Hal Winters' War
Diary No.1 goes from 18th October 1914 to 4th April 1915
HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No (1)
Henry F Winters
No.2 Field Amb
Aust. Exped. Force
18th Oct. Sunday.
Arrived on troopship Wiltshire about 4 p.m. Very merry night but not like Sunday. Fun with Hammocks.
19th Oct. Reveille at 6.
Breakfast:- Porridge Milk, sausages. Good. Sailed at 8 a.m. Wrote mother. Through the rip at 12 noon. Sent back 2 men L. Horse with measles. Got a bit giddy in afternoon. Good tea. Slept on Boat deck with Miles McCabe.
20th. Not much work. Nothing doing – no ship sighted. Slept on Boat deck.
21st. Bandage practice & medical inspect. Saw two whales in morning & 1 in afternoon.
22nd. Quiet Day. Whale abt. 6 p.m.
Smoke showing over port quarter stern. Had friendly go with Keith Barrett; walloped me. Started to write mother.
23rd. Nothing new. Slept in showers.
24 Land in sight. High cliffy islands. Anchored abt. 9.a.m. Albany. No parades in afternoon. Hospital duties. Wrote Mr Wilson, Vera & May King & mother.
25th. Hospital orderly. Quiet day. Wrote Grace Dowling & Maud Petersen.
Wiltshire 18 Orvieto 3 Euripides14
Medic 7 Southern 27 Argyllshire 8
Ascanius 11 Pera 4 Shropshire 9
Star of Eng 15 Armadale 26 Afric 19
Geelong 2 Saldanha 12 Benalla 24
Pt. Lincoln 17 Katuna 13 Rangalina 22
Karroo 10 Hymettus 1 Star of Vic.16
Marene 21 Suffolk 23 Honorata 20
Clan McC 6 Anglo Egyp25 Omrah 5
(Sydney in L margin, Melbourne in R)
Frank Pifferer Chas. Johnston
Val Peverell Andy Vale
Bill Hard Jack Edments
- Chapman Chas Mayne
HFW Stan Low
Rup. Hammett Cedric Newey
Keith Barrett Billy Millard
6 Storeman’s Fatigue. Appendicitis opp.
7 Paid in morning. 14/- & tobacco. Holiday in afternoon. 2nd Typhoid Inoculation. Very warm. Rumour about cruiser sunk off Valparaiso. Crown & Anchor man arrested. Read Barrier. Paid for mess orderly 4/- & washing 2/-
Boxing gloves for A.M.C. brought out. Fine sight of phosphorus round propeller. Fire & Collision alarm 8.30 p.m. Slept on Parade Deck.
HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No (3)
8th Sunday Church Parade 11 am. Very hot all day. Funeral Service on board Euripedes – Tetanus. Hospital 6 pm. Slept on Parade Deck. Started Kenilworth.
9th. 12.30 a.m. On Duty in Hospital till 3.30. Some excitement in morning when Sydney, Minotaur & Jap ship went full steam towards West. Reports of German wireless messages intercepted. Great excitement & rejoicing when news arrived of sinking of German cruiser & armed merchant man. Utmost joy when the report was confirmed, and the German boat known to be the “Emden”, some-what tempered by the news of 2 men killed & 13 wounded aboard the Sydney. After guns had been cleaned & manned & put under guard.
Longa parolo Kuna R.F.G. pui la reveno – tra americko K.C. (Esperanto = "Long conversation with R.F.G. about returning home via America K.C".)
All lights out at 7.15, and special guard put on to prevent throwing overboard of floating rubbish etc.
10. Nothing special. Still very hot.
Started semaphore. Cesigis liphararo (Esperanto = "Stopped growing moustache")
11th. Very hot. Hammocks aired. Lecture on camp sanitation. Holiday in afternoon. Ruling dress fashion – Boots, towel and hat. Hospital 6 pm. Wrote aunt Laura.
12. Hospital all day. Night 11.40 – 2.20. Report of 100 cases of typhoid on Orvieto. Orvieto steamed N. followed by Jap. Nescias Kialon (Esperanto = "Unaware reason")
Armed ship Empress of Asia passed on way to relieve “Sydney” of German prisoners at Cocos Is. Crossed the line at 7.50 p.m.
