I bought a poppy from a veteran in the mall the other day, in Calgary. I already had one, but he was standing there, next to a display, which included the poem In Flanders Fields written in big letters. I felt I couldn’t just pass by. I asked him where he had served and he had been in WWII. Then Korea, then stationed in Germany. As he described that last one, his eyes got misty. So did mine. I started to get embarrassed, so I said thank you for service somewhat abruptly and left. And then cried in Banana Republic, while looking at sweaters.
There was something odd about the juxtaposition of the modern mall, glassy and expensive and remembering our fallen soldiers. Though I’m certainly grateful they had that display.
This veteran was as old as my grandfathers would be, were they alive. These men won’t be around to thank in person forever.
There is a cool display in England for Remembrance Day, too. You can learn about that here.
Lest we forget.