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Basrah [Basrah, Al (Basra)] March 17 Dearest Mother. Monotonous days pass so quickly that I never realize it's mail day till it is upon me. I am still with the good Coxes but I only dine, sleep and breakfast here - like Mr Jorrocks - for I go in to lunch next door to G.H.Q. which saves time and trouble. Next week I am to be lodged there also - which will be convenient though I shall be sorry to go away from here. Sir Percy is most charming, well read and interesting and a really considerable politician, I like him so much. But I can't decently impose upon their kindness much longer - I've been with them a fortnight already. Mr Dobbs also is a great standby. I go walking with him of an evening. Today I went to tea with him, for I wanted to look at some maps he had made, and afterwards I walked with his second in command, a very nice and intelligent young man called Bullard who was for a long time at the Embassy at C'ple [Istanbul (Constantinople)]. We walked right out of the palm groves and into the desert - the first time I had seen it for 2 years. The hasty recall of General Aylmer is a sufficient comment on recent events here. Heaven send someone more competent to command, otherwise I see no chance of an advance until the Russians clear the way for us - not a satisfactory thought.
I'm still wading through the stuff which they have got here but tomorrow I have a man who is coming to see me and give me information, an Arab of Central Arabia, and I expect to have rather an amusing talk with him.
No mail in yet. One pines for news. Ever your affectionate daughter Gertrude