[April-Sept 1918] twenty minutes I had to talk gardening to him and <to discuss> the differences between the English and German systems of growing vegetables. The other sentry was also being engaged in conversation and did not see the wire being cut until the fugitives had just got through it. He the fired a hurried shot at them, but as he had not cleaned his rifle for months, the barrel was so full of rust that the shot burst it and he was unable to fire again. One of these two officers got right up to the Dutch frontier and had the extraordinary bad luck to be caught there, when almost over the border.
No one <indeed> had yet succeeded in getting across the frontier from Furstenberg. The distance was too great, the Dutch frontier being 300 and the Danish 240 miles as the crow flies. The distance to be travelled being of course much greater. As it was the nearest, I had decided to make for the Danish frontier, as there was always the possibility of being able to jump a coal train & across the Kiel canal, which was the great obstacle in the way. This route also led through a less populated country.
The Lieutenant Edmundson, an officer of the Machine Gun Corps, who had been captured on March 22nd & had accompanied us from Karlshruhe to Furstenberg, I found a very keen & energetic young officer who was anxious to try his luck & get back home. The necessary preparations for making an attempt to escape required much time & thought. In this camp most of the necessities were easy to procure; for a tin of cocoa one of the German under officers was quite ready to supply you with any amount of German money in exchange for camp money.