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The Queen has Died..


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I'll miss the Queen.


Putting aside politics and the fact that I'm a former republican turned born again constitutional monarchist, from a personal standpoint, the Queen has been there all of my life until now. She was on every coin I saw, handled or spent. The Mint was always kind to her, issuing coins with the image of a much younger Queen than she really was. And there she was in a big portrait looking down at us every school day in the classroom, keeping a benevolent eye on our progress as we scratched away at our slates, or at an older age dabbling in ink pots to fill in our copy books. Every morning, when the bell rang, we would all line up on the asphalt parade ground like a little primary school army. The head teacher would drag a big plywood speaker out on to the verandah of the school, and we would all put our right hand over our heart and sing God Save the Queen accompanied by a scratchy old record. The JW kids were exempt and would just stand to attention, no singing the anthem and no hand on heart.


In all the portraits of her that were hanging on the walls of government buildings, RSL's, CWA halls and country town halls, she had the same expression. I don't know if you would really call it a smile, but it was a serene and kindly look, in no way stern or scary. In those days, women always wore a frock with hat, gloves and handbag on any occasion of note, including CWA meetings. As a kid, I never thought the Queen dressed like other women; I always thought women dressed like the Queen. Any sort of do in the town hall seemed to have scones with strawberry jam, lamingtons, cups of tea with saucers, and the Queen looking down on everybody.


Growing up in a rural soldier settlement community, it was obvious that the Queen had a big following. She was even on the wall of the pub (in the lounge of course; it was more dignified there). My dad saw her when he was in the army during the war. As Princess Elizabeth, she inspected the troops and walked right past in front of my dad. After that, he was a fan for life and you couldn't say anything against the Queen when he was around. He said she was a good looking sort when she was young. I can just remember seeing her when I was a kid; it might have been at the Gold Coast. There was a big excited crowd there to watch the Queen drive by with her colourful frock, big hat, and gloved hand calmly waving to the crowd.


Rest in peace Queen Elizabeth the Second.




Edited by willedoo
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I was in grade 3 when King George VI died, so I do remember singing God Save The King. I first saw the Queen on her 195 tour of Australia. All the students were marched to the local showground, forming a large circle. She and Prince Phillip drove around in a burgundy Land Rover.



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I liked King Charles III referring to her as Elizabeth the Great. 


Why "Great". Perhaps because she saw through the transition of an Empire bloodlessly to a Commonwealth of Nations. The members of that Commonwealth might have their own troubles and might bicker and battle between themselves, but they have the rest of the members to back them up in time of need, or to enjoy life together. What other organisation can come together regularly in so many peaceful ways for the joy and benefit of its members?

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6 hours ago, willedoo said:

and we would all put our right hand over our heart and sing God Save the Queen

We didn't put our hand on our hearts, but we did sing it every morning at assembly. Although much older, I rued the day Keating orchestrated the change of national anthem.. 


I am no royalist, but I have always been a constitutional monarchist for the very reason the system isn't broke, so no need to fix it and introduce risk. The real political power rests in the government - not the head of state, although, to shake things up a bit, it would be a bit of sport for the GG to, for once, refuse royal assent to a bill passed by both houses 😉


We all talk about constitutional reform of the Commonwealth of Australia, but let's not forget, the monarch is also the constitutional head of each state (last time I looked, anyway). Otherwise, there would be no reason for governors. So, it suddenly becomes a relatively big job to introduce structural reform across Australia.


Yes, it is strange that the head of state is someone who lives 10,000 miles away, but they are represented locally, and, in the constitution of Australia, as OME rightly points out, they are the monarch of Australia - not the UK. When people at work were asking me on Friday if I was sad, I pointed out of course, because two of the greatest monarchs that ever lived died - the Monarch of the UK and the Monarch of Australia - and heads of both my states. 


To me, as a born and bred Aussie, there is no current argument to change the status quo - apart from further reconciliation with first nations peoples (who are also Aussies). The system largely works and appointing a local head of state won't fix what is broken. The reasons given for a republic,  apart from the lack of democratic nature of it, which is a token reason in reality, and the reconciliation bit are largely false. The world won't see us un any other way than they do now (most don't even know we are a constitutional monarchy) and will we really walk around smug in the knowledge we now have a local head of state as if, *poof*, all of our troubles and problems will magically evaporate. To me, changing the system introduces a lot more risk than problems it *may* solve.

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By the way a bit of a shameless name dropping, but I have been up close to her Maj.    In 1982 (when I was a lad of 20) in the RAAF band we played for the Commonwealth games opening and closing ceremonies and associated events in Brisbane.   We were on the tarmac at the airport when her plane arrived to play the anthem after which she inspected the band and spoke to a coupled musician she didn't speak to me though.


The second occasion was when she visited RAAF Base Richmond to (memory fails me here a bit) either present a Queens colour or to troop the queens colour.

A prize for anyone wo can pick me out of this lineup.




After the parade we played at a function in the officers mess where she met one of our band members.  Again not me. I do have a feeling they chose the tallest a best looking of us to meet her. I have pixelated all the no queen people in this picture because I havent really asked the fellow if he minds me posting it.



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Victoria is in for a four day weekend, with consecutive public holidays. Thursday as the national day of mourning, and Friday as the Grand Final Parade.

1 hour ago, Jerry_Atrick said:

the monarch is also the constitutional head of each state

Gov Gen Hurley made the national proclamation today, as did Perettet for NSW. Victoria will make theirs tomorrow.

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I can recall a well-known woman pyschic (can't recall her name now), many decades ago, predicted Charles would never become King.

At this point, she looks to be wrong in her prediction, but then again, Charles hasn't been through the actual coronation process yet - which will not be held until early 2023.

A lot of things could happen between now and then, and 74 yr old blokes can quite often "drop off the perch" without warning, even though they look healthy enough.

Perhaps one extra good shag by Camilla, followed by a green apple, will be all it takes!

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