Eddie and I bunked together on and off over two years, when he was doing
the 'spiffy' job as platoon signaler he often got to bunk in the more
salubrious HQ bunker. This photo was taken early in 52 when we were on
'The bowling alley', as can be seen cramped and basic conditions were the
order of the day. Charlie was just across the valley on four hills called
Mathew, Mark, Luke and John (227).
The poncho hanging at the doorway was
to keep the weather out and the light in (after dark). The men were so
attuned to react even though asleep, they would wake instantly when
someone touched the poncho; which happened when it was their turn to be
woken for picket duty at night.
Outside the door a small tunnel turned
sharply into the main trench and the fighting pit. Most depended on
candles for lighting in their foxhole, some of the people higher up the
social scale had lanterns. Bunks were always cut into the wall during this
period, and if lucky a few beer boxes were scrounged to use for furniture.
Pegs were driven into the wall and equipment hung on them, firstly to keep
it out of your way; secondly to keep it dry if the hole was filling with
water during rainy spells.
Such times saw us sitting crouched up on the bunk, watching the water level rise and cursing our ill fortune.