A Peaceful Night During Advent WW2

“But hang on, angels don’t have a brass band do they? They are playing the Stars and Stripes! It’s the Yanks - they’ve arrived.”

2 Watch came out of Mess Hall, where they had just had a light meal prior to heading for their billet and hopefully for a good night’s sleep. Katy and Helen stopped for a moment to take in the beauty of the scene which was breathtaking to say the least. They had been on duty down in the Bunker doing the 2pm-10pm shift and in the meantime the RAF station had been transformed into a wonderland. There had been a fresh fall of snow while they were working and every building, every hut, was covered in a pristine blanket of snow.

Looking in every direction Helen said “I can’t see which direction to go to the hut, can you Katy?” who answered “Not sure, but let’s stand for a moment – we may not get another chance to experience a lovely sight like this, look at the sky”. And when they did everybody gasped, as the rest of 2 Watch were enthralled too.

The sky which was inky black was the background for a myriad of stars. All of which were twinkling. It was so beautiful they could almost hear the angels singing their songs of praise and playing heavenly music, as one of the girls said.

“But hang on, angels don’t have a brass band do they? That music is coming from the direction of the main gate and they are playing the Stars and Stripes! It’s the Yanks – they’ve arrived.” Everybody knew the Americans were coming some time, but not when. We all headed in the direction of the music and there they were coming through the main gate. When they saw all the WAAFs coming to meet them, now being joined by people pouring out of huts in all manner of dress and undress, they stopped playing and a great cheer went up.

Then they started playing Jingle Bells and we all followed them around the camp where everybody by now was awake. It was a great experience. One which none of us would forget.

The Angels were outdone in their singing that night. After battling against the forces of evil for so long on our own, we now had an ally. We were no longer alone. These young men with their brash ways, inexperienced in warfare and unused to discipline had travelled thousands of miles to throw in their lot with us. It was a boost which made us forget the hardships and sadness of the preceding years.

We knew then that we could look forward to a good Christmas and go forward into the New Year. It was the most wonderful Advent we had ever experienced.

Kitty Brightwell

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