Ice Cold in Alex


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Something else that I picked up from the Warewhare bargain bin, the 60th Anniversary issue…it’s been sitting in the wait list for weeks, til I was in the mood for something like this…

Ice Cold is one of the real British classics, understated and effective with elements of edge of the chair suspense and quiet humour against the backdrop of one of the less known theatres of World War 2. Although all the major Allied nations campaigned in North Africa, few know the details of the battles that raged up and down and back again along the North African coast from 1940 until 1943.

We may know some of the placenames…Tobruk, El Alamein…some of the personalities…Montgomery, Freyberg, Upham…but little of the detail…I’m likely that, as part of my guinea pig role at Waikato, I was able to study the New Zealand Division in WW2 under Laurie Barber and credit that one paper with opening my eyes to the ebbs and flows of this campaign.

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Ice Cold is the story of an Austin K.2 ambulance named Katie – the style brought to life for many in Airfix’s classic Emergency Set – retreating from Tobruk to Alexandria with a very small but very effective cast, only four key characters including Harry “You Can’t Kill a Squadron” Andrews, with a dozen or so minor supporting roles…through minefields, avoiding German land and air patrols, and negotiating steel sand drifts, hard rocky ground, and soft treacherous desert sands…

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The driving motivation through Katie’s odyssey is the vision of an ice cold beer in Alex(andria) and the end of the journey…

There’s plenty of opportunity for spoilers so I won’t go any further other than to say that this is a must-see classic…and the sort that I can watch time and again, each time picking up subtleties that I have missed before…

…possibly quite a timely one as I’m researching potential ‘ice colds’ for this summer…

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…seeking a vision that will motivate Tongariro Alpine Crossing hikers throughout this summer…

…possibly with onion rings…

 

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