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[Page 65]

a sudden gas alarm. There appear to be a fair number of civilians in the small town notwithstanding its proximity to the front line. They are all selling things to the troops at more or less exorbitant prices and I think would even sell bootlaces in a front line trench if they were permitted to go up. There is plenty of work to do and numerous cases have been admitted and evacuated to Casualty Clearing Stations. They are however so far practically all sick & accident cases – only one man with shrapnel wound & a couple of gassed men.

Thursday, 20th Sept. 1917:-

My 21st birthday! The 18th in Australia, 19th in Egypt, 20th in France and 21st in Belgium. What a variety! Have had no time to think about birthdays – going hard at it all day.

The Australians are in action. This morning early our "B" Section stretcher bearers left us, later in the day "C" bearers followed & then those of "A" Section – all going to do their bit – one hundred and ten men of the best.

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