Well it is a wild and wet Monday here in Tamaki Makaurau , but it’s ok because today is a holiday – hooray. There are few things nicer than knowing you can stay snuggled in bed when the weather outside is bad. Luckily the Anzac celebrations took place on Saturday, which was a beautiful day. When I was a kid you would always hear about some poor old digger catching pneumonia from attending the Dawn Parade in atrocious weather.
ANZAC Day has never been a big deal in my family. My great grandfather was actually in the Royal Navy at Gallipoli. So he got to see what a debacle the whole thing was. Needless to say he was never a fan of Winston Churchill’s.
My grandfather served in the Pacific, two of his brothers went to Northern Africa (where one died) and one was a conscientious objector. And two stayed home to look after the farm. So you could say most aspects of the war time experience were covered. But Anzac Day was never observed.
Partly because when I was young, it was still a very formal affair and there was no way it was considered appropriate for children to take part, or have people wearing medals they hadn’t earned etc etc. Then it all started to change, and I think for the better, where it became a real reflection on the futility and waste of war.
We do seem to do it differently to the Aussies. Our Anzac days seem more reflective theirs more about the glorification. I suppose that also illustrates our cultural differences as well.
They not only have Anzac Day but they also observe Remembrance Day on the 11th of November. I was in Melbourne a couple of years ago, where at 11.11am everyone went silent for a minute. I had no idea what was going on. And was in fact quite perplexed – surely one day to remember war is enough?
This year being the 100 year anniversary of the Gallipoli landings, it has all become a very big deal, and I don’t like it. Not because I want to diminish in anyway the sacrifices and losses of those who have served in our armed forces, and their families, and not because I don’t think our history is important, but because the whole theme is Lest We Forget, and I think we have absolutely forgotten how stupid war can be.
Alastair Paulin at the Nelson Mail says it far far better than I can
One of the excellent points he makes is ” in confirming the troop deployment, the PM shouted at the opposition that “This is the time to stand up and be counted. Get some guts and join the right side.” But as Gallipoli showed, being on the right side counts for nothing if the strategy is flawed or the goals unachievable.”
And while I am referencing really good writing, I loved this article by Kurt Bayer, about the battle from the Turkish perspective. After all their soldiers were actually defending their country from an international foreign invasion.
It has always amazed me at how gracious the Turkish people have been at letting hoards of Kiwis and Aussies visit a battle site, where so many Turkish lives were lost. Would we be quite so accommodating if if 1000’s of young Japanese people took over Darwin every year on the 19th of February?
I think we do owe Turkey an apology – irrespective of all the dodgy things Turkey has done – including the terrible Armenian massacre. But sorry does seem to be the hardest thing for our PM to say. So I won’t be holding my breath.
Anyway as I said it was a beautiful day on Saturday and we went up to the Lodge, to do some cleaning. Thank God Brett is the cleaning meister. I am 100% sure our renting the place out would not work so well if it wasn’t for his amazing skills with a cloth and some Mr Muscle. The Lodge has actually been booked out quite a bit lately as we have had some guys from Drill Force NZ staying. They are doing exploratory drilling for wells for market gardens in the area. I am actually going to share their website, because who knows when you might need some drilling done? And they are a great group of people to deal with
I expect that with market gardens and avocado farms going in, the area will look quite different in a few years time, but our cunning plan to have a fun and stylish place to stay will still be very relevant. Brett is the ideas man, that is for sure and he really has some great ones.
I on the other hand, are really excited about my feijoa wine scheme. I am sure by next year I will have done enough research and sampling to establish how to make the stuff. And I am working very hard on luring Hamish up for some of his technical expertise. Hamish the Lodge account has enough in it to buy the kit you need (a modest one – not full strength industrial just yet) and cover your travel expenses. I am just not sure about your requirement to sample Veuve Clicquot on a regular basis – something to do with the size of the bubbles apparently. But I am not the expert that you are, obviously.
Well my Dragons just keep surprising and delighting. But another big win for them this week, with them plucking the chooks despite a thunder storm and not being picked to win. Apparently it is not appropriate to tell Brett all about my love for the boys each and every night while we are in bed. Who knew? Well I do now
My Warriors once again stole defeat from the jaws of victory, but I have every confidence they will come right. They have plenty of great players and they will be giving it every they have got. I know that.
I realised I didn’t take any photos worth sharing this week. A bag of feijoas photo anyone? But here are some photos I took on my morning run around West Haven marina a couple of weeks ago, and it certainly was a lovely way to start the day.