The Kia ora coo-ee : the magazine for the ANZACS in the Middle East, 1918
['Bill Bowyang': Anyone know a cure for a jibbing camel?...]
"Bill Bowyang": Anyone know a cure for a jibbing camel? I've read several, but none of them has proved successful so far. My "hooshter" goes on strike at regular intervals, and I've tried fire sticks, military boots and other things on his carcase, but there's nothing doing. I've got wise of late, and when my steed takes it into his head to stop work I treat him with contempt, unroll the blankets, and sleep. It's just as well to tie the camel down before drifting into the land of dreams, else, on awakening, you are liable to find a wide expanse of sun-parched sand stretching before you, with a small speck on the horizon. Said speck, on closer observation, will turn out to be a camel.
"Getis": While we waited for the billy to boil, Billy Cronin told me all about it. It was just before the Gaza stunt, on April 19th., and one of the Billjims, who had a forty horse-power whisky thirst, was sent back to the L.H. dump at Rafa for a spell. He carried a note from his CO. to the Sergeant in Charge, which contained the following words, "See that......gets no whisky." For two days Bilijim longed in vain for the forbidden juice, but on the evening of the third day a truck containing 40 cases of "Oh be joyful" was shunted on the siding, and two gaunt camels proceeded to take it, case by case, to the Canteens. When darkness fell twelve cases still remained, and these were carefully counted and stacked just outside the R. T. O's door, and a sentry put on guard. At 7.30 p.m., the Bilijim with the whisky thirst walked briskly into the R. T. O's office, saluted, and said, "Excuse me, Sir, but when does the next train leave for Kantara?" "In half-an-hour," replied the Officer. Bilijim thanked him and retired. When he reached the sentry and the twelve cases of whisky just outside the door, he bent down, seized a case, and called out, "From here, Sir?" "Yes," Came the reply from the R.T.O. inside the tent. At the inquiry next day, a bewildered sentry stated that he heard the R.T.O. tell an Australian to take a case of whisky. The R.T.O. told him that he was a liar. Just about the same time, a bleary-eyed Bilijim was seated on a half empty whisky case somewhere in the sandhills, and was passing more spirit through his neck than any other forty troopers in Palestine.
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"Feloush": Some chaps can make money out of straw, more easily than the Israelites did bricks without it. For example. Two of our men converted their dug-out near the Wadi Ghuzze into a photographic studio. They had a couple of V.P.K's, a dozen spools of film and plenty of printing paper. Started biz in the portrait line, and roped in clients by the dozen. Their work was good, too.
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"R.H.": It gives me the hump to hear fellows arguing about the breed of camels used in Palestine. A corporal wanted to bet that our mounts were the Bactrian species, which, of course, has a brace of humps. I ought to know a dromedary when I see one, and I have seen a devil of a lot, worse luck, both in Palestine and Australia.