Jack's Diary

The diary of Sergeant Samuel John "Jack" Drew M.M., August 1918 to January 1919.

My Photo
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Over 60, with a son 32 and a daughter 22. Retired on 26 October, 2007, after 37 years with the company. No matter, I've led an interesting life with much travel in Southeast Asia, the Pacific Region, and a little bit of Africa.

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Page 33 - December 31st

Tuesday Dec 31st dawned upon us rather mild & turned out a very decent sort of day. Usual morning practice & free afternoon. At 6 o'clock we played for the officers mess, & had a fair evening. Everything going very quietly now.

Sunday Dec 31st started out very 'summery', warm with big fluffy clouds. Friends coming to visit later today, and the girl will be off with friends to celebrate the New Year.

Happy New Year everybody. Stay safe.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Page 32 - December 30th

Monday Dec 30th broke cold & dull. Spent the morning on practice, & took a walk to the glass works at Martinville & spent a jolly interesting afternoon watching the blowers at work.

Saturday Dec 30th another clear and warm one - you can almost hear the grass growing. Dad rang last night, and will be in town for a few days soon, staying with us. That will be nice.

Page 32 - December 29th

Sunday Dec 29th saw us at breakfast at 9 o'clock & at church parade at 11 after which we had the usual free afternoon.

Friday Dec 29th dawned clear and bright and warm after those lovely rainy days. The garden and lawn are looking very green and fresh now.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Page 32 - December 28th

Saturday Dec 28th was a much finer day than yesterday. Went through the same old rigmarole routine.

Thursday Dec 28th seems to be clearing, too. Steady drizzle through the night, so the back yard is starting to look somewhat better than it has of recent times.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Page 32 - December 27th

Friday Dec 27th was just the usual cold day, with the morning's practice and free afternoon.

Wednesday Dec 27th damp outside, after more overnight rain on top of yesterday's, and yet more on the way. Not doing much for the water supply dams, but the lawn and garden are looking much happier.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Page 32 - December 26th

Thursday Dec 26th was a holiday for all hands so two of us pushed off to Blangy, a decent town about 6 kilos away & spent a very good day, as it was glorious weather.

Tuesday Dec 26th very gloomy early, with scuds of light drizzle. Looks like it has been similar all night. Not enough rain to dampen the soil under those shrubs with dense foliage.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Page 32 - December 25th

Wednesday Dec 25th (Xmas Day) Went out last night carol playing around the village, & had a jolly good night. After breakfast, we had the morning free. The boys had their dinner at 3 o'clock, & the band played for them but in the middle of the programme, a slight snow storm dispersed the band. We had our dinner at 6pm, & a jolly goood one too. A very nice day indeed.
Monday Dec 25th No snow here, of course, though Melbourne had morning hail and there might be snow in the high country. Family get together at Marburg today.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Page 31 - December 24th

Tuesday Dec 24th dawned fine & bright. Put in about 2 hours practice in the morning, & at 1 o'clock we went to Franslay to play for No.1 Company's Xmas dinner. Very cold. Played 'Lost Chord'.

Sunday Dec 24th also dawned bright and unseasonably slightly cool. Good morning for just lazing about, but there are preparations to be done for tomorrow's Christmas lunch. Very little cooking involved, which is good.

Christmas 1918 - Jack's photo.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Page 31 - December 23rd

Monday Dec 23rd Dawned very rainy. Put in the usual practice, & 3 of us set out at 10 o'clock for Blangy, but about a mile on the road it rained very hard, so we sheltered behind a haystack & decided to return when the rain had finished. Arrived back about 2:30pm & dried our clothes.

Saturday Dec 23rd Jack, all this talk of heavy rain is making us quite envious. Yesterday's light showers were pleasant, but not terribly helpful in the overall scheme of things. Today, some extra shopping for the (cold) Christmas family lunch at brother's almost-complete new house outside Marburg.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Page 31 - December 22nd

Sunday Dec 22nd Dawned much brighter so I decided to take a walk to Saint Maxent to see the 41st boys, but on arriving there found that they had just left for a days outing to Abbeville, so had to retrace my steps, arriving back just in time for lunch. Did nothing all afternoon.

