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1. Posted by Wocca (Inactive 3745 posts) 11y

This weekend is a long weekend in Australia, because of the annual observance on Monday 25th April of the ANZAC (Australian New Zealand Army Corps)landing at Gallipoli in 1915.

ANZAC Day is an Australian national public holiday. It is believed that the spirit of ANZAC, with its human qualities of courage, mateship and sacrifice,still continues to have meaning and relevance for the Australian sense of national identity.ANZAC Day Program

TP'ers currently or previously in Australia are sure to have some memories / experiences of ANZAC Day weekends in Australia & abroad. Please share some of them here in this thread ...

2. Posted by Wocca (Inactive 3745 posts) 11y

Can anyone in Australia advise if there are any international sporting events being held over the ANZAC Day long weekend?

3. Posted by newguy (Full Member 197 posts) 11y

When i was serving in the Navy, i once had to arrange for transport for Australian soldiers to a dawn service for ANZAC Day at one of our war memorial site. Pity i didnt get the chance to attend it. Kranji War Memorial But i was there during Remembrance Day in my last year with the military..

"They shall grow not old
As we that are left grow old
Age shall not weary them
Nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun
And in the morning
We will remember them"
- Laurence Binyon

4. Posted by james (Travel Guru 4136 posts) 11y

"A party of Army Medical Corps men went out to bury our dead. The place where I was out was only about 100 yards from the Turks' trenches, and on that space there was a dead man about every yard; bodies without heads, arms and legs hanging on bushes, it was an awefule sight. Some of our own dead were lying a few yards from our trenches and had been there for nearly a month, and when we went to shift them they would fall to pieces. They weren't taken far and jut covered over with the earth."

Stretcher-Bearer Charlie Owers, helps bury the dead, May 24.

5. Posted by IMonaghan (Respected Member 431 posts) 11y

Went to the ANZAC parade in Sydney today and watched Australia's finest show their respects to their past. It was a different feeling attending a parade of this sort in a foreign country (I am from the US). All in all was a very nice parade...

All through Sydney retired army vets are wearing their medals proudly today. It's really nice to see how much pride everyone has in their country's armed forces.


6. Posted by Wocca (Inactive 3745 posts) 11y

ANZAC DAY 25th April 1915

I remember well the first occasion, the ANZAC Day tradition was explained to me. I would've been 7 years old, and everyone in the primary infants school was assembled on parade to pray, sing hymns, observe silence, ... and in other ways show their respect. We all stood to attention as the "Last Post" was bugled.

ANZAC Day closely followed Easter.I was already quite overwhelmed by all the emotion displayed during my first school Easter ceremony. Having ANZAC Day so soon afterward, choked me right up. Whenever I am in countries where ANZACs have suffered along with their allies, I always try to make a point of visiting any war cemeteries, etc.

One example is the Death Railway in Thailand where there are many graves of allied soldiers (England, Australia/America,Holland).I make a particular effort to visit the graves of the unknown. The sad reality is that these people were possibly unknown of even in their everyday civilian life anyway.

ANZAC includes New Zealand as well. The following link is a fitting tribute to the combined trans-Tasman bond between the two countries Spirit Of Courage

Quoting IMonaghan

"...It was a different feeling attending a parade of this sort in a foreign country (I am from the US)..."

BTW An old Aussie digger once stated to me that "...if America didn't help us during WWII, we'd all be speaking Japanese today..."

It's not unusual to see Americans & other nationalities also marching in ANZAC parades

7. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 11y

This is about the extent of what I know about ANZAC Day - although Remembrance Day (November 11th) here is similar, marking the wars in which Canada participated. I've only heard the version of this by The Pogues, although it's originally by Eric Bogle.


When I was a young man I carried me pack
And I lived the free life of the rover
From the Murry's green basin to the dusty outback
I waltzed my Matilda all over
Then in nineteen-fifteen me country said "Son
It's time to stop rembling, there's work to be done"
So they gave me a tin hat and they gave me a gun
And they sent me away to the war

And the band played Waltzing Matilda
When the ship pulled away from the quay
And midst all the cheers, flag waving and tears
We sailed off for Gallipoli

Oh, 't well I remember that terrible day
When our blood stained the sand and the water
And how in the hell they called Suvla bay
We were butchered like lambs at the slaughter
Johnny Turk, he was ready, he primed himself well
He rained us with bullets and he showered us with shell
And in five minutes flat we were all blown to hell
Nearly blew us back home to Australia

