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scheme to get leave; and having got it, go aimlessly
off to Cairo, Port Said or Ismalia, to spend their
money on eating and drinking and being bored. One
hears a certain amount of "war-shop" being talked,
but it hasn't the haggard intensity of Western Front
war-shop. The whole place has the empty clearness
of a moving-picture. Movements of men and muni-
tions against a background of soulless drought. The
scene is drawn with unlovely distinctness. Every liv-
ing soul is here against his will. And when the War
ends the whole thing will vanish and the sand will
blot out all traces of the men who came here.

Along the main road that runs through the camp,
parties of Turkish prisoners march, straggling and
hopeless—slaves of war, guarded by a few British
soldiers with fixed bayonets. They too are killing
time. One of them was shot last week, for striking
an officer.

March 3. Went to Port Said for the day with Mar-
shall. A dreary place; but it takes more than Port
Said to depress M. Bought Tolstoy's War and Peace
and Scott's Antiquary. ("Everyman" editions were all
they had.) Funny books to buy at Port Said of all
places in the world. Seems funny to me, anyhow. Sort
of thing that would amuse Rivers.

Watching sunset waves foaming and coming in
rather grandly with a breeze blowing across from
Asia Minor (rather nice idea, that), I thought ot
Rivers—I don't quite know why.

Thinking of him always helps. . . .. Port baid
also provided me with a dozen wire pipe-cleaners
at a penny each. Marshall quite indignant at such
proHteering. "No one here except swindlers he

Sa* March 10. Left Kantara yesterday evening, Thir-