2nd November 1916 – 11.15am
Arthur has now left the docks for the relative comfort of the South Western Hotel. The latest news is that they expect to sail this evening. He has tried to phone but there is a delay of one and a half hours getting through to London: “Everything seems so strange without you, darling. I feel as if I were having rather a bad dream”.
Arthur to Dollie
South Western Hotel, Southampton, 11.15am
… They have let us off at last but we have to report again at 2.30: so I am afraid that there is no chance of seeing you. I’ve put in a telephone call; but they say that there is a delay of an hour and a half getting through to London. So I shall stay here and have an early lunch & wait for it. The weather is pretty fine – there was one very heavy shower but it has cleared again. Our movements of course dear, are still very uncertain but I should think we shall be off this evening at the latest.
My thoughts are full of you, little one. I do wonder what you are doing now. How did you get on yesterday afternoon: did you meet Elsie? & what did you do? Will you ask Nannie to send my things on as soon as possible if she hasn’t done so already please. I am with a Sapper of the Division. This was his first leave for 8 months.
I shall be wild if they put us off again at 2 ½ o’clock. Southampton is getting dull; as any place is without you. Everything seems so strange without you, darling. I feel as if I were having rather a bad dream: & that soon, I’d wake up to be with you…