Tis a time of reflection that comes every year at this time. It is even more emotional than Thanksgiving as there are more thanks given. We live in a wonderful place here in Muskoka, surrounded by the best Nature has. The quiet solitude of the soft wilderness just outside our door. The ducks in the pond, the blue herons and the osprey overhead. I still pinch myself looking at everything that surrounds us.
But it came with a price – a price we do not have to pay – but one many did. The ultimate sacrifice is still just a concept to many of us. But it was real for so many people back in the 2 wars, and in the conflicts of today. Imagine living in Syria at this time. We are sipping coffee – they are dodging bombs.
My Dad would have been 100 this year. He had a great life – from the time I spent with him. But before that, he was in the war and in Europe. My brother has a map of his regiment’s travels from landing to liberation. It is on my bucket list to follow this trail at some point. I will do it in a different fashion than he did – but it will be interesting to see what happened after he left.
Mom was at Bletchley – and she took her secrets to her grave as she was bound by duty to do. She was part the whole decoding center there – but we will never know what it was like. When asked she would tell us she just listened to Dad tap away on the keys in Europe – a romantic dodge to the real answer.
We reflected on their lives and what they saw happen. From the high days to the depression, into the war and then on to some of the most prosperous times in our history. From flight to space to cellular phones and the internet. It happened at a pace few saw. Just like today – who has been able to foretell the developments that we face on a world stage. How different things could have been. And for this we have to be grateful. There are just a few survivors of this war left. The numbers are thinning so quickly. Now well into their 90’s these men and women who served our country have earned our thanks – and I hope we are all able to express this to them. And to the troops in current service – also a thank you as your presence is needed to balance the world stage on a constant basis.
Do try to attend the cenotaph wherever you might be. It is a small time of recognition and reflection. And if you can’t get there – please try to stop what you are doing at 11 AM and stand and think about how lucky we are to have what we have. They made it possible, and they continue to make it possible for us.