Taken in stages over a distance approaching 300 miles, the route across Sumatra in 1942 must have seemed more akin to a voyage of exploration for Europeans who had lived in Singapore, and even to those who had spent many years in peninsular Malaya. For soldiers, sailors and airmen also it was very much new territory, offering a whole range of tropical scenery, some of it very dramatic. Travelling had to be done, however, as circumstances allowed; for many, this meant covering long distances at night.
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