Daily Archives: March 19, 2016

19 March 1916

Work has been going on at such tremendous pressure during the last few days that I have absolutely lost count of everything.  I have not the remotest idea when I last wrote but imagine it must have been some time ago.  And yet in spite of all this work nothing of any real interest or importance has happened.  Today has been simply glorious, bright sunlight & warm, a real spring day.  This morning Church parade to which I walked via one or two woods, & across the fields, a most delightful & quite unwarlike proceeding.  The parson could not preach for toffee & chose inappropriate hymns.  One compelled us to say that every evening we pitched our tents a day’s march nearer home.  This seemed very well for those about to go on leave but for the rest of us not quite so realistic.   This afternoon we rode over to see a most extraordinary & interesting demonstration.  Some thirty odd men were put in a trench & told to sit well down in the bottom thereof.  Then another gentleman wearing a tube helmet approached to within nine yards of them with a captured German “flammenwerfer”   with which he proceeded to attack them.  There was a tremendous jet of fire with bright red flame, & thick black smoke, giving out tremendous heat, & making a noise like several hundred express trains.  He tried hard to spray the trench but the liquid became vapour as soon as it caught fire & would not in consequence travel downwards.  The result was that in spite of a thirty yard jet of roaring “liquid fire” thrown at them from thirty feet away, no one in the trench felt anything more than a little warm.  It quite proved to all of us what a ludicrously futile thing the great flame-projector really is.   I have been indulging in a strained ancle for the last few days, & so have not visited the trenches again.  There has been plenty to do however back here with maps & other such things of that sort. The ancle is nothing very much & does not prevent my riding.  The country round here is very good & the weather ideal so I usually manage to get an hour or two with a horse sometime or other during the day.