Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Rate This Thread
Hop To
#4396403 - 12/23/17 12:50 PM A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post)  
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 2,815
RAF_Louvert Offline
BOC President; Pilot Extraordinaire; Humble Man
RAF_Louvert  Offline
BOC President; Pilot Extraordinaire; Humble Man
Senior Member

Joined: May 2012
Posts: 2,815
L'Etoile du Nord
.

"A Story for the Season"

1916: Christmas Eve at the Front. The War has dragged itself along on its steely, mud-caked claws for over two years, and the end seems no closer now than when it all began. At an RFC aerodrome not ten miles from the first line trenches, a group of airmen sit through the morning’s briefing, and prepare themselves for the day’s work. They are nearly all young men, at least in years. But with war comes age beyond a calendar’s mark, and one would find that each man is far older than first appearance would tell if a moment were taken to look into his eyes. As the meeting breaks the jovial banter can be heard amongst the group: the good-natured ribbing and warnings, the verbal jousting, the camaraderie and the closeness that bonds souls together in such tenuous and temporary times. Across the mud at a German aerodrome, a similar scene is being played out. The Jagdstaffel pilots there are also preparing themselves for the task at hand. To look at them, you might imagine they were schoolmates of their British counterparts, rather than enemies soon to be locked in mortal combat. For they too laugh and joke, and share that same bond. And they too are of the "old young".

The hour is at hand. On each side the signal is given and the small, fast scout planes skim along the cold, icy ground, and one by one lift into a winter sky as grey as the earth below. They form up, and after climbing to their prescribed altitudes, they head towards No Man’s Land and on to do their best; for King and Country; für Kaiser und Vaterland. They meet, and there is the initial gun pass as each sizes up the other. A few moments later and the aerial battle begins in earnest. To those in the fight it is a mind-numbing blur of action that runs in both accelerated and slow motion simultaneously. A split second given to pull the trigger as a plane zips across the sights: an eternity spent to try and twist out of the path of the bullets. An entire lifetime won or lost in less than an eye blink. To those on the ground it appears as a graceful ballet of the sky, the canvas-feathered birds turning and rolling and climbing and diving. But it is a dance to the death more often than not, and it will end when one or more has fallen.

And one has fallen. The long, slow, spiraling pirouette as the finale comes to the dance. The others have now tired and as if by mutual agreement or unseen signal the partners separate and turn away. The audience below does not understand how it can be over so quickly. They cannot see the fatigue and exhaustion of those in the air; cannot see their battered ships, or their bruised and aching bodies; or their tired, aging eyes. No, they can see none of these things, any more than the men in the air can see the pain or the agony endured by those who must fight on the ground. Each sees the other from afar, as through a glass darkly. It is an irony of war that in each case, either in the Sky or on the Earth, a man better understands and is more akin to the enemy he fights in his realm than to his own countrymen above or below.


Christmas Eve at the Front. Night has fallen and the pilots sit about the dinner table at their respective aerodromes, and talk of flying and fighting, and of family and friends. Wishes of the Season are shared, letters from home are read. Songs of hope are sung and toasts are made to fellow flyers, and to mothers and sweethearts. At one of the tables an empty chair stands in remembrance of the comrade lost that day, and to whom the final toast is made. He will be missed, and to a loved one back home he will forever be a young man with bright, happy eyes; forever a photograph, a memory of a life that could have been. It matters not which side he fought for. He was a man, a part of human kind, and with his passing we are all the lesser for it.

.

May you have safe and blessed holidays wherever you are, and may we each remember the true message of this season: Peace on earth, good will toward men.




[Linked Image]

#4396410 - 12/23/17 01:47 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 503
Stache Offline
Member
Stache  Offline
Member

Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 503
Michigan, USA
Nice Lou, look forward to the reminder every year.

Best wishes to one and all, Happy Holidays.

Be safe out there.


Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. A. Einstein

(System Specs:)

I7-6700k OC 4.4GHZ, 16GB DDR4 3200Mhz; Gigabyte Gaming 7 MB, G1 OC'ed GTX980ti; Three-Acer XB271HU WQHD Gsync 144Mhz; Samsung 950-512GB NVMe SSD; WD 2TB-7200rpm; Cooler Master HAF XB EVO, Nepton 240M cooler, V1000 PS; Windows 10 PRO; VKB GunfighterPro Stick; Saitek Pro Flight Pedals & Throttle; Dual TM MFD panels; TrackIR 5; home grown cockpit, � la RogerDodger.net
#4396423 - 12/23/17 03:04 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Oct 2015
Posts: 98
Dark_Canuck Offline
Junior Member
Dark_Canuck  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Oct 2015
Posts: 98
Canada
Wonderful! Happy holidays to all of you and yours!

