Sir Joseph John Talbot Hobbs personal diaries, Vol. II (14 January 1916 to 31 January 1917)

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30th Dec. Got Influenza. 'X' Gen Birdwood called on me told me my appt as Div Comd 5th Aust Div had been appd. he spoke exceedingly nicely to me & gave orders that I was not to be worried until I was fit & well - very unwell during afternoon. Wet day. 31st Dec. 'X' Still in Bed but better - very ill through about 11.pm. So ill I nearly fainted with pain. Doctor & Mervyn very good to me - Jeffs has also been invaluable during my illness. Another year gone how thankful to God I should be for his great mercies to me & mine during this past awful & eventful year - I am very glad to have seen the last of it. I went into the New Year under the influence of morphia to alleviate the agony I had suffered from pains in the abdomen. Jany 1st 1917 - fine day - Good wishes from Gens Birdwood & White & the official notice in advance of my promotion to the rank of Major Gen & to command the 5th Aust Div from this date. Jany 2 & 3rd. confined to my Room with Influenza attended to what office work was necessary Jany 4th - Wet & mud & gloom as usual. We are shifting on today to VIGNACOURT H.Qs in the training area. The move appears to be going quite smoothly. I have have had 3 pretty rotten days & nights but am much better this morning though very weak. Still I feel I am going to get right now. Arrived at Billet rather a nice modern Shooting box quite comfortable Room Mess Rooms etc with very fair Garden in rear - (Wet off & on all day.) found 4th Div had left every thing in a filthy condition - Major EVANS the area officer called to see me & also L'. Col Anderson Comdg 1- FA Bde. [Page] 98