There is the smell of acrid body odour and sickly sweet blood. But I have become used to that. It is all part of being a Lance Corporal in the Infantry Corps; one of many serving in Mussolini’s army to defend our honour in the dusty heat of Libya’s North Africa.
A fly lands on my nose, twitching its short stubby wings. I hate the ever-constant flies and the irritating buzz of these parasites in the sticky heat. Sweat trickles incessantly down my face and the back of my neck so that my uniform clamps uncomfortably around my body. Red and hurtful chaff marks have occurred between my legs as the heat and the sweat causes my trousers to hitch up and gather.
And now, after many months of onslaught, my compatriots and I have had to surrender to the enemy in a town called Agedabia, on Africa’s north coast.
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