Sunday, November 10, 2013

Remembrance Day 2013

Last year, Gus and I sort of stumbled across a couple of Remembrance Day observances in the city of Aberdeen, and on the lawn outside King's College Chapel. This year, I'm up here in Orkney, where the World Wars constitute a significant element of the local historical narrative. Given that one of my primary functions up here in Orkney is to do research on the First World War, I was relieved when my landlady told me when Kirkwall's Remembrance Day ceremony was - not only did I feel obligated to attend, but I wanted to attend. The ceremony had already begun by the time that I arrived outside St. Magnus Cathedral, but I was there for the majority of the brief proceedings. I'm not sure whom the officiant was - based on context clues from his speech, perhaps a vicar from elsewhere in the United Kingdom who's recently relocated to Orkney - but I was pleased when he followed his remarks about committing to be peacemakers with a reminder that one should not confuse peace with appeasement.

After the ceremony, I went to get something to eat, and when I was leaving the restaurant, I heard more bagpipe music. I was pleased to find myself on Castle Street as the parade that had marched from the British Legion Hall marched back. It was great to see how many of Kirkwall's residents not only participated in the ceremony, but also attended the observance as well. The entire experience was quite moving, and I was glad to have the opportunity to experience a Remembrance Day here in Kirkwall.

No comments:

Post a Comment