Guestblog by Edgar Valderrama – 5th Infantry Division, 11th Infantry Regiment, Company C.
We reached the Danube after the war had ended. They say the Danube appears blue to those in love. I was in love, yet the Danube sure looked like any big muddy river to me.
The end of the war had caught us in the hills of Czechoslovakia, (whereI met “Ella”) though we had dropped down to Austria and were having a ball by the Danube. We had paddled across the Rhine, Moselle and Sauer rivers under artillery and machine gun fire, but I remember crossing the Danube for fun in a primitive rope drawn ferry just to get to the other side like the chicken crossing the road in a joke.
My only previous interaction with horses had been an adventure with a friend and his pony long ago in Puebla. (the saddle slipped off and we had to carry it and walk about two miles leading the pony back home) Correct me if I’m wrong. Feland, but I remember I carried the saddle and you led the pony!
Back by the Danube. I found a barn nearby and dared to mount a friendly, but sturdy looking horse bareback. Someone opened the barn door. It apparently didn’t want to stay or didn’t belong there, because as soon as it saw its chance, it immediately made for the outdoors with me on its back hanging on to its neck. It was in a hurry; it ran, it galloped – and I hung on, clinging to its neck and managing to stay on the top side. We must have travelled around two miles till we arrived at another barn where the damn horse felt at home. I got off first chance, and started my long walk back without ever even seeing either of the barn owners.