Grandad’s Diary 6-7th February 1945

Entry spanning 6 and 7th February

Saw show given by Belgians continental style – very good. Extensive black market in these places. In fact all goods through this source. Belgians keen bargainners, giving little away – very friendly people if only surface friendliness.

No post yesterday because this post took up the space for two days.

I see some interesting observations here that I think say as much about the observer as the observee. The Belgians had only been out of German occupation for four months (the liberation of Belgium began in September 1944) and so it is difficult to categorise a people after such a traumatic time.

Grandad had never been abroad and never did go again after the war – these experience of Belgium and France in 1944 and 1945 were to be his only ones. It would be interesting to hear him talk about a comparison between life in wartime England and life in Belgium. He almost seems surprised by the health, wealth and happiness of the Belgians that he might, as if he was expecting something else.