We do not gather together to glorify war - but rather to remember the men and women who served their country, and especially those who made the ultimate sacrifice.
~Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, Governor-General of New Zealand.
Today, 25 April 2015, marks the 100 year anniversary of the Anzacs landing in Gallipoli in the Great War.
We huddled this morning with our fellow Wellingtonians at the Pukeahu National War Memorial Park in the dark before dawn and contemplated all the brave souls who lay down their lives for us a century ago and in the conflicts in-between, those away today, those who didn't make it home, and those who come home forever changed.
It was particularly special for us: both my husband's great grandads served in World War I, his maternal grandad was a prisoner of war in WWII and our friend Curt lost both his legs in Afghanistan 3 years ago while serving for the Australian Army.
We remember and honour them not to glorify war but with gratitude that their sacrifice means that we may never need to know the atrocities of the battlefield.
In the Governer-General's address, he spoke of "mateship" and camaraderie as enduring ideals we should aspire to. Wonderfully positive, don't you think? And boy was it in full force today. Forty thousand strong at Pukeahu Memorial Park alone and hundreds of thousands more kiwis and aussies banding together across both countries and in Turkey. So incredibly moving.
We carried on the mateship theme with the rest of the day by having a good goss and photo-nerding sesh with the very gorgeous Katie over copious cups of tea and these Anzac Crumble Ginger Muffins.