Saturday, February 28, 2009

#269-365 Sculpture

This sculpture depicts a pivotal pair in the Australian Psyche, it is "Simpson and his Donkey"
During Australia's Blooding as a Nation in the Gallipoli Campaign of the 1st World War. This character, would take the opportunity during lulls in the fighting to venture into "No Mans Land" to retrieve wounded comrades and bring them back for aid. The story is too important for me to relate so try this site
http://www.awm.gov.au/exhibitions/forging/australians/simpson.asp
for more info.

I photographed this statue to Simpson outside the Port Macquarie RSL (Returned Services League's Club). It always brings alump to my throat because it is what being a "Digger" has always meant to me and my generation. It is a bout honour, it's about dependabilty and giving more of a damn for your Mates than yourself. None of these are easy to come by, but you have to strive. When I first joined the Army, I was told by a Captain that it was better to have failed at climbing Mount Everest than it was to have successfully scaled Mount Kosciuszko (Australia's highest peak at a mere 7,310 feet) not really tall).

I mulled over this for a few months till I left recruit training, and in Corps training queried what it meant from my then Squadron Sergeant Major WOII Gus Ballantyne (an ex member of the Wafen Panzer Corps during World War II) who with the stoicism of the German Race pondered for a while then stated; "You bite off more than you can chew - then chew like s&*t". I tried to live like that ever since, and it has made life a little unpleasant for those around me. If ever you encounter someone wha has done more than their share think of Simpson and his Donkey.

14 comments:

jo said...

A terrific shot and an inspirational story, Ron. Simpson looks a little like Chuck at the Village, don't you think?

Cita said...

My maternal uncle served the army during world war 2, he passed away 10 years ago. Since childhood we were taught by my mom to respect everyone who serves the military. Thanks for sharing this photo.

Iona said...

Wonderful photo and story. Great bravery in this man. We should all be challenged as he was to leave our mark on society. Thanks for sharing this tale, Ron.

Chesney said...

And here at first I thought you were talking about "Bart" Simpson! LOL
Great image and love the history behind it - the link was very interesting as well. It is nice to have SOME explanation that explains why you are as you are - good attempt! :)

tracylee365.com said...

That's a great story, Ron. I'd never heard of Simpson before, but he's certainly worth honouring.

I also love the inspirational nugget that's it's better to have failed at something nearly impossible than to succeed at the easy stuff.

Brita said...

Great story and photo. Thanks for sharing the tale.

Debbie said...

Great sculpture, powerful story, imagine the difference one man and a beast of burden made in such a terrible war.

gregworld said...

Ron..really wonderful photo. thanks for sharing the story and website.

Clara said...

What a wonderful story, Ron, and a wonderful image, too. I really like the comments that you made on this post. Thanks so much for sharing with us.

klsbear said...

Very nice photo Ron, and thanks for sharing the story and a bit of insight into who you are and what you're made of.

DART said...

Words of wonderful wisdom! We should all strive to live like that. Great shot and story behind it. Thanks for sharing!

shadowsandhighlights said...

Wonderful shot and story! Thanks for supplying the link. I'm going to check it out!

mljrbg said...

Very touching story and you portrayed it beautifully. I know under that tough front that you have there is really a very tender, caring person inside.

Candyce said...

A great shot and of course the story to go along - I like how you framed this statue