Sunday, January 04, 2009

Wednesday 14th April 1943

Big inspection again, this morning. The whole ward in a state of nervous tension from 6:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. Just before the inspection, I dashed into the annexe for a broom, and found a Sister, distracted, anxiously walking up and down in front of the lavatories. “Oh dear!” she cried, when she saw me, “I wonder if he would like to see the seats up or down?” This put me in a good humour, and I was still laughing when the great man - Major – approached me during the inspection.

Conversation Piece:

Doctor i/c Ward: “This is Corporal Dawson.”
Major: “Ah! What is your name?”
Myself: “Dawson, sir.”
Major: (Peering around furtively) “Yes, yes! Anything else? Are you a Trooper or what?”
Myself: Corporal, sir.”
Major: (Squinting at me as though I had a nasty smell) “And are you well?”
Myself: (Smiling happily) “Oh, yes sir! Very well sir!”
Major: (Relieved) “Ah! Good!”

Alas! Crew and Store go away to the farm tonight. And the other two men from the 22nd Hospital have just gone to another (non-magdnoon) hospital. So now I am the only one from the 22nd, in this ward, except for Howe, of course.

Crew, Store and I had our final walk among the citrus groves two hours ago. Now they are gone.

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