Remembering our soldiers on ANZAC Day eve

April 24, 2010 at 2:00 pm 1 comment

Mr L and I met my friend Cassie in the Rocks today.  While there, I took the following photo.  Though the carving is of a soldier from Australia’s settlement period, it seemed a fitting reminder that ANZAC Day is tomorrow.  I’ve been remembering my two grandfathers who both served their countries in world war two – as did many other men and women.  I’ve also been thinking of the cab driver in Brisbane this week who told me that he’d been left for dead with two bullets in his chest in the Vietnam War.  He was so glad to be alive – there was a spring in his voice seldom heard while people rush about their days, barely stopping to remember their manners in the street, or acknowledge others.  This post has one purpose – to remember those who have gone to wars – whether by choice or not.

Sandstone carving at the Rocks in Sydney - of a soldier from the time of Sydney's settling

Sandstone carving at the Rocks in Sydney - of a soldier from the time of Sydney's settling

Remembering my Pop and Papa and many others

I’m so fortunate to have grown up knowing my grandparents – many of my friends didn’t get to know theirs.  My Mum and Dad’s fathers both served in World War II.  They didn’t like to talk about it.  It was only when my Pop knew that he was getting close to the end of his life that he told us much about his time in the war.  It was painful.  He didn’t like to talk about it.  I can only imagine why.  I never heard any stories that I remember from Papa.  The biggest reminders in our lives of that war is the age difference between Mum and my uncle.  They’re nine years apart – my uncle was a pre war baby and my Mum, post war.

I was listening to the radio a couple of weeks ago and heard a caller talking about her experience of growing up in a house where both her parents had worked together in WWII.  In her house, things were different.  Since her parents worked together, they spoke about it.  They shared stories in their household and that was an outlandish concept to the other families whose parents now had things about which they couldn’t communicate.

That same Brisbane taxi driver was drafted to serve in the Vietnam War.  He went along despite his preference not to.  He got shot and left for dead.  Somehow, at the last minute, he was rescued.  Thanks to his mates.  To him, the one thing he values following the undervalued return to Australia by the few remaining members of his unit is the comraderie that he shared with his fellow soldiers.  The mates that saved his bacon.

Rosemary grows wild on the hills in Gallipoli - remembering our ANZACs

Rosemary grows wild on the hills in Gallipoli - remembering our ANZACs

Thanks from me

I can’t speak for you, or anyone else, but from me, I say thanks.  I don’t condone war, I don’t support it and I don’t understand why, at the end of the day, people can’t just talk things out over a damn good meal!  But we’ve had wars, and our people were called upon to serve their countries.  To those who have gone to fight through choice or force, I say thank you.  To those who perhaps were never thanked – thank you.

To those who have fought and lost – loved ones, lives, or countless other things, I’m so sorry.

I wonder what our lives would have been without all the wars we’ve had.

Lest we forget

Lest we forget

Remembering the ANZACs

Tomorrow, services will be held around the world to honour the ANZACs.  I will be thinking of them and their families – of my family too – with fondness, gratitude and respect.

The Ode

They shall not grow old as we that are left grow old
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them

Lest we forget

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Entry filed under: Anzac day, australia, Brisbane, Grattitude, sydney. Tags: , , , .

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