This previous Thursday was Anzac Day. Anzac Day is a public holiday, so Paul had the day off. Anzac Day is a holiday memorialising the Australian and New Zealand Soldiers who fought in World War 1.
Here's a little knowledge for you, courtesy of http://www.awm.gov.au/commemoration/anzac/anzac_tradition.asp:
What is ANZAC Day?
ANZAC Day – 25 April – is probably Australia's most important national occasion. It marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.
What does ANZAC stand for?
ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps. The soldiers in those forces quickly became known as ANZACs, and the pride they took in that name endures to this day.
Why is this day special to Australians?
When war broke out in 1914, Australia had been a federal commonwealth for only 13 years. The new national government was eager to establish its reputation among the nations of the world. In 1915 Australian and New Zealand soldiers formed part of the allied expedition that set out to capture the Gallipoli peninsula in order to open the Dardanelles to the allied navies. The ultimate objective was to capture Constantinople (now Istanbul in Turkey), the capital of the Ottoman Empire, an ally of Germany.
The Australian and New Zealand forces landed on Gallipoli on 25 April, meeting fierce resistance from the Ottoman Turkish defenders. What had been planned as a bold stroke to knock Turkey out of the war quickly became a stalemate, and the campaign dragged on for eight months. At the end of 1915 the allied forces were evacuated, after both sides had suffered heavy casualties and endured great hardships. Over 8,000 Australian soldiers had been killed. News of the landing on Gallipoli had made a profound impact on Australians at home, and 25 April soon became the day on which Australians remembered the sacrifice of those who had died in the war.
Although the Gallipoli campaign failed in its military objectives, the Australian and New Zealand actions during the campaign left us all a powerful legacy. The creation of what became known as the “ANZAC legend” became an important part of the identity of both nations, shaping the ways they viewed both their past and their future.
Paul served in the Australian Navy for 12 years (If I'm not mistaken). Those years helped mold him into the person he is today & led him into his current career. Australians truly honor those lost in war and grieve over their loss. Anzac Day is a brilliant way to show their patriotism and respect to those who've dedicated their lives to defend their country. I'm so happy to have participated in the Anzac Day festivities. Our friend, Kieran is currently in the Australian Navy. That's where Paul and him met many moons ago. They both left the Navy, but Kieren reentered to pursue his dream of working in submarines. He's chatted us up a bit about the tight quarters in a submarine. But until yesterday (while watching a news cast with a submarine) I never knew just how confined the spaces are! Big ups to Kieran for taking the big step to pursue his dream.
We watched Kieran, and his crew march in the Fremantle Anzac Day March.
The march started and ended at the Esplanade Park.
Charlotte waiting for Daddy.
Charlotte didn't like it when Mummy walked away.
A sea of seamen...
Look at that wing span!
Back at the park.
Charlotte and Mummy taking pics of Daddy.
Proud wife and daughter.
Thought my friends in America might like to see what Aussie cops dress like.
Uncle Freddy's sunnies are always a hit.
Showing off her big girl walking skills.
Food is always better with a dirt rub.
Thanks, Uncle Freddy.
Charlotte looking for Daddy.
Notice the biscuit in the back pocket.
Daddy and daughter.
A kiss sandwich for Charlotte.
Charlotte liked seeing her Daddy in his sailor suit ;)
We're all very proud of you, K-man!