Posts Tagged ‘Anzac Day’

488. Sunday 1st May 2016. Anzac Day, a birthday and World Tai Chi Day…

04/05/2016

Monday 25th April – Anzac Day

Over the last several years I have become more interested and involved in Anzac Day. Here at our village we have an official Anzac cenotaph, for want of a better word. We have the three masted flag-pole where the flags of Australia, New Zealand and Queensland are flown in a ceremonial and protocol regimented way. About 80 people, including some visitors at the Treasure Island Caravan Park next door, turned up for the dawn service. Those visitors were brought over in the electric buggy or they chose to walk. Rob, who was in charge of the service, connected his iPhone to ABC Radio which broadcasts the official service from the War Memorial in Canberra, our national capitol. In turn the iPad was connected to an amplifier connected to two outside speakers. The location of our ceremonial site is beside the Biggera Creek. Watching the wan dawn break through clouds as sunshine highlighted the water was just the right setting for the moving ceremony of reflection and thanks to those who gave their lives and for our current armed forces who still protect us.

I returned for the 11am service which was a mixture of short speeches, poetry reading and prayers followed by approved Anzac music. All in all it was a sombre, reflective service.

So was the weather.

Sigh!!!

This year, the 101st anniversary of the landing at Gallipoli and the beginning of the ANZAC Legend, Rob was able to conduct the ceremony, by himself. I realise when looking around how many of the men in the village are returned soldiers by the medals worn on their coats.

With the mostly miserable weather we stayed home and watched many of the Anzac broadcasts on TV.

Saturday 30th April – World Tai Chi Day.

To be a part of World Tai Chi Day we drove to Broadwater Parklands where several Tai Chi classes from around the Gold Coast had agreed to participate. The wet weather kept people away. I did not participate because I had hurt my knee the day before but I was able to take photo’s. The very wet weather kept numbers down which was disappointing. Normally the Wednesday and Friday classes we attend have about 40 participants. Today with several groups invited to attend, there were only about 20 people in the class.

Tai Chi in the park beside The Broadwater.

Tai Chi in the park beside The Broadwater.

More Tai Chi

More Tai Chi

and yet more Tai Chi...

and yet more Tai Chi…

...and more again.

…and more again.

A heavy downpour could be seen in big black clouds moving in from the sea

Big black clouds approaching from over The Broadwater beyond Versache Marina and Marina Mirage.

Big black clouds approaching from over The Broadwater beyond Versache Marina and Marina Mirage.

so the class was quickly moved to the nearby sound stage normally used for outdoor concerts.

The Tai Chi class was moved to the shelter of the bandstand just in time to beat the rain.

The Tai Chi class was moved to the shelter of the bandstand just in time to beat the rain.

Tree lined piazza to the bandstand.

Tree lined piazza to the bandstand.

After the Tai Chi we drove to McIntosh island almost in the heart of Surfers Paradise. It is an island of tranquillity in a sea of busy roads and activities.

Water course and footbridges on McIntosh Island.

Water course and footbridges on McIntosh Island.

Footbridge connecting McIntosh Island with Surfers Paradise Beach.

Footbridge connecting McIntosh Island with Surfers Paradise Beach.

The watercpurse through the island.

The watercpurse through the island.

Unbelievably parking is free and plentiful. The park has a watercourse running through and picnic shelters, tables, benches and free electric barbecues are dotted around the island. We were here to help celebrate the 5th birthday of Eloise

Eloise waited patiently for her birthday cake to be lit. Note the cake in the shape of a butterfly surround by caterpillar shaped merangues.

Eloise waited patiently for her birthday cake to be lit. Note the cake in the shape of a butterfly surround by caterpillar shaped merangues.

Eloise with her sister and young friends waiting for the candles to be lit.

Eloise with her sister and young friends waiting for the candles to be lit.

Eloise with her butterfly wings

Eloise with her butterfly wings

Eloise turned Five today. The party children are lined up to beat the living daylights out of the Butterfly shaped Pinata. The party them was...butterflies.

