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Author's Chapter Notes:

Have yourself a merry little Christmas,
Let your heart be light
From now on,
our troubles will be out of sight

 

It had taken a few months for the film to arrive in the cinema at Armiford, not that it mattered to the crowd that had gathered outside, huddled in their outdoor winter clothes. All that mattered to them was the couple of hours respite they would get from the film, a couple of hours escapism from reality.

Have yourself a merry little Christmas,
Make the Yule-tide gay,
From now on, 
our troubles will be miles away.

 

It seemed impossible to think of the times before the War, even now at the close of 1944 when things seemed to finally be turning nobody quite dared hope that the end would come soon. Even the film, a nostalgic trip back to the turn of the century, couldn’t quite convince them.

Here we are as in olden days,
Happy golden days of yore.
Faithful friends who are dear to us
Gather near to us once more.


In the darkened cinema Jo turned to Madge, unable to hide the tears streaming down her face as she thought of all those friends that they had heard nothing of since the Anschluss and the flight from Austria. They wondered if they would ever hear anything of them again. Nobody quite dared to admit that they might not. Nobody wanted to lose hope.


Through the years 
We all will be together,
If the Fates allow
Until then we’ll have to muddle through somehow

So have yourself a merry little Christmas now.

 

“Well?” Jo turned to her sister expectantly as they left the cinema. “Aren’t you glad that I dragged you out to watch it?” Madge smiled.

“What did you think?” asked a voice from behind them and they both turned to see Hilda Annersley and Nell Wilson.

“More importantly, what did you think?” asked Madge with a grin at Nell.

“Bit sugary for my liking but you were right, Hilda, it was what I needed,” she conceded, tucking her arm through her friend’s.

“Do you think things will ever be like they used to be,” asked Jo as they began to pick their way through the crowds. “I wonder if 1945 will be the year to bring peace.”

“We mustn’t lose hope, Jo. We’ll have to muddle through somehow,” she quoted softly.

 

And 1945 was the year that brought them peace.


<p class="MsoBodyText" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><em><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">Have yourself a merry little Christmas,<br />Let your heart be light<br />From now on,<br />our troubles will be out of sight</span></span></span></em></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: #cc3300;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;">&nbsp;</span></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;">It had taken a few months for the film to arrive in the cinema at Armiford, not that it mattered to the crowd that had gathered outside, huddled in their outdoor winter clothes. All that mattered to them was the couple of hours respite they would get from the film, a couple of hours escapism from reality.</span></span><span style="color: #cc3300;"><br /><br /></span><em><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">Have yourself a merry little Christmas,<br />Make the Yule-tide gay,<br />From now on,&nbsp;<br />our troubles will be miles away.</span></span></span></em></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: #cc3300;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;">&nbsp;</span></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;">It seemed impossible to think of the times before the War, even now at the close of 1944 when things seemed to finally be turning nobody quite dared hope that the end would come soon. Even the film, a nostalgic trip back to the turn of the century, couldn&rsquo;t quite convince them.</span></span><span style="color: #cc3300;"><br /><br /></span><em><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;">Here we are as in olden days,<br />Happy golden days of yore.<br />Faithful friends who are dear to us<br />Gather near to us once more.</span></span></em><span style="color: #cc3300;"><br style="mso-special-character: line-break;" /><br style="mso-special-character: line-break;" /></span></p>
<p class="MsoBodyText2" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;">In the darkened cinema Jo turned to Madge, unable to hide the tears streaming down her face as she thought of all those friends that they had heard nothing of since the Anschluss and the flight from Austria. They wondered if they would ever hear anything of them again. Nobody quite dared to admit that they might not. Nobody wanted to lose hope.</span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: #cc3300;"><br /></span><em><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">Through the years&nbsp;<br />We all will be together,<br />If the Fates allow<br />Until then we&rsquo;ll have to muddle through somehow</span></span></span></em></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><em><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">So have yourself a merry little Christmas now.</span></span></span></em></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><em><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;">&nbsp;</span></span></em></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">&ldquo;Well?&rdquo; Jo turned to her sister expectantly as they left the cinema. &ldquo;Aren&rsquo;t you glad that I dragged you out to watch it?&rdquo; Madge smiled.</span></span></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">&ldquo;What did you think?&rdquo; asked a voice from behind them and they both turned to see Hilda Annersley and Nell Wilson.</span></span></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">&ldquo;More importantly, what did you think?&rdquo; asked Madge with a grin at Nell.</span></span></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">&ldquo;Bit sugary for my liking but you were right, Hilda, it was what I needed,&rdquo; she conceded, tucking her arm through her friend&rsquo;s.</span></span></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">&ldquo;Do you think things will ever be like they used to be,&rdquo; asked Jo as they began to pick their way through the crowds. &ldquo;I wonder if 1945 will be the year to bring peace.&rdquo;</span></span></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman;">&ldquo;We mustn&rsquo;t lose hope, Jo. <em>We&rsquo;ll have to muddle through somehow,&rdquo; </em>she quoted softly.</span></span></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;">&nbsp;</span></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="color: black;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: small;">And 1945 was the year that brought them peace.</span></span><span style="color: #cc3300;"></span></p>




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