Our European Trip to Gallipolli & Wedding in United Kingdom travel blog

raising of the oars







beautiful sunrise over Gallipoli and beach where boats came in!


Vicki – April 25th

Today we are in beautiful Venice (as it is actually the 30th April), while we wait for our accommodation I decided to fill in the events of my Anzac Day.

We attended a beautiful ceremony at Gallipoli. I only had to leave at 1.00am in the morning and we did not have all the red tape to go through like Paul with the Dept. Veterans Affairs. I could not believe that they left them there on Lone Pine, with no food unit 7.30pm at night. He enjoyed the ceremony - but the organisation was not well thought out!!!! We returned about 9.00am. The service was well run with the surf boats coming in at sun up, they did their salute with their oars, whilst the Barker College sang and played the music (they were on board the ship with us). Don, Jill, Olivia, Ross, Mavis and I attended this ceremony. The highlight of the ceremony was the Mayors speech.






Dear guests,

You are in the middle of two seas and continents. This place is GALLIPOLI. Its name proceeds before itself. We are honored to host you in the land of peace, love and eternal beauties.

In antiquity, people used to name this place as “BEAUTIFUL CITY’. Besides, the people of antiquity were also farsighted. Because after centuries and 100 years later of the great war, today Gallipoli is still beautiful. And YOU ARE ALSO AS BEAUTIFUL AS GALLIPOLI

Our dear guests,

Never suffer the difficulty in being a stranger on this land. We may not be speaking the same language but we do feel the same things. We all breathe at the same moment. Our language, religion may be different but our tears are the same colour.

Actually, the world is the country for us all.

Today you have come to Gallipoli from the far end of our world to commemorate your ancestors who rest in peach on these lands. The grandchildren of the warriors of the past have become brothers today. Your ancestors laying beneath, and you, our guests standing on these lands are our guests and brothers.

My dear friends,

What is important; is to live fraternal, isn’t it? Because it is easy to die. What is difficult; is to live. And war is sometimes easy, but actually peace is difficult. Today, we have achieved and extremely difficult goal. 100 years ago, we faced each other on that cove. Today, we are side by side on this cove.

That day, we fought on Anzac Cove, today we embraced on Hamzakoy cove.

And a 100 ears later, this day; we are sharing the same night and breathing un the same stars.

Our guests who have come from far away countries. There never was a good war, or a bad peace, Because in peace; sons bury their fathers, and in war, fathers bury their sons. And after the war between the armies, remain an “army of veterans’ and ‘an army of mourners’.

Therefore, we must declare war against war. As our great leader Ataturk has said; we must accept war as murder unless necessary. Therefore, wars must end. Otherwise, it has to be understood that mankind will come to an end. You all know “the boomerang’ quite well. Whatever you do in this life will return to you like a boomerang.

The one who sows fight, will reap grudge and hatred.

Yes! The powerful ones may win the war. But the ones who win the peace will be mighty.

Soon, darkness will give way to daylight.

Let the sun warm us all.

And to shine upon our path.

Let the wind carry our brotherhood and love that we created here behind the seas and mountains, where the darkened hearts of people who do not know anything but war.

Let ‘scent of flowers and peace’ spread from Gallipoli, not ‘blood’. Let ‘voices of children’ rise from earth, not ‘whiz- bangs of bullets’. Instead of being full up during war, let us starve during peach.

And I would like to call out to you my dear friends,

Let it be known that;

We will stand upright against the war as the Gallipoli Fortress stands. To whoever it is, we open our doors to everyone as the Gallipoli Whirling Dervish Lodge. And we will always unite like Gallipoli, which unites both seas. As the ones standing on Gallipoli soils, we will never forget the ones laying beneath

One of the things that we do not have to forget is the unique words of Mustafa Kernal Ataturk, the founder of the ‘Turkish Republic” I call out those words from here:

“Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives…. You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours…. You, the mothers who sent their sons from far away countries, wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace. After having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.”

A letter sent by an Australian mother to Ataturk is also unforgettable. It says:

“The warmth of your words eased our sorrow for our sons who vanished in Gallipoli, and our tears ended. Your words are a consolation to me as a mother. Now we are sure that our sons rest in peace in their eternal rest. If your Excellency accepts, we would like to call you ‘Ata’, too. Because what you have said at their graves of our sons could only be said by their own fathers. In the name of all mothers, our respect to the Great Ata who embraced our children with the love of a father’.

One one side, there is Ataturk, accepting the late soldiers as heroes and as his sons, and on the other side, there is a sorrowful mother, showing respect.

On one hand, the supremacy of fatherhood, and on the other hand the honour of motherhood.

Neither we bear grudge, nor you bear hostility………

As our great leader Ataturk, the hero of these lands and the founder of our country had said; we would also like to say: ‘Peach at Home, Peace in the World”, and we embrace you with peace.

Dear guests,

After these words, I would like to end my speech with an Australian proverb:

“We are all visitors to this time, this place. We are just passing through. Our purpose here is to observe, to learn, to grow, to love; and then we return home.”

Some day I will also return home.

Some day, you will also return home.

But, I would like you to know that:

Tonight, I am so happy to see you before returning home.

One day, when my journey back home starts, I will remember this night.

I will remember you with joy.

Thank you.

With my deepest love and regards.


Mayor of Celibolu (Gallipoli)


This I thought was a wonderful speech considering we attacked his country, and they lost thousands of young men too just defending their home. The whole service was very moving.

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