WWI remembrance day 2018

WWI 1914 – 1918. 100 years ago.

265248 Private Robert John Smith of the 9th Battalion, Norfolk Regiment, died in Flanders fields, 21/03/1918, Born in Mattishall, Norfolk. Enlisted in Norwich, Norfolk. Gerry Francis’ Granddad. Great Granddad of Annette and Chris and Malcolm. He and so many others gave their lives for us. We will never forget.

100 Reasons

100 Years ago there was no reason
For killing 100 Soldiers on a day or more
100 Years today
There are 100 reasons
That we’ve learned from 100 Years before
To live another 100 years again
Without a war

 

Hearing Aids

You can hardly see them, these little things behind my ears. This week I got hearing aids. For years now I have been experiencing hearing loss and I kept asking others -mostly my wife- to repeat what they were saying to me as I couldn’t understand it straight away.

People have been trying to reach me in numerous ways over the last ten years, talking slowly, loud, slowly and loud, spelling it out, getting irritated with me or becoming angry with me because I could not confirm what was said.

Poor

I am not a Roman Catholic myself but I do respect their ways of experiencing their belief and this is why I wear this medal of Saint Francis. On the back it says “Pray for us”, Saint Francis is the Patron Saint for the poor.

This little medal reminds me to pray for them every now and then. I was poor once and living on the streets. That was a long time ago but I have not forgotten the kindness received from people, a meal, a sandwich and occasionally a drink. Very rarely I was offered a bed and shower and once a few quit to spend on clothing at the Salvation Army shop.

Do not forget the poor, do not forget them in your prayers, God bless you.

Schön ist die Welt

On a perfect early Sunday evening where earlier my family was gathered in the house for a meal now scattered over four floors and Doris Day is singing with the most wonderful angelic voice ever heard on earth in perfect German Schön ist die Welt I am now sinking back in my armchair to reminisce about that same feeling years ago in another time and place so far away and yet I am in another castle of my own but for me it doesn’t matter as I am perfectly content and the world ís a beautiful place and I can close my eyes.

Yawn

I never recovered from that fire alarm that went off early this morning, I just can’t stop yawning all day long.

This morning we were all ‘alarmed’ so to speak when my beloved woman decided to use deodorant spray right underneath the fire and smoke detector. Not a wise idea as it appeared.

I tried to go to sleep again after that but when I lay in bed after I switched it off I just had to laugh. I mean, how many times in your life will it happen that you stand on a chair at 6 in the morning in front of the love of your life shouting, “it’s ok love don’t panic, I love you dear!”? Butt naked?

Time traveling

Many years ago I lived in England for a few years, I am sure I have told you all about it on many occasions. Even though I love my life in The Netherlands, the love of my life my wife, and my four children and all the friends I have here, I do long to be there at times.

I think it has to do with all these great memories I have of those good time I had as a young man, being in England, having friends around me there (just as I have them around me here nowadays) and not in the least the British food. Yes, there are times I wish I could just pop over for a pint or a proper English meal.

Rest in Heavens Peace Billy Graham

One of the jobs, in fact the first ever job I had -even though it was a long time ago- I remember so well.

In 1986 I got a job at the office of BGEA (Billy Graham Evangelistic Association) in Amsterdam working as an Office Assistant and later as a Steward at the RAI conference building. It was a job with great colleagues. Introduced by a dear friend (who is sadly long longer with us) I got a job high up in a tower block with offices (first time in an elevator). My job was to water plants at the office, amongst numerous other duties such as running errands, making coffee and cutting cake for guests, preparing mailings and much more. You can say I was the general dogsbody at the office, being able to stick my head around every corner to say hello to every colleague in the building and we had loads of fun too.