Sunday (7 October 1917)

We are busy darning socks, altering tunics, collecting gear etc., all excepting the gamblers who sit round one of the tables rattling money and crying out “bust me for a crown!”, “bust me for 6d” as if there were no such thing as drafts either of men or of chill air.  Have been mending puttees as I want to keep the woollen ones as long as possible.

Returned Dombey* to the Y.M.C.A.  The attendant was dumb-founded to find that I had put a paper cover on it, he looked up with admiration and ejaculated, “Well, you’re a gentleman!”.  He said he had a cousin in Nelson, N.Z. and to my astonishment I knew the man well.**

Donald the infuriate and elderly Scot is in great form, being 3 sheets in the wind, and his language is something to listen to.  He believes in simplicity and takes only his boots off when retiring and I must also “prepare to retire” as the drill hath it.

* Likely Dombey and Son, by Charles Dickens.

** Lincoln writes ‘Frank Hornbell’ in the typescript.

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