Item 02: Henry Frederick Wallace Tucker diary, 1 January - 31 December 1916 - Page 183
Thursday 14 September 1916
Col. Fuller around inspecting Camp which is situated on Hill. Posties are built out of Date Palm Sticks & leaves as no Tents are allowed.
General Royston visited the Col. today.
Taube passed over Camp about 7-30 p.m.
Wrote & posted letter to Miss Mitchell.
Building for H.Q. Mess being erected.
Col. Croll over getting evidence regarding the handling of patients who were wounded during Katia Battle.
Col. Fuller & Major Bruxner at Brigade this afternoon.
Friday 15 September 1916
Brigade left at 2-30 a.m. midnight for Hod Gecila where we camped all day. We had to keep well under cover so the Taubes could not see our movements.
Spear pumps are used now for the purpose of getting water quickly for the Horses. A Steel pipe is driven into the ground until the Water is tapped & by suction is drawn up into the trough. This is a great boom owing to the loose nature of the Sand, & the difficulty of digging Holes.
Saturday 16 September 1916
The Brigade left Hod-Gecila at 4-30 p.m. & met artillary & Ambulance a few miles out. We traveled all night so as to get on the outskirts of Mazzar.
It is a refreshing sight to come across different Green Shady clumps of Date palms nestled in among the Hills. These Hods are rich not only in Color but in Fruit also. The growth is prolific, & the bunches of Dates slowly ripening in the Sun harmonizes with the Green leaves perfectly. The Dates are very large & when nearly ripe give forth much sweetness. The Horses are ravenous for the Fruit & the Lads simply gourge themselves with as many as they like.
There are no restrictions & no one to look after the plantations.
The Gov. here are arranging for the Harvesting of the Crops in certain spots, but many thousands of £ will be lost this year in Egypt. After being picked the Dates soon ripen & foment. It can safely be said that plenty of water may be found near the surface anywhere in the vicinity of these groves.