Historical Vessel Vega Humanitarian Mission Update. Pls help to reblog and share their story


It’s wonderful to see so many happy kids! Great post!

Originally posted on The Crazy Bag Lady @BulanLifestyle.com:

Earlier in the year, in March, I wrote about meeting the couple behind the Historical Vega Humantiarian Mission. Captain Shane Granger and Meggi Macoun were the most inspiring and passionate people I have ever met. I met them when they docked at Straits Quay Penang to collect donations for schools in the remote areas of Indonesia and East Timor areas. They were looking for school bags, school supplies, musical instruments and medical supplies. They had a list of things that people could donate. They didnt want money, they wanted specific things which involved people having to go out to buy or donate from their homes or schools. It gives people a sense of involvement. It surely did for me. I got a few of my friends to donate money so that I could go out to buy musical instruments for the school band.

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The Battle of Cer, Serbia, WWI

Today Serbia is celebrating the centenary of the Battle of Cer.

The Battle of Cer was the first victory of the Allies, which occurred after the first Austro-Hungarian invasion of Serbia in late July 1914, when Belgrade came under heavy artillery bombardment and the country was ravaged, houses burned, wells poisoned, unspeakable atrocities committed against civilians, young and old, women and children as well. The ailing King Peter, riddled with arthritis, walking with great difficulty and with a grieving heart, made his way to the troops on the frontline and to boost their morale addressed them with these words:

“Heroes, you have taken two oaths: one to me, your King, and one to your country. From the first I release you, from the second no man can release you. But if you decide to return to your homes and if we should be victorious, you shall not be made to suffer.” (p. 582 Black Lamb and Grey Falcon by Rebecca West, Canongate Classics 1993)

They all stayed and went on to prepare for a counter attack.

The Battle of Cer was won singlehandedly by the Serbian army against a better equipped and larger enemy army. The battle lasted nearly ten days on the slopes of the Cer Mountain, from 15 August to 24 August. Henry Barby, a French journalist, wrote on 19 August 1914: “The history of Austria-Hungary has been studded with a remarkable collection of defeats and the reign of Franz Joseph has been particularly fecund in military disasters. But until today, the old monarch was able to claim that he had only ever been beaten by the Great Powers, by France in 1850, and by Prussia in 1866. Today, it is Serbia, a tenth of the size of Austria, with a tenth of the population, which has inflicted a first and resounding defeat.” (Battle of Cer – Wikipedia)

* * *

This is an excerpt from “My Dad, Volunteer in WWI”. At the time of the Battle of Cer, Dad was on military training in Osijek, Slavonia, getting ready to be sent to the front. – (To be continued)

Copyright © 2014 Irina Dimitric

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Imagine Peace


Beautiful post about spreading the energy of peace!

Originally posted on Artists4Peace:

For many of us, war is clearly not the answer. Let’s try peace.

Hoi, Vietnam

For inspiration, we can draw on John Lennon’s beautiful song and vision for a world united in peace, Imagine.

As part of my commitment to peace, bloggers for peace, and the truth of who I am, I dedicate this post to peace.

 Imagine the impact we could make if every day the internet was awash in creativity, beauty, energy, emotion, and positive vibrations about Peace. ~ B4Peace 

I’d like to help create an energy of peace for Syria and the Middle East. As much as I understand and even admire people willing to protest the wrongs of wars, governments and injustice, I don’t believe it creates the right conditions for peace. To create peace, we must send out the energy of peace in our thoughts, feelings, and actions.

I’m committing to daily time spent in quiet, contemplating…

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Why must it be so?

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Pretty garden spider
Like the jungle tiger
The same old tale
On a smaller scale

Why must it be so?
Wherever you go
Every creature’s feature
Hunter or hunted in Nature

Blood and gore
For ever more
From the start
Until death do us part

Why must it be so?
Couldn’t humans show
Some brilliant ingenuity
And do away with this iniquity?

For everyone milk and honey
Every being as meek as a bunny
Wouldn’t that be nice?
Just as in Paradise

I can hear your icy sneers
Like hailstorm in my ears:
That is life, that’s the go
You should know it must be so!

Yet, despite the cursèd doom
Let us pray to cast away the gloom
May the gentle, caring dove
Spread the word of peace and love!

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Copyright © 2014 Irina Dimitric

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Change the World


Beautiful tribute to Robin Williams <3

Originally posted on Misifusa's Blog:


 No matter what people tell you,

words and ideas can change the world. 

~ Robin Williams

What’s the memory you leave behind after you’re gone?  How will people remember you?  These are the questions in my head this morning as we say goodbye to Robin Williams who passed away yesterday.  When I think of him, I think of the laughter he evoked in such a variety of ways and I admire the freedom he displayed in expressing so many different characters seeming as easily as he took a breath.  I am reminded of the stories that circulate about how he offered to pay for treatment for Christopher Reeve after the horseback riding accident which left him paralyzed and how he quietly and yet consistently donated his own funds to all different charities over the years.

I have written about how Laughter is the Best Medicine and even about Robin…

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Dove of Peace and Love

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May the gentle, caring dove
Spread the word of peace and love!


Copyright 2014 Irina Dimitric

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Texture

In my street at Beauty Point, Australia. All photos were taken with my smart phone HTC Desire this morning.

