22-12-1941 Letter from Palestine (3 pages)

 

22/12/41                                                                                               A.I.F. Abroad

 

My Dear Mother,

                              Here I am old Dear, writing to you once more & I will start off by telling you I am as well as ever, & I sincerely hope you are all the same. I received a long welcome letter from you yesterday & one from Till today. I was so pleased to hear all the news from home & the people in my old home town. Mother, I am not clear yet whether you heard me on the Air or not, & you are the main one that I wanted to hear my voice over all the miles of Ocean between us. You have my letter by now making things a little clearer for you about it all. I hope they put it over again for your sake. Little Jim is certainly a busy man these days, but I think before this War is over a few more will be doing a bit more work. Old Sweetheart, I have been a good scorer for presents this few days. A nice cake from Mc Whirters sent by the ladies A.I.F. Welfare Com. at Camooweal, also a £1 of Canteen orders from them. Then a 5/- Canteen Order from the Richmond CWA, a bonzer big fruit cake from my little Cobber out at Lake Nash, Beryl Paine, also a neck warmer from her today, and the one I like to receive best of all, was two lovely parcels from my Darling Mother. Everything was very nice & both your parcels arrived in good order. I am keeping most of the nice things for a blow-out Xmas Day, which you will note is very close now, so you can see I have done very well for myself. I received your long letter the evening of my Birthday & one from my Adeline, so I was very happy that night. It has been raining like the Devil here for the past few days, & I can tell you it is very cold & windy. The nights are very long here in Palestine now, but I donít get troubled with a heavy head from too much sleep. They donít cater for Sleepy Heads in the Army, & my sleep is often disturbed by some silly cow telling me ĎTimeís up Daveí, and then I walk & stand about in the cold night for two hours & watch the stars or clouds & the lights twinkle up & down the road, & look at my watch every ten minutes & so until my two hours are up & then I just seem to get to sleep again & I hear someone stumbling over my mates in the Tent asking for Dave & I blunder out in the night once more & call Hitler & Musso & the Japs all kind of names & this time I might not even look at the Stars or Moon or Clouds or distant lights or anything, only my watch & this time it is every five minutes. And so I do another two hours  & bed once more & hardly close my eyes & I am shaken & shouted at & told Revellie has gone, & a Bull voice outside is calling in the morning air, ĎAll Out A Companyí & that means me also, so once more I go cheerfully out in the Cold Breeze & donít really wake up properly Ďtill I hear my name spoken & I answer "Hear Si"r; & so the long night passes & another begins in the Middle East & presently a big Red Sun rises over the big Rusty Sand-Hills in the East & if it is not raining it soon warms us up & the cold night is soon forgotten.

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If Auntie Jess is with you , give her my fondest Love. D.

 Mumsie, donít send me any more parcels after you receive this letter. The reason, I cannot tell you just now, but I will let you know when to start them again. Tell all my Family & friends the same. One reason, I want for nothing where I am now. The Army feed me extra well three time a day, & there is a Canteen where I can buy Tobacco, Soap, Milk, Lollies, Hot Dogs, & almost everything a man needs. The other reason would surprise you, but I would spoil it by telling, & as I have said I will let you know one way or the other shortly, but you would never guess. Now old Sweetheart I will close for this time, I know now this letter goes the round of the Family, so to them all I send my Love, you will have Sister Nell home with you, she will probably read it for you & many kisses for the lovely parcel Nello. I would love to be able to send you a bushel or two of the lovely Oranges that are going begging here, also that I had a stack of money to buy you all some of the beautiful hand worked Table Centres & what not on sale in the busy Cities.

Now Mother Mine, I will close for this time & hope you & all the family are as well as can be, & Oh, I nearly forgot your precious Chookies, are they laying well, as well bred fowls should? Cheerio Mumsie & I hope to hear from you again soon. You canít imagine how happy your letters make,

                                                                                                            Your loving Son

A special packet of kisses for you Mother.                                                     David.