Ten years ago I was falling asleep in my birthday dessert in a fine dining restaurant in Istanbul. Jetlag is one degree of exhaustion; war fatigue is something else entirely. I made my pilgrimage to Turkey in order to honour the sacrifice of family members directly involved in and subsequently impacted by World War One.
After travelling from Istanbul to Gallipoli I camped out and attended the memorial service at Lone Pine and the Dawn Service at Anzac Cove.
After Gallipoli I hired a car and – without the help of GPS or even the language – set off to discover more of the history of Turkey.
In the years that have passed I have researched the war records of a number of branches of my family and uncovered more stories of bravery, injury, tragedy and survival.
I will be attending a local Dawn Service this year but I am grateful for the opportunity to have retraced my ancestors’ footsteps.