If my parents were still alive they would now both be 100 years of age.
They were products of working class, suburban, devout Methodist families.
Dad a printer by trade, and Mum a factory worker.
Their individual young dreams were probably irrevokably altered by the real depression of the 1930's, and they deferred plans of marriage until after the second world war.
Dad enlisted in the air force and was a navigator on Beaufort bombers. He later spoke little of these experiences, but I know he was posted to Winnipeg, Ceylon, Cairo and England.
His war was to leave him embittered and physically injured.
Yet he rightfully had great pride at having defended Australia from invasion. Had it not been for him and all the other brave young Australian men and women, this blog would probably be written in Japanese, for there were political plans in place to sacrifice at least half of Australia to the Japanese should an invasion occur.
My Mum did what all the other women of that period did. She kept the factories and the country operating in the absence of men at war.
War injuries and a quarrying accident ensured my Dad would have difficulty finding permanent post-war employment. So many memories I have of my Dad involve me seeing him in a hospital bed.
He died at age 65.
Enduring inner peace and happiness having been denied him by the stupidity of war.
They raised me in an era when children were "seen but not heard".
I was compliant. Even when my Mum was ailing at age 80, I still felt I had no right, as her child, to ask about many events in her life.
I retain numerous regrets about that, and resolved that my own children would not be deprived knowledge about my life, thoughts and philosophies.
That, in part, is a reason for the existence of GOF's scrap bucket.
I hope my Mum and Dad are in their heaven, and looking down upon the life of their boy, finding some pride amongst the disappointments, thankfulness that he has not witnessed military conflict, and observing that he retains some principles of what is right, moral, and good from their teaching and example.
Perhaps they might also understand my reasons for jettisoning organised religion as the vehicle for transporting these qualities with me through my life.
I thank them for providing this miraculous and wonderful gift of life.