06 September 1915

LEMNOS - General Sir Ian Hamilton, Headquarters, MEF - Whatever conditions were like on Gallipoli it was indubitably all right for some. There are just times when the inevitable superior conditions of service of generals just seem to jar a little.

"HMS Triad: Mudros. After breakfast sailed over to Mudros West; Lindley met me, also a host of doctors. Walked to No. 3 Australian Hospital with an old acquaintance whose Italian name slips my memory at the moment; then to No. 2 Australian Stationary Hospital; then to Convalescent Depot of Lowland Division. At 12.30 ran down to my launch and was swiftly conveyed to lunch on board the Europa with Admiral Wemyss. Such a lunch as a lost voyager may dream of in the desert. Like roses blooming in a snowdrift, so puffs and pies and kickshaws of all rarest sorts appeared upon a dazzling white tablecloth, and then—disappeared. We too had to disappear and sail back to Mudros West again. Horses were waiting and I rode to No. 18 Stationary Hospital and made a thorough overhaul of it from end to end; then tea with the Officers of No. 1. In No. 3 Australian General were eighty nurses; in No. 3 Canadian Stationary seven nurses; in No. 1 Canadian Stationary twenty-four nurses. Since Lady Brassey descended in some miraculous manner upon Imbros, they were the first white women I had seen for six months. Their pretty faces were a refreshing sight: a capable crowd too: all these Hospitals were in good order, but the sick and wounded in charge of the girls looked the happiest—and no wonder. The Canadian Medicos are fresh from France and discoursed about moral. Never a day passed, so they said, in France, but some patient would, with tears in his eyes, entreat to be sent home. Here at Mudros there had never been one single instance. The patients, if they said anything at all, have showed impatience to get back to their comrades in the fighting line. We discussed this mystery at tea and no one could make head or tail of it. In France the men got a change; are pulled out of the trenches; can go to cafes; meet young ladies; get drinks and generally have a good time. On the Peninsula they are never safe for one moment (whether they are supposed to be resting or are in the firing line) from having their heads knocked off by a shell."


I. Hamilton, Gallipoli Diary, Vol. II (London, Edward Arnold Ltd, 1920), pp.168-169