Weekly Photo Challenge: Hope


Off the back roads of faith and onto the super-freeway of hope....

Had to think quite hard for this (actually last) week’s photo challenge until I stumbled across this memory from Exercise VELVET TOUCH which deployed a large chunk of the Army and Air Force from respective bases to Stewart Island (drive to the bottom of the South Island and keep on going) which, it was felt would offer some more practical challenges than the more routine drive to Waiouru or Tekapo training areas…

This fine building became Headquarters Alpha Company for the duration – it was warm and dry and that, for us, made it safe (enough). We swapped some ration pack boxes for a couple of bins of fish from a boat that pulled into the inlet one afternoon: they were well over fish and we were well over canned food so it worked out well for everyone although our warm and dry accommodation almost became warmer and drier when our artillery forward observer party started a roaring blaze in the coal range to start cooking up our kai moana haul. As it turned out the stove hadn’t been used in years and the reason that the fire was roaring so well was that the base of the range had burned through long ago and the floor board and joists were quite happily contributing to the blaze…every wonder just quickly a burning stove can be ripped out of the wall and ejected from a building…?

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