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Thursday, 18 October 2012

Diary Entry - 17th October, 1917

We march at seven forty a.m., being called at five. The march was not good. There were too many stops, caused by traffic, especially around Aire. Ginger was very fresh and danced the whole way, getting himself into a regular lather. We reached Tannay at about three p.m. and got our lines up in a grassy field, which was better than most of the other batteries. The billets were the worst part as they were scattered all over the country and some of the men's were about half a mile from the lines. We had a most amusing time at dinner - at least one takes it as all in the day's run. We had hard work in persuading an estaminet to let us have a Mess there but eventually they did and we shared a room with the owners. Well, during dinner one of the females gave her young son - or child, anyway - dinner, much to our captain's disgust. However, he seemed to forget we were no longer in England and that France's customs are somewhat different to ours. To add to the delights of the place, a room close by was full of drinking Tommies and they would insist on playing a french penny in the slot machine, which was all out of gear and it made a noise like two children thumping on a piano at the same time.

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