25th August 1916
Arthur is thankful for the arrival of the post and a parcel from Dollie’s sister Amy. The weather is oppressive and threatening, with a downpour earlier in the evening – and the rain has started again. Most distressing is the news from Malta of the death of Arthur’s eldest sister, Inez – he fervently hopes “that the news may be a mistake – and so am eager for news to-morrow. I’ve a wonder and admiration & respect for any one at such a time”.
Arthur to Dollie
Friday even. 9.45 pm
… I’ve heaps of letters to thank you for, you sweetheart – those of Sunday & Tuesday came yesterday: Mondays didn’t reach here till to-day… Amy sent me a parcel with a cake and some biscuits: it was decent of her. Lloyd sent me a note. He is coming up to-morrow to spend Saturday night here.
Sweetheart I am upset to hear of the news from Malta. I’m still hoping that the news may be a mistake – and so am eager for news to-morrow. I’ve a wonder and admiration & respect for any one at such a time. To think of poor Inez [Cassar]. It’s awfully hard to realise. I am still hoping for good news.
To-day has been very oppressive & threatening & this evening it rained hard and it is raining again now. This morning we were on parade until after 12, then COs memoranda, lunch & parade again. All this evening I have been overhauling my official papers. I also pow-wowed my Officers & NCOs.
I hope you’ll forgive a shortish letter, dear one. I’d have written before only Bert Pearce & Ely have been in. Bert asked after you all at 45 [Compayne Gardens].
To-morrow we have to be up at 5.45 & shall be out all day. Our training area lies about 4 miles away.
I’ve found out late post leaves early in the morning now. Good news – for I’m awfully busy all day & the evening is the only time one gets to write…