Friday Dec 22nd cloudy early, with a few spots of rain. Gave in to "the girls" yesterday and purchased a hammock stand so we could finally get the old Hawaiian hammock (from Lombok days) out of storage - only been stashed away for 15 years! ) ALDI had a hammock and stand on sale, so I zoomed down early to make the purchase. Lucky we had the old hammock, because the item sold with the stand was way too short to fit. I'd guess that there might have been a few irate people, because these hammocks were very popular items at the small ALDI I visited. Rang their Brisbane HQ to warn them that they might expect some nasty phone calls.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Page 31 - December 21st

Saturday Dec 21st proved to be a much better day than the previous ones. At 9:30 am we went on a route march through Martenville & Franslay arriving back at Ramburelles in time for lunch. Lazy afternoon.

Thursday Dec 21st Low cloud early. Very close. Rain for Christmas?

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Page 31 - December 20th

Friday Dec 20th dawned cold & wet. Nothing doing all day.

Wednesday Dec 20th We could do with some of that "wet", Grandad, but not the "cold".

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Page 30 - December 19th

Thursday Dec 19th dawned dull & cold, put in the usual old lazy day.

Tuesday Dec 19th a very bright morning, quite cool. Opthalmologist appointment later in the day to see if the old eyes are holding up OK.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Page 30 - December 18th

Wednesday Dec 18th Dawned rather fine but turned bad towards evening. Usual practice & lazy afternoon.

Monday Dec 18th Couldn't get to sleep last night until wee small hours, so slept in and very sluggish this morning.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Page 30 - December 17th

Tuesday Dec 17th No reveille on account of boys on leave. Practiced all morning & went into Oisement in the afternoon.

Sunday Dec 17th started out clear, but clouding up again. Nice showers yesterday and overnight. Could be more. Venturing out into the wilds of the extreme western suburbs later today for a yarn to old friends.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Page 30 - December 16th

Monday Dec 16th Played Reveille. 4 boys went on leave, which makes the band a little wesk. Practiced all morning & spent the lazy afternoon.

Saturday Dec 16th dawned dampish after some overnight storm rain. Again, the heavier rain seemed to be avoiding us.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Page 30 - December 15th

Sunday Dec 15th Dawned rather fine. No Reveille this morning, being Sunday. Church parade at 11 o'clock. Lazy afternoon.

Friday Dec 15th yet another in the procession of fine hot days. Let us hope that the promised storms this evening do more good than harm.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Page 30 - December 14th

Saturday Dec 14th Again a usual sort of day. Much finer than the few previous days.

Thursday Dec 14sup>th I suppose I could echo that sentiment, Jack. A usual sort of day - some clouds but nothing that indicates rain for us.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Page 30 - December 13th

Friday Dec 13th One more of the cold dull days. Nothing unusal (sic).

Wednesday Dec 13th Some rain overnight - didn't hear anything, but quite damp outside at dawn. More investigations into the state of my dear spouse's feet today - I hope some progress can be made into easing her pain.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Page 30 - December 12th

Thursday Dec 12th Another of the dull cold days. Nothing unusual happened today.

When you think about it, these weeks after the Armistice must have been difficult for the soldiers. The fighting was over, but they were still in a state of readiness in the battlefields with no idea of when they might get to return home.

Tuesday Dec 12th - a bit of the 'nothing unusual happened' going on here, too. Showers are still being predicted, but not arriving.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Page 30 - December 11th

Wednesday Dec 11th Just the usual dull day, with Reveille at 7:30. Practice all morning & lazy afternoon.

I wonder how they organised Reveille with the soldiers billeted all through the village? Did the bugler go to the centre of the village and play?
Monday Dec 11th another warm and dry looking day. I pity the firefighters down south and have great sympathy for the townspeople awaiting the arrival of the fires.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Page 29-30 - December 10th

Tuesday Dec 10th saw us up at 7am for Reveille & to prepare for our shift. After a little fussing we got under way at 9:20am & we marched through Oisement to a village called Ramburelles arriving at about 12:30pm. The village proved to be a small dirty one & the billets were very bad indeed so a Sgt Barratt & myself found a nice cosy room with a double bed & made ourselves at home.

