Gallipoli, gallantry and g’day

Our visit to the Gallipoli peninsula coincided with the Turkish 100 year celebration of victory at Cannakale, a sea of red flags and a scury of last weeks preparations for ANZAC day. On the 18 March in Bodrum we watched a moving celebration of the victory in the main piazza overlooking the sea from our balcony. The local piazza dog had never seen so many people and and I just loved how he was allowed to stay and become part of the event. We watched buses of school children spill out late and line up with their flags, war veterans huddle together and local officials chat over a coffee in the bar downstairs. Although the ceremony was in Turkish there was no mistaking the solemnity of the moment and when the bugle played everyone in the square from fishermen to dogs stood silently still, listening and thinking.

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In Cannakale the remembering continued with thousands of locals visiting at the weekend to commemorate the victory. The sea of red flags and even the chairs being set up for ANZAC, were an innocent reminder of the blood shed on this land. So many boys and men. So little reason. So beautiful a peninsula. So terribly sad.

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