Item 04: Walter Bruce Rainsford diary, 3 January 1917-31 December 1917 - Page 52

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[Page 52]

are so green and the fields either full of ripe, waving wheat or covered with soft fresh grass. We are occupying some old farm buildings and on the other side of the surrounding hedge is a little forest intersected by narrow footpaths. Yesterday I gathered a few blackberries from the thickets in the little wood and also from nearby hedges, but they were not like Australian blackberries.

Our tumbledown old farm is owned by Belgians – uncouth old people who only speak Flemish. There are numerous small, dirty children – these speak French as well as Flemish. The latter language is only a mixture of German & Dutch – a horrible jargon.

I have just had a book lent to me by a chap – "It happened in Egypt" and now I am back again at Alexandria, out by the old Sphinx, on the dry old desert etc! Egypt never exercised that spell over me that seems to grip some people, but it is very interesting to read books about the country after fourteen months in the land of the Pharaohs. I only had a letter

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