Welcome to Somme
20,000 British soldiers died in the first day of the Battle of the Somme. The battle would go on to last from July 1st until November 18th and at the end, over 1,000,000 men were wounded or had lost their lives fighting over less than 10 km of ground. Going to the locations I had written about in previous papers was a sobering experience. On the way from my parent’s house to the Somme, we stopped by Verdun, where a similarly horrific battle had taken place. One of the locations we visited was the Douaumont Ossuary – a building where they store bones of the dead - through the windows, we could see the skulls of men who fought in World War I staring back at us. Both battlefields were located in the beautiful French countryside, the rolling hills alternating between the yellow flowers of rapeseed, the waving wheat and the furrows of fields awaiting their next crop.