13. All N.Z. ships came through the lines & out to front. Eng. Cruiser joined. No parade after 9.30 am. Rain. During discussion at next table of Ruskin, Shakespeare etc. “Yes I think Shakespeare’s a good book.” Burns reading by Sabellierg “For a that & a that” – accent on “that”.
14. No parade after 11.30 a.m. mail to be collected tomorrow 6 a.m. for Columbo. Wrote to Aunt Laura, Mother, Mrs Stubbs, Patty & Sid Low. Started French. On Guard at 5.45 p.m. Report of beaching of Konigsberg. Duty 10 till 12 midnight.
HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No (4)
15th. November Sunday
On Guard 4 am till 6 am. Sydney and Empress of Russia came up through the lines about 5 a.m. Land in sight as soon as light. Rugged mountains. (sketch)
Numbers of outrigger “sampans”, even far out. Porpoises. Waterfront looks fine, specially a long stretch of grass on the right, extending from a large new brick building, probably a hotel, to a low white building. About the centre is a tall tower, next a yellow stone building almost rectangular every way. Next is, apparently, the Admiralty Building, flying the Union Jack, a tile or brick building, with verandah all round, & a lawn to the front of and between it and an imposing concrete building. To the left is the breakwater & wharves, crowded of course with shipping – all grey. N.Z. troop ships & various men o’war. Further to the left, cocoanut palms and beach fortifications etc.
At about 2. p.m. a gun was fired from bridge of Orvieto on which all the ships dropped anchor, and all the sampans scuttled for land like hens, except one, which getting in our lee, lost all wind & caused much merriment by their efforts to paddle away. 5 niggers & one white sweater.
Then came a cross between a miniature Spanish galleon & a Chinese junk. Most picturesque.
About 3 pm. a 5 funnel Russian Cruiser steamed past our stern, with steam launch beside. Soon after 4 p.m. at fall of the tide, the sea became gradually yellow, the circle widening, but showing well defined. Estas du blink buoys, (Esperanto = "Two flashing buoys") to seaward, red & white & the lighthouse shows 3 flashes & then blank during the time of 4. (sketch) The lights of the town & ships look fine.
Konigsberg blocked in West African river by sinking of colliers across entrance.
16th. Still in port. The butterflies are numerous & of varied colors. Heard officially today that Earl Roberts had died of pneumonia from chill while inspecting troops in France. 5 Niggers alongside begging. Aired blankets. Started German.
17th. Two boatloads of niggers alongside, diving for money and off ships boats etc. Could swim some. Signed for uniform & equip. Weighed anchor at 11.20 a.m, land out of sight about 1 p.m. going about 10 knots still. Cruiser Hampshire passed & went ahead at 3.30 p.m. Hospital 6 p.m. Much cooler.
HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No (5) (Nov.)
18th. Hospital all day. Night 11.40 – 3.20. Very bad throat & cough. Temp up to 101.4
19th. Lecture on haemorrhage not much food.
20th. Spud sorting fatigue. Finished “Cruise of the Cachalot”. Paid 14/-
Since entering the tropics there has been almost invariably, each night, a shower, more or less heavy. Sun rises abt. 6 & sets abt. 5.30.
21st. Started “Histy of Aust’sia”. Fine concert in evening. Lecture a.m. “Treatment of wounds”. 1st Haemorrhage 2nd Infection 3rd Shock 4th Pain. No morphia in abdominal stabs. Drain deep stabs, or open up. Two men overboard from “Shropshire”.
Cruiser went across played searchlight. Numbers of lifebuoys. Started fish for breakfast.
22nd Sunday Divine Services in morning. Read “Sky Pilot” Wish I could turn round & go home for Christmas. Doing average 250 Knots a day. The numerous purple
jelly fish are beautiful. Flying fish very numerous, specially like flight of starlings. “Hampshire” returned & took “Orvieto” forward. Latter then fell back into line again.
Yarn with (code in morse, semaphore & greek letters = "Jack Stubbs").
Cough nearly better.
23rd. Sacotra in sight about 8.30 a.m. Very high, rugged hills & mountains volcanic in appearance, meeting the clouds. Sand hills and shrub – one would say something like ti-tree, but all seeming most desolate, in sight all day. Cruiser took mails – closed at 2.30 p.m. Wrote mother. Orvieto & Wiltshire ran ahead some distance to give off mail. Paid Mess orderly 3/9. Hospital 6 p.m. Night 11.40 – 2.20. Bad pneumonia case. Lecture on treatment of Disloc’n.
