15th July 1917 (Sunday)

Sick parade was unquestionably something to be avoided if possible.  It was always the first parade of the day and was held at an ungodly hour which deprived one of breakfast.  Those with minor ailments were likely to get “Medicine and Duty” which helped them not at all, or “Light Duty” which, in its performance, could very often prove more arduous than duty in the ranks.

The impetigo on my face had now spread to such an extent that my neck glands were swollen and painful.  Reluctantly I paid my first visit to the MO.  Inside the first aid tent a Corporal was treating a line of patients for a variety of minor ailments.  He adopted the moving belt system.  As the line moved forward the Corporal, using one jar of Iodine and one brush, quickly painted over sores, pimples, cuts and bruises, etc from toenails to tonsils.  My own case called for special treatment.  The MO ignored the swollen glands and the filthy scabs of the impetigo were pulled off with tweezers together with any beard which I had succeeded in growing in my youth.  The open wounds were then smeared with what I believe was sulphur ointment.  In order to avoid a repetition of similar visits during the weeks that followed I should perhaps anticipate and mention that as the heat of the day caused the ointment to run over the unaffected parts of the face, the impetigo, loath to be ignored, spread with it.  On this occasion I was given “Light Duty” and told to report again for medical treatment the following day.

Sick with impetigo and swollen glands.
Light duty. No parade.
Evening services by Tiplady CF (Wesleyan) in village school room.

Original diary entry
Original journal notes