Quote of the day

March 23, 2018

 The man who can drive himself further once the effort gets painful is the man who will win.  – Sir Roger Bannister who was born on this day in 1929.


March 23 in history

March 23, 2018

1174 Jocelin, abbot of Melrose, was elected bishop of Glasgow.

1568 Peace of Longjumeau ended the Second War of Religion in France. Again Catherine de’ Medici and Charles IX of France make substantial concessions to the Huguenots.

1645 William Kidd, Scottish sailor, was born (d. 1701).

1708  James Francis Edward Stuart landed at the Firth of Forth.

1775 American Revolutionary War: Patrick Henry delivered his famous speech – “Give me Liberty, or give me Death!” – at St. John’s Church in Richmond, Virginia.

1801  Tsar Paul I of Russia was struck with a sword, then strangled, and finally trampled to death in his bedroom at St. Michael’s Castle.

1806  After traveling through the Louisiana Purchase and reaching the Pacific Ocean, explorers Meriwether Lewis and William Clark and their “Corps of Discovery” began their journey home.

1821 Battle and fall of city of Kalamata, Greek War of Independence.

1848 The immigrant ship John Wikcliffe anchored at Port Chalmerscarrying the first Scottish settlers for Dunedin, New Zealand.

The John Wickliffe anchors at Port Chalmers

1848 Otago province was founded.

1857 Elisha Otis‘s first lift was installed at 488 Broadway New York City.

1862 The First Battle of Kernstown, Virginia, marked the start of Stonewall Jackson’s Valley Campaign.

1868 The University of California was founded.

1879 War of the Pacific  between Chile and the joint forces of Bolivia and Peru. Chile successfully took over Arica and Tarapacá leaving Bolivia as a landlocked country.

1889 – The free Woolwich Ferry officially opened in east London.

1889 The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community was established by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad in Qadian India.

1896 The Raines Law was passed by the New York State Legislature, restricting Sunday sale of alcohol to hotels.

1903 The Wright Brothers applied for a patent on their invention of one of the first successful airplanes.

1905 Joan Crawford, American actress, was born (d. 1977).

1919  Benito Mussolini founded his Fascist political movement.

1921 Donald Campbell, British car and motorboat racer, was born (d. 1967).

1929  Sir Roger Bannister, English runner, was born. (d. 1918).

1933 The Reichstag passed the Enabling act of 1933, making Adolf Hitlerdictator of Germany.

1935 Signing of the Constitution of the Commonwealth of the Philippines.

1939 Hungarian air force attacked the headquarters of Slovak air force in the city of Spišská Nová Ves, killed 13 people and began the Slovak–Hungarian War.

1942 In the Indian Ocean, Japanese forces captured the Andaman Islands.

1949 Ric Ocasek, American musician (The Cars), was born.

1956 Pakistan becamesthe first Islamic republic in the world. (Republic Day in Pakistan).

1956 José Manuel Barroso, Portuguese politician, president of the European Commission, was born.

1962 – NS Savannah, the first nuclear-powered cargo-passenger ship, was launched as a showcase for Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Atoms for Peaceinitiative.

1965  NASA launched Gemini 3, the United States’ first two-man space flight.

1980  Archbishop Óscar Romero of El Salvador gave his famous speech appealing to men of the El Salvadoran armed forces to stop killing the Salvadorans.

1982 Guatemala’s government, headed by Fernando Romeo Lucas Garcíawas overthrown in a military coup by right-wing General Efraín Ríos Montt.

1983 Strategic Defense Initiative: President Ronald Reagan made his initial proposal to develop technology to intercept enemy missiles.

1989 Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann announced cold fusion at the University of Utah.

1994 Mexican presidential candidate Luis Donaldo Colosio was assassinated by Mario Aburto Martínez.

1994 – Aeroflot Flight 593 crashed in Siberia when the pilot’s fifteen-year old son accidentally disengaged the autopilot, killing all 75 people on board.

1994 – A United States Air Force (USAF) F-16 aircraft collided with a USAF C-130 at Pope Air Force Base and then crashed, killing 24 United States Army soldiers on the ground in the Green Ramp disaster.

1996 Taiwan held its first direct elections and elected Lee Teng-hui as President.

1999 Gunmen assassinated Paraguay’s Vice President Luis María Argaña.

2001 The Russian Mir space station was disposed of, breaking up in the atmosphere before falling into the southern Pacific Ocean.

2003 In Nasiriyah, Iraq, 11 soldiers of the 507th Maintenance Company and 18 U.S. Marines were killed during the first major conflict of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

2005 – A major explosion at the Texas City Refinery killed 15 workers.

2007 Burnley Tunnel catastrophe in Melbourne.

2007 – The Iranian Navy seizes Royal Navy personnel in the waters between Iran and Iraq.

2009 – FedEx Express Flight 80: A McDonnell Douglas MD-11 flying from Guangzhou, China crashed at Tokyo Narita International Airport, Japan, killing both the captain and the co-pilot.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

365 days of gratitude

March 22, 2018

When we say our friendship is older than our memories, that’s not a poor reflection on our memories.

We first met when we were two.

We’ve laughed together, cried together, kept each other’s secrets, spread each other’s news,  comforted each other in sad times and celebrated with each other in the good.