Anniversaries: Today marks the end of my 60th year on this good earth. Suppose I'll have to change the wording of my Blogger profile, now.

Sunday Dec 10th saw a brief shower of rain just before dawn, which I suppose was the 'clearing showers' the weather bureau talked of. It did clean the air a little, so not completely useless.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Page 29 - December 9th

Monday Dec 9th dawned very nice indeed. The usual Battn parade at 9am, spent the rest of the morning at practice. During the evening, the folk where we were billeted gave us a send off so we had a jolly fine evening.

Anniversaries: Mum's 83rd Birthday today.

Saturday Dec 9th much like any other recently. No overnight showers, and very little promised.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Page 29 - December 8th

Sunday Dec 8th No Reveille this morning, being Sunday. Church parade at 11 o'clock for which we played. Gave the village a little music during the afternoon.

Friday Dec 8th
cloudy, but none of the promised showers. This is getting to be rather monotonous - 'possible showers' turning out to be falling in places other than where we are.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Page 29 - December 7th

Saturday Dec 7th dawned very much brighter than yesterday. Being a quiet sort of day, we spent most of the time on practice.

Thursday Dec 7th also a bright morning. Possible showers are predicted, but it looks very much as if that possibility is near negligible.

Anniversaries: Pearl Harbour.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Page 29 - December 6th

Friday Dec 6th dawned rather dull & rainy but we turned out for Reveille. No parades on account of the all day sports which were held. The sports were very good taking everything into consideration, but the day was very dull & cold. We played a few selections during the afternoon.

Wednesday Dec 6th arrived with no rain from the recent cloudiness. Mrs D to the podiatrist today, to see what can be done about the pain currently being caused by her terribly flat feet.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Page 28-29 - December 5th

Thursday Dec 5th saw us up & doing for 7:30 Reveille. Put in the usual old day of 9 o'clock parade, morning practice & lazy afternoon.

Tuesday Dec 5th saw me sleeping in somewhat because of the long day yesterday and dark, cloudy morning. No rain to speak of, however. An e-mail from the man who is making a list of Rudall Carte cornets - I had sent an e-mail some time ago, but no reply, so had another try yesterday morning without attachments - and he is pleased that he has tracked down yet another. No 6289, entered in stock in 1916, is now no longer lost to his list, having been purchased by Jack during WW1.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Page 28 - December 4th

Wednesday Dec 4th saw us up at 7:30 as usual. After breakfast, there was the Battn parade, after which we came back for practice. Did nothing all afternoon except play the Guard on.

Monday Dec 4th started cloudy after storms yesterday afternoon and some rain during the night. Youngest sister arrives back from India this morning, so will soon have to head out to the airport.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Page 28 - December 3rd

Tuesday Dec 3rd Up as usual for 7:30 Reveille. Practice all morning & lazy afternoon. Started playing the Guard on this evening.

Sunday Dec 3rd started out drizzly. Sister off to the Scrabble tournament early.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Page 28 - December 2nd

Monday Dec 2nd Up for Reveille at 7:30am. Bath parade at Allery. Went to Warlus to see the old 42nd Band Boys. Long walk, but good exercise.

Saturday Dec 2nd Another warm morning. Mum and Sister descending upon us later today. Sister has Scrabble tournament in Southport on Sunday, and is returning other sister's car ready for her arrival Monday morning.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Page 28 - December 1st

Sunday Dec 1st saw us up & doing at 7:30 am. No Reveille. Breakfast as usual & church parade at 11am. Jolly cold standing there. Lazy afternoon as usual.

Friday Dec 1st dawned less weirdly than yesterday. The mixture of smoke, dust and heavy low cloud that made yesterday look like Armageddon appear to be clearing.