25th April 2013
ANZAC day public holiday
Well, my day is only half over and already so much has happened. And no, I’m not talking about me actually doing anything like, something....something...productive with my time. –shudders- I can’t stand that thought.
No, I mean so much has happened in other ways. Such as this next example. In the bright, early hours of this morning at approximately 5:00am my ‘delightful’ mother came into my room and woke me up. But it wasn’t until 5:30am until I dragged my slothy self out of bed and got dressed in layer upon layer and in a beanie, big warm coat and scarf. This is quite the task when you’re half asleep. As I walked out into the kitchen complaining of hunger, my parents shoved a few ANZAC biscuits into my grasp and we got in the car as we were going to have to be quick if we wanted to arrive at 6:00am for the ANZAC dawn service.
The car was freezing. Even though I was rugged up I was only just getting warm with the car heater when we arrived at town. As we walked towards the big memorial gates where the service was going to be held, I took a look at the people count. As a usual attender of the dawn service every year, I could safely say that this year’s turnout was much bigger than lasts, which was great to see.
Before I go any further, I better explain to some of you who may be reading who aren’t Australian what ANZAC day is. It’s basically a day where Australians and New Zealanders remember the soldiers of our countries who have served in all wars, although the main focus is on WW1 and the battle at Gallipoli which is said to have been what really brought Australia together as a nation. The ANZACS (Australian + New Zealand Army Corps) are the main focus, although the family and friends of ANZACS also play a part in our hearts. I could go into much greater detail as this is a subject I am very knowledgeable about since I studied a whole class on it last term but I won’t ramble. Back to the dawn service, shall we?
So the service started on 6:00 sharp and it rolled the way most dawn services do. There was the guy who ran most of it, bearing proudly some medals sewn onto his jacket; he was the conductor of it all. There was also a priest who read out some religious notes throughout, and lastly a local man who has very recently served in both Afghanistan and Iran told us of some of his experiences. Although the morning certainly was very frosty, the people of my town stood still for an entire hour, to honour our soldiers of all wars, and to remember them with pride. The Last Pope was played (on record, unfortunately the usual bugle player wasn’t there) but still had a chilling effect. As everyone shuffled forwards to collect a poppy at the end of the service to place at the gates, I took a look around to see if I could spot any familiar faces.
Many faces were those of locals, who I don’t know by name but whose faces are familiar. Among them my mum spotted a friend, I spotted two girls from school and a local teacher among the crowd who had all gotten up at the ripe old time of six o’clock. I felt immense respect not just for our soldiers but also for all these people who had bothered to get up out of bed and celebrate our ANZACS. People short and tall, old and young, had all gathered around our memorial gates for one reason and one reason only: to remember them. With pride, gratitude, and to thank them for the nation Australia is today.
After the service had finished, Dad drove us back home. As we were driving, I looked out the window and up the road a little. Now, something quite unusual happens to me in a minute. So the road to my house is a dirt road right, and there are huge gum trees and stumps all surrounding the sides of the road. I had looked up ahead and I swear I saw figure of an ANZAC from the waist up. The hat, hand paused in salute and everything!! But as we got closer, and I continued to stare out the window in wonder, I looked and saw what I thought to be a digger was simply a tree branch. Now I don’t know if that actually meant anything or if it was just a slip of my mind in early morning, but I wanted to put that down.
As we got home, we watched some coverage of the services on TV from Gallipoli, France, Melbourne, Brisbane, and Canberra, but very soon we began to grow sleepy. My parents fell asleep on the couch whilst I crept back to my room and have only woken up about half an hour ago. But let me tell you of the dreams I had.
Usually, my dreams are very odd. In no particular order, here are some of the things from my more significant dreams:
Bushfires, Chihuahuas, family, celebrities, swimming, loosing teeth, kissing (which is odd because I am yet to have my first kiss so I guess my brain just guessed what it’d be like in those particular dreams), bears, a magical pony, gorillas, vampires, my dog Rosie, and a loch ness monster.
