Click here for diary entry for Monday July 21st (cont.) 1941 – Friday 25th July 1941
Saturday July 26th
Routine march & drill in morning. Did washing, wrote and packed some of my gear in afternoon. Went to Naafi at night.
Sunday July 27th
Reveille at 4AM. Breakfast 4.30AM Paraded with all gear packed at 5.15.
Marched to Battalion Parade Ground then were carried down to Railway Station in lorries where trains were waiting. Train pulled out at 6.45AM.
Went past Maadi, Dead City, Citadel & Blue Mosque and then onto a station on the outskirts of Cairo.
On same line as when we first landed in this country and started off for the coast. First stages of journey interesting – passing irrigated land cut up in sections by canals large and small. Big ones had Dhows sailing on them. Every tie the train stopped, wogs rushed over to sell grapes, watermelon & lemonade.
Had lunch at noon of Bully Beef, biscuits, cheese & marge. First time I had tasted it and not too good. Passed aerodromes dug underneath the sand.
Continued on through deserts and suddenly saw the lovely blue sea in distance. Left train at 2.30AM marched an hour to camp called Kabrit. Just about 400 yard from Suez Canal.
Aerodrome & Navy camp just along road. Had lovely swim – water tepid but muddy bottom and rather shallow – water very salty. After swim started to dig our tents in. Steamers and dhows passing frequently.
See Arabia across the water.
Went to pictures at night and saw Navy Blue and Gold.
Monday July 28th
Continued digging in tent. Went for swim whenever we could. Night manoeuvres. Air Raid warning sounded at 1.30. Planes over Alexandria way. None over camp. Could see real flashes in distance but could not hear planes. Some of ours went up from Aerodrome close by.
Click here for diary entry for Tuesday July 29th 1941 – Saturday August 2nd 1941
I think it is absolutely marvelous that you are doing this! a great honor to your grandad!
Thank you, I hope he would have been ok with it, its hard to know. He never talked about the war so its hard to know if he would have wanted others to read his diary.
I don’t think many of the men that served talked about it. My uncle was shot in WWII and was paralyzed from the chest down. He never talked about the war, except to say “damn japs” (his sentiment, not mine). I guess I can’t blame him, it did change his life forever. I wish he would have, I would have learned so much from him. I think it was because of the pain of remembering, not the desire to withhold the knowledge. I think your grandad would feel the same, now that his pain is over.
Amazing. I am just stumbling on items like these in my own family. They’ve always been around, we’ve just never really given them the attention they deserve. I’m starting to scan some of the items in as well. Sharing them is the best thing you could do! Thanks for that.
Thanks for reading. Good luck to you to on your scanning project. Its something I have developed quite an interest as I am getting to know more of his story. Its nice to be able to share these real stories with a wider audience.
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