Today, ANZAC Day 2018 the

Prime Minister of Australia…

Mr. Malcolm Turnbull…

is visiting the co-located

Australian National Memorial

and the

Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery

located just outside of Villers-Brettonneux

on The Somme Battlefields of France,

to open the Sir John Monash Centre.


The Sir John Monash Centre was…



under construction when

I visited early in June, 2017…

and is situated behind the Central Tower…


from which the views are stunning. 


It was extremely difficult to imagine

all the lives lost…


and bloodshed in

this idyllic farming land.


 There are wing walls flanking the central tower…


upon which are engraved the names of

10,732 Australian casualties who died in France…

and who have no known grave.


Used as an observation post by

the French in World War II…


the Memorial was extensively damaged by

German aircraft and ground fire.  

During the repair process it was decided to

retain some of the scarring.




Lest We Forget



Cee’s Odd Ball Challenge-16Wk-7


Odd Ball

Week 7, 2016


Wouldn’t this be great…
ANZAC_8495Ba free tour of Europe and Great Britain?

ANZAC_8495AUntil you see the Big Picture!.

Last week I visited the

Spirit of ANZAC

Centenary Experience

at Melbourne’s Exhibition Centre.

Locally known as Jeff’s Shed after the Premier who

organised its construction in the early 1990s.

This was a great exhibition focusing on World War 1,

and to a lessor degree subsequent wars Australia,

or the ANZACs have been involved in.

After receiving an iPod and headphones each time

a new section was entered appropriate commentary

would commence.

The exhibition is travelling around Australia

culminating in Sydney in June next 2017.

Click this  link to see if it is coming to a city near you

Allow a couple of hours to view it (slowly).

Sponsored by

The Victorian Government and Telstra (our major Telco)

this exhibition is free,

although you  are asked to book tickets.

Visitors are allowed to take cameras into the exhibit,

although flash photography is banned.

I was also given permission to by Telstra

use my photos in Social Media.


Cee’s Odd Ball Challenge-7






Wordless Wednesday_1111

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At the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day,Remembrance-Day-2015_0001

of the eleventh month…we remembered them.

Remembrance-Day-2015_0005Throughout Australia local communities and schools

Remembrance-Day-2015_0011joined together in remembering those who served in

Remembrance-Day-2015_0022two World Wars and many other conflicts.

Remembrance-Day-2015_0026Community members laid wreaths…

Remembrance-Day-2015_0031prior to observing the traditional one minute of silence.


Wordless Wednesday

Wordless Wednesday (

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Craftyspices.com_Wordless Wednesday

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Photo opportunities are all over Australia and New Zealand this morning

as we commemorate,

the 100th anniversary of the Gallipoli landing.


While the major centres receive a majority of media publicity

it is the rural areas which were settled by

returned soldiers from two World Wars


It is these same small towns who may have had their

heart and soul ripped out with the death

of well known identities, sportsman and family members.


This post is in memory of of all the service men and women

who have served our country

and whose home was a small rural centre.


For those service men and women…

Lest We Forget.



I would like to visit Courcelette, in France, sometime in the next few years as my Grandfather served on the Western Front and was awarded a Distinguished Conduct Medal at Courcelette during World War I.


W Carlin_Australian9_2inchHowitzerFiring_YpresThis photograph is now in  the public domain – copyright expired…

however, it can be found on the Australian War Memorial Webe Site…

Click this link

The photo was taken in September 1917

on the Western Front (Belgium),  in the Ypres Area, Voormezeele

My maternal grandfather served with the Light Horse at Gallipoli

and I have read part of his diary many, many years ago.

Unfortunately any such memorabilia was not passed on to me.

I searched the Australian War Memorial website this morning

and have not even found his name, let alone service records.

Links to previous ANZAC  Day posts:


ANZAC Day – 2013

ANZAC Day Dawn Services – 2013

World War I Diary Extract – 2013


Armistice Day 2014

I make no apology for re-posting last year’s Armistice Day post.


At the eleventh hour,

of the eleventh day,

of the eleventh month,

we shall remember them

“Lest We Forget”


Back in August, 2014, we remembered the firing of the First Allied Shot of World War 1

at a ceremony attended by nearly 1,000 people,

representatives of nearly twenty countries as well as electronic media,

which, it was said, broadcast the ceremony world-wide.

Why do I mention this event?

First my Grandfather was part of the gun crew which fired that shot

and second the shot was fired from Fort Nepean,

located on the eastern side of Port Philip Heads…the entry to Port Philip Bay…


which is only a short drive from Geelong and a 40 minute ferry ride these days.



November 11, 2013


Yesterday I read another blog, which stated that we are at a stage where there is no-one left who remembers losing a friend or relative in the Great War.  However, there must be countless people in their sixties who don’t remember, or barely remember their grandparents or who have a photo such as this.  My grandfather passed away, at the ‘ripe old age of 64’ (I am 62), a week after this photo was taken.  I hope I have more than two years left in me.

