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Yearly Archives: 2016

The Big “C”

Call it what you will cancer of any kind is a terrible disease, I would not wish it in any form on my worst enemy.

I have just found out that one of my oldest and dearest friends is now battling a form of this horrible disease. My former sister-in-law and a friend I have known for some years are also fighting the good fight. I trust that all three will come through relatively unscathed.

I don’t think there would be many of us who have not been touched by cancer is some way, we would all know someone, or know of someone, who has  had their body ravaged by this most indiscriminate of diseases, not to mention the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation treatment.

None of us know what is going on inside our bodies, it makes you wonder whether we would be better not knowing. I suppose we at least then have the option to fight, or at the very least say our goodbyes, but there is little dignity either way.

To the three very brave ladies in my life, keep fighting, we have many wonderful memories that we are yet to make.

 

 

Model for an Australian monarchy

The subject of Australia becoming a republic rather than having Queen Elizabeth II and her descendants as our head of state is never far from the headlines, it rears its ugly head with monotonous regularity, particularly when a federal election is pending. I make no bones about the fact that I have a passion for all things royal, so why not  create our own monarchial system, a model unique to Australia.

A Royal Family could help unify the nation as they would be above politics, as are other modern royal families. Look at the way the crowds flock whenever Queen Elizabeth or any of her immediate family make a public appearance, and what wonderful ambassadors they are for Great Britain when travelling abroad. What of the Danish Royal Family and our own Crown Princess Mary, crowds flock to see her and Crown Prince Frederick at every opportunity……..I know, I am a crackpot! 🙂

Other than the selection of our first monarch the infrastructure is already in place. The monarch could reside in Yarralumla, the current residence of the Governor-General, whose position would become redundant. There are residences in every capital city for our current state Governors, these would become royal residences and the position of Governor would also become redundant.

The Prime Minster does not require two official residences so Kirribilli House could be sold, and when travelling interstate the Prime Minister could stay in one of the previous state Governor “royal” residences.

As for the Civil List or wages for the monarch, wages previously paid to the Governor-General would suffice, and for the Heir Apparent, wages equal to one of the former Governors, so no additional expense, in fact there would be a considerable saving.

What of the extended royal family, only the Heir Apparent and their immediate family would be funded by the Civil List, all other members of the Royal Family, including the siblings of the Heir Apparent,  would have to earn their own way, although grace and favour residences in the various royal residences may be provided for the monarch’s children, for which they would contribute a nominal amount. These residences are already fully staffed so no additional expense.

All other grandchildren of the monarch would need to find their own way in the world once they become adults, no civil list and no additional “royal” residences.

As for royal security, the Governor General and the state governors already have security so no additional expense.

I am not talking about instituting a new “Honors” system, we already have one so why change it. No Knight or Dames, no aristocracy. The children of a monarch would be styled Prince or Princess, but not their children, only those of each consecutive Heir Apparent, and their children.

Should an Heir predecease the monarch and have no children, the next in line would become Heir with all the privilege and title that came with it. Naturally their children would also be elevated to Prince or Princess.

What about interstate and overseas travel, yes the federal government would have to meet the bill for that, but it’s not like they would be travelling overseas every week, and accommodation, again a minimal expense.

Royal ceremonies? No coronation just the swearing of an oath, royal weddings would be at the monarch’s own expense, official opening of parliament, come on we do need a little razzle dazzle. What about state banquets for overseas heads of state, we already have them. Crown jewels, back to the razzle dazzle, but nothing over the top.

Day to day travel, all state Governors have official cars and chauffeurs so nothing would change. There, I think I have everything covered, the only thing left is to order my straight jacket and private suite in the penitentiary.

I have had a lot of fun coming up with all this, quite harmless and not too serious. Have a laugh if you like, I have.

Published the Royal House of Mitchell

A new world order

Watching the opening ceremony of the Rio Olympics and the various news bulletins from Rio of late has really highlighted to me the void between the rich and poor. Add to that our recent cruise through Vanuatu, New Caledonia and Fiji, where we found the extreme poverty of the local people very confrontational, and it makes you think. You realise how truly blessed we are to be Australian.