And the band played Waltzing Matilda
When we stopped to bury all slain
Well, we buried ours and the Turks buried theirs
Then it started all over again

All those that were living just tried to survive
In that mad world of blood, death and fire
And for ten weary weeks I kept myself alive
While around me the corpses piled higher
Then a big Turkish shell knocked me arse over head
And when I awoke in me hospital bed
And saw what it had done, I wished I was dead
I never knew there was worse things than dyin'

And no more I'll go Waltzing Matilda
All around the green bush, far and near
For the hump tent and pegs, a man needs both legs
No more waltzing Matilda for me

They collected the wounded, the crippled, the maimed
And they shipped us back home to Australia
The armless, the legless, the blind men, the insane
Those proud, wounded heros of Suvla
And when the ship pulled into Circular Quay
I looked at the place where me legs used to be
And thank Christ there was no one there waiting for me
To grieve and to mourn and to pity

And the band played Waltzing Matilda
When they carried us down the gangway
Oh, nobody cheered, they just stood there and stared
Then they turned all their faced away

Oh, now every April I sit on my porch
And I watch the parade pass before me
I see my old comrades, how proudly they march
Renewing their dreams of past glories
I see the old men, all tart, stiff and worn
Those weary old heroes of a forgotten war
And the young people ask "What are they marching for?"
And I ask myself the same question

And the band plays Waltzing Matilda
And the old men still answer the call
But year after year the number get fewer
Someday no one will march there at all

Waltzing Matilda, waltzing Matilda
Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me
And their ghosts may be heard as they march by the billibong
So who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me

8. Posted by Wocca (Inactive 3745 posts) 11y

Eric Bogle was born in Peebles, Scotland. He trained as an accountant before becoming a professional singer-songwriter. In the early 1970s he moved to Australia, where he has continued to perform and record songs remarkable for their trenchant political message.

He is best known for his anti-war lyric, "And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda", which has been recorded by more than 100 artists from Joan Baez to The Pogues. The definitive version is by June Tabor, who also recorded "No Man's Land".

Eric Bogle has received a United Nations' Peace Medal and the Order of Australia Medal for his music.

9. Posted by Wocca (Inactive 3745 posts) 11y

"NO MAN'S LAND" - Eric Bogle

Well, how'd you do, Private Willie McBride,
D'you mind if I sit down down here by your graveside?
I'll rest for awhile in the warm summer sun,
Been walking all day, Lord, and I'm nearly done.
I see by your gravestone you were only nineteen
When you joined the glorious fallen in 1916,
I hope you died quick and I hope you died "clean,"
Or, Willie McBride, was it slow and obscene?

Did they beat the drum slowly, did they sound the fife lowly?
Did the rifles fire o'er ye as they lowered ye down?
Did the bugles sing "The Last Post" in chorus?
Did the pipes play the "Floors O' The Forest"?

And did you leave a wife or a sweetheart behind
In some faithful heart is your memory enshrined?
And, though you died back in 1916,
To that loyal heart are you forever nineteen?
Or are you a stranger, without even a name,
Forever enshrined behind some glass pane,
In an old photograph, torn and tattered and stained,
And fading to yellow in a brown leather frame?

Well, the sun's shining down on these green fields of France;
The warm wind blows gently, the red poppies dance.
The trenches have vanished long under the plow;
No gas and no barbed wire, no guns firing now.
But here in this graveyard it's still No Man's Land;
The countless white crosses in mute witness stand
To man's blind indifference to his fellow man.
And a whole generation who were butchered and damned.

And I can't help but wonder now, Willie McBride,
Do all those who lie here know why they died?
Did you really believe them when they told you "the cause?"
Did you really believe that this war would end wars?
Well the suffering, the sorrow, the glory, the shame,
The killing, the dying, it was all done in vain,
For Willie McBride, it's all happened again,
And again, and again, and again, and again.

10. Posted by -kel- (Full Member 38 posts) 11y

Can anyone in Australia advise if there are any international sporting events being held over the ANZAC Day long weekend?

this could be a bit late but i'll tell you anyways. a friend of mine was travelling to sydney on anzac day for a soccer tournament against international teams....that is the only sporting event I can think of right now. let me know if you need some more, I'm sure i could think of more tomorrow.