Monday, July 28, 2008

Sunday 19th November 1939

Regimental Policeman today – the latest and worst job for junior NCO’s. One is on duty from 0800 to 1730 – 9 ½ hours – with brief intervals for a hasty late breakfast and dinner – and has to march up and down on the pavement outside BHQ, with an “RP” armband above the elbow. One does nothing except salute the dozens of officers who pass by. (I made these salutes as fierce and noisy as possible – crash! of left foot to attention; swish, crack! of right hand to salute; crash! of the left foot to stand-at-ease.) The “beat” extends 20 yards to the right and 20 yards to the left of BHQ gateway but I altered this to 30 paces left and 10 paces right.

Romance enters once more the heart beneath drab khaki jacket! Dark eyes in a dark face looked mysteriously down from a window with a balcony. At a window of an old cream coloured house surrounded by quiet green railings there were seen glimpses, throughout the thus shortened day, of a tall, slim, stately girl.

Nevertheless I was not sorry when my duty ended, in the chill silent evening. I wasn’t particularly tired; guess I’m toughened now. Only seven cigarettes today!


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