Today’s curve ball is this. I am strongly anti-war and anti-militaristic and yet today I am expected at the Royal Star and Garter complex in the nearby town where the Royal Artillery veterans get together on a regular basis to make plans for future events, such as attending certain old boys’ funerals and marching in commemoration of some wartime event or other. Basically, they continue to glamorize war and look back with extreme sentimentality at their days of military service. Last week, I had to attend a tour of ‘Bomber’ Harris’s office at the RAF military base…but I’ll get on to that another time maybe.
The reason for this excessive exposure to the militaristic ideal on my part is that we buried my mother around this time last year, and since then my dad has had to find outlets and re-build his life around him. Taking into account that he was 92 last week, that has been no easy thing and I admire all his efforts towards creating a new existence for himself.
Part of that process has entailed being drawn into the all-pervasive military presence that is contained virtually all around us.
Today, the Royal Artillery veterans want to celebrate my dad’s birthday at their old people’s home and I am, of course, only too happy to accompany him there.
The only problem that I have is having to fake the fact that I think war is abominable and that any glorification of it ought to be directly tackled.
But I couldn’t possibly spoil my dad’s day – and so will go ahead and behave as appears seemly.
Maybe another day I can deal with the pointless horrors wars inevitably cause.