Try and get yourself a bit of kip

One thing they don’t tell you though, when you join up, is that, erm, soldiering sometimes can be a bit boring. Its true you know when I, when I  first joined up, probably thinking much the same as you lot ‘oh he’ll be fighting every day, running here and there, great sort of battles’ and such forth, then when you come out here to these trenches you see, these things don’t move. You’re stuck in here. That’s where you are and er, if it’s on a quiet day like today, you might find yourself with, er, perhaps a bit of spare time. I mean lots of the action here takes place at night. You know, when sun goes down, you’ve got people going out to er, pick up wounded, or the dead. Or they’re going out on er night patrols, going out on trench raid, digging a forward observation post, you’re repairing the wire, you’re bringing supplies up, you’re bringing replacements in. All that happens during the night time. So during the day, if it’s quiet and once you’ve done your sentry duty and carried out your fatigues, you might find yourself with, er, with a bit of spare time.

Now you can use your spare time, if you take my opinion, to get yourself a bit of kip. Because I said you don’t sleep much out here, so er and also, look about you, where we sleep? Well for your poor bloody infantryman you sleep in the trench. Your officers have dugouts and er, you know certain skilled men like er signallers, they’ll have dugouts as well but for your er average soldier such as me you sleep out in the open so you find somewhere, somewhere in the trench where you can kip. So what you do is you put your groundsheet around you and try and get some sleep. Best thing to do, if you take my opinion, is to sleep in threes. That way you can share the warmth of the other two. Course you might think, well fellas in the middle he’s er, he’s got best of both worlds hasn’t he cos he’s got heat on both sides, but what we do is exchange places during your sort of period of sleep, so that fella has say hour and half in er in the middle then next fella comes in then next fella after that. So you take my opinion try and get yourself a bit of kip. Or, as we’ve said before, you might want to do a bit of chatting. Try to get the er, the lice out of your uniform.