Though war may have seemed far away, country kids in Australia still had a taste of the danger that threatened the nation during World War 2.
For Mary Newing, who grew up in the rural NSW South Coast community of Cambewarra Mountain, the memories were a mix of fear and excitement.
Mary, who died in 2015, shared her recollections with the local newspaper, TheSouth Coast Register - memories that included hiding in the bush during air raids, and secret plans to blow up their country road if the enemy approached.
Mary and her family lived at the top of Cambewarra Mountain near Kangaroo Valley.
Her father, Os McClelland, was a World War I veteran serving in the 13th battalion in France in 1917.
He became a prisoner of war after being captured by the Germans at Bullecourt and interned in Friedrichsfeld POW camp (Limburg an der Lahn) near the border of East Prussia, returning to Australia on March 31, 1919.
Mrs Ewing's parents built their mountain cottage in the 1920s and lived there for 15 years, running the Tuckerbox Cafe from the location and establishing Mountain Mist ice cream.
Mrs Newing vividly recalls life on the mountain during the war.
"We had to use blackout lights at night and from our house Dad was a warden and had to ensure there were no lights showing in case the Japanese planes came over," she said.
"We had big black curtains mixed with horsehair and frames that we hung over our windows.
"It was his job to ring anyone in Cambewarra who still had lights on that hadn't been blacked out. We knew everyone in the district; they were just small farm lots then.
"At one stage during the war 15 to 20 members of the VDC [Volunteer Defence Corps] were camped there.
"They were afraid if the Japanese invaded and landed on the South Coast they would try to make it to the Southern Highlands. So they had dug two mines into the mountain, one just below our house where the other hairpin bend is today and another one above us, up near my grandparents' guest home - they had them filled with explosives and if we were invaded they were willing to blow the mountain up.
"There were armed guards at both sites day and night.
"My father was also over at the Hampden Bridge during the war to defend it in case the Japanese got there and tried to make it to the Highlands.
"All they had were pick handles - what would they have done if a Japanese tank had rolled up? They would have had no hope."
Her mother and many other local women were volunteer plane spotters and recorders at Cambewarra Lookout.
"My mum, Mrs McMahon and Ivy Boxsell would go there during the day and record and register every plane that flew past," she said.
"Also during the war we would do air raid practice at school.
"We didn't have trenches to go to. If there was an air raid we used to take off to the bush and take cover.
"The teacher, Cecil Chapman, would blow a whistle and we would scuttle like chickens into the bush - we all had special places to lie down.
"It was always a great time when the army used to move - we would sit and watch all army trucks go up the road in convoys to the Highlands, it was a bit of excitement."