Read today's entry from Harry Gissing's 1914-18 war diaries

October 18, 1916

At 10.30 we managed to have a little breakfast of bread and jam still being in the carriage, the train having backed into a siding. By 12.30 the transport was off the train and ready for a move so we left the train and set off to march to Duigny L’Abbe, a distance of about 5 miles which seemed more owing to a couple of big hills to surmount. Pont Remy seemed a very decent little village, and the country was splendid, very open, very much like England, in fact our destination proved a disappointment however, the place was dirty and the people most inhospitable, a great contrast to our last place.

They refused to give water to the cooks and locked the pumps and did not seem to care whether we took their billets or not. To buy food was impossible, eggs, etc. being almost unknown. We managed however, to fix up accommodation and even got a room for a mess, where we had a great singsong at night to brighten up our spirits. Witnessed a novelty here for the first time in threshing wheat by a horse working a tread-mill. Hour after hour the old horse plodded along well earning his keep.Later I saw an old chap threshing wheat with a flail, a length of wood about 2 ft. long being tied to a handle.


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