The Letters of Arthur Martin-Leake July 1917
Read by Nicholas Blatchley
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My dear Mammy
I am very sorry to hear that Bella is bad again & hope she will take herself in hand again & have some treatment. A visit to Dr. Bolton will be the best. She has probably been doing too much & not taking any care of her insides. Shall be anxious to hear how she gets on. Hope your new cook will turn out all right & be capable of running the show.
The garden need not be kept up to such a high pitch of cultivation & it can always be put right again. Is Hackle coming back to the army? You said that you had had a visit from him, but I did not understand whether he is fit again or not.
Frank seems to be in the process of collecting together his staff. A shore job must be a great change & I hope he likes it.
All very good news from Russia & they are doing splendidly.
The German Chancellor has gone, but they seem to have a bigger Hun in his place.* However it shows that all is not going well with them & perhaps they will bust up before long.
We had the Yank gas expert round here the other day. A funny little man with huge tortoise-shell spectacles. He fraternised much with our tame Yank & for the time being we might have been across the water in Yank land.
Weather fairly good for these parts & inclined to be hot when it is not cloudy.
Hope you are very fit & tell Bella to get well as soon as possible.
Y[ou]r affect[ionate] son
* This would refer to Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg being succeeded by Georg Michaelis on 14th July 1917. Michaelis didn’t last long, resigning on 1st November.