Eloise turned Five today. The party children are lined up to beat the living daylights out of the Butterfly shaped Pinata. The party them was…butterflies.

daughter of young friends from Airlie Beach who moved to the Gold Coast several years ago. They live about one kilometre from us. The rain stayed away, the sun wore a hole through the pesky clouds and gave the birthday girl a nice park to enjoy.

Sunday 1st May 2016

Grandson Chris had another game of Rugby League today. We drove to Brisbane in drenching rain which seemed to disappear when we got close to the football ground.

The crowd looks on. Mum Regelyn (in blue) could not bear to watch when Chris was tackled or tackled.

The crowd looks on. Mum Regelyn (in blue) could not bear to watch when Chris was tackled or tackled.

He was more involved in today’s game and really put his body into the game, tackling opponents

In the process of this tackle Chris got a fist sandwich in the face.

In the process of this tackle Chris got a fist sandwich in the face.

Chris performs a copy book around the ankles tackle.

Chris performs a copy book around the ankles tackle.

and running with the ball when it was passed to him.

Chris gets roughed up in a tackle. Chris is one of the taller boys in his team so seems to be targeted.

Chris gets roughed up in a tackle. Chris is one of the taller boys in his team so seems to be targeted.

Regrettably his team lost today.

Sigh!

419. Sunday 26th April 2015. 100th Anzac Day Ceremony and the Canada, USA and Alaska adventure begins…

26/04/2015

Monday 20th April

The excitement this little black duck is undergoing is umm err, well if not overwhelming at least it is not underwhelming. It could be my excitement is what wakes me during the night and does not allow me to get back to sleep until I acknowledge I am excited. I am really. I just do not show it.

I am excited that in a couple of days I take delivery of our new car and after a couple of days of driving it will be stored in the garage for a couple of months. It took a couple of minutes to work out how to get a few couples into that sentence. Then, only another minute to get a pair of couples into a sentence and no time at all really to get one couple into a sentence.

I must admit I am also excited that by 7am on Sunday morning I will leave home to begin an adventure several weeks in the planning and two months of execution.

Tuesday 21st April

Another day closer!

Wednesday 22nd April

In the afternoon I took possession of our new Brilliant Red Hyundai i30 SE Trophy Hatchback.

New i30 waiting to leave the showroom.

New i30 waiting to leave the showroom.

Still waiting.

Still waiting.

Look at the stupid look on the face of the proud i30 owner.

Look at the stupid look on the face of the proud i30 owner.

The excitement of a new car was overshadowed by nowhere to go! After dinner I drove to Coolangatta on the NSW border. The Laser Lighthouse is lit at night and I can stand one foot in each state.

i30 at the Point Danger (Dangar) lighthouse. I was unable to aprk in such a way that I could straddle the Queensland New South Wales border.

i30 at the Point Danger (Dangar) lighthouse. I was unable to park in such a way that I could straddle the Queensland New South Wales border.

From Point Danger I saw a large Quarter Moon setting in the west.

Setting moon over Kirra Beach. At this time of night I would normally expect to see a rising moon. I apologise for the quality of this photo. I forgot to change settings on the camera for night time, low light exposures.

Setting moon over Kirra Beach. At this time of night I would normally expect to see a rising moon. I apologise for the quality of this photo. I forgot to change settings on the camera for night time, low light exposures.

By coincidence another neighbour here in the village also took possession of a red i30 an hour before me. Our number plates have consecutive numbers.

Thursday 23rd April

Once more, to celebrate our new car, I took it for a spin to Sanctuary Cove Marina and Hope island Marina. This was my first visit to these locations and I was staggered by the incredible wealth tied up in the houses in the area but more so by the fabulous boats.

 

Friday 24th April

Brother in Law Ken C arrived to stay a couple (there’s that word again!) of nights and to join our village in ANZAC Day commemorations tomorrow. I had to show off the new car by taking Ken for a drive around some of the Gold Coast he has not seen before.

