Chota

Chota

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

{Flanders Fields}

{poppies at the Tower of London last year}
John McCrae, the cousin of my great Grandmother, Annie McCrae, wrote some very famous words, which are read out every year on this day. I am not an advocate of war, but I admit that I live peacefully due to the lives lost in battle. I am fortunate to hear birds singing in my garden rather than bombs, and when I do hear planes overhead it's people simply making their way from A to B rather than fighter jets dropping bombs on innocent people below. I am fortunate that when I travel it's my own choice, not because I am seeking asylum, away from war.
{my great grandparents, George Hills and Annie McRae}

My heart bleeds for all of those who don't know this peace, and I think we need to be reminded, especially on this day, that when we want to close our doors and borders to those who are seeking peace and a better life, it wasn't that long ago that we were doing the same... or that in the future, we might be relying on others to open their hearts and borders to help us seek a safer life.
So in the words of my ancestor, Major John McCrae:

{Flanders Fields}

Growing up I only knew that he was a relative of mine. Strangely, however, we seem to have a lot in common: John McCrae was born on 30 November 1872 (30 November is my sister Esther's birthday) and he taught at McGill University in Montreal, where I received my PhD. He also taught at the University of Vermont in Burlington, where I also worked (at a different institution) and he also spent time in England and France during the war.
Peace be with you,
L

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