A Reservist's Tale Of A Tour

On Remembrance Day…

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I didn’t get a chance to post anything yesterday, because it was a pretty busy day, and I think a week of not sleeping particularly well caught up to me pretty hard. By about 8pm yesterday I was ready to go to bed, but I somehow managed to stay awake for a couple of episodes of Criminal Minds curled up on the couch with the Missus. If I’d been hammering away at the blog in the time I had with her, well, it wouldn’t be a good use of time, would it.

Halifax, being a military city, has a lot going on on Remembrance Day. I didn’t really know what my unit’s plans were in detail other than what I could remember from last year, so I headed into the Armouries around 9am. I didn’t have my DEU (dress uniform) as the tunic is in the tailor shop having the braiding changed to reflect my new rank, and it wasn’t ready in time. So instead, I wore my combats (the CADPAT camouflage uniforms that we wear in the field and to work most of the time). I didn’t have a parade appointment anyhow, since no one was sure if I was going to be there anyhow. My unit normally parades at the South African War Memorial, which is located at Province House (the provincial legislature), and so we were bused over to the waterfront to form up and march there. Despite heavy rainfall warnings, it was decided that we’d parade outdoors anyhow. It seemed on arrival that all we had to content with was a not terribly unpleasant forceful warm wind, and some drizzle. By the end of the service, however, I can officially say that I’ve paraded in a tropical storm.

Joy went home to change into dry clothes, and I changed out of uniform and headed to the Halifax Alehouse with the rest of the unit for beers, stories, remembrance, etc. We stayed for a few hours as people came and went, we talked to times gone by, and of toasts to absent friends, and so on.

This year we didn’t have a piper on our parade, which wasn’t that bad – I’ve found, as one of my friends mentioned, that I have a hard time listening to the lament traditionally played between the Last Post and the Reveille (Flowers of the Forest), it stirs up things in me.

We spoke the names of our fallen friends, told stories of them, and again, we ensured their immortality. We won’t forget them, and we’ll make sure no one does.

Written by Nick

November 12, 2011 at 11:11 am

Posted in Musings On Army Life

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