Today was a very special day for all the Russians, the day which we have been celebrating in my family for as long as I can remember. The day that brings tears to my eyes and makes us, Russians, be very proud of our ancestors, our great-grandfathers and grandfathers, who fought for lasting peace and lost over 26 million of lives in the process.
Both of my grandfathers fought in the Second World War and were lucky to come back alive. One of them, Vladimir, is still alive and even though he is getting on with years and is becoming quite frail I love him dearly and am very proud of what he, together with many of his comrades, achieved and later taught us. My other grandfather, Yvan, burnt in the tank but survived that and finished the war in Berlin-he truly was an extraordinary man and I miss him greatly.
Today’s military parade on the Red Square was extraordinary, the fireworks took your breath away and for the whole day people went out, putting flowers at War memorials, hugging and thanking our frail veterans and giving them their due. Moscow and many towns were a riot of beautiful flowers, special war memorial bands and the air was filled with old, beautiful, soulful wartime songs, which make every Russian reflect and reminisce.
Every 9th of May I feel very proud of my country, of our grandparents and of the courage and will that Russian people poses. The War came unexpectedly but we survived, we fought every stay of the way, showing humility and great courage in the face of horrendous events, deaths, hunger and torture. Thank you to every single man and woman that made this day possible and the Russian spirit even stronger.