24th. Hospital all day. Amputation of malformed toe at 11 a.m., after a couple of cuts pretty well to the bone, in response to the Doctors “How does that feel?”, “Well! It’s a bit tight.”, meaning a piece of gauze tied in order to pull aside the toe. “Wiltshire”
HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No. (6)
now flagship as Orvieto has gone on, therefore in middle line. Great number of brownish-red jelly-like animals up to 10 ft. long & 6 inches in diameter floating past. Good concert. Read “On an Australian Farm”. Near sundown a light was noticeable to port & some said they saw land.
25th. Land in sight to starboard. Lecture on Epilepsy, Apoplexy & Sunstroke. Came up to very steep mountain at Aden. Anchored abt. 4 p.m. in 10 fathoms. Rest of fleet further in coaling. To the right of mountain is a round tank cut out of the rock. Then comes a signal station and lighthouses, with a few small bldgs. On top of a peak to the left is a wireless station, seemingly plastered on. At the base is a tall mast, & further to the left on a slight slope the barracks. Then the harbour. On the extreme right, in the distance, apparently some houses. On the left of the harbour, is a high steep hill, with some sand slopes & inlets.
26th. Just before reveille we weighed and went down
the line & away to land in sight to starboard the whole time – a succession of hills – and later on, to port. Lecture on Unconsciousness, Sunstroke, Alcoholic Poisoning, congestion & apoplexy. About 4 p.m. we passed a settlement on the starboard with a lighthouse & 2 or 3 vessels in harbour. On the port, the mountains were flat topped, specially three, two large & a smaller one – which showed out like tables. Sgt Kennedy enquiry still going on.
27th. Passed a high rocky island, about 9.45 a.m. with a lighthouse plastered on top of one of the peaks. Slept on seamen’s washhouse.
28th. News of our disembarkation for Egypt. May see something of interest there & see England “after the ball”. Paid 14/-. Lecture on poisons.
29th. Sunday. Divine Service 11 a.m. II Timothy II. Hospital 6 p.m. All books to be returned to library. Long yarn with (Morse code = MILES). On duty 9 – 11.40 pm. Sherman just opened beer. Cork landed him in the eye & by the time he’d finished dancing about every drop was spilt – over everything. Sighted revolving light on port 11pm
enclosed & sandy flats on the right. In the bay, to see a smart tug steered by a quaint figure, fat & unshaven, in a flowing pink night dress seems as curious as a smartly dressed young man, dark skinned, with collar & cuffs & well cut sac suit, but with a scarlet fez cap. A porpoise in the middle
On the way through we passed some native soldiers & also of a Lancashire regiment. On the left side of the canal at first, is shallow water, & the same on the right further down. A railway runs right along on the African side. Not far from Said is a station, & opposite nearby, four oil tanks, two Vacuum Co & two Asiatic Oil Co.
2nd Dec. A number of engineering works are on the right, & docks etc. on the left. A fine building with two domes in tiles is the canal offices. The rest of the water front seems to be hotels, a specially fine one being the Casino Palace, the last building on the Mediterranean side. Then comes the De Lesseps Statue. We anchored at 8 a.m. opposite a tall signal tower, about 200 yards from the casino. Coming in we passed 5 warships French & English, & 2 torpedo crafts.
Between 3 & 4 p.m. the N.Z. ships are passing. During the morning, the Wiltshire took in coal, the coolies working like furies & yelling like a dozen Eastern markets. We received a mail this afternoon – letters from Mother, Trix, Muriel & Mr Paul
6th. Dec. Storeman’s Fatigue – no work. Some Indian Troops arrived. Wrote Gus Priestly & Mother. Wrote Mrs Rust
7th. Dec. Lecture on Bullet wounds of abdomen. If through alimentary canal, don’t remove, just lay still. Up anchor at 7.37 for Alexandra
8th. Rain turned us off horseboxes. Dreamt that mail came aboard, and I saw my address at the bottom in (Morse code & Esperanto = "Muriel's writing")
When they had called 4 letters for me, I said to Frank “There’ll be another at least for me, one from mother” & there was. 6 altogether. Then a bit later, I thought Mavis had come in on a Sunday morning & was waking me for breakfast – but it wasn’t – it was Frank waking me because it was raining.
