Our small rural area is home to a vibrant community centre. Managed by locals for the benefit of locals, the centre hosts all the usual sorts of events and activities one would expect – euchre groups, yoga classes, dinners, a garden club, and so on. It’s a busy place.
But yesterday was extra special. The Live ‘n Learn group had arranged for a visit by an Ottawa historian and author, Tim Cook. Tim is the Great War historian at the Canadian War Museum and the author of numerous books focused on Canadian military history, for which he has received many awards, including the Order of Canada.
I first came across his work several years ago when I was given a copy of At The Sharp End: Canadians Fighting the Great War, 1914-1916. Having greatly enjoyed that book I proceeded to acquire additional volumes and now I can say I have read most of them, including his most recent, The Secret History of Soldiers: How Canadians Survived the Great War, which I reviewed here. I am a big fan.
So I was very much looking forward to meeting Tim and hearing him talk about his research and his writing. And he did not disappoint, keeping us all enthralled as he talked about his latest book and took the audience back to what life was like for those young men during those terrible years.
The time flew by far too quickly, but to have such an accomplished individual come and spend even a few hours with us was indeed a pleasure. Thanks Tim.