And many of them, if I went to a dream reader, would tell me they had no significance at all because they’re all so random. But this certain one I had today, not before the service but after, I have been dwelling on in my mind and I will write down what parts of it I can remember.
I remember sitting on the side of a fountain of what looked like some sort of city square. Anyway, first there was a boy next to me. I have never seen this boy in my (real, awake) life, and I struggle to remember what he looks like now, but I will try. I think he had sandy coloured hair, brown eyes, normal to tan skin, and my god he was sexy. He looked maybe a year or so older than me. But anyway. Prior to this moment in my dream world I must have obviously at least known him before. We must have talked prior in THIS dream but I can’t remember that, all I can remember is him in my arms, his head on my lap, looking deep into my eyes and a single tear slipping down his face. I think he had just been shot (I can’t remember the shooting clear enough to tell you the specifics or even who shot him) but all I remember is him, clutching onto his last moments of life. His hand had oh so very gently rested on my cheek, and his last words were “Please.” He then had softly pushed my head towards his and we kissed until his lips became lifeless and his eyelids slowly fluttered shut and I was holding a lifeless teenage boy in my hands that I had immense love for.
I remember bawling my eyes out and my god can I just say, this dream seemed so real.
Afterwards, I can’t remember these ones so clearly, but two other people I was with in that dream after McDreamy had died also died somehow. I was gutted, I was like a lifeless person, having random bursts of sobs whenever I remembered any of these three who had passed away. Which is odd now as I type this, because from what I can remember now I don’t know any of these people in my own head, I think they were just figments of my imagination, but pieces of my heart, my soul, my being seemed to be ripped out as each of them died because, oddly enough, I was the only one present when each of them passed.
But soon after the deaths, I was wandering around a town, with my mind repeatedly chanting stuff like ‘what’s the point of life anymore’ because I had loved these people so much. But then I saw a little girl. She was only very small, and she was wearing a dress and had big blue eyes. She was alone, which I should have noticed in the dream but I didn’t. Her blue eyes reminded me of one of the other two who had died and I began to lose it again. Somehow this smart little kid knew I needed somebody and came over to me and took me to a park bench. She sat me down and said “What’s the matter?
I recall telling her of the deaths of these three people I loved, and how I somehow felt the cause of them because I was the only one there with them (dreams are weird things.) And I remember her then telling me this quote, which made me bring tears to my eyes of how simply beautiful it was. She was like an angel.
The only reason I can quote what she said exactly is because as soon as I woke up, I wrote it down. It was something along the lines of this:
‘When people die, they never really leave us. You just have to keep looking for them. They’re all still around us, in many little ways most people overlook. Keep looking.’
In her words she said that so beautifully it made me believe everything she said. After she said that, I remember he going on to naming the three who had died (whose names I can’t remember now, damn!) and pointing out how they are still around us. There was a storm brewing to the right of us above the buildings, and she told me to watch the lightning. I saw one flash, and it lit up the whole sky. As the rest of the sky was a bright white, there was a dark outline of the boy’s face from the start, the sandy haired cutie, y’know? And I saw his face and it almost felt like he was there with me for that split second, but then the flash ended and he was gone.
She pointed out the other two also but I can’t remember those, because as she was I had begun to slip out of this dream because as I was trying to listen to her, I could hear my mum walking around my house (as in, in real life) so I was on the verge of waking up.
When I did, I felt an odd sense of warmth within me. I’ve been happily floating around today after that dream, still on an odd high of some sort.
So now you understand why I’ve been pondering that dream (and the soldier/stump thing from earlier) all morning so far. Been wondering if it was just a coincidence or if it meant something or whatever. I really don’t know what to think about the whole situation to be honest with you, but I feel better to have written it all down. And for it to be out there, not just sitting in a document on my laptop never to be read again for years.
I’m going to go now, as I feel if I write any more I’m going to begin to ramble.
Until next time,
‘Lest We Forget.’
- Love EJ x