Ensival, 19 December 1918

I have just crept with trepidation into a great white bed in the house of a Belgian gentleman.  Another soldier and I spent the evening with M., Madame and Mademoiselle, partaking of an excellent supper of tender steak, vegetables, beer and tart.  Chatted over books of views, maps and things (Madame speaking a little English), drank a bottle of good wine carefully lifted from the cellar, and in a word, been “bon vivants”.  Perhaps they mistook us for officers.  My companion, determined to pass one comfortable night, had knocked on the door and asked for a bed, with this result.

The trek today was miserably cold, up the valley of the Vesle through scenery in places extremely picturesque, the river plunging through a rocky gorge with quaint villages clinging to its sides; and ruined castles perched on promontories of rock.  In one place a beautiful chateau stood upon the opposite bank with a stone bridge and bridgehouse all to itself.

Now for white sheets next to the skin – “home au nature”.  We had stacked all our lousy clothes in a far corner of the room, and rinsed ourselves out of the wash basin.

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