We now live more than two hours drive from each other and see each other only a few times a year.

One of those times was today when we met for lunch and did a lot more talking than eating.

Today I’m grateful for the blessing of an old friend who’s still a truly good friend.

Carpool Karaoke with Down Syndrome children

March 22, 2018

Fifty mothers and their children with Down Syndrome lip-sync in carpool karaoke:


You can read about it here.

Word of the day

March 22, 2018

 Smultronstallet (Swedish) – wild berry patch; an underrated gem of a place; a quite, cultivated place to which one goes to retreat or relax.

Thursday’s quiz

March 22, 2018

You’re invited to pose the questions.

Anyone who stumps everyone will win a case of nectarines.

Rural round-up

March 22, 2018

NZ led study reveals DNA of cattle and sheep bacteria – Eric Frykberg:

International scientists led by New Zealanders have identified the genetic makeup of over 500 species of bacteria found in the gut of cattle and sheep.

Previously the genomes of just 15 rumen microbial genomes were available to the scientific community.

The project was led by the former AgResearch scientist Bill Kelly and a current AgResearch scientist Sinead Leahy.

They were joined by nearly 60 scientists from 14 research organisations across nine countries. . . 

Organic dairy dreams backed by science – Fritha Tagg:

Fritha Tagg meets an organic dairy farmer who has the science to make his dreams come true.

Ged Goode is not shy when it comes to improving his herd. “We want to produce the tastiest, healthiest milk in the world,” he says with a big grin.

Dreams don’t get much bigger but this organic dairy farmer who has farmed south of Tokoroa for 26 years has the track record to back it up and the determination to keep forging ahead. His 800ha (500ha effective, the rest is native bush and forestry) farm is home to 680 organic milk-producing cows.

Now he is embracing A2 milk production and establishing a polled herd. . .

Wetlands hold secret ingredient of future water quality – Aslan Wright-Stow, Tom Stephens, David Burger, DairyNZ, Kit Rutherford, Chris Tanner, NIWA:

Wetlands are the kidneys of the land – filtering, absorbing and transforming contaminants before they can affect streams or lakes. DairyNZ’s water science team and NIWA experts share how wetlands benefit water quality.

A NIWA review of research into seepage wetlands in New Zealand over the past two decades showed wetlands are remarkably effective at stripping nitrate, a problematic form of nitrogen, through a process known as denitrification.

The review offers robust evidence into ‘how’ seepage wetlands benefit water quality. DairyNZ commissioned the NIWA work because it firmly believes that seepage wetlands offer a unique opportunity to reduce nitrogen loss and should be prioritised for stock exclusion and protected against further drainage. The independent research commissioned certainly supports those claims. . . 

Federated Farmers pays tribute to John O’ Connor:

Federated Farmers offers its deepest condolences to Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and family after the passing of his father, West Coast dairy farmer John O’Connor.

Mr O’ Connor ONZM was a passionate advocate for the dairy industry and was regarded as a pioneer for introducing dairy to the Buller district on the West Coast.

He was a Nuffield Scholar, Federated Farmers National Dairy Chair, West Coast Provincial President and served for 48 years as a director on the Buller Valley, Karamea and Westland Dairy Companies. . .

Rabobank New Zealand announces new board appointment:

Rabobank New Zealand has announced the appointment of Jillian Segal AM to its board of directors.

Ms Segal, a respected Australian company director with extensive regulatory and legal experience, joins the boards of Rabobank New Zealand Limited, as well as Rabobank Australia & New Zealand Group’s other major operating entities – Rabobank Australia Limited and Rabo Australia Limited.

Announcing the appointment, Rabobank’s Australia & New Zealand chairman Sir Henry van der Heyden said Ms Segal’s extensive board experience across the private and public sectors, including in financial services – coupled with a career-long background in governance and law – made her an “ideal fit” for Rabobank’s New Zealand and Australian boards. . . 

Mammoth kiwifruit property portfolio placed on the market for sale:

One of New Zealand’s biggest privately-owned kiwifruit orchard portfolios has been placed on the market for sale.

The portfolio consists of three separate mid to large-sized productive blocks at Te Puke in the Bay of Plenty – the centre of New Zealand’s highly lucrative kiwifruit-growing industry.

Combined, the three blocks comprise some 98 canopy hectares – on track to produce between 1.2 million – 1.3 million trays once all in mature production, and with the potential to increase production even further. . . 

An easing in the late summer market:

Data released today by the Real Estate Institute of NZ (REINZ) shows there were 52 fewer farm sales (-11.9%) for the three months ended February 2018 than for the three months ended February 2017.

Overall, there were 384 farm sales in the three months ended February 2018, compared to 396 farm sales for the three months ended January 2018 (-3.0%), and 436 farm sales for the three months ended February 2017.1,524 farms were sold in the year to February 2018, 13.5% fewer than were sold in the year to February 2017, with 20.3% more finishing farms, 19.0% more dairy farms and 32.4% fewer grazing and 36.2% fewer arable farms sold over the same period.

The median price per hectare for all farms sold in the three months to February 2018 was $27,523 compared to $27,395 recorded for three months ended February 2017 (+0.5%). The median price per hectare fell 2.6% compared to January. . . 

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