August 8, 1918 – Full diary entry:
“On guard all night at a listening post and bombing machine. The activities started about 2 a.m. as usual. No one in G.C.I. has been hurt yet. No mail from Nora yet. Lots of artillery fire today.”
I’m not exactly sure what Robert meant here. A “bombing machine,” at the time, was an airplane. So perhaps he was assigned to guard a plane in between its missions?
The listening post assignment is easier to explain and also sounds a lot more dangerous. This is from FirstWorldWar.com:
Also commonly referred to as a “sap-head,” a listening post was a shallow, narrow, often disguised position somewhat in advance of the front trench line – that is, in No Man’s Land.
Listening posts were, as the name suggests, used to monitor enemy activity and to gather intelligence information. As such, listening posts could sometimes be sited dangerously close to the enemy front line although they were typically some 30 yards ahead of the front line.
And lastly, I don’t know what G.C.I. refers to but I have made inquiries.
Where was Robert today? See the timeline.