Sunday Jan 14th 1917

Dear Dad and Mam

There was a mail in yesterday and by it I received a letter dated Dec 23 from you was awfully glad to get as I was afraid there was nothing for me in the mail after all. I feel very glad that you get my letters alright as it’s a great thing to me that you know that I am in the very best of health and I to know that you all at home are well. You mention in your letter that five parcels have been sent to me, but I have only received the one from the Ladies’ Committee, Jon’s, and your Xmas parcel, have not had the one from Uncle Messach or Wm Francis, they may turn up but may not might have been on the Ivernia but I hope not, I am glad that you received the photos I sent from Cairo, although I know they are very poor. The one taken in Alex is much better. I think I will grow another mustache only it will keep like fluff. You want to know the result of my course at Cairo, well I sent and let you know all the details as soon as I came back, also that I passed out first class. I could solider in Cairo for duration but of course it can’t be ___. Im sorry that you felt a gloom over Xmas indeed, I do wish that you would keep your peckers up and be happy, it can’t be helped, I don’t believe it does anyone any good to be gloomy we can’t alter circumstances so we must look forward for brighter and better days in store when this war is over and of course everybody with the least gumption wishes it would be over soon. By the way, if you enjoyed your mince pie like I enjoyed mine, well you had a treat. There has been some good work done here this last week again, 1700 more prisoners taken by the infantry and ___ Jerusalem is not far off now. Could you let me have a small pocket atlas, can’t get one out this way. I will do my best to put a bit towards Mailys going to college and will be able to send a pound or two in a month or so, am not much in credit now after being in Cairo for three weeks. Hope Mailys had a good birthday and enjoyed herself. Hope the entertainment on Xmas was a success, we had a fine concert here. As you see by the date, today is Sunday,  was on Nonconformist parade this morning and Mr Davis preached a fine sermon on the kind of God God was. The Brigadier General was president, have never seen him on a NC service before. We have a fine crowd going to NC service here. There is a Welsh service here tonight and I intend going there. Glad Dai Williams was looking so well, have not received any letter from him yet, will write back when it comes otherwise I don’t know his address. My address as per usual so there is no need for me to keep writing it down. I wrote to S Jones Rhymney yesterday his brother is in C Coy and is a decent chap, but of a different type of fellow to him. Mr Davies is getting up a Gamanfa Ganu and he intends to get up the old Welsh tunes, he has been asked to do this by the men themselves, so you see there is quite a lot of good stuff in the army and not all scalawags (?) by a long way. Will let you know the result of the Gamanfa after it’s over. It maybe interesting to you. Give my love to Jon and Mag, I wrote to them a few days ago. Is it right that you are only allowed a pound of sugar a week for a family, a chap just out from Blighty tells us so. Now if that is the case, mind you don’t send me anymore cake because I don’t want you to rob yourselves for me, now don’t forget now. Times are very hard by what he says.  Well I must wind up now. With best love and best wishes to you all.

I am you affectionate son