Saturday, 7 November 2009

Lest We Forget



When I was little, and Sunday School was the stuff Sunday mornings were made of, Remembrance Day had a special strength of its own. My parents were a bit older than the other mums and dads. Older, probably, than any other parents I knew. And so for them the War was still something they could reach out and touch. This was the 70's, don't forget. Other dads were painting their kitchens orange and experimenting with facial hair. My dad wore his sports coat to the beach and believed in the power of hand signals when driving. We loved him for it, of course. But when Remembrance Sunday came, it brought a strange unwelcome strain. It buttoned us down. It closed us up. My dad kept his shoebox jumble of  horror and happiness high up out of reach. It took my mum's encouragement for him to bring out his medals, polish them up and pin them on our coats. For one brief hour every year, he let us carry his pride because he wasn't sure if he could do it himself. I had to read Lost voices Of The Royal Navy before I found out what really happened. And then The Professor found some old newsreel and we tried to spot him. I'll probably let The Tall One and The Small One watch it again today. So we remember. Lest we forget.

13 comments:

6p00d83453ea8d69e2 said...

Lest we forget. May we never do that. Your post has brought a tear to my eye. May I never forget everything that those men and women sacrificed to secure the freedom I enjoy today.

Is that picture of your Dad? If so, you look a lot like him.

catrin said...

I read your new great post, I cried and then I went and hugged his newest grandson and thought, no we must never forget.

g said...

wow- what a powerful post. thanks for sharing this.

Linda said...

This was wonderful to read, you're a talented writer.

dave said...

Sad, great post. I want to frame it.

Denise said...

No we must never forget, just read your post after watching the rememberance service on tv.Thank you for sharing x

Angela2932 said...

Very moving. I like your writing style, and how you refer to people as nouns (like "the Professor" or the "Tall One."

Debs said...

What a lovely thought-provoking post. We should never take our lives as we live them now for granted. Things could have been so different without these brave servicemen.

Karen said...

What a very thought provoking post - and no we must never forget, not for those that died then, nor those servicemen and women still sadly dying now.

If only we could have peace throughout the whole world, what a nicer place it would be!

Maria Ontiveros said...

What a lovely post. My father served in WWII (for the Americans). I have a very simple, old l/o about him slated to run Weds. morning (our Veteran's Day). Hope to do some other Remembrance Day art today.
Rinda

Heather said...

What a wonderful, sad, happy post that was, forget at our peril!

Tinkertaylor said...

Thank you for sharing this moving post. My Dad served in the Raf during the WW2. I have some old photos but I don't know his story as he died 30 years ago. It's made me think about doing some research so I can pass history onto my two sons. We must never forget the price of freedom

Liberty :) said...

A lovely post! I also love the way you call your family the Tall one and the Short one!

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