365 days of gratitude

February 24, 2018

The North Otago A&P show used to be held on a Wednesday in November, with shops and many businesses closing at lunchtime and primary schools having a day off.

Over the years fewer businesses and shops closed, schools had other calls on their time as did many of those who used to flock to the show. Numbers attending, and entering competitions dwindled until the committee decided change was needed and moved the show to Friday and Saturday in February.

Crowds haven’t returned to those attracted in the 1900s but in spite of more than 100 mms of rain forcing the cancellation of the horse jumping and the ground being soft to soggy underfoot, a good number turned out today.

The weather was mild, it was hard to go more than a few metres without running into someone we knew and it was a good opportunity to catch up with people.

It was a relaxing day for us but I’m aware that events like this depend on a  big effort from a team of volunteers and I’m grateful for the work they do.


Word of the day

February 24, 2018

Bewray – betray; expose; disclose, divulge; point out.


Saturday’s smiles

February 24, 2018

A whale swims all day, only consumes fish and water, and is fat.

A rabbit eats only vegetables, runs and hops all day long, and only lives 5 years.

Meanwhile a tortoise doesn’t swim, doesn’t run and does nothing energetic, yet it lives for 450 years.

And you tell me to eat well and exercise?


Rural round-up

February 24, 2018

A2 Milk now a $10B company, eclipsing Fonterra as investors bet on bullish  – Rebecca Howard:

 (BusinessDesk) – A2 Milk Co is now more valuable than Fonterra, even though the milk marketer’s sales amount to less than 3 percent of the dairy giant’s, as investors bet it will continue to beat expectations.

A2 shares jumped 18 percent to $13.87 on the NZX and are trading at more than 50 times forecast per-share earnings – the highest price-to-earnings (PE ratio) of any company on the NZX 50 Index. The market capitalisation of a2 has jumped to $10.1 billion, exceeding the $9.76 billion value of Fonterra based on the $6.06 price of the shares that trade in a farmer-only market on the NZX. . . 

NZ’s largest dairy genetics supplier gets behind A2 market:

Herd improvement and agri-technology co-operative LIC welcomes the announcement from Fonterra and The a2 Milk Company about their new partnership as it prepares to launch a new team of elite A2 bulls supported by genotype testing that allows farmers to determine the A2 status of each of their animals.

As the country’s largest supplier of artificial breeding services, LIC’s bulls are responsible for up to 80 per cent of the cows grazing on dairy farms around the country. LIC has been providing farmers with A2 genotype testing for more than 15 years from its laboratory in Riverlea, Hamilton. Its first A2 bull was made commercially available to farmers for AI in 2002. . .

Shearers plan marathon session to support mental health organisations – Emma Dangerfield:

Before Mark Herlihy lost his brother to suicide two years ago, mental health was not something the family had needed to discuss.

There had been no signs, no-one had seen it coming.

“We’re a really bubbly sort of family,” Mark said of his parents and seven other siblings.

Michael was just 20. He and his brothers had been preparing for a shearing record, which may have put him under a bit of pressure, but nothing they would have attributed to such a dramatic event. . . 

Seepage wetlands work wonders:

A recent review commissioned by DairyNZ may surprise you at just how effective wetlands can be at preventing contaminants from reaching waterways. DairyNZ water quality scientist Aslan Wright-Stow explains.

Wetlands are often referred to as the kidneys of the land – they filter, absorb and transform water contaminants and, therefore, help to reduce excess reaching waterways. In particular, wetlands can be highly efficient at removing excess nitrogen by creating unique environments whose chemistry and hydrology are ideal for treating, in particular, shallow sub-surface flow, and also runoff from dairy farms.

A recent review of scientific studies in New Zealand, undertaken by NIWA for DairyNZ, found seepage wetlands can reduce the amount of nitrate – a problematic form of nitrogen – entering them by up to 75-98 percent. That’s higher than we previously thought. . . 

Name change underlines wool focus:

Federated Farmers wants to play a key role in ramped-up sector-wide collaboration on wool initiatives – and that’s reflected in a name change.

By unanimous vote of delegates from the Federation’s 24 provinces who met in Wellington this week, the Meat & Fibre Council and industry group is now the Meat & Wool Council and industry group.

It’s actually a return to the name that was used more than two decades ago, the chairperson, Miles Anderson, said. ‘Wool’ was switched out to ‘Fibre’ back then when mohair from angora goats was on the rise. . . 

How avocado farmer Jenny Franceschi is taking on food waste – Cara Waters:

“I don’t think Australian consumers realise just how tough it is for some farmers,” says Jennifer Franceschi.

As an avocado farmer, Franceschi counts herself as one of the lucky ones with an avocado shortage driven by rising demand between seasons sending prices surging to about $7 per fruit at some retailers.

But concerned with the huge levels of food waste in agriculture, Franceschi and her husband, alongside three fellow growers, launched Fresh Produce Alliance out of Manjimup in Western Australia. . . 

 

 


Saturday soapbox

February 24, 2018

Saturday’s soapbox is yours to use as you will – within the bounds of decency and absence of defamation. You’re welcome to look back or forward, discuss issues of the moment, to pontificate, ponder or point us to something of interest, to educate, elucidate or entertain, amuse, bemuse or simply muse, but not abuse.

 

Why Music?

I Music is a science

II Music is mathemtqacial

III Music is a foreign language

IV Music is history

V Music is physical education

VI Music is all these things, but most of all, music is art.

That is why we teach music: not becasue we expect you to major in music.

Not because we expect you to play or sing all your life.

But so you will be human.

