Remembering the ANZACs

Today, 25th April, is ANZAC Day and it’s celebrated the country wide. Here in Australia (and worldwide where there are Australians) we remember the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.

ANZAC is the acronym for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps. The soldiers in those forces became known as ANZACs, and that name still holds a lot of meaning today.

People go on parade marches around the country, attend breakfasts and also visit special places of remembrance where many of our people died.

I recently set up a new service through my VA business that provides the sending of cards to those you care about.  If you want to let someone know you were thinking of them at this special time you can design your own card with a photo or drawing, or some kind of image and even include your own photo on the inside.  Or simply choose one of the many thousands of cards already available at that site.  You can even send a card free on me to try the service out.

Photo from The Age

ANZAC Day – a day of importance

Here in Australia we celebrate ANZAC Day on 25th April each year.  For most of the country that means Monday is made a public holiday but here in Victoria that was abolished which is a shame.  However this just means that since Anzac Day is a Saturday this year many shops were closed for the morning, choosing to open in the afternoon only so that we could honour the memory of those who fought for our country – Australia and New Zealand that is.

The Australian War Memorial site gives an outline of Anzac Day and what it means.

I was hoping to go into the city and see the march firsthand and take some photos but in the end I didn’t get there so watched it on TV and I’m afraid taking photos from the TV screen isn’t as good!  But since I’m learning photography it was an interesting experiment, learning about refresh rates and shutter speeds as I poured through my camera manual and researched on Google.  So below are just a few shots to give you an idea of the march.

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Butt or Bug?

The latest fire has hit quite close to home for us.  Graham and I were only at Birdsland Reserve in Belgrave on 14th February and you can see some of my photos at my photoblog.  Today there is a fire tearing its way through the park and heading towards houses that we had only been looking at a month or two prior.

The fire started at the edge of one road (Nixon Road) and then headed north as it was fanned by the strong winds and heat of the day.  It also has burnt some of Lysterfield Park – the very place my husband and his mate ride every weekend and where I was taking photos just yesterday.  The fire is further up the hill from where we were.

I can’t understand this.  There was no thunder and lightening and unless there were problems with a powerline there, that pretty much leaves it to two possible things:

1.  Someone threw a cigarette butt out of their car window – something I’ve seen happen so many times in the past, or

2.  Someone deliberately lit the fire.

Either way it was a deliberate act and I can’t help feeling that the person in number 1 above is just as liable for the damage and terror as the person in number 2 above.  And the person in number 1 could have driven on their way merrily totally oblivious to what they have done.

cigartettebuttI don’t like the fact that smokers litter places anywhere – you just have to walk around cities and suburbs and see cigarette butts where smokers congregate. There aren’t always ashtrays or sandboxes available and it seems to me that many just seem oblivious to their actions. But to throw a live butt out of a car window as they drive along is totally irresponsible and I expect they’ll be eligible for a jail sentence if ever anyone was seen to do that immediately before a fire was started.

Tonight the wind is blowing strongly and I remember back to the year we first shifted to Melbourne.  It seemed to rain all year long in 1992 and we wondered what on earth we had done, shifting to such a wet city!  How I wish it were like that again, this drought has gone on for far too long and our beautiful state is really suffering.

Summer in Melbourne

The daily news is full of the aftermath of the bushfires in our state and I don’t think it’s something we’ll get used to hearing about.  However, people in other parts of the state are continuing with their daily lives, in between donating to charities, or giving of their time to various relief efforts to assist those who have been affected by this natural disaster.

I guess if people in other countries didn’t know where Victoria, Australia is, or hadn’t heard of it, they probably have now.

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For those visiting here you’ll find we have wonderful beaches and when the weather isn’t too hot, it’s lovely to be there.  Closer to the city there is St Kilda Beach with Luna Park and worth paying a visit. There is a long boardwalk on the beach where people are often skateboarding and skating, cycling, running and walking and there’s a kiosk almost on the sand with icreams and drinks and other things.  There are heaps of eateries down there too.

Other beaches worth visiting (and closer to where I live) are Half Moon Bay in Sandringham and Rickett’s Point in Beaumaris.

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Half Moon Bay, located on the shoreline of Pt Phillip Bay,  is home to a Surf Life Saving Club and swimming competitions and is a very popular area.  It is also the resting place for the shipwreck the Cerberus which is an historical feature you can read about here.

beach_2We’ve been to Rickett’s Point lots of times – a great cafe which is very popular in that area and lots of local artists have their works displayed on the walls inside the cafe.  Outside is a delight for children and adults who love to walk over rocks searching for the delights the sea brings with it of all sorts of shapes, colours and sizes.  We took our girls there many times when they were young and Graham and I still go there on occasion, usually when friends or family have come to visit and stay with us for awhile. Nice place for breakfast on the weekends!

Orange glow in the sky

It’s 6.39pm and I went outside to see what the bright glow was coming through my office window. There had been news reports earlier in the day not to panic, that burning off is happening in the hills to help protect areas around Melbourne from the bush fires but that Melbourne would be shrouded by smoke.

It’s really eery out there. I’ve taken some photos to give you an idea of the contrast of colour from the orange cloud and sun shining on the garden at a time when the sun is getting low.

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