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Full text of "TheCompleteMemoirsOfGeorgeSherston"

trenches) there were more than thirty English miles.
Mentally, the distance became immeasurable during
my first days at the School. Parades and lectures
were all in the day's work, but they failed to convince
me of their affinity with our long days and nights in
the Front Line. For instance, although I was closely
acquainted with the mine-craters in the Fricourt
sector, I would have welcomed a few practical hints
on how to patrol those God-forsaken cavities. But the
Army School instructors were all in favour of Open
Warfare, which was sure to come soon, they said.
They had learnt all about it in peace-time; it was
essential that we should be taught to "think in terms
of mobility". So we solved tactical schemes in which
the enemy was reported to have occupied some vil-
lage several miles away, and with pencil and paper
made arrangements for unflurried defence or blank-
cartridged skirmishing in a land of field-day make-
believe.

Sometimes a renowned big-game hunter gave us
demonstrations of the art of sniping. He was genial
and enthusiastic; but I was no good at rifle-shooting,
and as far as I was concerned he would have been
more profitably employed in reducing the numerical
strength of the enemy. He was an expert on loop-
holes and telescopic-sights; but telescopic-sights were
a luxury seldom enjoyed by an infantry battalion in
the trenches.

The Commandant of the School was a tremendous
worker and everyone liked him. His motto was "al-
ways do your utmost", but I dare say that if he had
been asked his private opinion he would have admit-
ted that the School was in reality only a holiday for
officers and N.CLO.'s who needed a rest. It certainly
seemed so to me when I awoke on the first morning

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