Most of us have memories of the Happy days in our lives. It can
be in our childhood or any period of our lives.
As a octogenarian I can look back a few years and the memories come flooding back.
I have just heard an aircraft going overhead. Not a jet but one of the old fashioned
type. Which brings back a recall of the time as a youngster? When the question would
be is that one of ours. If it was not, then it was time to seek some shelter. As a town
Situated on the east coast of England. We were subject to enemy aircraft strafing.
By that I mean a low flying aircraft firing at anything they could see. Some of those
Pilots were not too discriminating about what was a good target. I have often
wondered if they had any children of their own. To be so ruthless takes a very sick
Mind. Still they say that all is fair in love and war. I did not think so and still do not.
I was in later life to see the reality of this again in Korea where I did most of my
One of the things in the early part of the second world war that I remember. Was
Seeing a part of my beloved pier being blown up. With the excuse that the enemy
could land on it. We had a flat beach and the tide went for three miles. Even a
schoolboy could work that one out. Then to add insult to injury, large parts of the
beach were cordoned off with barbed wire.
Gone were the days when we used to build large sand castles. That this time the
tide would not breach! We had not read of King Canute. Nor would we have cared,
ours was the one that would stop the tide. Oh the folly of youth who thinks that those
who have gone before. Did not know what they were doing. But we were to have
reprieve. After the first two years of the war. The barbed wire was taken back a bit.
Leaving us part of the beach. With the warning, if you hear the siren then get out of
there. And of course we had our own fully armed beach patrol which we thought was
especially for us.
The promenade on my home town was very long and wide. The new army recruits
would do their square bashing on there . We used to watch them and when the drill
sergeant would cry halt we used to mimic him. Sometimes we could get them all to
halt when he had not said so. Up would go the cry, get those children out of here.
Time for us to run!.
There was one night when the Geneva convention was broken. We had anti personnel
devises dropped in the form of sweets and other children’s toys. As far as I know we
were the only town that happened to. It was never done again and rightly so .
We had one bonus in the form of the big army cook-house that was near us. If you
hung around long enough and there was no officer around. You could get a treat and
treats were scarce in those days.
In the first few months of the war. We were schooled in peoples houses. Just a half
day Monday to Friday. We thought that was great, we were spoilt in those houses.
Ever heard of a cup of tea in the middle of class and some well treasured home made
baking thrown in?. All in all we did not do so bad compared with some.
They do say when the memories start to flood back. That is a start of old age, my take
on that one is that there is nothing wrong with a bit of nostalgia.
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