#blogjune D-Day

Today is the 70th anniversary of the D-day landings – still the largest amphibious landing in history to date.invasion.

We’ve just had dinner with some friends of ours, and a few people came up in conversation that have had very difficult lives for one reason or another, but have managed to stay resilient. There are all sorts of things that, if we had foreknowledge of them, we would run from. The people who scrambled ashore on D-Day had trained for months, but nothing that I can imagine could come close to what those on both sides went through.

Shelley and I had another lovely trip to Normandy in January. We stayed in Bayeux, which we love very much. We managed day trips two D-day related trips. The first was to Arromanches-les-Bains, which was the centre of the Gold Beach zone. It was absolutely quiet, apart from some locals at the pub. The museums were shut, but we just wanted to have a wander about. The tide was out and we could get up close to some of the surviving Mulberry harbour caissons. These were built in the UK, sunk in the Thames to hide from the Germans, then towed over to Normandy and assembled. Absolutely amazing structures.

Mulberry Harbour, Arromanches les-Bains

Mulberry harbour caisson interior

One of the nice things about the day was that we also had dinner with a very nice American couple who live in the area. The second trip was to Omaha Beach with an Australian couple who were staying at our hotel. The museum and cemetery was simply awe inspiring.

Overlooking Omaha Beach

American Cemetery, Omaha Beach

American graves, Omaha Beach

Looking back towards the cemetery from the Omaha Beach

On Omaha Beach

Waiting for the bus back to Bayeux, American cemetery, Omaha Beach

The second Mulberry was built here, but only lasted a few days before storms destroyed it.

I cannot imagine being caught in something like D-Day. It would be better of course if no-one did.

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