Dropped in Alexandra harbour at 11.30 a.m. Most noticeable were the lighthouses, half a dozen of them, and lattice-work guides for channels, well over a dozen. On the extreme right a rocky point juts out. Near are some clumps of palm trees. Then Yellowstone houses & shipping & 4 large oil tanks
Turning to the right, we went down a semi-respectable street & then through a couple of smelly little native lanes – stalls right across the footpath. Then we took a cab – sort of brougham - & drove for 1 ½ hours through all parts of the city. The sight of a tall, dignified Arab(?), mounted on a tiny donkey, with his legs a few inches from the ground, moved us unanimously to mirth. Our heads were soon dizzy with “piastres, milliesnes, sheelings and francs”.
(Mixed code in French, Esperanto, English, using Morse, Semaphore and Greek alphabets =
"The impure women are dreadful. They stand at the door and call out. The brothel keeper beckons to the young chaps 'Hello', 'Come on!' 'Come on'!")
A doorway every ten feet. We went to all the lowest parts of the town, & the better, too, tho’ this latter seems like Little Collins St.
terminus to camp, arriving about 3 a.m. Turned in at 4 a.m. under the stars. We would have slept if it had been under the sand, I think. During a stop on railway journey we threw some money onto opposite platform, & the porters joined in the ensuing scramble, using their lamps.
13th. Sunday Breakfast with sand sauce – sand everywhere. No wash till 3 p.m. Laid horse lines etc. After breakfast went to pyramids Bought pseudo old coin 4p. Found small pottery. Pyramids some size. Guides beastly nuisance. Oranges cheap. Excavations very interesting. Went up great pyramid in afternoon, reached top as sun set. Coffee on top. Wonderful view. Sphynx down below. Race on donkeys from foot of pyramids. Numbers of old inscriptions on pyramids. On 20 ft square on top hardly room for another name & put mine.
14th. Spent day placing stone boundaries & tent pitching. Apportioned to tents.
3rd pyramid. Slide down a shaft into a chamber in the middle of the pyramid & fifty or so feet underground then through into the queen’s chamber & the children’s – 6 of them. 2 sarcophagus.
23rd. Stretcher drill in morning. Route march round pyramids in afternoon. Bought 1 small scarab P.T. ½ & 1 large P.T. 1 ½.
24th. Stretcher drill. 2 o’clock leave. Frank & I went to Cairo. 1st a hot bath & then dinner at the new Khedivial. The town seems more up to date than Alexandra tho’ we didn’t see very much. We got down in the native quarter. Home just on 11 p.m.
25th. Church parade in morning & then holiday. Went up Great Pyramid – writing this on the top. The Light Horse out past the Sphynx seem like insects – The sphynx itself seems small. The antics of horses passing camels are amusing. The pyramids of Sakara are to the S.E. The floodwaters of the Nile are half dried up – Cairo is to the E.S.E. The Arab villages seem like islands with many palm trees. The varying manner in which the men arrive on top here is interesting – some with blasphemy – others enlarging on the beauties of “a pint” just at the moment. Some paying attention to the view, others being most occupied in restoring normal respiration
The shadow of the pyramid lengthens perceptibly as the sun goes down. There are 6 other pyramids to be seen in the middle distance to the left of Sakara.
Wrote Mother & Vera.
26th. Route march around 3rd pyramid. Leave from 12 noon. Went up Musky St as far as Old Cairo. The old city looks & is absolutely dead. In the foreground are the tombs. As we went down the widow’s & mourner’s cries sounded
HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No. (12)
most melancholy. Our guide, who had just “come” from nowhere, was positive in his belief of the devil’s down there & when an extra loud cry came from one of the “dead Arabs”, he turned & ran up hill, but we brought him back & he took us through the lanes in the twilight. The feeling of the place came upon us with a most real feeling of sympathy for those women in black, with black hoods & face coverings, returning at evening to mourn.
The view from a sandhill between the two Cairo’s is wonderful – The sun setting with fluffy clouds & the pyramids showing up on the skyline. The minarets & mosques of Cairo for a foreground & the Citadel on the left.