Preparing the shade pergolas and seaating ready for the Dan Service.

Preparing the shade pergolas and seating ready for the Dawn Service.

Saturday 25th April

ANZAC DAY.

About 130 residents and guests and visitors from the caravan park next door attended our dawn service. It was a moving ceremony and one which has taken months of planning by Rob C a resident here at the village.

Dawn Service ready to get underway.

Dawn Service ready to get underway. Rob is delivering  details of the coming events.

The Australian, New Zealand and Queensland Flags on our revamped flagpole  at  our Shrine of Remembrance.

The Australian, New Zealand and Queensland Flags on our revamped flagpole at our Shrine of Remembrance.

A mural was unveiled at our Dawn Service.

A mural was unveiled at our Dawn Service.

Australia & New Zealand must be unique in the world in that we commemorate losses of our worst military disaster rather than celebrating strategic victories. I am speaking of course of Gallipoli on this day in 1915 where we fought the Turks and losses were huge…on both sides. Out of that conflict came a national spirit and an enduring friendship with a previous foe.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott addressed the 10,500 invited Aussie’s and Kiwi’s crowd at Anzac Cove in Turkey as follows;

“Beginning here, on this spot and at this hour, 100 years ago, they fought and all-too-often they died: for their mates, for our country, for their King and — ultimately — for the ideal that people and nations should be free,” he told the crowd. “Because they rose to their challenges, we believe that it’s a little easier for us to rise to ours.

“Their example, we believe, helps us to be better than we would otherwise be. That’s why we’re here: to acknowledge what they have done for us — and what they still do for us.

“So much has changed in 100 years, but not the things that really matter: Duty, selflessness, moral courage. Always these remain the mark of a decent human being. “They did their duty; now, let us do ours. They gave us an example; now, let us be worthy of it. They were as good as they could be in their time; now, let us be as good as we can be in ours.

“Like every generation since, we are here on Gallipoli because we believe the Anzacs represented Australians at their best.

“Because they rose to their challenges, we believe it is a little easier for us to rise to ours. Their example helps us to be better than we would otherwise be.”

Our beautiful dawn service, via radio broadcast from the War Memorial in Canberra was played via loudspeakers in our private park and memorial.  The service brought tears to all present. Later in the morning we had an 11am service at the same location only this was in blazing sunlight and temperatures nearing 30°. It is a good thing we set up shade pergolas yesterday and put out 150 chairs. A Wreath laying ceremony was conducted and yours truly had the job of official photographer and “sound technician” for all the music and speeches. This was another moving ceremony but there was still more to come.

We had a roast meal for lunch for 98 invited guests. At the conclusion of lunch an ANZAC painting by Anne T, a resident was auctioned.  The successful bid was made by the brother of one of the residents. Once he won the auction he then donated the painting back to the village. Anne was reduced to tears of emotion for the auction of her work and subsequent return of the painting to our clubhouse. The successful bidder was swamped with thank you’s from the crowd.

Wow! What a day!

But it was not over yet. We went to dinner with Ken’s sister Kirsty and their uncle Ian and a wonderful Thai restaurant in the Southport gastronomic precinct.

 

Sunday 26th April

Another morning up early for the trip to Coolangatta Airport (thanks to neighbours Keith and Mary for driving me) Ken left for his return home on the Sunshine Coast. I left Coolangatta on a Virgin Airlines flight to Sydney. I left in brilliant sunshine and 26° temperature and arrived in Sydney to rain and chill. The temp was around 16°.

Brrr!

The first leg of my trip to Canada and Alaska has begun.

