Eben also sends Juliet a letter of thanks for Eli's wood. He writes about the evacuation of the Guernsey children. The parents were in an awful predicament when they had to decide whether to send their kids away to keep them safe. Nobody knew if the Germans would actually come, but there was also no guarantee that the Germans wouldn't invade England. When France fell to Hitler, it became clear both that England was next and that England couldn't help Guernsey. The United States arranged ships to take children away, but only gave parents a day to prepare. Jane was adamant that Eli evacuate.
In the case of the lead-up to Guernsey's occupation, its relative independence and freedom actually becomes a bad thing: it means that England has less incentive to protect or try to keep it. By choosing to send their children to England, parents were forced to trust that complete strangers would care for their children as though they were family.
On the 19th and 20th of June, the U.S. took children and mothers with babies to England. The small children were excited; the older ones knew better. The authorities asked that the children be dropped off at the school so that kids wouldn't cry saying goodbye on the pier. Elizabeth and Eben walked Eli to the school and Elizabeth helped get the children ready. On his way back to Jane, Eben remembered when, as a small child, Eli had seen a lone shoe in the path, commented that it was all alone, and remarked that he never felt alone. Eben says he's asked Isola to write about what happened at the school, as Elizabeth slapped Adelaide. Juliet promptly sends Isola a telegram asking for details.
Eli's childhood musings about the lone shoe show that even at a very young age, Eli felt very connected to his family and his community, as he recognized that he was never truly alone. Eben presumably hopes that this outlook will help Eli bond with the family that cares for him in England and instead, will help him see it as a way to expand his community and his chosen family even further than Guernsey.