Coming down to Cairo again, we tasted the native confectionery at the street corner. Quite the best we’d ever had – any of us. Then through a bazaar off a lane up a bystreet – with a magnificent stock of silks, antique jewelry etc. Bought necklace for Mavis – hardly worth sending home. Went about the city till 9.30 & then to camp. Frank arrived home at 5.15 a.m.
27th. Church Parade. Sleepy afternoon Very fine service by Col. Unsworth in evening.
28 On Bulk drug store sorting cases etc.
30 “ Another fine address
by Col. Unsworth.
31st. Went into tomb near 2nd Pyramid without guide. Some wonderful pictures on the walls. Seems to be a list of sacrifices. Goats, Bulls, Fish, Cane, and others gracefully carved, Tea at Mena Café. Went to 4 L.H. in evening. Went to 5th infantry about 11 p.m. Great rejoicings there. One, a small Welshman just far enough to be a bit quarrelsome, loudly complaining to everyone “I wenta th’ door there, an’ they tol’ me. No Welshmen admitted. Th’ Irish, Scotsch an Welsh all fi’ for Brittin. Then everyone marched round, with the pipes, bands & tins, pulling everyone out of bed & generally rejoicing
To bed about 1 a.m.
Friday 1st Jan. 1915.
Worked at Drug Store all day.
2/1/15 On leave in afternoon. Tea at Santi Café. Nothing doing.
3/1/15 On Hospital all day
4/1/14 Wrote Mavis & F Reynolds.
6 “ Letter from Mother, Mrs Stubbs, Mabel Fuller.
8 “ 9 eggs & 4 sausages
Wrote S. S. Boys
9 “ “ Mother. 3 operations
“ Laura, Alf Runnell
19. Route march through Arab Village, sewerage systems rotten. Read three times “No man must cut down or injure any trees near to or in the camp”. One looks around and sees in the distance one tree – the rest – sand!
Wrote to Maney.
20th. Paid 14/- less 1/- for kit. Went to Mena house with 3 patients. Leave in evening. Went in with Frank. Went round lower native quarters (Mixed code of Morse, Greek & Semaphore = "Women in cages").
In a narrow street we came to a small crowd and, pushing into it, found a tom tom accompanying a native dancing most happily, without any apparent reason. The music in some of the cafes is really ear splitting. Some have a kind of bagpipe – multiplied by a hub brake – other an instrument apparently by a flute out of a cornet – made of wood and producing a noise more nerve racking than a tin with resined string through. One can realise why the inhabitants of the town came out at the call of the Virginian’s music.
by cherubim. A cut glass chandelier hangs from the centre of the dome. In the sanctuary are numbers of devotional paintings and crucifixes, and some braziers. A very fine silver bass relief of St George, with ornaments on a cord across the front and lights floating in coloured liquid is to the left of the sanctuary.
Going from there, we walked to the Mosque of Amr, the first Mohameddon to get to Egypt. Concerning one of the pillars, our guide, although a believer, was incredulous of the fact that Mohammed whipped it and it flew over as a present to Amr from Syria, even though the mark of the whip is there.
Getting into a lucky carriage we drove over the site, as the guide said, of ancient Babylon. Here, there are many places from which soil for manuring is taken.
After being followed for 3 or 4 hundred yards by a young woman, wailing for “backchiche”, we arrived at the tombs of the Mamelukes. The Mamelukes became rather strong for the ruling sultan, so he devised a scheme. Having invited 300 of the chiefest to dine he had them killed as they rode in. The last, seeing signs of slaughter escaped by jumping over the wall, at a spot shown to us by the guide
HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No. (15)
near the Mosque of Mohammed Ali, jumped off the horse as it landed, and, although it was killed, escaped himself, and became ancestor of the new Sultan now reigning.
The tombs show wonderful samples of bronze work & inlaid work.
From there we drove to the Mosque of Sultan Hassan.
In Napoleon’s invasion of Egypt the French took the lamps that hung from the chains – 100 or so – some 100 ft or more in length. The dome is most imposing, tho’ it was dark at the time. In the front is the marks of cannon fired by the French soldiers at riotors who were taking refuge there in 1797.
It is part built of Caroca, the Pyramid casing.
The Citadel, which we next visited is on the top of a hill, a solid fortress.