369. Sunday 27th April 2014. From Easter to Anzac Day…

28/04/2014

Easter Monday 21st April

What a way to spend the last day of Easter. We continued to empty the garage and now have the verandah loaded with what was once in the garage. I gernied the garage doors and floors, washed the windows and sliding glass doors and steam cleaned the floor in the back part of the garage. I re-tightened the screws holding the shelving, hung garden tools back where they once hung, lopped more branches off an overhanging tree and cut it into small pieces to be used as landfill on the back driveway. At the end of the day I felt we had achieved something over the weekend and it was certainly more fun than had we been sitting in bumper to bumper traffic for hours on end trying to get home before the other million or so road users were trying to get home before us.

At the end of the day Donnis suggested we could pack some of the empty boxes back in the garage.

Sigh!

 

Friday 25th April ANZAC DAY   en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anzac_Day

Today, completely without planning or the use of an alarm I woke at 4am. I knew by being awake and unable to go back to sleep I would attend the Dawn Service at the Cannonvale Cenotaph.

Cannonvale Cenotaph taken at 5am without the use of a flash.

Cannonvale Cenotaph taken at 5am without the use of a flash.

I arrived just on 5am with the service due to begin at 5.30. On arrival I thought the 200 or so people gathered in the dark was a good crowd.

The small group at 5am. Within 30 minutes the numbers had swollen to around 1,000.

The small group at 5am. Within 30 minutes the numbers had swollen to around 1,000.

By 5.30, currently serving military personnel and past service personnel had gathered in ranks in what is best described as a natural amphitheatre. I took my place among the strangers, all of us with medals, ready to “Come to ATENSHUN” and “AT EASE” when called by the appointed ceremonial Sergeant. By now the numbers of attendees had swollen until looking out on the hillside at the sea of faces, visible even in the pre-dawn light, was something unexpected.  The quiet conversation rippled along the ranks and the comments were much the same. “I have never seen a crowd as large as this.”

During the ceremony we were reminded of the many theatres of war Australia has attended and that this was the 99th Anniversary of the landing at Gallipoli – the birth of the ANZAC Legend.    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anzac_Day

I felt a surge of pride at the numbers of people who turned up at dawn for this ceremony. Even more importantly were the numbers of children and teenagers in respectful manner who attended. When the National Anthem was sung, it was a patriotic crowd who quietly sang along. As the Anzac ode            ( www.awm.gov.au/commoration/customs/recitation.asp   )was read, at the appropriate times the crowd softly whispered the refrains, We Shall Remember Them and Lest We Forget.

The most well- known lines from ode the are taken from the fourth stanza of a poem, For the Fallen, by Laurence Binyon.

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.

It was a very emotional ceremony, as it is every year but the part of the ceremony which always makes me feel I have a lump in my throat and salt water wells in my eyes are the words from Ataturk the father of modern Turkey, its first President and an Officer in the Ottoman Army at the time of the conflict in Gallipoli.

Remember Australia and Turkey were at war. As a result of that conflict a great respect and admiration evolved so that by 1934 and as it is today, Turkey and Australia are friends with the friendship – forged in battle, strengthened by mutual ties and respect on land which is sacred to both.

The words by Ataturk are set in a memorial wall at Anzac Cove in Gallipoli.

Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives…

You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in Peace.

There is no difference between the Johnnies and Mehmets to us they lie side by side here in this country of ours…

You, the mothers, who sent their sons from faraway countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in Peace, after having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well”

I should mention that at the time those words were written by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, he did not understand the soldiers he fought against were Australian and New Zealand soldiers (with a few French thrown in). He mistakenly believed he was fighting British soldiers, hence the reference to Johnnies. Modern Turkey understands the difference and the Turks are most welcoming and friendly towards Australians and New Zealanders who come to pay their respects. In fact they commemorate Anzac Day themselves as well as attend our ceremonies.

Dawn over Pioneer Bay on Anzac Day.

Dawn over Pioneer Bay on Anzac Day.

View over Airtie Beach after the Anzac Dawn Service.

View over Airtie Beach after the Anzac Dawn Service.

