The first light of morning revealed a heavy sky over Manhattan, dappled clouds that promised snow. A few early risers looked forward to the first snowfall of the season, hoping it would last until Christmas.
Shop owners, as they unlocked their stores or rolled down their awnings, wondered how it would affect business. They hoped this holiday season would be profitable, despite the news from Europe.
For others, the threat of snow intensified the sense of unease that was now a part of daily life. As they stopped at the newsstands for their morning papers, they read the headlines with the now familiar foreign words: “Luftwaffe,” “Blitz,” “Führer.”
Some of the veterans could feel it in the old wounds that never really healed – war was coming sure as winter was coming. They shuddered that it could be happening again, and thought of the brothers lost, the limbs lost, the minds forever scarred. They shook their heads as they walked or limped away with their newspapers.
Mothers read the headlines and heard the dire news on the radio and bit their nails, or smoothed the brows of their little ones as they watched them sleep, calculating how many years before their sons could be torn from them.
One such mother, the widow Lillian Hapsey, parted the curtains in her sons’ bedroom, allowing the morning light to gently nudge her boys away from dreamland.
“Time to get up,” she said softly.
Click Follow to receive emails when this author adds content on Bublish