10th May 1916
Poor Arthur has been thwarted in his attempts to write a longer letter to Dollie – as they are doing night work, he falls asleep instead; the fine weather is making the nearby orchard look glorious and Arthur wishes the war would end – so he could be with Dollie; however, he has hopes for leave in a few weeks time; sage words of encouragement for Dollie: “God sends us these trials to test us…”
Arthur to Dollie:
Billets, Wednes. aft: 5.45pm
… To-day your letters of Sunday and Monday came. … I had hoped to get a longer letter off this afternoon, dear – but I must confess that, as we shall be out all night I lay down – & fell asleep. Then the CO wanted to see me on something, about to-night’s working party. We start at 7.
To-day DG has been fine – such a change after yesterday’s pouring rain. We were up at 6 for an informal inspection by the CO at 7. Parade again at 9 until 12; then Coy Orders & lunch.
Oh, darling mine, I wish this war were over. I want to be back with you again, never to leave you. The orchards are beginning to look glorious …
Leave is still going along pretty steadily. I think another 4 go this week. Sammy, I believe, leaves on the 13th by Boulogne. At this rate, dear, my leave should be along within the next fortnight or 3 weeks. I am awfully eager for it. I don’t know whether I shall come by Waterloo or Victoria i.e. Havre or Boulogne, as the allotments vary.
Darling mine, be brave to endure a little longer. Things are awfully hard at times; it seems that they are insupportable, that they will never end. Try & look at things largely – look ahead. God sends us these trials to test us & the metal of our love, as gold is tested by fire…