Upon our arrival in Warsaw we were assembled into squads by the Company First Sergeant. In 1940 the NCOs’ still took the basic military bullshit seriously. Later on in the war, depending on what officer was present, we would, at best, be subjected to a minimum level of discipline.
We were set to work right away off loading the freight cars which contained the company rations, ammunition, and paperwork into the waiting trucks. The trucks we were loading all this into were ancient Czech made pieces of shit whose diesel engines farted and stunk as much as the horse drawn wagons that transported the mighty Wehrmacht. When we finished, we were once again assembled, and we marched off singing the Horst Wessel to our new barracks in Warsaw. No, we didn't get to ride in the trucks. There wasn't enough of them. A problem that would recur over and over the next few years. Plus I am sure some officer that it looked better if we marched. Far more impressive then us pedaling our bicycles down the road I am sure.
Yes, the mighty German army was horse powered then. The newsreels showed the Panzers, the armored personnel carriers, the screaming Stuka swooping from the sky. The reality was horses, a lot of horses, marching, and bicycles. Even towards the end of the war most of the army infantry divisions still used horses for transportation. Since by then most divisions were really regiments or battalions at best it was a good thing less horses were needed. Why? Because most of the horses had died or been eaten by that point. My company, as were the two other companies of the battalion was bicycle mounted. Yes, we invaded Russia on bicycles, but that was still months in the future.