04 November 1915

ANZAC - Captain Eric Donald Wolton, 1/5th Suffolk Regiment, 163rd Brigade, 54th Division - The battalion had been in and out of the line at Hill 60, the scene of heavy fighting during August 1915. Although far from peaceful; a scene of on-going bombing and mining as each side tried to gain dominance of this little mound, it was rare for lighter things to cause much amusement. This day was going to be different when the battalion was in the area of Dixon's Gully, a rest area within the new Anzac perimeter.

"We had not much to laugh at on Gallipoli as we were in very poor physical condition, and there were no canteens where we could buy extras to supplement the eternal bully beef. But when we were in support in Dixon's Gully we had a real hearty laugh such as seldom happens in a life time. The company's bivouacs were on the sheltered (from shells and bullets) side of the small gully. On the other side, and only about twenty yards away, were the company latrines. A trench had been dug and a pole had been found on which the men could sit. We were not used to such a luxury! There were no screens and as we sat in our bivouacs or had our meals opposite we had a grand stand view of nature's processes and accompanying sounds! As most of us were suffering from diarrhoea, the pole was continually occupied and sometimes there was no spare room. It looked just as fowls do sitting on a pole before settling down for the night.

One day the rush to the latrine was even more than usual and, suddenly without any warning, there was a loud crack. The pole had broken depositing the occupants in the bottom of the latrine! The look on the faces of those unfortunate men climbing out of the trench covered with indescribable filth was such that the sight made us laugh as we had never laughed before, and the tears streamed from our eyes. This behaviour was completely unfeeling and unsympathetic, but it did not mean that we were not sorry for them. I expect it was because when there was a cause for laughter we seized it without inhibition: Anyhow I remember feeling much better after the laugh."

SOURCE:
"Some Experiences of the 1/5th Battalion The Suffolk Regiment TF On Gallipoli" by Captain E D Wolton, The Gallipolian No.47, Spring 1985, pp.19-20.