#4396431 - 12/23/17 03:36 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 154
Mr_Dirt Offline
Member
Mr_Dirt  Offline
Member

Joined: May 2012
Posts: 154
Missouri USA
Well done Sir may you and yours have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy Prosperous New Year!!
John

#4396437 - 12/23/17 04:16 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 187
ARUP Offline
Member
ARUP  Offline
Member

Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 187
Kentucky
Merry Christmas!

#4396446 - 12/23/17 05:08 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 1,178
ArisFuser Offline
Member
ArisFuser  Offline
Member

Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 1,178
Merry Christmas , best wishes for you and your families.

#4396456 - 12/23/17 05:52 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 855
Hauksbee Offline
Member
Hauksbee  Offline
Member

Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 855
DeForest, Wisconsin
Ahh! The sweetest of Christmas traditions; all of us seated before the fire, bellies full from dinner, freshly poured drinks in hand, and Uncle Lou tells us a Christmas story. Thanks Lou. Good to know that some things don't change.

Last edited by Hauksbee; 12/23/17 05:53 PM.

In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. But in practice, there is.
#4396465 - 12/23/17 06:28 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 1,624
Hasse Offline
Member
Hasse  Offline
Member

Joined: May 2012
Posts: 1,624
Ah, I was waiting for this!

Merry Christmas everybody! CT


"Upon my word I've had as much excitement on a car as in the air, especially since the R.F.C. have had women drivers."

James McCudden, Five Years in the Royal Flying Corps
#4396472 - 12/23/17 06:41 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,215
JJJ65 Offline
Member
JJJ65  Offline
Member

Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,215
Czech Rep.
Merry Christmas to all fellow WOFFers! CT

#4396475 - 12/23/17 06:48 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: May 2016
Posts: 378
BuckeyeBob Offline
Member
BuckeyeBob  Offline
Member

Joined: May 2016
Posts: 378
Ohio, USA
Now, Christmas has officially begun. Thank you, Lou!

CT

#4396485 - 12/23/17 07:19 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 1,139
Raine Online content
Member
Raine  Online Content
Member

Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 1,139
New Brunswick, Canada
A revered tradition. Thank you, Lou. And heartfelt warm Christmas wishes for all the denizens of our virtual sky.

#4396521 - 12/23/17 10:56 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 2,124
MFair Offline
Member
MFair  Offline
Member

Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 2,124
Thank you Lou. And a Merry Christmas to everyone.


Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from either end.
BOC Member since....I can't remember!
#4396536 - 12/24/17 12:04 AM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 6,234
Robert_Wiggins Offline
BWOC Survivor!...So Far!!
Robert_Wiggins  Offline
BWOC Survivor!...So Far!!
Hotshot

Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 6,234
Lindsay, Ontario, Canada
Thanks Lou, That story based creatively on substance, always touches my heart and soul. One cannot help it.

To all a very Merry Christmas.

Here is one I recently saw for the first time and it too is moving:

“A Soldier’s Silent Night”

Also known as "A Soldier's Christmas," "Merry Christmas My Friend," "Christmas Soldier," and "Christmas Night Song," Father Ted and "A Soldier's Silent Night" have been blessing soldiers and their families since 2003


T'was the night before Christmas
He lived all alone,
in a one bedroom house
made of plaster and stone.

I had come down the chimney
with presents to give
To see just who,
in this dwelling did live.

I looked all around
A strange sight to see
No tinsel, no presents,
Not even a tree.

On the wall hung pictures
of far distant lands.
Metals 'n badges, awards of every kind;
A sobering thought came alive in my mind.

This house was different...
it was dark, it was dreary.
I had found the home of a soldier,
I could see that most clearly.

The soldier lay sleeping,
Silent, Alone;
Curled up on the floor
In this one bedroom home.

His face was so gentle,
The room in such disorder;
Not at all how I pictured
a United States' soldier.

Was this the hero
of whom I'd just read;
Curled up on a poncho,
the floor for a bed?

Then I realized the other families
I saw this night,
Owed their lives to soldiers
Who were willing to fight.

In the morning, round the world,
Children would play;
Grown-ups would celebrate
A bright Christmas Day.

But they all enjoy freedom
Each month of the year,
Because of soldiers
Like the one lying here.

I couldn't help but wonder
How many lay alone,
On a cold Christma Eve
In lands far from home.

The very thought
Brought a tear to my eyes;
I dropped to my knees,
I started to cry.

The soldier awakened
I heard his rough voice,
"Santa don't cry,
This life is MY choice.

I fight for freedom,
I don't ask for more;
My life is my God,
My country, My corps."

