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Going Overseas cont'd

by footslogger

Contributed by 
People in story: 
Ray Sinclair
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Contributed on: 
30 March 2005

I don't know if what I am going to write about now is applicable to this site,but these are the little things that stick in my memory
For instance since that time on the troopship when I seemed to live on canned fruit, when ever I have "Del Monte" pears at home for dessert I am often reminded of that miserable voyage.
Also since that time I refuse to travel anywhere by ship or go on a cruise, (Much to my wife's annoyance) In my army career I think I had my share of being ill on troopships, my last one was returning home from the Far East on the Empress of Australia (Her last voyage incidentally) and having a very rough time going through the Bay of Bengal in a Monsoon.
I know that the modern vessels have stabilizers to control their rolling and other motions, but I will not travel on a ship!

Another memory: Saltwater Soap! Using it in the ship showers, does anyone remember that? Trying to get a lather from it was very hard,in fact I don't think anyone did,and it was like washing with pumice stone.

One of the duties on board we had to do was down in the bowels of the ship,where I and my pal were given orders that in the event of an attack on the ship we were to; on hearing the "Tannoy" instructions, close the watertight bulkhead doors and not to open them again until we were ordered to.
Not a very re-assuring postion to be in we both thought, closing our only exit to safety!
What gave us a scare down there was the time we heard loud clangings and felt vibrations in the ship, we found later when we were relieved they were explosions, though no order was given for us to close the door,apparently there was a U Boat around and our destoyers were dropping depth charges.

We finally made port and our draft ended up as reinforcements for the 8th Army We were posted to an Infantry Reinforcement Training Depot (IRTD) While there I caught some infection which cause very bad vomiting and a high fever among other things which put me in hospital The MO wasn't able
or couldn't indentify what was wrong but thought it was from some kind of insect bite
anyway it left weak and unfit for duty for some time time so I missed the first draft that went.
By the time I had recovered the Sicilian campaign was over and I was sent to a Corp Reinforcing (CRU) Unit in Italy where I was posted the the 6th Battn. Royal West Kent regt. "S" company 3" Mortar Platoon. 36th Brigade. 78th (Battle Axe) Division

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These messages were added to this story by site members between June 2003 and January 2006. It is no longer possible to leave messages here. Find out more about the site contributors.

Message 1 - Sea Sickness

Posted on: 30 March 2005 by Ron Goldstein

Hi Ray
I was interested and sympathetic to read of your sea sickness 'hangover' problems.
For years after the war finished, my journey out to Africa on the SS Frankonia still affected me. I must have been the only person who felt nausea and claustrophobia on the Cutty Sark, which I remind you is permanently moored at Greenwich !
I eventually cured myself by staying on deck on car ferries to Dieppe but I still am not a happy sea traveller.
Keep your stories coming in


Message 2 - Sea Sickness

Posted on: 30 March 2005 by footslogger

Thanks for your sympathy Ron, I'd get sick rowing on the lake in Regents Park. Incidentally I will be in London for our yearly visit in April staying at the Victory Club in Marble Arch.
How does my latest entry fit in with the site requirements.I hope it is acceptable




Message 3 - Sea Sickness

Posted on: 31 March 2005 by Ron Goldstein

Dear Ray
No problems at all with the content of your postings.
I, and I'm sure many others, are waiting patiently for further articles from you and in particular your comments on what life was like for the PBI (Poor Bloody Infantry)at Cassino.
Remember, you will usually have plenty of time to re-edit what you have submitted and so it doesn't matter if you get the odd phrase or punctuation wrong first time round.
The important thing is to develop your own style of writing, get down us much as you can remember into your 'portfolio' of articles and enjoy the process !




Message 4 - Content

Posted on: 01 April 2005 by footslogger

Dear Ron,

Thanks for your encouragment, as after reading all the other entries I was wondering if what I had written so far is really interesting for others to read, and will writing about my activities in Italy and especially Cassino be of interest as after reading some of those stories I now consider what happened to me there was, (until I was wounded)to put it mildly rather tame.

With other actions it was the usual round of crossing rivers, going up and down hills, taking objectives,digging in,and I was very lucky compared to the happenings of others,I don't think there were great heroics anywhere in what I did.

I have a question! Could you tell me what happens to stories after they are submitted, What do the editors do? Will I be told if my stories are no good or unsuitable. How do I know if they will be used.
Thanks and regards


Message 5 - Content

Posted on: 01 April 2005 by Ron Goldstein

Dear Ray

If you click on the RED link on the left you will see an EDITORIAL DESK button. From that I have taken the following quote.

"All stories that are contributed to the People's War site are automatically submitted to the Editorial Desk. They are then categorised into the Archive and removed from the Desk. If you can't find your story at the Editorial Desk, go to your Personal Page - all your stories are linked from there."

At no time is there any mention of the 'quality' of the content of the story but, rest assured, what you have to offer is gold compared to some of the dross that has been submitted in the past and has already earned it's right to be placed in the public domain.

Going by my own experience, if you lok at my personal page you will see that out of some 50 odd entries about ten have been selected for 'editing' with paragraph headings being inserted at that time.

I have never been quite certain as to the what or why of this process, perhaps one of the team will join this thread and explain in a bit more detail to all of us.

But going back to my earlier point, please keep sending your stories in and let us see some photos !



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