We got to the point where Georg tells Maria to get the children together so they can flee the country, and I tweeted this:
Just a reminder that the real Von Trapps fled in part b/c they refused to sing for Hitler's birthday. #SoundOfMusic— Su Wilcox (@cheekysu) December 19, 2016
|Maria Trapp had three children after|
she and the captain married, in case
you're counting humans and wondering
where the extra ones came from.
Image source: Goodreads.
Georg received his offer to rejoin the Navy. (In the book, he wrestled with the decision of whether to accept, unlike the instant response he has in the movie.) Rupert, the eldest, received an offer to take a responsible position in a hospital in Berlin almost immediately after finishing medical school. Then the family received the invitation to sing at Hitler's birthday.
Because the movie timeline is quite compressed and accelerated vis-à-vis real life, the children in the movie have only aged a couple months since Maria first met the family. However, when it was really time for the family to respond to these offers, the children as we know them were either grown or in their late teens. Georg called the family together, went over the invitations they'd all received, and asked what they wanted to do. They all agreed to say no, knowing they would have to leave home and homeland behind, willing to draw on their deep faith that God would hold them in His hands.
They got a train to Italy a few days later (just in time before the borders were closed), contacted a manager who'd previously invited them to do a concert series in the US, and were on a boat to New York within a few weeks. The entire rest of the book is about their adventures in adjusting to a new country: learning a new language, deciding to become US citizens (after the boys were drafted by the US army), buying a farm in Vermont, and other parts of life in a huge, singing, touring family.
I've said it before and now I'm saying it again: if you love The Sound of Music, get yourself to a library and pick up this book. Also check out books by other members of the Trapp family, to get even more perspective on the family's history.