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For two and a half years they lived in a bunker with nothing but two sefarim, a Gemara Kesubos and a Mishnah Berurah chelek gimmel, and so, they were able to learn only hilchos Shabbos.
In the spring of 1946, Reb Yehoshua joined a group of illegal immigrants traveling to Eretz Yisrael. They were ordered to board the ship in Marseilles, France, on Shabbos, which distressed him to no end. On the other hand, it would have been dangerous to remain alone in a strange place with no money, food or belongings. He boarded the ship, but felt remorseful about it for many years, especially when he learned that the whole boarding on Shabbos was a setup by Shabbos desecrators who wanted the religious group to desecrate Shabbos.
As he boarded the ship that Shabbos, Reb Yehoshua pledged that when he would settle down, he would do something for Shabbos. This pledge was the seed that germinated into the sefer Shemiras Shabbos Kehilchasah.