After last year's unique and very moving Stand at Dawn ceremony, where people throughout New Zealand joined together from a distance to mark Anzac Day at the end of driveways in the dark, this year we were able to return to the usual celebration here in Te Awamutu.
Shortly after 10.30am on Sunday the masses of people on Alexandra St outside the RSA began to form into groups.
The mixture of uniforms suddenly became regimented and the parade formed up ready to march.
Led by the Te Awamutu Brass Band the procession of veterans, members of uniformed services and various youth groups, set off from the RSA to Anzac Green, where a crowd was waiting by the cenotaph, with a background comprising the field of remembrance crosses, each named and with a poppy attached.
The service started with the singing of the national anthems of both New Zealand and Australia, and Reverend Norris Hall's words left no doubt as to how important it is to remember the sacrifices made to enable us to live freely today.
Wreaths were laid by representatives of many town organisations and community groups, as well as Waipa mayor Jim Mylchreest and one of the World War II veterans in attendance, Colin Murray.
Mid ceremony there was an unexpected and very heavy downpour, leaving many people sheltering beneath trees and the shop canopies opposite, while officials hastened to provide umbrellas to protect the veteran guests of honour.
Te Awamutu College head students stood at the corners of the cenotaph and remained in place with rain running down their faces, while the cadet standard bearers were moved to shelter.
The way in which the children of the community are drawn into this day of commemoration is something that will ensure that it continues for generations to come.
Children marched proudly along with the adults, wearing medals earned by their parents and grandparents. They also laid wreaths.
The guest speaker, Te Awamutu College head student Bayley Quin gave a well-researched and delivered a speech which showed a deep understanding of how lucky his generation is to be able to live the lives they do, and how much they owe to so many young men not much older than themselves, many of whom gave their lives fighting for freedom.
The traditional playing of the Last Post and the Reveille along with the recitation of "They shall grow not old ... " in both Maori and English, were, as ever, at the heart of the service - the moving and familiar words of Laurence Binyon used at similar services worldwide.
The rousing singing of God Save the Queen brought the ceremony to an end, prompting the procession to regroup and a performance made by Te Awamutu College's kapa haka group.
Back at the RSA it was the turn of the combined junior schools to end proceedings with their haka before the crowds dispersed.
It was a morning of remembrance, with sunshine, rain, medals, and uniforms and flowers all combining to paint a picture of one of the most important days in the Kiwi calendar.