Monday, November 12, 2007


Remembrance day. We get out to the cenotaph on Commercial Drive every year. This year it wasn't raining when we arrived, but started soon afterwards, just to make us feel at home.

It's pretty much the same every year, the same priest with his pithy sense of humour and strong voice to lead the hymns, Libby Davies, Shane Simpson replacing Joy McPhail, and watching Jenny Kwan's daughter grow up.

This year the priest was late. An odd occurance. We were surmising that perhaps he's Catholic and, as Remembrance Day was on a Sunday this year, had to work in the morning. The president of the local Legion got things going, but the master of ceremonies was sorely missed. Fortunately for all, he arrived after about 10 minutes. The Salvation Army brass wasn't there either. I really missed them. There' s something about a brass band on a rainy cold morning that just makes it seem alright.

It gets you thinking about what we rely on: the ceremony, the priest, the band, and how it all will not last forever. The theme for the priest's talk was 'passing the torch'. His meaning was that there are now new veterans, given wordly circumstances, replacing the old, but it also can refer to him., and I suppose, us. He can't do it forever. Who's next? How will this event change in the future?

My father used to be the military person in charge of a similar ceremony in back in my youth. This is usually the one time of the year I get to think of him. Happy remembrance day, Dad.

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