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Author Topic: Ordinary life in the war  (Read 1574 times)

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Offline ska face

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Ordinary life in the war
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2015, 18:55:48 »
My late grandmother was 17 when the Great War began, and 21 when it finished.

I have memories of her showing me the pictures and letters my late grandfather sent her home from the war (they had met before the war and kept in touch) though I think their relationship was quite casual because, from what she used to tell me, she had the time of her life in Margate during the war.

She used to tell me about the men she went out with (she was quite adventurous but didn't let them have anything more than a kiss and a cuddle) and some of the things they asked her to do (she wouldn't, even if they were going back to the front the next day).  She stayed faithful (other than the kissing and cuddling) and my grandfather reached home safely after the war, but he would never talk about his experiences, except very reluctantly.  My nan was much more willing to talk about the war but my grandfather had seen and experienced too much - he had been gassed and always had health problems afterwards with his lungs.

When my grandfather came home he took my nan out a few times but about six weeks after he came home he disappeared after pushing a note through her door saying "I'm going away and I'll be some time".  She thought he'd been put in prison but it turned out he'd signed up for another 7 years in the Army (he'd been a professional soldier before the war) and he came back home in 1925, found a job (which I think is why he signed up again, he couldn't find a job after the war) and married my nan.  He served in Palestine and Ireland - my mum says that he was in the Black and Tans but she has dementia and that story might have been just that, a story (she's come out with some corkers in the last couple of years).  She has never been what anyone would call truthful and the dementia has made it much worse.

My nan's sister Jess also found love during the war, with a Geordie sailor who came back also and, as he'd been a miner before the war, moved to Kent to help sink the Betteshanger pit where he spent the rest of his working life.


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