Christmas at Tel-el-Kabir
(Recalled by Greta Marshall - Dec2004)

We were spending Christmas and the New Year in the Canal Zone (1951). The accommodation was in large tents in the grounds of the Grand Hotel, Tel-el-Kabir as the building itself was full. There was one extra-large tent that held four, so Sylvia England, Laura Lynne, Irene Boynton and I decided to share. We were woefully short of Christmas decorations, so Irene unscrewed a toilet seat (can't remember where she got the screwdriver) and we hung it up with "Merry Christmas" across it. Then we got several toilet rolls and twisted and strung them from the tent poles out to the edges of the tent and also around the sides. Well, it was certainly better than nothing.

After Christmas, we took down the decorations and a few days later Laura felt sick so we put her to bed and sent for the doctor. We were lying around sunbathing in our swimsuits (pre-Bikini days) when an Army officer strolled over, twirling his moustache. "I say, put me among the girls, eh what?" He sat down for a social visit with us and seemed to forget that he was here to see Laura, so finally I took him over and into the tent he went. After he had gone, we went over to see how she had got on and there she was lying amidst the toilet paper that she had forgotten to take down from around her bed. We wondered if the prescription he had given her was for dysentery!!!

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