In the land of nowhere
Canal Zone March 4th 1916
Just a few more line to let you know that your little boy is still well. As you will see by the address we are still here in the land of nowhere and are heartily sick of the stunt. And I am afraid my underwear would improve with a wash some how but this morning we got the “dinkum” that we are leaving here very shortly, very likely tomorrow, back to the Canal, where they have water layed on now so that won't be too bad. There are canteens where a fellow can buy something to eat. I am not looking forward to the stroll though but they have the road to within three miles of the camp, so things will be better.
We have all been there to the railhead this morning and have been fitted out with new rifles (high-velocity).
I wrote a short note to you during the week from Cairo, where I was enjoying a stolen night's rest and refinement in one of Cairo's best hotels but I don't know if you will receive it as we are not allowed to post letters privately.
I got leave to go and get my “tooter” which I received in good order and condition. The band is going again in a sort of a fashion but is not anything to write home about.
We have had some very bad weather lately. For two days we had wind in large lumps, blowing a fierce gale all day long and shifting tons of sand with it, which gets into everything eatable until its uneatable. The sand is bad enough at any time and today the wind is just as bad but coming from the opposite direction.
We had a party of bluejackets out here for a look round the trenches and things but they were very glad to leave again. They went a coupe of hours ago.
We had a gunnery instructor in the tent with us last night, and I don't know how many thousand questions we asked him, but he was a good chap and told us heaps of things. I could have listened to him all night talking on torpedos and such like.
I expected to have been able to send you some more photos this week and have them already printed but the weather has been too bad for fixing and we can not get any ice here like in Heliopolis. It has been too windy for drying but if we don't have too much shifting around next week I might have a chance. Anyhow, you will get them the very first opportunity.
I wonder when Bill will be coming me way. They seem to be keeping him in camp a long time. I suppose he is anxious to get away the same as we were, and when he is away like us, he will want very much to get back.
All the boys are well, both of them as good as ever they were. Ralph is a brown as a walnut stain, and Ernie is putting on fat again.
Hoping you are well, your loving son.