Waiting for Sunday Night Football to come on, Sandy and I turned the channel to watch the beginning of the 1961 movie, Breakfast at Tiffanys, starring Audrey Hepburn. Ms. Hepburn is one of my all-time favorite actresses and as I watched the opening scene with her standing in front of Tiffanys, I was reminded about her childhood growing up in Holland during World War II.
I’ve been lucky. I’ve never had to personally experience war. I’ve never felt hunger or had to worry where my or my children’s next meal was going to come from. I’ve never lived in a country occupied by a foreign enemy. I’ve never had to show documentation to move about in my own country. I’ve never had to worry about the possibility of being deported each time someone knocked on my door in the evening.
I’m writing this post on 5 May 2014. Liberation Day (also known as Freedom Day) for Holland. It was 5 May 1945 that Canadian forces along with other Allied forces were able to obtain the surrender of German forces in the small Dutch town of Wageningen. This led to the complete surrender and liberation of the country.
There is a cemetery near Maastricht. It is the final resting spot for 8,301 American soldiers who died in Operation Market Garden (17–25 September 1944). It was a failed Allied attempt to liberate Holland on their path to Berlin. There are other military cemeteries nearby for the British and Canadian men who did not survive the battle.
A Dutch family has adopted every man who perished in the battle. Each man’s grave is kept up and decorated. Even a portrait of their adopted soldier sits in their respective homes.
Stew takes you on a walking tour of buildings, places, and sites significant to the theme of each of his books. But most importantly, you will learn the intricate stories of the people and places that many other tours do not.
Stewart Ross’ book is full of interesting documents and research, it put you well on the tracks of Marie Antoinette, Danton, Robespierre and many more, whether in Paris or in Versailles, extremely interesting and easy to read!
Raphaelle Crevet | Certified Tour Guide, Paris, France
Mr. Ross brings the streets of Paris to life, making it possible for you to stand on the very spots where the grand and tragic events of the French Revolution took place. If you are looking for more than just the typical tourist experience in Paris, then this book is must reading!