Sunday, April 25, 2010

Day of the Anzacs

Well, that will learn me to sleep with the window open on Anzac Day. We never hear any noise from the Shrine as a rule. But at precisely 6.23 this morning I was woken by a very loud rendition of Advance Australia Fair coming from the Shrine. Slightly hungover, I still appreciated the beautiful moment. Bagpipes followed, but I could only just hear them.

God Save the Queen has been dropped from something today. Was it the Dawn Service? I have never been woken by renditions of God Save the Queen. Was our National Anthem sung with more gusto than God Save the Queen ever has been? Don't get me wrong. I love our queen. I spent nearly a decade when I was young promising to love, honour and obey her. But I also recall when we attended the Dawn Service in 2005 and took a rel of R's from Jersey to the service and wondering what he thought of everyone singing God Save the Queen. I may have even felt a little embarrassed.

Hot off the press, James has an observation about God Saving the Sydney Queens, no, hang on, the real Queen, at Sydney services.

And then fifteen odd minutes later, some of the 40,000 attendees to the service started making their way home.

Post the Vietnam war, returning vets from that great South East Asian country where we did a big bad, were treated very badly. I recognise that, but it does not excuse them from roaring around on their ear splitting motorbikes at seven o'clock on Anzac morning. People talk in hushed tones as they return to their cars, tram drivers don't ring their bells. No one beeps their horn, and the nightclubs are shut down at three a.m. to get revellers off the street before the service. Bad form Anzac Day motor cyclists.

Later an unfortunate incident happened with a motor vehicle travelling behind a group of marchers. It may have been poor driving or a Camry type problem with a snagged accelerator cable. No matter, a few people were mowed down and a person fell out of the back of the vehicle.

But can this be true? The market along St Kilda Road at the Arts Centre was operating as the Anzac Day March passed by? Surely not.

Simon Warren said he was serving a customer at his art stall on St Kilda Road when he heard "screaming and revving’’.


  1. Thank goodness we didn't have to sing the second verse of Advance Australia Fair, though.

  2. Oh James. There is a second verse. I did not know. I am a bad patriot.

  3. You might have promised to love, honour and obey her but did you remember to 'cheerfully obey your parents, teachers and the law', too?
    4 Hail Marys, 2 Our Fathers and 3 Partridges in Pear Trees for you , young man :P

  4. Oops Jayne. I may have done the above somewhat sullenly at times.