A Lucky Escape


My Family’s Reaction

After reading my account regarding the lucky escape from the bombs in 1945, two of my grand-children had a few questions. One asked, whether there had been a lot of noise, when the bombs came down, the other one wanted to know, which song little Peter had been singing, when we were bombed. And had the lights gone off?
Well, we always had some candles handy, in case the lights would go out. On this occasion for sure the lights all went out instantly. The noise was horrifying as the bombs hit us. It was such a terrific noise  that nobody could be in any doubt, our house had been hit this time. In the quiet that followed and before people started to move around to look for an escape, they did light a few candles.
Five bombs  had hit our building in quick succession. Immediately afterwards it was absolutely quiet. That meant, there were no more planes in the air. What if the last plane, that was around, just had to get rid of the last five bombs before flying back to follow  the other planes who were on their way back already?
As far as little Peter’s song is concerned, I think it was probably the song about little Jack who wanders off into the world and his tearful mother stays behind. After seven years the boy thinks of his mother and very quickly runs back home.

 For people who can read a bit of German,  here is the text
for the song about little Jack (Haenschen Klein):

 Haenschen Klein, geht allein, in die weite Welt hinein.
Stock und Hut stehn ihm gut, er ist wohlgemut.
Aber Mama weinet sehr, hat ja nun kein Haenschen mehr.
Wuensch dir Glueck, sagt ihr Blick, kehr nur bald zurueck.

 Sieben Jahr,  frisch und klar, Haenschen in der Fremde war.
Da besinnt sich das Kind, kehrt nach Haus geschwind.

              Five Bombs have to be dropped

“Damned, the chute is jammed!”
“Hurry up,  hurry up, we must go back!”

Finally the bombs are released: All five of them are dropped close together  in a residential area. The plane with three men on board  follows the other planes.  It is April 1945. Today most bombers make  it safely back to England. It is their lucky day.
The five bombs hit a house in Sophien Strasse in Leipzig. They ripped apart a solidly built five story residential building.The whole building is completely gone, except for the groundfloor: Bits and pieces of the ground-floor are still standing! Even some completely undamaged furniture can be seen somewhere on the ground-floor.

The rest is just loads of rubble near the road in the front and also in the back.  Where the entrance to the building used to be, there is just an immense heap of debris. It looks like nobody would have come out from under there, if this is where the entrance to the people’s air-raid shelter had been.

Miraculously everyone did come out from under all that debris. The cellar-rooms were not damaged at all. One of the cellar-rooms had a window out to the street, which was not blocked at all and people were able to get out through there.

A lucky escape indeed.

7 thoughts on “A Lucky Escape

  1. Dear Island Traveler!

    Thank you so much for visiting and for giving me one of your liebster-awards. I wanted to make a comment on your blog, but my comment was not accepted. I don’t know why I’m not logged in anymore, that is I don’t know why I can’t log into your blog for a comment.

    Congratulations for consistently publishing beautiful blogs!

    Best Wishes from Uta.

  2. Bombs falling must be so very scary as you have no idea where or when the next one is coming from.

    When I see footage from current conflicts, the night-time views of cities being bombed make me want to run away and hide for all of them.

    1. I don’t like to see footage like this either. My family was lucky and none of us did get hurt. But I feel for the people who are badly affected by bombs or any other disaster be it natural or manmade.

      Thanks for visiting and commenting.

  3. That hit must have been frightening.I’m so happy you survived. In those days it was pure luck and fate decided who survived and who not. The picture with you and the baby on the beach would never have been taken if you had not survived. I had some lucky escapes myself.

  4. What an amazing story and very lucky too… I loathe war… the memories are stark and scary. TY for your patience as I have been adjusting to a changed schedule in my life … Glad to comment again. 🙂

    1. TY for your comments, dear Eliz. For me the memories of war go a long time back. However it makes me aware what life must be like for people who still live under warlike conditions in this day and age.

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