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[Page 247]

shelled, but off we go as soon as the first shell comes, but very soon after the joyful news comes that the Guards are in and are holding the Germans. With that the tension relaxes somewhat. The poor Colonel he has had an anxious day, and he told my tent mate at night that we had no idea how close we were to being prisoner of war (they said the position we were in for a time was something like being inside a horseshoe). All night the staff car remained in readiness in case and we were not allowed to undress. For days the sights of war are everywhere, the roads present a constant stream of troops, artillery, ammunition, provisions etc. etc., and we are surrounded with fresh troops which of course endanger the position of the C.C.S.

I hear that the 4th Division of aussies familiar turned up hate. Of course after a battle the inevitable follows and we truly see the havoc the war plays on these precious human lives of cure and those brave big splendid fellows – the Guards, the Grenadier, the Irish, Scotch, Shropshires, and many others. They were on their way to rest awhile after the Cambrai affair, but it's very terrible to see them coming in like they are and it's a blessing that one cannot stop to think or analyse things. I only know that I am not only nurse but represent to them for the time being their dearest ones, and many a time I find myself going to the marquee flap to hid the tears that will gather and ask for strength to control a distorted face and go back. Then a once bonnie boy with many wounds has just realised what his affliction is for the rest of his life, but with a smile will put out his only hand and say "Sister but you're worth fighting for." Every hour of every day one touched tragedy and the only bright spot that I could see or may be it was the saddest, was the braveness of the boys in their sufferings. As I said before, to work was to live, and I felt the life was like the waves of a rough and stormy sea with a strong deep undercurrent. I do hope I haven't made your hearts ache with telling you these things.

I think it was the 2nd December when in the morning the Night sister greeted me with "Sister I've got an Australian here for you." Then as I was talking

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