Mid-morning we received a call to say my daughter Averyl was in Mackay Base Hospital so we drove to Mackay to visit. She hopes to be allowed home on Monday. After an hour we could see that she was tiring and we bid her farewell so she could get some sleep.

This is what is left of the The Hospital Bridge at Bridge Road across the Pioneer River. The original bridge was two lanes but no side rails. The bridge was closed several years when another bridge was built up river. During deconstruction there were many protests especially from local fishermen who use the  bridge as a fishing platform. The powers that be agreed to leave a remnant of the bridge but included a safety fence and the fisherpeople just love it.

This is what is left of the The Hospital Bridge at Bridge Road across the Pioneer River. The original bridge was two lanes but no side rails. The bridge was closed several years when another bridge was built up river. During deconstruction there were many protests especially from local fishermen who use the bridge as a fishing platform. The powers that be agreed to leave a remnant of the bridge but included a safety fence and the fisherpeople just love it.

This man and several like him do not need to fish from the bridge. They get right into the river. Hmmm! The Pioneer River was known to have crocodiles. In fact the largest criocodile ever recorded was shot from the verandah of a Mackay Riverside Hotel.

This man and several like him do not need to fish from the bridge. They get right into the river. Hmmm! The Pioneer River was known to have crocodiles. In fact the largest criocodile ever recorded was shot from the verandah of a Mackay Riverside Hotel.

We then visited the Cenotaph in Mackay where the Anzac Dawn Ceremony and Wreath laying was conducted at …umm err…dawn!

Mackay Cenotaph with floral remembrance tributes.

Mackay Cenotaph with floral remembrance tributes.

Floral Tributes.

Floral Tributes.

Close up of Australian Native flowers in a remembrance wreath.

Close up of Australian Native flowers in a remembrance wreath.

Next we visited sister Sandi and Dave and left late in the afternoon.  They had just arrived back from Fiji where they had gone to celebrate our sister Enid’s birthday. Although it is almost a two hour drive we were both tired from a long day of getting up early, emotional ceremonies and visiting Averyl.  We took turns driving so I could sleep while Donnis drove but soon Donnis became tired and I took over the driving feeling refreshed after a nap.

Sunday 27th April

Yesterday we decided to make a start on the side of our land where the temporary bamboo screen fence was in a state of collapse. We decided to pull down the fence and replace it with plants which will become a hedge. With the old fence pulled down and the soil had arrived we started the long process of preparing the ground before building a mound of soil in readiness for the plants. Just as the sun was slipping behind the Conway Range we planted most of our hedge plants and will finish the remainder later in the week. For today we are both bone weary and too tired to continue.

312. Sunday 28th April 2013. Fairfield, Anzac Day and looking at houses…

28/04/2013

Monday 22nd April

What did we do today?

I finished polishing TERIOS.

After dinner we drove to Peter and Regelyn’s to stay the night.

Tuesday 23rd April

After a hurried breakfast we drove Chris to school as Regelyn had an early start at work and Peter had an even earlier start. Afterwards we had a McDonalds coffee and joined the bumper to bumper traffic on the M3 heading to Brisbane. After lunch I caught the bus to Brisbane where I had an appointment with an Ear Nose and Throat Specialist. For some reason I thought he was going to give me a hearing test and assess my hearing to support my claim for a hearing disability with Dept of Veterans Affairs. Not so. After a preliminary quick test he declared my disability to be higher than I rated it. He then made an appointment for me to have a full hearing test – elsewhere – next month time. I then go back to him for a review!

On my way to the specialist I walked through Anzac Square, noting the huge amount of flowers in the Shrine of Remembrance beside the Eternal Flame. It seems something like 3,000 schoolchildren had their own pre-Anzac Day memorial shortly before I arrived.

230413 shrine 230413 shrine1

Wednesday 24th April.

240413 king g square

Another visit to the city for Donnis to have another dental appointment. As we were leaving we saw a large group of Unionists marching in honour of their international memorial day.

