11th November has significance in both Australia and The Netherlands. I’ve already written about Sint Maarten which we are celebrating today in the North of Holland with our girls. In Australia, Remembrance Day is observed on the 11th day of the 11th month at the 11th hour. Then, 1 minute of silence is taken nationally to remember those who have died or suffered in military service. The link above leads you to the Department of Veteran Affairs and explains more about the day.
The symbol of the day is a red poppy and you will see these being sold and worn around during the month of November around Australia. I haven’t seen any this year and have missed them, though did see one man in Amsterdam airport as I flew back from Brisbane to Schiphol, with one on his lapel. I found it very special how in a busy airport, this small symbol caught my attention and did bring a wave of emotion of gratefulness for all the sacrifice so many have made and continue to do so.
Both my parents served in the Australian Navy before I was born, and i’ve been proud to watch my father march in some years in the ANZAC day parade. The dedication and sacrifice of so many in the military and their families well warrants more than one official day and I plan on observing both ANZAC Day and Remembrance day in our family while we live here in The Netherlands – though think my 3 and 5 year old are still a little young to understand and my chanced of keeping them quiet for a whole minute during the daytime is not likely just yet!
What I didn’t know until researching this post is that each year, a commemorative poster is produced. This year is recognising the contribution of Australian forces in the Vietnam War – of which my father was actually part of in the navy.
Do you observe Remebrance Day?