There were no “10 o’clocks” either. Of course, if you happened to be in camp at that time you probably got a cup of tea in the cook-house, but it’s not much of a pastime with no one else to drink it with you. “Pleasant Sunday Evenings” were also out of the question for, with all the best intentions in the world, no one could have spent an evening in our Mess tent (even to the accompaniment of soft music) and called it “pleasant!” They were still carried on at Lamarck, however, and whenever possible we went down in force.
A BLACK DAY IN THE LIFE OF A CONVOY F.A.N.Y.
(By kind permission of Winifred
From “Barrack Room Ballads
of the F.A.N.Y. Corps.")
Gentle reader, when you’ve seen this,
Do not think, please, that I mean this
As a common or garden convoy day,
For the Fany, as a habit
Is as jolly as a rabbit—
Or a jay.
But the’re days in one’s existence,
When the ominous persistence
Of bad luck goes thundering heavy on your track,
Though you shake him off with laughter,
He will leap the moment after—
On your back.
’Tis the day that when on waking,
You will find that you are taking,
Twenty minutes when you haven’t two to spare,
And the bloomin’ whistle’s starting,
When you’ve hardly thought of parting—
Your front hair!
You acquire the cheerful knowledge,
Ere you rush to swallow porridge,
That “fatigue” has just been added to your bliss,
“If the weather’s no objection,
There will be a car inspection—
With profane ejaculation,
You will see “evacuation”
Has been altered to an earlier hour than nine,
So your ’bus you start on winding,
Till you hear the muscles grinding—
In your spine.
Let’s pass over nasty places,
Where you jolt your stretcher cases
And do everything that’s wrong upon the quay,
Then it’s time to clean the boiler,
And the sweat drops from the toiler,
When you’ve finished rubbing eye-wash,
On your engine, comes a “Kibosch.”
As the Section-leader never looks at it,
But a grease-cap gently twisting,
She remarks that it’s consisting,—
“Half of grit.”
Then as seated on a trestle,
With the toughest beef you wrestle,
That in texture would out-rival stone or rock,
You are told you must proceed,
To Boulogne, with care and speed
At two o’clock.