But what can we do, our means are limited, and while we are comparatively rich compared to these people, the reality is that we are not rich, we wonder whether we will have enough money to retire comfortably. Will we have to rely on an aged pension, or have we done enough. How every selfish, even those thoughts are a privilege denied to many.

So what can we do, we can do as much as our means permits, but that will never be enough, but what of the rich and famous. Look at the lifestyles and fortunes of the rich and famous, movie stars, television personalities, sportsmen, musicians, these people are worth millions, hundreds of millions some of them.

Imagine what these people could do, what a difference they could make to the world if each one donated just a small percentage of their fortune to creating a new world order. Build a school, put a roof over a families’ head, teach them how to fend for themselves and build a future for their families, the possibilities are endless. We could wipe our poverty and create a new world where everyone has an opportunity to have an education and contribute in a positive way to their community.

I have always said if I was lucky enough to win a significant amount of money I would give something back, whether it be a much-needed piece of equipment to a hospital, or school books for children in a third world country, I would do something. I would make a difference to someone somewhere.

I am not having a shot at the rich and famous, I am sure that many of them are already philanthropists and it goes unreported, but imagine if they all did something. What a better place this world would be.

 

 

Feral neighbours Part 3

I am thrilled to say that my feral neighbours have moved on. It looks strangely like they have done a runner, leaving behind the things they did not want  in the back yard. With any luck the landlord will fill in the holes their dog dug through to our place

When we drove out today we could see some of the most disgusting graffiti on the walls in the front room. I feel very sorry for the landlords who now have to clean their filth up. I certainly hope that the next tenants are nicer, one would think that the property manager and landlord will be a little more discerning next time around. Surely we can’t finish up any worse off.

Oh well not much we can do about it, we will find out when we get back from our holiday one way or another. I just hope the new tenants take a little more care of the place so we can maximise our return when we put our own home on the market.

 

Cruise Time

Getting a wee little bit excited at the moment, just four days away from our next cruise. We both started three weeks annual leave last night and Wednesday morning we fly to Sydney before boarding the Sun Princess for a 14 day cruise to New Caledonia, Vanuatu and Fiji. Cannot wait.

This is the same cruise ship we went to New Zealand on so we know our way around, it would be great to see some of the same crew as they were all very friendly.

We have promised ourselves to be a little more responsible this time around, yes we are still going to eat, drink and be merry, but we are also going to do a couple of revolutions around the deck each day to help ward off that holiday fat. Hopefully I will be a little more relaxed about the whole experience second time around, and just enjoy myself.

Last time we didn’t get involved with any on board activities, and to be honest we probably won’t do this time either, but we do intend to make the most of all the amenities on board. The casino, the theatre, movies under the stars, maybe even the pool.

The festivities don’t end when we get back to Sydney as we are having an extra couple of days there before flying home to Adelaide. Brian and I have not spent any real time in Sydney together so we are looking forward to that as well.

The excitement will continue for Brian as he furthers his career in retirement living with a new job the day we go back to work. This year is our year, a holiday and hopefully a new house, and with a new house comes my racing pigeons.

Live, love, laugh

Live, love, laugh. Leef, houd van, lach. De phase, amour, rire. Phasen, Liebe, Lachen. Vivo, amor, riso. Levande förälskelse, skratt. In tensione, amore, risata.

Live, liefde, lag. Live, lerato, tseha. Live, jacayl, qosol. Live, asih, seuri. Ishi penda Cheka. Live, uthando, insini.

Mabuhay magmahal tumawa. Live, katresnan, ngguyu. Hidup cinta ketawa. Live, te aroha, kata. Sống, tình yêu, tiếng cười.

 

 

Be kind to others

Be kind to others. Sé amable con los demás. Intentions a l ‘autri. Vær snill mot andre. Vertu góður við aðra. Vær venlig mod andre. Fie un fel altora. Budi dobar prema drugima. Jkun it-tip lill-oħrajn.

다른 사람에게 친절. ຈະປະເພດກັບຄົນອື່ນ. ਹੋਰ ਕਿਸਮ ਰਹੋ. Dadi apik kanggo wong. Ia agalelei atu i isi. Hãy tử tế với người khác. Berbuat baik kepada orang lain. மற்றவர்கள் அன்பாக இருங்கள்.

