Monday, April 2, 2012

Military Monday Week 3: Linky Party! - The Order of the Yellow Garter

"Give me the greatness of heart to see,
The difference between duty and his love for me.
Give me the understanding so that I may know,
When duty calls him, he must go.
Give me a task to do each day,
To fill the time when he's away.
When he's in a foreign land,
Keep him safe in your loving hand."
- Unknown -

The Cavalry has a tradition of the Yellow Garter, like the one you see above.

In the 1700-1800's the lovely ladies of Cav Troopers would wear a yellow ribbon or scarf on their arm, parasol, hat, etc. to show that they were waiting for their soldier to return from protecting the wagon trains.

Over time, the tradition has changed and developed to a few different varieties.

At one time, when a new wife came to her first "Hail & Farewell" she was welcomed into the unit by receiving a Yellow Garter. This garter was placed on her leg by the youngest officer or NCO present. Now-a-days she is presented with a yellow aren't to keen on another man touching their woman's leg!

But the yellow garter didn't go away. The yellow garters are still around, and normally presented by the husbands to their wives as part of a special event.

I have a yellow garter...the one you see above.

The garter is to be worn at all Cav events.

So in this picture? Yep, I had on my Yellow Garter.

I even have a certificate.

"Be it known that this exalted recipient is charged the wear of this proud and traditional symbol of the Cavalry Trooper's love, a yellow garter, and that she display in with due pride at a location three fingers' distance from her dainty left knee. The yellow garter is indeed symbolic of her life with a trooper. The circular form reminds us that the duties of defending the frontiers of freedom never end, but call a trooper and his lady back again, again, and again... The yellow is a tribute to the wearer's undying devotion to her trooper and her acceptance that he may follow someday a furl of gold leading him to the sound of angry funfire, but again on a better day the golden glow of the sunrise his day of return...

The knot which is blue and binds the garter together is a sign of the bond between the lady and her trooper. The blue of the knot is the color of virtue and truth, the standards she bears day to day.

Do not take the charge to wear the garter bestowed by this order lightly. Nor, gentleman, should those of you present when the garter is displayed take its appearance with other than the most discreet respect. Lest I, driven by timeless accords of the Gods of War and Love, castigate you with swift and sure justice."

I love being a Cav Wife.

If you're a military spouse, does your unit have any interesting traditions?