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Sep 2008

Another Great Lions Day

On Saturday the Barraba Jockey Club held its annual race day. Last year the race day was cancelled because of the equine influenza outbreak.

For many years Barraba Lions has provided a barbecue for the race day but this year they asked us to do sandwiches and cakes as well. Ken and I offered to do the light refreshments and we had superb help from several of the Lions Ladies.

We worked continuously from 10 am until 6 pm and, though we were well supplied with food and coffee, we were all a bit shattered at the end on the day.

It was very pleasing to get so many compliments from the people who used our services and we were proud to fly the Lions banner again.

The day was extremely productive of funds for our future projects and we went home well satisfied with our efforts.

Posted: 29/9/08 8:57 AM

Poor Old Digger

I was browsing through the System Preferences and came upon an option to return the function keys to their primary function so I selected it.

Then the fun started. Every time I had to enter my password the thing shook its head at me. I did see a hint of the problem when I entered root and saw r66t but the penny didn't drop.

I found an entry in Keychains for a "Boccadice Express" password dated 7/09/08. I didn't think I had done anything to make that happen!

I couldn't get Keychain Access to work because my password wouldn't work. I initialized all the passwords using the install disc but it still shook its head. I tried a ClamXav to see if the machine had been infected. No, it was perfectly OK. Finally I retraced my steps and changed the function key setting back to its original state and "Lo and Behold" everything worked. If I had remembered to use the function key to re-enable the num-lock key I wouldn't have had such a long journey.

It took some time but I did fix it!

The other story is about the Lions ride on mower which wouldn't start even with a jump starter from a car. I tried to suss out what was wrong without any success. The last thing I tried was to check the starter solenoid by putting the digital ohmmeter across the battery + to starter motor +. I asked someone to try the key start and "Lo and Behold" the machine started like a dream. I was christened a "genius" and I suppose I will now have to fix everything that goes wrong!


Back in Barraba

We got back to Barraba on Tuesday afternoon after an uneventful drive. The only downside was the lunch we had in Glen Innes. It was a bit disappointing since we have had such good meals there before.

The house was in good order but we immediately ran out of gas in the first cylinder so I had to do a changeover.

I have had to mow the lawns because we had 6 mm of rain and lots of sun while we were away. Spring has definitely sprung. The birdies are all about and the weeds are growing like mad. Jean's front garden looks "as though someone who cares lives here".

The week has been filled with things to do. We had a very pleasant ladies night at Lions on Thursday and I joined the working bee at the Lions Park this morning.

Tomorrow we are off to Tamworth for hearing tests.

Posted: 21/9/08 10:26 AM

Another working week ends

We have been in Brisbane since a week last Sunday.

Sarah went into hospital on Monday and came home on Tuesday. She had some minor problems with the surgical wounds but she is improving every day and is now pretty fit.

The week was spent preparing for a Real Estate open house on Saturday. We got virtually all the minor repairs done. The open day was a great success. One of the Saturday visitors came back for a second look on Sunday, made an offer which was finally negotiated and a conditional contract was signed. We have to go back to Barraba tomorrow to attend to our commitments.

Sarah is pretty chipper that everything is falling into place for her.

Posted: 15/9/08 12:20 PM

Another Medical Adventure

I have recently noticed that the vision in my right eye is suffering from some sort of misty obscuration. I thought that while I was in Brisbane I would try and get an appointment with the optometrist who has been looking after me for several years. As it happened I got an appointment on Tuesday. He found a cataract on my right eye but determined that the prescription of my spectacles hadn't changed and my left eye was OK. Because I didn't have an alternate driver, he asked me to come back on Wednesday morning to do the dilated pupil examination of the retina.

I went back with Jean and took the test. He was concerned when he measured the intraocular pressure after the dilated pupil drops had done their stuff. I had to hang about and have the pressure measured again after 15 minutes. The pressure was still high and hadn't come down at all. I had to keep going back every 15 minutes for several more tests but the pressure stayed the same which caused him considerable concern. He tried to speak to the eye specialist about my case but he was in the operating theatre so couldn't be contacted.

Eventually the optometrist decided to have me go back at five o'clock for another measurement, By this time the pupil had returned to normal and so had the intraocular pressure. All was now well. He gave me a referral to an eye specialist with his findings on the cataract and describing the episode of elevated intraocular pressure. I will make an appointment to see a specialist when we get back to Barraba. I understand that the treatment for the cataract is just day surgery so I shouldn't have any drama there.

Kelly had asked me for help with a school science project but hadn't told me that the deadline was Thursday. I had to scout around on Wednesday to buy all the parts she needed. After dinner we set about constructing the device she had designed and didn't get it finished until gone nine o'clock but it was all done and tested so she should have a pretty good time in science class today.

Posted: 11/9/08 4:54 AM

Three Cheers for the Surgeons

My elder daughter, Sarah, has been suffering from gall gladder problem for some time and the surgeon who was looking after her and she agreed that she should have the gall bladder removed. She was in hospital only one day and the surgeon said the operation which was done laparoscopically went even better than he had expected.

She was quite groggy from the anaesthetic when we saw her yesterday only an hour after the operation but she improved quite remarkably in the couple of hours we spent with her.

We are all pleased that she can now look forward to a healthy existence. She has adapted very well to a very low fat diet while she has been in trouble with her gall bladder and plans to stay on it into the future.

Unexpectedly, her daughter, Kelly, had a hypoglycemic event in the hospital ward while we were visiting. The nurse brought her a can of lemonade to help her and I found a machine which dispensed a bar of chocolate which revived her quite quickly. She apparently had had little breakfast and no lunch. I told her about her Aunt Rachel who had had the same problem when she was in university.

Posted: 9/9/08 3:12 PM

Happy Hour

The Samins arrived home this week from a winter long trip to Queensland. They invited us to happy hour yesterday so that we could all catch up.

They had a pretty good trip though there were a few problems. Vicki threw herself on the ground in a paddock, landed on her nose and gave herself two horrendous black eyes. John's reputation came in for a bit of banter.

We caught up on most of their encounters with friends of ours on the road and on new acquaintances. I asked how the Highway Wanderers were going and they said "Really well, most of the long time members don't even think about what the club is doing as long as they can enjoy their travelling and happy hour with friends.

We enjoyed our happy hour so much that we didn't get home until seven o'clock. As we were leaving, Vicki and John gave us both presents for looking after the house because they were happy knowing someone reliable had been taking care.

Posted:7/9/08 8:23 AM

Six Steak Knives are not enough

I remember when some advertisers offered six steak knives in an effort to capture the attention of potential customers.

The 21st century equivalent is to offer free fuel with a new motor vehicle. The ad which stimulated this piece was for some sort of SUV, I don't remember the make or model, and the offer was for $2000 worth of "free" fuel. How anyone would be tempted by such an offer is a conundrum. Clearly the manufacturer is not "giving" away the fuel, the cost must be included in the price of the vehicle. It may be that the manufacturer pays wholesale price for the fuel and claims to be "giving" the customer fuel at retail price. The fact that this is a fairly common technique in todays world seems to me to illustrate that the research behind the advertising techniques has shown that a significant proportion of potential customers are totally taken in by the offer. This shows that there is a large and, perhaps growing, element in the population who are so innumerate and so lacking in critical thinking skills that this kind of offer affects their buying decisions even though they would be paying for the "free" offers.

I worry that this apparent decline in critical thinking skills will lead to a society where the "truth" will matter less and less as time goes by with a consequent destruction of the intellectual gains we have made since the enlightenment.

Posted: 1/9/08 5:43 PM


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Created: 1/09/08 and last revised 30/03/2014
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