Although no-one has ever mentioned it, I often wonder just how much the gas used in World War 1 cut short his life.

My other grandfather, minus a leg, is said to have wept upon hearing of the declaration of World War 2.  He passed away in August 1940.

A few months ago our younger son expressed concern when world peace was looking shaky as tension was building between some countries.  I agreed and also added that he was ‘the right age’.  He looked surprised and had to explain that I was talking about conscription and being dragged into a war against your will.  He had not thought of that.  Many young people are going about their every day life and have little or no knowledge of conscription and I pray that they do not have that experience.

That is why we must never forget.

Click here for Images from World War 1



Photo Source:

Armistice Day (which overlaps with Remembrance Day and Veterans Day) is celebrated every year on 11 November to commemorate the armistice signed between the Allies of World War I and Germany at CompiègneFrance, for the cessation of hostilities on the Western Front of World War I, which took effect at eleven o’clock in the morning—the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” of 1918. While this official date to mark the end of the war reflects the ceasefire on the Western Front, hostilities continued in other regions, especially across the former Russian Empire and in parts of the old Ottoman Empire.


Travel Theme-Glow




Travel Theme

for this week.


The Australian Rules Football season is into its sixth week of competition…twenty-three weeks in total, plus finals.  Twenty years ago two major AFL teams in the league, Collingwood (The Magpies) and Essendon (The Bombers) played the first ANZAC Day game and a tradition was born.


Ever since these two teams have been scheduled to meet on ANZAC Day, April 25th.  As dedicated Collingwood supporter I think I have watched each game on television.  This year, however, was different.  I had a ticket for the game.


The Melbourne Cricket ground has a capacity of nearly 100,000.  Today I was one of 91,371 AFL supporters attending and arrived shortly after 1400 to watch the pre game ANZAC Day ceremony.  I have often heard commentators talk about this day.  Now I was to see for myself.


 In a sign of unity both Collingwood and Essendon used the same ANZAC Day themed banner as their run through prior to ceremonies commencing.


Usually each team has their own banner to run through.


A voice in the crowd bellowed “Quiet” and all the fans immediately rose and ceased talking.

In the glow of a mid afternoon April sun the pre match ANZAC Day ceremony commenced.

Some time later an announcer asked us to stand and remove hats.

A gentleman in front of me could not rip his baseball style supporters cap off quick enough.


The last post was played, followed by a minute of silence.

Ninety-one thousand, three hundred and seventy ones fans were so quiet I could hear a

mobile/cell phone ringing about forty to fifty metres away.


I have often heard how moving this ceremony was and could not believe that so many people could become silent and show so much respect for the ANZAC tradition.

In this atmosphere, while thinking of my grandfathers and other relatives who served in World Wars I & II, it was difficult to maintain dignity and stop tears rolling down my cheeks.  As the final strains of the National Anthem died away the same voice that quietened the section in which I was seated, again  bellowed, “Carna Pies“.

This was a signal for fans everywhere to begin cheering for their team.



Where’s My Backpack?: Travel Theme: Glow


All these photo were taken using my HTC mobile phone




Several months ago I had cause to drive back to the Western District of Victoria to Branxholme, a small town not far from where I grew up.  Unless there was some more of the township situated off the main road, Branxholme consists of a typical country store which handles everything from mail to coffee.


While waiting for the other half of the meeting to arrive I noticed this memorial across the road.

branxholme_0463In all the small towns I have visited I have never seen a memorial like this one.


Most houses and outbuilding of that era were made of blue-stone pitchers such as these…

branxholme_0465a memorial to all those early settlers who pioneered the way for us today.


Branxholme, in all likelihood was settled by pioneers who struggled to create roads, communities and a lifestyle no-one would ever dream of these days.


The Branxholme timeline traces the history of the township, noting its population decline and the establishment of its school, Number 63, when the town’s population was listed as 221 and ‘probably included Condah’ another nearby town.  My home town’s school was numbered 766 which was always thought of as an early school.  Branxholme was established years before my home town if the two numbers are anything to go by.


Facing the memorial to the early settlers is another memorial those locals who have served in major conflicts around the globe.


 I could only think of the sacrifices made by Branxholme volunteers in all conflicts and how it has impacted this small district.


This morning, at Branxholme’s War Memorial, I am sure the gathering would have been as solemn as it was in other centres around Australia and New Zealand.  As well as Turkey (Gallipoli) and townships throughout France reports indicate that many other towns and countries observe ANZAC Day.

I would like to visit Courcelette, in France, sometime in the next few years as my Grandfather served on the Western Front and was awarded a Distinguished Conduct Medal at Courcelette during World War I.

Links to 2013 ANZAC  Day posts:

ANZAC Day – 2013

ANZAC Day Dawn Services – 2013

World War I Diary Extract – 2013