War Poet.ca - A CFAP Project by Suzanne Steele

gifts

spending a few days with a sister-in-law and brother and our dogs at the beach house. gorgeous, peaceful. ocean and herons, sandbars. people laughing into the night. peace and prosperity.

and they are caring for me as I make my way through more shitshow. we’re family my brother says, that’s what family does. he grills a steak on the bbq, his wife and I drink scrumpy. here’s to solutions, she clinks my glass. and I feel great pity for those who do not know family, strong family that is there for us when we succeed and when we fail.

today a neighbour from along the beach who saw me on the tv last week found me and handed me a CD. the CD is a copy of his grandfather’s WWI diary from the front. this grandfather was an army doctor with the 49th Loyal Edmonton Battalion (Loyal Eddies), a reserve unit a.k.a. 4th Battalion PPCLI, and he kept a close diary and photos of his experience serving and being wounded. he served June 1915 – April 1917.

I had only a moment to look at the CD but will take a good look when I get home and have some time. what I read and saw, the scanned documents, the photos, was enough to last me a long while. I looked at a photograph of the young medical officer and I recognized that 1000 mile stare of PTSD. I asked the grandson if his grandfather ever spoke of the war and he said no, never.

the grandfather served in WWI and his son served in WWII as a medical officer. the grandson/son wants the diaries of both to go to the National War Museum or somewhere special – hopefully together.

later in the day another neighbour gave me a Hawaiian shirt with his company logo on it. it’s a beach thing. all the men have these shirts and wear them to “happy hour”. a bonding ritual and it’s really fun. I’m the first woman ever awarded one. maybe I’ve been deemed an honourary guy. in any case I’ll wear it with pride (even though it’s a Lg and I’m an xSm!

besides the shirt though, this fellow gave me a lovely pin commemorating the 50th anniversary of the end of WWII. it’s been waiting for the right person for a long time he said as he gave it to me.

thanks I said.

nice gifts. on a beautiful day. even though sometimes things. are a shitshow.


1 Comment (Closed)

Joan

treasures indeed!

Jul 29 2011 · 08:02

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The page you're reading contains a single diary entry entitled gifts. It was posted here on July 28, 2011.

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