13th June 1917

At Plymouth. This forenoon I had cause to feel elated at the possibility of being able to meet you tonight. The Commander seemed to think there would be leave tonight. After dinner, however, matters did not look so bright especially when the Captain returned from the C-in-C. and the usual “watch-keepers’ leave” was not piped. During the afternoon preparations for sea have been made and I understand we are off tonight.

It is 2-45 p.m. now and things certainly look all against my seeing you tonight poor old girl but I shall not give up hopes until a move towards the Sound is made.

4-30 p.m. I’m afraid all hopes must be abandoned now Mabs. for just now it was piped “Both watches will be required at 6-25 p.m.” That means to say we shall be on the move by 7 p.m. Hope Dad will see the ship in the Sound ere he goes home, so as to inform Ma. The weather has changed this afternoon for it is quite dull and chilly now.

7 p.m. Ship is just proceeding down the Hamoaze. Folks are cheering and waving all the way along. A good crowd is assembled around the bandstand on the Hoe and a great deal of waving can be seen.

I thought of you at 6 p.m. and wondered if you were very unhappy because I was not there to meet you. I prepared you for such a disappointment so hope you are not too sad in consequence.

Anchored in the Sound at 7-30 p.m. near to three large transports. The weather seems to be unhappy because of our departure for it is dull and raining. We are now waiting orders for leaving and I expect when the morning arrives we shall be buzzing down the Channel. Ah! well, the sooner we get on our journey the sooner we shall be home again for that promised leave. My, won’t we all be disappointed if we do not return so soon as expected. The hopes we have for the future leave is our strength and help against the usual misery of departure, and altho’ I feel disappointed at not being able to see you tonight and also to keep that appointment with Aunt Nina, I am not so unhappy as usual.

10 p.m. We are just leaving. It has struck me that Dad will not be home tonight so perhaps he will see the old ship leave. Hope so anyhow. Well, I am giving the old town a farewell look and think of you there, then to bed. Goodnight Mabs. may we meet again soon and have the good time we ought to have had this time although we did not do so bad. Roll on the time when such departures as these will not be so often and we shall be able to have a good long time together.

A notice placed on the board states “Roxburgh is proceeding to Halifax”.

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