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Dead palm tree branches

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African daisies

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A lonely leaf

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Gum tree bark


Copyright 2014 Irina Dimitric


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A Sprig of Golden Wattle

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A sprig of golden wattle
For the deceased
A gift of remembrance
By the bereaved
Both old and young
Deceased and bereaved
Now joined by the sweetest fragrance
Of the golden wattle sprig
At St Patrick’s

Three times she kissed the golden sprig
Before her frail, trembling hand
Stuck it
Into the golden wattle wreath
Before the altar

Cruel death met them in the sky
Two hundred and ninety-eight
Why? Why? Why?
Angelic voices sing a soothing hymn
Love conquers hate, the say
Love conquers death
At St. Patrick’s today

United in grief they stand
Side by side
Christian, Muslim, Buddhist and Jew
To honour the lives cut short
Their dead loved ones
Now resting in peace

In the end
Love always conquers hate
Love, sweet love, shall wipe their tears
The sweet fragrance of the golden wattle
Their hearts shall warm
Love shall not abandon us `


Written on the day of the National Memorial Service for the victims of the MH17 disaster at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Melbourne, Australia. 7/o8/2014.

Copyright © 2014 Irina Dimitric

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My Dad, Volunteer in WWI

My Dad, Volunteer in WWI

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Today is the 100th anniversary of the beginning of WWI. Here’s an abridged version of the first chapter of a memoir I’m writing about my Dad’s involvement in the Great War. At the time of the outbreak he was a medical student at Graz University.


“28 June 1914, Vidov dan (St. Vitus Day).”

This is how Dad started his story while I was recording it on my cassette recorder.

“It’s two o’clock in the afternoon. We’re sitting in a coffee house by a lake on the outskirts of Graz, when the waiter comes to us and announces the latest news: ‘Two hours ago Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in Sarajevo.’ We paid our bill and went home.”

“Only a day before, I had received a letter to report at Bregenz for the voluntary one-year military service. “

“I left for Bregenz on Wednesday.” In his late nineties Dad’s memory was amazing.

“As soon as I arrived, a Czech student approached me and whispered into my ear when he learnt I was a Serb. ‘You know what you can do? You can go for an excursion on the lake to Konstanz.’ He was a one-year volunteer like me.”

“Thank you”, I replied. “I’ll think about it.” I knew what he meant.

“Yes, that would be a way out of this dreadful situation, I thought. I couldn’t bear the thought of having to fight against my own people. I’d be free in Switzerland.”

“But first I went to see the captain of the garrison to report for duty. When he read my name, Bogdan Stojić, he asked me with a stern face: ’Du bist ein Serbe aus Sarajevo?’ And I replied politely: ’No, I’m a Serb from Croatia.’ He was quite unpleasant, clearly expressing his disgust at what had happened in Sarajevo. ‘See me tomorrow,’ he said.”

The next morning, young Bogdan Stojić walked to the lake Constance to catch the 6 am ferry. The third largest lake in Europe. The source of fresh water for Germany, Austria and Switzerland through which the mighty Rhine flows in and out again. Its blue waters in the misty morning were taking him to freedom, to neutral Switzerland. The German-Swiss border runs through the south part of the lake.


“The next morning, at 6 am, I caught a ferry to the town of Konstanz. I hired a boat and started rowing around in circles, wondering whether I should escape to Switzerland or not. I was rowing around for three to four hours unable to make a decision. I was afraid my father could lose his pension or suffer all kinds of reprisals. He just retired the year before. Then I wrote to a colleague in France, a year older than me. And I wrote to a Russian volunteer nurse I worked with in the Russian hospital in Belgrade in 1913. She was a daughter of a High Court Judge in Petrograd. I wrote to both of them, my colleague in France and Tatyana Firsova, telling them of my situation, not knowing what  to do. I wasn’t expecting an answer on time. I just needed to unburden my soul.”

Filial duty prevailed, and in the evening Dad made a decision to return to Bregenz and the next morning reported to the captain.

“Tomorrow you’re going to ‘Freibürger’ school in Innsbruck,” the captain informed him.

“What kind of school?” I interrupted.

“Freibürger school. Students who volunteer to do military service for one year are trained to become officers. They were called ’einjährige Freibürger’, one-year volunteer. University students and those who matriculated enjoyed the privilege to choose three garrisons in the whole of Austria-Hungary where they would prefer to serve. I chose all three in the Tyrol and Vorarlberg because I liked the mountains. Innsbruck is a lovely town in the Alps.”

“The next day I came to collect my travel papers and, to my shock, instead of going to Innsbruck I was being sent to Osijek in Slavonia to the 78th regiment of the Austro-Hungarian Army.”

And that was the end of Dad’s idyllic one-year voluntary military service in the romantic Austrian Alps before it had even started. He was 21 years old.

© 2014 Irina Dimitric

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A Photo a Week Challenge: Off-Centered

In my garden at Beauty Point, Sydney, Australia in July 2014

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Snowdrops getting ready to bloom

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The first snowdrops opened up on 15 July this year. It was a rainy day. Strictly speaking, these are snowflakes, but they’re commonly called snowdrops. Snowflakes prosper well in Sydney gardens whereas snowdrops prefer a colder climate. A snowdrop has only one flower on a stem while snowflakes can have up to four flowers on a stem. Moreover, snowdrops don’t have green dots on petals, therefore, I think, snowflakes are prettier.

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Australian native violet and parsley grow together in harmony

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Poinsettia after rain


Copyright 2014 Irina Dimitric



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