240413 rally

Thursday 25th April ANZAC DAY.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anzac_Day

Over the years I have written about how we honoured Anzac Day in locations as diverse as Rollingstone, Balgal Beachand Airlie Beach North Queensland, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Capital of Australia at the Australian War Memorial and Bridport, Tasmania.

Today we travelled by bus to Brisbane and joined 20,000 other people who lined the streets to clap and cheer our armed forces, old and young, currently serving and retired but most importantly to remember those who fell to protect our way of life.

250413 crowd

250413 cameraman

ANZAC DAY.  http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-04-25/anzac-day-parade-in-brisbane-draws-thousands/4650962 As usual it was an emotional event for me. The first sight as we left the bus was a group of older soldiers in full Lighthorse uniform walking and talking with their horses.

250413 lighthorse

The lighthorse was a cavalry division formed in the late 1800’s and gave birth to what is now known as the Australian Armoured Corps. There is a Lighthorse division within the Armoured Corps and I was proud to serve in that division, A Squadron 1st and later, 2nd Cavalry Regiments. 250413 lighthorse1

The march was due to commence at 10am and at that precise moment two Super Hornets flew over the city, seeming just higher than the buildings and so fast we only saw them for a brief moment.250413 clockWhat an amazing way to signal the march is to begin. It is such a heartfelt welcome to see the many younger people at these events as well as those from other nations and cultures embracing our lifestyle and remembrance. I wore my medal as well as an Australian Imperial Forces badge and when we walked on the bus the driver told me not to flash my card as travel for past and current servicemen and women was free today. Before leaving the city we dropped into the Town Hall in the hope we could catch a clock tower tour.

Town Hall auditorium

Town Hall auditorium

We were too tired to wait for another two hours before the tour began. To find our bus home we walked across one of the many bridges over the Brisbane River. I met two men about my age and both were wearing all their medals. I noted from the badges on their berets they both served in the Australian Armoured Corps and served a tour of duty in Vietnam. We chatted while walking over the bridge and all the way to our bus stop. It was a wonderful sunny and warm autumn day, more like a summers day in fact.

In the afternoon I drove to Dutton Park to view what was originally known as The Green Bridge  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eleanor_Schonell_Bridge which was built exclusively for buses, pedestrians and cyclists. The weather stayed near enough to picture perfect all day.

The Green Bridge.

The Green Bridge.

Crap Aint Sold Here but...

Crap Aint Sold Here but…

Friday 26th April

Today we drove to an over 50 resort near the Gold Coast  http://www.goldencrestmanors.com/ at Highland park  and spent an interesting two hours going over details of the resort options and looking at several re-sale houses and then a happy tour through their Country Club and resident facilities.

Hmmm! Tempting.

We then had a 3pm appointment at the next over 50’s resort  http://www.livinggems.com.au/ruby-gardens.html  at Eagleby about 20 minutes from the Gold Coast Beaches.  We spent two hours here as well.

Hmmm! We are greatly tempted.

On our way home along the M1 Motorway we saw a four car pileup on the other side of the barrier. Police, Ambulance and Fire trucks were arriving as we eased past in the bumper to bumper traffic. I have no idea why our side of the road was blocked.

We arrived home after dark.

Saturday 27th April.

Hmmm!

Today we drove back to Eagleby and had a second look at the house we are interested in as well as the two building sites which we prefer. As we inched along the M1 Motorway we could not understand why four lanes of traffic was bumper to bumper.  We soon found the reason. A six car pileup, in almost the same position as last nights pileup, with two cars facing the wrong direction.  Police and Ambulance were still on their way as we edged past.

At the resort we spent another two hours looking at internal fitout options.

Afterwards we drove to the coast at Jacobs Well, somewhere neither of us has been to before. Not much to report about The Well except it is a very flat area surrounded by mangroves and is a fishermans paradise.

Once again we arrived home after dark.

Sunday 28th April

Not much happened today. We visited a shopping centre at Garden City and drove to Peter n Regelyns for dinner.