#256 The Way Through the Waves

by Charlie Berridge

It seemed as though there wasn’t a man left on the vessel. Every one them could had been shot or drowned as the landing craft dashed towards the beach. It was as though the machine was delivering an invisible troop as it drove through the waves lashed by enemy fire. The surf shook and white salt water shot to the heavens. Fierce fire took out the engine room and lit up the stern as the craft headed for the barbed wire sand. The dive bombers screeched, loosed their high explosive loads, twisted and turned up and away back to try and have another shot. And still we found our terrible way through the waves.

Then the shout went up and we surged ashore running, yelling, shooting and dying. Wave upon blood red wave, soaked in sea and sweat. A foreign sea, a home made sweat. We ran up the beach away from the chaos and into hell itself.

French Letters, or a journey to at least three places, is a work of non-fiction written by a fifty something English man. A heart attack gave him the tap on the shoulder and changed his life. Quitting work and Britain for the French High Pyrenees, he tried to become a mountain man but found himself journeying around France in an unreliable three-wheeled vehicle, called Peter, at a frustrating stop-start pace. With a head for escape, a desire to keep moving and a dodgy heart torn between the girl he thought he loved and the new life he thought he could sustain, the true story unfolds gently to culminate in Brancaster on the North Norfolk coast of England. This is the place where he comes to be with his dying Father and it's probably the place where he learns more about himself and those he really loves.

Click on the cover to visit the book's Amazon page.


Anonymous said...

Vivid, Charlie. I particularly like 'white salt water shot to the heavens'.

Wendy Edmond said...

Loved this Charlie, very evocative