Tuesday, April 24, 2007
Let's Stand For Those Men We Call The "Anzacs"
I caused a bit of consternation around here at home this morning, I think. My two cats aren't used to seeing me go out at 4.30am. Both were hovering around the back door when I returned from the Dawn Service, having spent the time of my absence discussing with each other the strangeness of my behaviour, no doubt. The three of us tripped over each other as we stumbled to come inside and, even though I'd given them some breakfast before I went out, they were eager for more, so I bowed to their superior knowledge.
Again, this year the folk of the mountain showed up in droves at the Service. The only face I recognised amongst the ever-increasing crowd was our local councillor. This is the fifth Dawn Service I've attended here on the mountain and the crowd must have doubled or more in size. (number, not obesity!)
I wish people would stop doing things to trigger off my urge to giggle! They do it on purpose, I'm sure, because they know I'm uncontrollable!
Everyone was standing, candles in their hands, singing "Abide With Me" (I didn't want to scare the guy next to me, so I just silently read the words. He must have felt similar as he didn't sing along, either)...but voices rang clear and strong through the early morning mountain air until....silence. I'm not sure if it was the lone piano-accordion player or the Pastor who was leading the hymn...but one of them...or perhaps both...forgot there was another verse! And there stood everyone...mouths half-open, waiting to be led into the third verse. A quiet voice came through the microphone, "There's another verse." And everyone continued again where they left off! The two fellows next to me cast sideways glances at me with stupid looks on their faces. I wish they hadn't done that!
Once again this year we beat the kookaburras in starting their day. This happens every year and it's wonderful. The bugler began playing the first notes of the "Last Post". In the tall gum trees guarding the Tamborine Mountain War Memorial, the kookaburras loudly, proudly sang out their glorious rejoicing, heralding the dawning of a new day. It seems so fitting...so "true blue" Australian. There's not much that is more "Australian" than the 'laughter" of kookaburras first thing in the early morning light....or their final salute at the setting of the sun.
May our men and women in far distant places always hear the call of the kookaburras, leading them back home to safety.