to goodness all the delayed letters would hurry up & arrive.

I must close now with tons of love from your loving son & bro Bert.






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