Old hymns and bagpipes, and where’s the peace?

I don’t know what to write about this morning’s Remembrance Day service that I haven’t covered already in my previous post. I’m ashamed to say it was my first one in a few years, first one since I moved to Victoria. All I have are scattered impressions and a couple of photographs, so I’ll share them randomly.

My daughter’s young man is a fourth-year cadet aiming to join the army, and I’m not sure how I feel about that because she seems to really like him and I know loving a man in a uniform leads to all sorts of complications besides the usual ones. Currently The Regiment he is attached to has members serving on combat operations in Afghanistan.

Bagpipes always make me cry.

During the ceremony we stood near a decorated Air Force officer. She was so tiny her medals hardly fit across the breast of her uniform. I wanted to know more about her. I’m sorry I didn’t have the kajones to introduce myself and ask.

People should probably not bring excitable dogs to a place where there’s going to be a 21-gun salute.

I really detest “Onward Christian Soldiers,” even when in the context of a Remembrance Day Ceremony. Even when I believed in Jesus, that hymn seemed just — wrong. I wasn’t the only one; the church choir I sang in for years resisted it as well.

You can really tell Victoria is a navy town. Either that or a lot more people show up to outside ceremonies here because the weather’s better than in Saskatchewan where I came from.

There are no WWI veterans left. There are few WWII veterans left either. I did, however see several blue berets and UN jackets.

When will all this remembering translate into true worldwide peace?


2 thoughts on “Old hymns and bagpipes, and where’s the peace?

  1. Raymond Parker

    Good one, Tori. I sat in the warmth, watching on TV (just like so much of the faraway strife we see go by on the screen). Of course, I could hear–and feel–the 21 gun salute.
    We are lucky to have not witnessed the real thing.
    Imagine what it was like for my parents, hiding in air-raid shelters at the end of their gardens, as the bombs rained down.
    Those dark corrugated steel warrens were scary hide-and-seek places us post-war kids played in. We just had the sense that there was something sinister about their existence, something our parents didn’t want to talk about too much.
    In any case, they were busy rebuilding their world.

  2. Tori Post author

    Thanks Raymond! I’m glad I made it out today, it was worth it. As I got colder and it threatened rain, I thought “At least I’m not in a foxhole trying not to crap my pants from fear, hoping my gun fires properly when the time comes.” It did make me appreciate the incredible personal sacrifices made on our behalf by so many young men and women.

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