Talking to my sister the other day she mentioned how touched she was by some of the recollections of our late sister that friends had shared with her. It reminded me of how I felt when someone ( a stranger) had shared some information with me – information that helped to unravel a ‘mystery’ concerning one of my grandfathers.
The man seated is my maternal grandfather – Isaac John Joseph Thompson, my mother’s father. A few years ago I posted this photograph (and his name) on a military forum in the hope of getting it dated – to my surprise I learned a whole lot more than the date.
Yes, we knew he served in the RAMC (Royal Army Medical Corp) and we knew he was a regular and had ‘fought’ in both WW! and WW2 – Mum had told us he was a hero, ‘mentioned in dispatches’ but that was it.
Well, from that photograph, I was given the approx year it was taken and his rank. Also from looking at the medal ribbons on Grandad’s uniform this person was able to determine his ‘mention’ and (through contacts he had) then went on to supply me with information on which conflict he was in at the time.
This is when my jaw dropped – after giving me the date of the award, the forum member told me “he earned his mention for gallantry in the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force (MEF)” When I looked it up I discovered the MEF is another term for The Gallipoli Camapign!
Even though I was not born here in Australia (am a long time naturalised Australian) it brought a smile to my face when I realised he took part in and performed an act of bravery in a campaign that is dear to the heart of most Australians.
I didn’t do it on purpose at the time it was easier for him to do it than me. Just look at what he came home with this time. Theres no point in me complaining about him bring home unnecessary stuff because I did ask him to look around and maybe pick up something ‘interesting’. Interesting- adjective Unusual, arousing curiosity or interest, holding or catching the attention, strange or different
They definitely caught his attention 😊
We have lots of little shops out here in the eastern suburbs that sell ‘interesting’ food stuffs. Little corner like asian shops where as you walk in you get the feeling you’re walking in to an Aladdin’s cave as well as slightly bigger bordering on small supermarkets selling ‘international’ bits and pieces.
When our loose leaf Chinese Green and Oolong tea is getting low it means a trip to one in Croydon to hunt through the shelves jam packed with things I’ve never heard of but look very interesting…….if I was confident enough to try.
It’s the only one locally where loose leaf is available rather than just tea bags and as they move things around the ‘teas’ are never where they were before, which means I’m constantly getting lost in unfamiliar territory trying to make sense of packets in very unfamiliar languages – now I’ve got into the habit of taking the tin along and asking for help. Which in turn makes other shoppers in there curious and they all have a go at finding my tea. It’s a very relaxed environment with lots of interesting chatter between shoppers and owners…..not that I can understand a word they’re saying to each other…or me at times…interesting to say the least😊
Further up Main Street is what we used to call ‘the dutch shop’ (now goes by a more upmarket name) where for years it was the only place I could get sweet soy sauce (ketjap manis) and the lovely oval almond cakes we enjoy. Now it has branched out and specialises in food from all over Europe, if The Golfer is curious to know if things he ate as a child still taste the same he’ll pop in there for English sweeties…..an international food mart indeed. If you’re a European migrant hankering for home, they have so many unusual products that something might catch your attention as you look at the interesting catalogue
And for real modern ‘interesting’ stuff there’s the chain that buys up weird and wonderful unheard of imported brands plus well known but nearly out of date products, also non sellers with what you think are surplus ingredients the manufacturer wants to get rid of. It began by buying and on selling goods that came off the conveyor belt looking ‘not quite right’. Perfectly ok, but maybe not the right shape or size. Now it’s all about clearance and discounts- buy now before it’s gone but occasionally they do have some ‘interesting- wonder what that tastes like’ things on the shelf
Guess where The Golfer picked up the chips with the ‘interesting flavours’ 😊
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I’m slowly catching up on the new daylight hours after our recent time change- it’s dark at the moment, the sky starts to lighten about 6.30am, so there’s still a bit of time left to enjoy another cup of tea before the day proper starts. The Golfer is all set with tea for a while now (Oolong is his morning choice, mine is Dilmah Premium Ceylon….I’m not a strong tea lover) and as I was able to get a soft pack refill for him the other day he can continue to use the old tin caddy. Our gain….the op shop’s loss!
And I just have time to wonder if anything interesting in the form of strange, different or unusual will happen this week. Here’s to an interesting one for you too!
Do visit Denyse’s blog to see the latest edition of Life this week – you’ll find lots of interesting people over there