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Thursday, June 30th, 2005

Nostalgia Attack

I was singing Boo to sleep tonight and “Two Little Boys” by Rolf Harris was what sprang to my lips. Rolf didn’t write it – the first recording of that song was in 1903 – but his rendition is what I grew up with, and the reason I know the song.

I was drawing a blank at a couple of lines, so after Boo dropped off I searched for the lyrics and found the official Rolf Harris website. I got into the lyrics section and experienced a major nostalgia attack. There were songs there that are deeply rooted in my childhood: “Jake the Peg,” “Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport,” and “The Court of King Caractacus.” Then I found “Botany Bay” and got a little weepy. I guess deep down we Australians are a maudlin lot. It comes with the legacy of suffering and the forced stoicism that comes from enduring hardship.

Not that I can complain – my parents worked hard for me and my brother and sister and the only suffering we endured was the envy of those who had more. I would have to guess that there was a part of the culture that I was susceptible to soaking up. When I first returned to Australia after having been gone away for so long, there were only two places other than my childhood homes that I had to go back to see – the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne and Phillip Island. I’m not qualified to express the significance of the Shrine – just take my word that it’s huge. Phillip Island was where we used to vacation – a happy, very relaxing place. Interestingly, though, it’s also the place that I remember Dad giving me a copy of The Lord of the Flies, the book I consider to be the most influential in my life.

Interesting how we can look back and see influences that have shaped who we are, or at least who we consider ourselves to be. If only we could also extrapolate from that and figure out how we got into this mess and what we need to get out of it.

Posted by Greg in Family & Friends, People, Posts About Me

1 Comment »

This entry was posted on Thursday, June 30th, 2005 at 23:36 PST and is filed under Family & Friends, People, Posts About Me. You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

One Response to “Nostalgia Attack”

  1. kevin stevens says:

    I went to the dawn service once and felt like crying. All the old blokes there with their medals and berets. During the silent period you feel as though you are there alone, but really you are surrounded by thousands of people all sharing a common experience. – Awesome!!

    Check this out if you are interested in the Shrine:

    http://melbourne-shrine-of-remembrance.blogspot.com/