Showing posts from April, 2013

ANZAC DAY in Warsaw - Poland - 98th Anniversary 2013

Click on images to enlarge

Many Australians would find it surprising perhaps to discover that an Anzac Day ceremony has taken place here in Warsaw for some years. It is held in Pilsudski Square at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

I have always felt that the broad notion of 'allies betrayed' has bound Poles, Australians and New Zealanders together in spirit however complex and many-sided the actual historical truth. In fact during World War II Poles and New Zealanders fought side by side at the appalling Battle of Monte Cassino. The Polish Independent Carpathian Rifle Brigade fought alongside Australian troops at the Siege of Tobruk. Three surviving members of the brigade took part in last year's ceremony (2012) but only one today.  The number diminishes with the passing of years but not the memory. A small number of bemused Poles and wide-eyed school-children always assemble to watch this puzzling (for them) ceremony.

It is always a very moving moment for me in voluntary exil…

Casual Car Club (CCC) Warsaw

For anyone interested in my classic car activities I am now Chairman of what we have called the Casual Car Club (CCC) formed recently in Warsaw to take advantage of the splendid motoring Poland has to offer. It was also an attempt to avoid the bureaucracy and political infighting that afflicts too many large car clubs. 
We had our first excursion on Saturday April 20th to Nieborow and Arkadia. Nice pictures of the treasures of Poland even if you have no interest in cars! 

You may like to read about the excursion on this link:

Warsaw Ghetto Uprising 70th Anniversary April 19th 2013

Last night in a quiet moment before I went to sleep I could not help reflecting on the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, living as I do where these tragic events occurred only a generation ago. I decided to get out of my warm and cosy bed and read what I had written in my Polish book about this particularly valiant and frantic moment in the tumultuous history of this miracle of a city, Warsaw.

The Ghetto Uprising is too often confused by travellers to this country, understandably unfamiliar with Polish history, with the equally tragic Warsaw Uprising that began on 1 August 1944. As an Australian author with no Jewish or Polish roots, I too initially suffered from a lamentable ignorance of matters almost beyond comprehension for one raised in 'The Lucky Country' - until I began to read. In this I consider myself privileged to have a rather  more objective, what one might even term an outsider's view of such historical events. I count myself lucky not to have absorbe…

The Bugatti Queen

I recently received my membership documents from the GRRC (Goodwood Road Racing Club) and a week or so later the annual luxurious and quite brilliant Goodwood Magazine. Of course it presents a style of life and expenditure that I can only dream of in real terms but this issue was particularly interesting with superbly illustrated articles on the Porsche 911 (50th birthday), William Knight the outstanding Goodwood horse trainer, the racing legend Jimmy Clark, the Boultbee Spitfire Academy where you can train to fly a Spitfire and a celebration of two decades of the Goodwood Festival of Speed. I managed to attend the Goodwood Revival in 2009 in my concours 1949 MG TC (black with Apple-green Collingburn interior) and am still recovering from the cost from Warsaw of that sublime weekend.

Click on photographs for best results (Leica D-Lux 4)


More on the history of my association with classic cars if you are interested: (English)…