3 January 1917

A good many thing s have happened since I last wrote, & have been the cause of considerable delay in writhing.   Soon after my last epistle several things occurred which led the Brigadier to imagine that all was not quite as it should be with the Regiment & one of the Coy Commanders was given a bit of a rest. This left them short of officers so I offered to go & look after a Company for a bit.  I did so during a tour of four days in the trenches & thoroughly enjoyed myself.   I got of course muddied up to the eyes & had to swim in places, but we did a lot of work & hardly slept at all – net result I am feeling extraordinarily fit.  I am still commanding the Company but shall cease to do so in a day or two & become Adjutant.  Allen’s transfer papers have hot come through yet but he is giving up the job in any case.   There is no denying that things are not quite as they should be, & the Brigadier lays the blame for half the trouble at the door of Allen.  Perhaps he is right.   In any case I am being put in to get things straight if possible. It will not be an easy job – as I shall be almost alone.   The C.O. is a wonderful man, but his ideas on discipline are not in accordance with those generally accepted, & though admirable for the old T.F. are of little avail when dealing with some of the people that we get here just now.   Meanwhile the Brigadier has just gone on leave, so we are left in peace for a day or two at all events. Sandall is commanding the Brigade.  I am sorry that you will now imagine that I am undergoing much more danger in my new job than before.   It is not so, & even if it were one cannot help being somewhat of a fatalist.   While there are shells about one may get hit anywhere, even in the softest of jobs.   I shall take as much care of myself as ever, & hope for the best.  Bosworth is going on leave tomorrow & will get me one or two things that he considers necessary for cleaning the strappings on my bags.  don’t know whom I shall have as my batman in his absence.

I see the Honours list are out & that Kemp’s son has got a M.C. Several people in the Brigade have also got them, but unfortunately no one in the 5th. However they cannot all have them.

There is really nothing very interesting happening just at present but I will write & give you an account of my first impressions as Adjutant.  I expect I shall get long all right somehow.

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