What did the people know of war in 1914, after nearly a half century of peace? They did not know war; they had hardly given it a thought. They still saw it in the perspective of their school readers and of paintings in museums; brilliant cavalry attacks in glittering uniforms, the fatal shot always straight through the heart, the entire campaign a resounding march of victory—‘We’ll be home at Christmas,’ the recruits shouted laughingly to their mothers in August of 1914…The young people where honestly afraid that they might miss this most wonderful and exciting experiences of their lives;…that is why they shouted and sang in the trains that carried them to the slaughter.
—The world of Yesterday, Helmut Ripperger and B. W. Buebsch, trans., 1943 (via wittyhistorian)
one year from today i will literally be preparing to move to paris. holy shit. this might be the scariest/most exciting thing that i’ve EVER done.