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Updated June 2012

T. E. Lawrence to Air Commodore Sydney Smith



Excellent: this letter is addressed to the Air Commodore. I wish I could see the blue plumes nodding down the main roads of Singapore.

The sands run out, continually. Another six weeks and the R.A.F. loses its smallest ornament. Meanwhile I work away at the boats, and find myself everlastingly putting up suggestions for new devices or improvements. I forget I'm going out, whenever there is anything to do.

When the Junior Air Commodore becomes the Senior Air Marshal, I hope he will allow me to whisper into his civil ear half a hundred things that need doing. The Force will be ripe for reformation, then.

I am so glad you have reached Air Rank. It is almost the top of the tree. Next letter of congratulation will hail Sir S. and Lady Smith, upon their joint transfigurement.

Finances, allowances, everything will now be easier? and commodoring is usually only a brief act before the baton comes.

Excellent as I first said. Excellent.


A sad week, this: The Biscuit, of tender memory, has journeyed to Felixstowe. Her new owner is F/Lt. Barlow. I hope he will be kind to her. She ran like a race-horse last time I drove her, in November. Leaving here is a preliminary training for the wrench next month when I lose the Service too. A bad year, 1935, for me. I hope it will go on being fine for you, at any rate.

Source: GR 240-41
Checked: jw/
Last revised: 4 July 2006

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