The soldier rolled over,
and drifted to sleep.
But, I couldn't control it,
I continued to weep.

I kept watch for hours,
So silent and still;
As both of us shivered
From the cold night's chill.

I didn't want to leave him
On that cold, dark night;
This guardian of honor,
So willing to fight.

Then, the soldier rolled over,
In a voice soft and pure,
He whispered, "Carry on Santa,
It's Christmas Day, all is secure."

One look at my watch,
I knew he was right.
Merry Christmas my friend,
May God bless you this night.



(System_Specs)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Trooper
Pwr Sup: OCZ, GameXStream,1000-Watt
MB: Asus Maximus VI Extreme
Mem: Corsair Vengeance (2x 8GB), PC3-12800, DDR3-1600MHz, Unbuffered
CPU: Intel i7-4770K, OC to 4.427Ghz
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Seidon 240M Liquid CPU Cooler
Vid Card: ASUS GTX 980Ti STRIX 6GB
OS and Games on separate: Samsung 840 Series 250GB SSD
Monitor: Primary ASUS PG27AQ 4k; Secondary Samsung SyncMaster BX2450L
Periphs: MS Sidewinder FFB2 Pro, TrackIR 4

#4396549 - 12/24/17 01:08 AM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,532
Fullofit Offline
Member
Fullofit  Offline
Member

Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,532
Ajax, ON
It's hard to follow Robert's post. I've got nothing. Merry Christmas!


"Take the cylinder out of my kidneys,
The connecting rod out of my brain, my brain,
From out of my arse take the camshaft,
And assemble the engine again."
#4396574 - 12/24/17 05:55 AM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 5,612
Sandbagger Offline
Forums Moderator
Sandbagger  Offline
Forums Moderator
Hotshot

Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 5,612
Coningsby, Lincs, UK
Real strong stuff guys, but it does show the true Christmas spirit.
Way to go guys, especially Lou, after this year.


Toolmaker (8 years)
Royal Air Force (27 years)
Aerospace Technical Author (20 years)

User Mods download page:
http://www.thatoneplease.co/indexWOFF.html

Models:
http://www.thatoneplease.co/logs.html

Alienware Aurora R5
Windows 10 64 bit
Intel i7-6700K 4.2Ghz (liquid cooled)
Two GTX 1080 Foundations in SLI (8 Gig each)
32 Gig DDR4 2133Mhz
1TB SSD boot drive - 1TB SATA storage drive
5.1 Surround Sound
34" Dell Ultra Sharp U3415W (3440x 2440)
CH Pro-Pedals, Stick and Throttle
TrackIR-5 Pro
#4396732 - 12/25/17 04:30 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 154
Mr_Dirt Offline
Member
Mr_Dirt  Offline
Member

Joined: May 2012
Posts: 154
Missouri USA
That is inspiring Robert thanks for sharing.
John

#4396733 - 12/25/17 04:34 PM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: RAF_Louvert]  
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 154
Mr_Dirt Offline
Member
Mr_Dirt  Offline
Member

Joined: May 2012
Posts: 154
Missouri USA
That is inspiring Robert thanks for sharing.
John

#4396801 - 12/26/17 05:57 AM Re: A Story for the Season, (my traditional OFF/WOFF Christmas post) [Re: Stache]  
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 551
CaptSopwith Offline
Barmy WingNut
CaptSopwith  Offline
Barmy WingNut
Member

Joined: May 2003
Posts: 551
United States
Originally Posted by Stache
Nice Lou, look forward to the reminder every year.

Best wishes to one and all, Happy Holidays.

Be safe out there.


Hear Hear! Thank you for sharing, Lou. It's always a pleasure to read your posts. And yours as well Robert.

A very Merry Christmas to all!

Cheers!


Moderated by  Polovski, Sandbagger 

Quick Search
Recent Articles
Support SimHQ

If you shop on Amazon use this Amazon link to support SimHQ
.
Social


Recent Topics
Question about the Cockney accent
by PanzerMeyer. 01/22/18 03:31 PM
You Can Always Go Around!
by Airdrop01. 01/22/18 12:11 AM
Usefullness of kitchen gadgets
by Dunolde. 01/21/18 06:15 PM
The Farthest: Voyager in Space
by Haggart. 01/20/18 08:51 PM
Hope You Got Your Flu Shots
by Haggart. 01/20/18 06:32 PM
Turbo Tax
by Haggart. 01/20/18 12:50 AM
Need recommendation for simple inkjet printer
by malibu43. 01/19/18 06:01 PM
Bullitt Mustang
by KraziKanuK. 01/18/18 05:59 PM
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.6.0