Perfectly Safe

Monday, August 27th, 2012

New Zealand infantry brigadier Howard Kippenberger felt perfectly safe after a near miss from German artillery:

We then settled down to rest, when suddenly there was an unmistakable shell-burst close outside. I went to the door as the smoke and dust were clearing, and through the Castle gap saw, far out on the plain, four quickly flickering flashes. I started to count the seconds, but before the sound of the guns had arrived there were four sharp explosions, neatly spaced among the buildings. The corner of one house collapsed and the guns flashed again.

I returned inside and remarked that we were perfectly safe as two shells never landed in the same spot, whereupon with a howl one entered the room above my head, passed through the next wall, and burst feebly, slightly wounding a pig. This confirmed my opinion that we were perfectly safe as certainly no three shells were likely to land in the same place, so we sat through the twenty-minutes bombardment in moderate tranquillity.


  1. Wobbly says:

    I snorted my tea reading that one. What’s odd here is that I’m trying to learn US history and there you are reading NZ history (I’m NZ-born).

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