Inside is the Mosque of Mohamed Ali, otherwise Citadel Mosque or the Alabaster Mosque.
In the courtyard of this is what appears to be a large water pitcher, fastened to the floor. The guide calls through a keyhole in it, and on putting ear to the hole, one hears the echo roaring within. It is, in reality, a well
100 metres deep, supplying the fountain, a large structure in the centre, carved & decorated 20 ft diam. for the triple washing of those who pray 5 times a day, 4 am, 12, 3 pm, 5 pm & 6.30 pm.
From the courtyard we went to the dome roofed interior. One enormous centre dome and 4 half domes around the central, with the name of Allah & that of Mahomet.
The whole floor – some 240 ft or so diameter, is carpeted from Turkey with a great number of electric lamps in a circle & three cut glass chandeliers.
Most of the walls is of amber alabaster and when one holds a light on the other side of a half pillar in the wall it shows through. Just outside is the place from where the last Mameluke jumped.
Meeting again our guide, who had been unable to enter the Citadel where the furloughed Indian troops are, of whom two died the same day – we took tram up Sharia el Mohammed Aly, to the Gasbekiah Gardens, dismissed the guide, had tea, and wandered
HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No. (16)
up Monsky St, had some sweetmeats & then through the native quarters. Assisted in bringing home one of the fellows fighting drunk. Altogether most profitable. (mixed code = Forty Piastres).
Wrote Mrs Stubbs
23 On the brake in afternoon.
24th. Arranged for trip to Sakkara and was put on hospital duty (mixed code = Venereal ?arg).
Went to communion with Ray in morning.
25. Hospital. AMC & 4 L Horse concert.
26 “ Wrote Miss Smith
Started 48 hours clearing of hospitals.
28 “ Frank & I in the evening at 9.45 went to 2nd pyramid with intention of climbing by moonlight. No trouble as far as the casing. After a bit of searching we got onto the casing & began to ascend, When some 20 feet up, decided to return a few feet to test possibility & ease of descent. Found it sufficiently hard to warrant retreat. There would be no chance if a foothole or handhold
gave way. A drop of 20 or 30 feet onto rocks & certainly bouncing further.
29th. Leave. Went to Heliopolis. Palace Hotel, now a hospital. Is the 3rd largest in the world. That & the whole city was built 7 years ago by a company. All buildings uniform & of concrete. Streets wide & at right angles. Fine pillars to verandahs – granite. Met people of American Mission. Got scarf & blouse length for mother.
30th. Hospital all day
31st. “ “ Washing. Wrote Mother
1st. Feb. Monday. Off Hospital duty. Wrote piu (= about) Esperanto to Egyptian Mail
2nd. Lecture on fractures. Route march & lecture in 3rd pyramid temple on burns etc.
3rd. put up tents. Pay 14/,
Chess with KB
4th. Crook pass to Museum. Ghezirch Gardens very fine. Lying in shade of shrub with birds
One goes down a slope into underground galleries that extend for 200 feet. There are 24 enormous sarcophagi for the sacred bulls. 23 of blue-green granite, some 6ft X 9 X 6 deep and a foot thick, and one specially large of red granite (all polished & carved). One wonders how these could have been got down here, and one striking thought is the fearful waste of labour just for bulls.
We next went down a well by means of a circular staircase of 119 steps 8 ins ea Reaching the bottom we wander through galleries & into tombs & large chambers, the walls of which are covered with carvings. These extend right under a pyramid. Passing through the village of Sakhara, where all the population turned out to greet us, we went through fields of “bermese”, a kind of Lucerne, meeting returning labourers we came to Rameses II
The scenery reminded one of the 1st verse of Grays Elegy. The statue of Rameses was 45 feet long, It is finely finished & smoothed. 50 or 60 yards away is a sphynx and further another prone statue of Rameses of red granite. These are in a palm plantation.
Coming back through the village a native of the many with “something to sell”, offered what
met by a dragoman, who was willing to show me round for a reference, as I was British. “This man Michael John”. He took and introduced me to “Pater Tadroos” and numerous others (names on 2nd last page), who made me most welcome. Coffee and cigarettes and a general reception.
Ilia ideo de faranta ajojn estas:- unue fari cigaredon, tram lumigi gin pon omi
(Esperanto = Their idea of doing things is:- firstly get a cigarette, then light it for one).
