The view from the Australian War Memorial down ANZAC Parade in Canberra this afternoon. You can’t see it, but Lake Burley Griffin is at the end of the road, and then that’s Australian Parliament in the distance.
Yet again we had spectacular blue sky. And – yet again – the national news said it is cloudy and raining here. Uh…
The new recruits from Kapooka were on a visit today. They were all lined up out front for a group photo when we arrived.
Even though we went to the Australian War Memorial in Canberra today specifically for the Special Forces exhibition, we always drop by the Vietnam War section because my father is a veteran, and there are a number of parts of the exhibition that relate directly to him.
Here’s the helicopter display. There’s a sound and light show every few minutes.
The From the Shadows Special Forces exhibition at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. Picture #2.
The From the Shadows Special Forces exhibition at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. Picture #1.
We had a public holiday today. I think it used to be the Melbourne Cup holiday, but the ACT Government moved it and renamed it. Whatever it is, it’s just an excuse to not go to work!
I went with my parents to the Australian War Memorial here in Canberra, which – despite being called a “memorial” – is actually a huge war museum to rival those anywhere else in the world.
The first picture is of some of the Victoria Cross soldiers’ uniforms. The one on the left belongs to giant SAS Special Forces soldier Ben Roberts-Smith. I had to get a blurry photo just because it’s so huge!
It was SO crowded today, with a gazillion tour bus-loads of visitors. It’s interesting watching people who have never been there before. There were actually people today who were walking around crying, that’s how moved they were.
My father is a war veteran, so we occasionally drop by and just look at a couple of things (usually things involving the Vietnam War) and then go for a glass of wine! It’s free, so it’s easy to do. However, this is the first time I’ve been where they had a teeny bit of security at the entrance.
The main reason we went is because Mephisto, a World War One tank, is on loan to the museum at the moment, and we hadn’t seen it before.
What’s really upsetting is that at the entrance there’s a boat from the Gallipoli landings, and every time we go there, everyone is running their hands all over it, despite being told not to. It’s astonishing how disrespectful people can be to such important historical pieces.
My Vietnam veteran father attended the fiftieth anniversary commemoration for the Battle of Long Tan in Canberra today. He knew people there, but the battle took place two years before he arrived in Vietnam.
He was the organiser for the Battle of Binh Ba commemoration a few years ago (which he did fight in), which took place at the same spot (the Vietnam memorial on Anzac Parade, running down from the Australian War Memorial).
When my father and another veteran went out to lunch, a woman saw their medals and paid for the whole thing. They didn’t know until after she had gone!
Here are his unedited pictures from today.
It was a gorgeous day, and the military flyovers came straight over our house, but I couldn’t make it to the actual event this time.