So you will recognise beauty.

So you will be closer to an infinit beyond this world.

So you will have something to cling to.

So you will have more love, more compassion, more gentleness, more good – in short, more life.


February 24 in history

February 24, 2018

303 – Galerius, Roman Emperor, published his edict that began the persecution of Christians in his portion of the Empire.

1387  King Charles III of Naples and Hungary was assassinated at Buda.

1538 Treaty of Nagyvarad between Ferdinand I and John Zápolya.

1582 Pope Gregory XIII announced the Gregorian calendar.

1607 – L’Orfeo by Claudio Monteverdi, one of the first works recognised as an opera, premiered.

1711 The London première of Rinaldo by George Frideric Handel, the first Italian opera written for the London  stage.

1739 Battle of Karnal: The army of Iranian ruler Nadir Shah defeated the forces of the Mughal emperor of India, Muhammad Shah.

1786 Wilhelm Grimm, German philologist and folklorist, was born (d. 1859).

1803 The Supreme Court of the United States, in Marbury v. Madison, established the principle of judicial review.

1804 London‘s Drury Lane Theatre burnt to the ground, leaving ownerRichard Brinsley Sheridan destitute.

1822 The 1st Swaminarayan temple in the world, Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Ahmedabad, was inaugurated.

1826  The signing of the Treaty of Yandaboo marked the end of the First Burmese War.

1827  – Lydia Becker, English-French activist, was born (d. 1890).

1831 The Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek, the first removal treaty in accordance with the Indian Removal Act, was proclaimed. The Choctawsin Mississippi ceded land east of the river in exchange for payment and land in the West.

1835  – Julius Vogel, English-New Zealand journalist and politician, 8th Prime Minister of New Zealand, was born(d. 1899).

1837 – Rosalía de Castro, Spanish poet, was born (d. 1885).

1839 William Otis received a patent for the steam shovel.

1848 King Louis-Philippe of France abdicated.

1868 The first parade to have floats was staged at Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

1868 – Andrew Johnson became the first President of the United States to be impeached by the United States House of Representatives.

1870 – The final detachment of the 18th (Royal Irish) Regiment departed from New Zealand, leaving the Armed Constabulary (formed in 1867) responsible for the colony’s internal defence.
Last detachment of imperial forces leaves New Zealand

1875 The SS Gothenburg hit the Great Barrier Reef and sank off the Australian east coast, killing approximately 100.

1877  Ettie Rout, New Zealand activist, was born  (d. 1936).

1893 The American University was chartered by an act of the Congress.

1895 Revolution broke out in Baire beginning the second war for Cubanindependence.

1899 Western Washington University was established.

1902 The Battle of Langverwacht Hill ended.

1909 – The Hudson Motor Car Company was founded.

1912: The hull of TSS Earnslaw was launched in Kingston.

SS <em>Earnslaw</em> launched on Lake Wakatipu

1917 The U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom was given the Zimmermann Telegram, in which Germany pledged to ensure the return of New Mexico, Texas, and Arizona to Mexico if Mexico declares war on the United States.

1918 – Estonian Declaration of Independence.

1920 The Nazi Party was founded.

1934 – Bettino Craxi, Italian lawyer and politician, 45th Prime Minister of Italy, was born (d. 2000).

1942 Battle of Los Angeles: a UFO flying over Los Angeles caused a blackout order at 2:25 a.m. and attracted a barrage of anti-aircraft fire, ultimately killing 3 civilians.

1942 Paul Jones, English singer (Manfred Mann), was born.

1944  – Ivica Račan, Croatian lawyer and politician, 7th Prime Minister of Croatia, was born (d. 2007).

1945 Egyptian Premier Ahmed Maher Pasha was killed in Parliament.

1948 Dennis Waterman, British actor, was born.

1951 – Laimdota Straujuma, Latvian economist and politician, 12th Prime Minister of Latvia was born.

1955 – Alain Prost, French race car driver, was born.

1968  The Tet Offensive was halted; South Vietnam recaptured Hué.

1970 National Public Radio was founded in the United States.

1976 Cuba’s national Constitution proclaimed.

1981 Buckingham Palace announced the engagement of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer.

1981 –  The Ms Gulf of Corinth earthquake registering 6.7 on the Richter scale hit Athens, killing 16 people and destroying buildings in several towns west of the city.

1989 – Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini offered a USD $3 million bounty for the death of The Satanic Verses’ author Salman Rushdie.

1989 – United Airlines Flight 811, bound for New Zealand from Honolulu, Hawaii, ripped open during flight, sucking 9 passengers out of the business-class section.

1999 – A China Southern Airlines Tupolev TU-154 airliner crashed on approach to Wenzhou airport killing 61.

2006 Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo declared Proclamation 1017 placing the country in a state of emergency in attempt to subdue a possible military coup.

2007 Japan launched its fourth spy satellite.

2008 Fidel Castro retired as the President of Cuba.

2010 – Sachin Tendulkar scored the first double century in One Day International cricket.

2011 – Final Launch of Space Shuttle Discovery (OV-103).

2013 – Patriarch Neofit of Bulgaria was elected and enthroned as a Patriarch of Bulgaria and all Bulgarians.

2015 – A Metrolink train derailed in Oxnard, California, following a collision with a truck, leaves more than 30 injured.

2016 – Tara Air Flight 193, a de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter aircraft, crashed, with 23 fatalities, in Solighopte, Myagdi District, Dhaulagiri Zone, while en route from Pokhara Airport to Jomsom Airport.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia, the ODT and Te Ara Encyclopedia of NZ.


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