Dear Grace,

Thanks for your many and numerous interesting letters which I have had from you of late.  I am rather sorry to hear of Khakis bad fortune in becoming a casualty.  I suppose he had been taken by stretcher to the casualty station.  Did he remain there or did he remain on duty like a true Australian Captain?  At present I am billeted on a farm house full of pigs, fouls and small children.  All of which continually wallow in the mire outside and am hanged if I know which is the worst of them.  The pigs grunt and so do the kids.  The fouls make a fuss over one egg.  The village we are in is composed of a main street and a church and a chateau where once upon a time a French Lord used to hang out.  It is situated in a valley and when we are half a mile from it is so small.  If one of the villagers happens to lose a thing as such as a bucket down a well the whole neighborhood turns up and discusses matters and produces a scene such as back at Irish parliament ie. Everybody talks and nobody listens.  These Froggies amuse me with some things and at others they make me despair.  Last night we had a swell feed in our company mess.  We invited the officers of another company for dinner and we sang some songs and got the Italian photograph to work and generally had a riotous time until about 10pm when we had to stop on account of it being the fact that we had to call our roles at a tattoo.  We often get on the Beams like that above and it makes the time pass more smoothly.  We do not always go on worrying about the war.  We only think of the war when we are right in the trenches and have to.  That pall of Kelly’s who was in our platoon Sheriff I think his name was.  He was killed recently on one of our little bits of trench.  He used to work at the post office at Kogarah.  I suppose you are feeling quite a young woman as you have had another birthday.  I hope I am back for the next one.

Give my love to all from your affectionate brother.

Walter  12 August ????