21 April 1918

On Sunday. April 21st. My birthday.  We arrived at Karlsruhe, a kind of central distribution camp for sending officers all over Germany.  It was full up, and we were sent an hour’s railway journey to Rastatt, an overflow camp, and the very worst place I’ve been in at present in Germany.  The country was very hilly and beautiful round here, while there were large vineyards on the southern side of the hills.  One could see the Black Forest which stretched away for miles.  Going along in the train, we would suddenly come upon most beautiful panoramas, and upon unsuspected villages nestling in the sides of hills, or tucked away in some sheltered valley.  And here I must say that I was delighted at the picturesqueness and neatness of their villages, and very much surprised at the clean-ness.  No paper or rubbish littered their streets and the whole place looked very well kept.  Practically every acre is under cultivation, while around the villages and towns, market gardening, and intensive culture was being carried out.