State Library of NSW
Channel, and have been in the danger zone since 25th March.
I shall be glad when we land as the Life-belts are very clumsy which we have been wearing since the danger zone. There are no submarines sighted now, the only danger is floating mines, the destroyers are not very large but very fast and 37 knots now. Our boat is travelling 17 knots per hour. A few days before we met our escort our cruiser was kept busy identifying ships in our route etc. The weather now is very cold, it is worse than winter in Queensland, we have not seen the sun for a whole week. I have struck guard today 2/3/17, the ship is up-side down below docks now, as we reach Devonport to night at midnight. I finish my post at 6 a.m. in the morning, at 7 a.m. it is very dark. We have been issued with a balaclava and scarf in one, and they are very useful now, the only way we can get warm is to put on our overcoats and scarf cap and gloves and then get up in the cold to get seasoned. The whole voyage from Australia has been very calm, no rough weather. We passed Gibralter at 6 p.m. Sunday night last, 24th March, only many hundred miles off, the troops on board had a medical examination this afternoon. Our cruiser is being escorted to Plymouth, she is out of sight by now. The Australian destroyers are much larger than the ones escorting us into port. We all disembark in the morning after breakfast. I am sending a letter like this home, so I want you to do me a favour. Kindly keep this letter until I come back, and then I shall be able to read it once again, and explain the voyage more to you.
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