Changing of the Guard

Without anything specific planned today, it seemed important to make sure that I got to the fitness center, boring as that might be. Of course, there was the idea that a stroll along the shore might also be a good idea.

I have my choice of currency

I have my choice of currency

So I did both: checked the block about burning off some calories first thing in the morning and then taking off. There had been a lot of warnings about staying out of the unsafe areas which seem to comprise a goodly portion of both Suva and the island. As it was a Saturday, there were people everywhere. Couples, vendors, little kids having a great time. Shops were still open and I decided that Maus was going to have to survive without a postcard from here as I just couldn’t brave the crush in the area around the port.


Heading along the seawall to the right, there weren’t as many people and I was enjoying my nice brisk walk past hotels, stores, open spaces and the occasional home. Then I heard a brass band playing. Holiday? Parade? Concert? And started to follow my ears leading me from the ocean side toward what appeared to be a main street.  There weren’t any crowds, but the music seemed to be moving in space and martial in content.

Reaching the main street – there was what was obviously a military marching band coming toward me. Ok – and I fell in with a few young boys, locals, and several tourists tagging along to see where they were going. The end point, as it turned out was the Governor’s/Counsel General’s/President’s/Whomever’s front gate where two guards dressed in the same blue and white as the band were standing guard.  The platoon following the band was outfitted in Red and White.

Being retired military, I am still a sucker for a well run military ceremony and this was. Over the next several minutes first the band played followed by a version of pass in review, and the ceremonial handing over of the duties complete with all the standard changes of rifle positioning.

Did I mention the loudly barked orders? The Sergeant conducting a visual inspection of each of the guards?  How about the stomping of feet into position? Or the fact that all are wearing sandals?

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About Holly

fiber person - knitter, spinner, weaver who spent 33 years being a military officer to fund the above. And home. And family. Sewing and quilting projects are also in the stash. After living again in Heidelberg after retiring (finally) from the U.S. Army May 2011, we moved to the US ~ Dec 2015. Something about being over 65 and access to health care. It also might have had to do with finding a buyer for our house. Allegedly this will provide me a home base in the same country as our four adult children, all of whom I adore, so that I can drive them totally insane. Considerations of time to knit down the stash…(right, and if you believe that…) and spin and .... There is now actually enough time to do a bit of consulting, editing. Even more amazing - we have only one household again. As long as everyone understands that I still, 40 years into our marriage, don't do kitchens or bathrooms. For that matter, not being a golden retriever, I don't do slippers or newspapers either. I don’t miss either the military or full-time clinical practice. Limiting my public health/travel med/consulting and lecturing to “when I feel like it” has let me happily spend my pension cruising, stash enhancing (oops), arguing with the DH about where we are going to travel next and book buying. Life is good!
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4 Responses to Changing of the Guard

  1. carmen says:

    The skirts! You failed to mention the skirts!

  2. Holly says:

    Didn’t think of them as skirts. It would be like thinking of a Kilt as a skirt…..

  3. Allison says:

    Ah…. Are they wearing skirts and sandals???

  4. Holly says:

    Yes to the sandals. And I do have a mental issue with the idea of rifles, dress uniforms and sandals. OTOH, I wouldn’t argue with the average Scottish regiment guy about whether or not he thought of his kilt as a skirt.

    Looked it up on Wiki – the traditional “dress” is called the sulu and is worn by both men and women… to quote
    “Even the military uniforms have incorporated the Sulu va taga as part of their ceremonial dress.”

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