Yellow Beach

George smiled. “It’s alright. I’m here because I have to apologise to someone.”

“Who is that?” Celia asked, leaning forward.

“I don’t know,” George answered, shaking his head and looking down. Celia reached for his hand.

“Back then,” George said, “the code name for Anzio Beach was ‘Yellow Beach’. I was nineteen and an infantryman. At first light we jumped from the landing craft and ran like hell …”

George stopped speaking, searching for the right words. He didn’t react to a plate smashing and the burst of laughter behind him.

“Five or six years ago,” George said, “for the first time in my life I saw a war movie. My wife had heard of a new movie called ‘Saving Private Ryan’, about the guys at Normandy. She’d been told the movie was the most realistic ever and wanted to see it and badgered me to go. She was right. The scene where they run up the beach is exactly right. Everything is in slow motion, like you’re running through molasses. And everything looks distorted, like tunnel vision. It was weird how you could hear the waves crashing but not the shells exploding. I guess fear messes up the senses.”





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