These people are the finest I’ve met in this city.
One has quite a different feeling with them, from that with which one regards the Mohammedan Arabs, which these Copts regard with hatred & despising.
These are the first Egyptians too who did not take money.
They showed great tact in many small things. One felt they could be trusted.
They all came out to say goodbye, and two beside the dragoman came as far as the tram, in the twilight. Promised to write to them.
Met tourist on tram. Met Ray in Soldier’s Café. Went to Prayer Meeting at American Mission, To Abu Fidail’s Store
I went through the bazaars. The scent bazaars were beaut.
Very interesting were the hollowed stones for crushing spices
(sketch) blue granite.
The boot bazaars are most interesting. Went to Amer. Mission Prayer Meeting. Coming home arranged with Ray Thornton that this night next year he should come out to our place for the evening. Thursday, 24th Feb ’16.
26th. Quiet day. Went to showers. Wrote Muriel,
27th. Wrote to Mr Campbell & Uncle Ferna & mother.
Rode some horses to water. Realize I can’t ride near as well as Scaddan or Wooton.
28th. Quiet Day. Cook’s guard at night.
Aeroplane went over at 10.45 p.m. Wrote Juon Box,
1st. Mar, S-no Veronesi venis nor min viziti. (Esperanto = Mr Veronesi came to call on me). We went in together.
2nd. Issued with two more gift shirts. Officers mess cleared out (sending stuff home)
3rd. Field Day. Picture show with boys in evening.
4th. Went to Cairo with S’no
8th. Hospital, 7 a.m. – 4.30 p.m. Wrote Mrs Coleman.
9th Hospital. Wrote W. Matthews
10th. “ Letters from Trix, Grace Dowling & Mabel Fuller.
11 Hospital. Letters from Mother, Mr Paul, Gus Priestley, Vera & Lucy Charles.
12th. Went into Cairo. Round Monsky etc.
13th. Hospital. Wrote Mr Stretton.
14th. Wrote Mother & Miss Jenkins. Letters from Muriel Emsly Boms & George Lockyer. Wrote Wal Meyer.
15th. Wrote Miss Kirolli. Full day for mending & washing. In morning went with Charley, Aut, Jock, Andy Vale & Pal Brown to the Sphinx & had photos taken. Letter from Mother
16th Went to Cinema in evening. Coming home we smelt steak & onions. We at once separated & endeavoured to locate the divine aroma. After some scouting we found – essence of sadness – that it was in the barbour’s – the natives tea. With saddened air and depressed mien we returned to camp to comfort our hearts with oranges & walnuts. Rain during night.
17th. Pay. 14/- Marched A & B sec.
(16) see next page
Alf Quinnell & Mrs Peterson.
24 Company drill & Lecturette on taking cover etc.
25th. Q.M. Fatigue. Very curious willy willy taking the dust & smoke up 100 feet & more, keeping it like a thin compact rope of smoke.
26th. Lecture on pressure points & then Company Practice in afternoon in taking cover etc. Millions of locusts near sphinx. One can hear their wings.
27th. Full Holiday. Went through bazaars – amber and goldworking.
Met some more good Coptics in gold bazaar. Bought Yushmak & shoes for Mavis.
28th. Rotten day. Wrote Pte Schofield & Mother. Y.M.C.A. service in evening
29th Monday Hospital – surgical ward.
30th. Man brought in – been in tent for 4 days with so called sprained ankle. Pressure along fibula produce pain in ankle, also any foot movement. Broken fibula. Cleared hospital – filled again in evening
31 Cleared hospital. Easy morning. Wrote Verna
1 April. Nothing doing all day. Dressed dog’s tail.
2nd. General cases. Fairly Easy day.
HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No. (22)
Good Friday. A big riot in Wady el Birka. Shooting and burning of furniture in the streets.
3rd Nothing doing all day. Heard of going. Wrote Mother.
4th Preparations for departure carried on quietly. Last night the fires in the incinerators & the cartridges in them gave 4th of July appearance to the place.
Today the heat of the sun was modified somewhat by a cloud of locusts – bright yellow.
4 – April 1915
End paper notes on page 22b
|HFW War Diary No.1, page spread No. (23)
Back page notes (incl. addresses, medication formula, Arabic phrases)