Saturday, April 24, 2010
Anzac Day Parade
This morning at dawn 40,000 people gathered in Melbourne to mark Anzac Day. All over the country on April 25, families remember the soldiers of the Australia and New Zealand Army Corp. At a beach near our home, 1,500 people assembled, and later many more of us joined for an Anzac Day Parade in our small, country town.
Veterans chatted to old mates, young cadets fell in ranks, and school children waited for the marching to start, wearing the medals or badges of soldiers from their families.
Older Diggers waited in cars and Jeeps.
And then the parade started, only half an hour late.
Veterans of all different regiments and wars marched together.
Families clapped and waved Australian flags.
School children, like this remarkably cute one waving, marched.
And this lovely big sister.
Children represented Diggers who have passed on, wearing the medals on the right.
Several soldiers wore kilts.
The horses came, and someone ran behind putting orange cones over the poo they left behind.
They all marched past the review officer.
And then we all assembled to listen to speeches. Look at that sea of school hats!
We laid wreaths at the cenotaph.
Where a soldier stood at each corner, guarding in the hot sun.
We listened respectfully near the plaques and poppies that mark the names of the fallen.
Planes flew over. And then we went home to enjoy this beautiful land.