Yiba nomusa kwabanye. Yiba nobubele kwabanye. Ba mosa ho batho ba bang. Aoka ianao ho tsara fanahy amin’ny hafa. Pagmabination ngadto sa uban. Ka kasance irin ga wasu.

Fè kalite bay lòt moun.

Love and peace to all

I am finding it increasingly  difficult to think of things to write about so I thought I would have some fun with it. This is the first in a series of posts that I intend to write to spread a little peace and joy, and have a little fun at the same time.

The theme of my post is in the title, and I am going to add a number of translations. Please forgive me should I make a mistake along the way, there is no disrespect intended.

Love and peace to all. Liebe und Frieden für alle. Amor y paz a todos. Dashuri dhe paqe për të gjithë. Liefde en vrede voor alle. Любовь и мир всем. Љубов и мир за сите.

Love iyo nabad oo dhan. Liefde en vrede vir almal. Uthando nokuthula kubo bonke. Lerato le khotso ho bohle.

бүх хайр, амар амгалан. ຄວາມຮັກແລະສັນຕິພາບທັງຫມົດ. Cinta dan perdamaian untuk semua. すべてに愛と平和. प्यार और सभी के लिए शांति.

Renmen ak kè poze nan tout. Love, a me ka maluhia i na mea a pau.

Guess whose coming to dinner…….

Have you ever thought about who you would ask to dinner if you could ask anyone, living or dead? I have given this much thought and I can bring it down to four I think.

The first of my dinner guests would be David Attenborough, what a truly amazing life he has lead. Imagine the stories he would have to tell about the places he has been, the amazing wildlife he has been privileged to film, the risks he must have taken. This man is a font of knowledge and I will never cease to enjoy his documentaries.

Second on my list would be His Holiness The Dalai Lama. The knowledge he could impart, his insights into all the famous people he has met, the history of those Dalai Lama who came before him, his previous incarnations if you like, and the experiences he has had. The story of his trek from Tibet when it was invaded by Communist China. A truly fascinating yet humble man, the very essence of human kindness.

Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother is third on my list, the last Empress of India, mother of our current Queen. The Queen Mother was born right at the end of the Victorian era, her life spanned the 20th century, she would have met almost all of the reigning monarchs of the world, and a good deal of those who had been deposed, not to mention presidents and other famous heads of state. A truly fascinating and privileged life.

I am a bit torn about who would round out the four, my first thought was the late actress Elizabeth Taylor, just think of the dirt she could dish out on Hollywood, on those truly great movie stars of the Golden Age of Hollywood. Then there is Pope Francis, another truly enlightened man, or Princess Diana just because she was Princess Diana.

In my heart of hearts I know who number four would be, my late Uncle Max, just because I miss him.

Cody Jordan Mitchell

My first born grandchild has now turned 13 years of age, where has the time gone. Cody had an older brother who was stillborn which made Cody’s birth all the more special. I will never forget either the day Cody was born, nor the day that Jordan Brandon Mitchell was “born sleeping”. One terribly sad, the other an absolute feeling of elation.

On Day 2 of Cody’s journey we received the news that he had been born with a heart defect, after the high of the previous day the emotions on this day were gut wrenching. Would he live, how bad was the prognosis, was there anything they could do?

I will never forget the look of complete and utter despair on my son Ryan’s face as they gave him the news, I was so glad I was able to be with him as Cody’s mother had to remain in another hospital. As a parent I was gutted and wanted to help my son, but as a new grandfather I was helpless, there was nothing we could do but put our trust in the medical staff.

That trust was well and truly tested when at just a few weeks old Cody and his parents flew to Melbourne where my beautiful grandson underwent heart surgery. That was one of the longest days of my life, one I shall never forget but one that I am truly grateful for, for without it I shudder to think.

Now that beautiful, loving child is 13 years old and I could not be prouder. Cody would and does do anything for any one. The love and goodness that he has inside him is boundless.

Unfortunately Cody has had numerous other hurdles to climb, but he attacks each one with drive, gusto, and a determination to live life to its fullest. He is one very happy, very determined not so little boy. Cody, Papa loves you to bits.