Hugh S. Calverley - A Man at War...
A Visit to Family
WWI Scrapbook - Hugh Salvin Calverley
WWI Scrapbook - Hugh Salvin Calverley Details
Letter – I went to see Gran – November 10, 1914

Dear Mum

I went to see Gran on the 5th for the weekend, and had a real good time. Saw a show, and went to Aldershot for Sunday, came back and had just time to go into the Abbey before the train went. They had a lovely anthem and an extenuated sermon about passing on comfort, for the v. clergyfied. It is more like a museum than a church in places. I loved the music, and the arches were lovely, especially the side aisles. The lamp light shows up the sides too much.

Gran is quite well. She took me to the photographers at Daniels in my uniform, and to Beddard’s and Dorells, quite a walk. She looked at me like Mrs. Peter looked at Peter when he came into the drawing room. She knits blue and gray scarves for the Belgians. Reggie has a good job as a regimental doctor to a Scotch regiment, getting about $6 a day.

I went to supper to Aunt Sybil’s. She found out I was coming. The butler buttled, (friend of mine), and the footman footled, same way as they used to three years ago. A solemn meal, Molly, Kitty, and Ray were there alone. I was placed between Molly and Aunt Sybil, and gassed. After supper the family returned to the drawing room and knitted socks for the troops. At 10.30 I departed after gossiping with the butler. I was clean, in uniform, and most proper except that I forgot to bring a hankie--sniffed instead. The three girls are the same as they used to be, no change. Guess they were grown up then.

I went with Viola to the Army and Navy. Gran gave me a Burberry to keep the wet out. It has been pouring for a fortnight. Viola and I saw ‘The Country Girl’, and liked Berry very much. They sang the ancient ‘Deodeus’ “Wont you marry me chick, Coo Coo”. Johnny brought it up to date. Berry was lovely. He dressed up as a lady and was made love to. He behaved very badly, he showed his trousers and let the old squire make love to him and ran the love affairs of his master. Kissed everything in sight.

I landed home at 6 a. m. at Reveille when my leave was officially up. Met a man weeping, (beer), because he hated the country, nine miles from a railway, twelve miles from a town. He cursed England, its inhabitants, and the climate in seven different ways, and I left him sitting on a stone with his head in his hands. Next person I met had been walking round and round all night. (I slept in a workman’s shed near the abutments). He had found a camp with no sentries on it, and had investigated every bottle in the beer canteen twice, with a lantern at 2 a. m. He drew blank second time but we found it again. It was a cloudy moonlight, misty night. Ran into three big barrows and expected to see their owners walking round, (4.30 a. m.).

We had a long 10 or more mile route march fast yesterday with our full marching kit. We landed up hot, but in good shape.

Hugh.

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