My dear Family,
I can actually write you a letter without having anything to acknowledge. The mail has failed to arrive today, so that is probably the reason, still I feel quite virtuous in getting a letter off in the circumstances.
There is no news. Weather fine & cold & a gorgeous moonlight night which will probably mean a frost. Very unpleasant in the early morn when I am woken at 5 a.m. to toddle round. It is quite extraordinary how I get up at such an unearthly hour quite gratuitously. Some of the officers of the Battalions who are relieving us have been here to-day to look round & more will be coming to-morrow.
We strafed the Hun pretty fairly last night & this morning, as he was supposed to be relieving a deserter having come over a little way down the line the other day & said so, but I doubt if we did any good unless the guns caught him in the woods behind. The deserters when they come are very useful & give a lot of information.
The Huns have had a lot of aeroplanes over lately & there have been a few fights in the air, but nothing really exciting & in fact they have been rather left to themselves.
I have just got your letters in spite of all. Mothers of the 18th & Cecily’s of the 17th both very interesting. What luck for Odd to go North.
I am so glad Cecily can manage the pram alone.
Little news in this letter so little commentary is in order! Peirs continues to man the trenches, amused at himself for being able to wake up at 5AM and be relatively functional. Sleeping in a dug-out, primus stove and all, still had to be uncomfortable, and like a camper, Peirs is able to adjust to new sleeping patterns. More interesting, is the fact that this is his first mention of German deserters coming across into British lines and providing them with information about the enemy. He also mentions enemy aeroplanes flying above. At his stage of the war planes were mostly doing observation of enemy trenches and not being used for bombing.