365 days of gratitude

06/04/2018

My farmer told me he had a phone call from a second cousin who was in town with his wife and wondered if we were free if they popped out to see us.

We were and they did.

The short visit lasted all day and led to dinner with my farmer’s sister and her husband.

A delicious meal was accompanied by reminiscing over family history which included a lot of amusing anecdotes.

Tonight I’m grateful for family and family stories.


Word of the day

06/04/2018

Turnsole – a Mediterranean plant of the spurge family, whose flowers are said to turn with the sun; : any of several plants whose flowers or stems are supposed to follow the movement of the sun.


Rural round-up

06/04/2018

Vet companies importing illegal drugs likely source of Mycoplasma – Gerard Hutching:

Officials on the hunt for the source of the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis have narrowed their search to two properties in the upper North Island and one in Southland, sources say.

Two sources with a close knowledge of the situation said the North Island raids carried out in late March by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) officials were related to veterinary businesses importing illegal drugs.

The Southland search involved a farm.

One of the sources said some veterinary pharmaceutical companies sold cheaper drugs not commonly used in New Zealand. . . 

Devastating disease has huge impact on those farmers affected – Joyce Wyllie:

 “It’s just a hill…get over it !” Golden Bay locals often repeat that slogan to visitors who find the long winding trip over the Takaka hill challenging and occasionally nausea inducing.

Getting over that hill has been more of a trial since cyclone Gita’s devastation and on-going closures during required major repairs. Much to relief of travellers, especially freight firms, the road crew are making great progress. We still have queues and convoys to make the trip but now one-lane flow is safe for all vehicles including truck and trailer units. Traffic controllers report 1000 to 1200 vehicles passing through daily which is a surprising number considering only 4000 of us live in Golden Bay.

Last week I left home before daybreak and already a stream of traffic was driving south through Takaka. Looking up from the bottom of the hill I could see dozens of headlights zig-zagging upwards through the blackness. It gives a sense of being on the move together and I wondered at the purpose of all these other travellers. Having to head over at restricted times does mean more organisation, earlier mornings and no chance to pop over and back for an appointment.

But any feelings of being hard done by hold ups and disgruntled about delays and disruptions to my routine and life were put in perspective when I listened to news on the radio. . . 

Woolhandler determined to succeed – Sally Rae:

Pagan Karauria believes it is mental training that has helped her perform so well on the competitive woolhandling circuit this season.

Karauria (29) won the open woolhandling title at the Royal Easter Show in Auckland at the weekend, beating world champion Joel Henare who helped mentor her to the win.

The Alexandra shearer reached more finals than ever before this season, bouncing back from the disappointment of narrowly missing out on a place in the New Zealand team for last year’s world championships in Invercargill.

Karauria was born into shearing royalty; her father Dion Morrell is a master shearer and world record-holder, while her mother Tina Rimene is a former world champion wool-handler.

She attributed her success this season to the mental training, mainly with her father and also some work she had done with Henare. . .

Husband and wife battle for top woolhandling honour – Doug Laing:

The opening day of the New Zealand Shearing and Woolhandling championships in Te Kuiti tomorrow could see a unique piece of matrimonial property decided by a couple whose family exemplify the adage “the family that plays together stays together.”

Ricci and Angela Stevens, of Napier, are currently tied for first place in Shearing Sports New Zealand’s 2017-2018 Senior woolhandling rankings going into the last event, the New Zealand Senior Woolhandling Championship, the final of which will be held late tomorrow afternoon.

Only Dannevirke woolhandler Ash Boyce can deny them the season’s honour, and then only if he reaches the championships final, and they don’t. . . 

Statistics eye-opener during push to connect rural Tararua – Christine McKay:

With 1311km of rural Tararua mapped for Connect Tararua, the results have been a real eye-opener, district councillor Alison Franklin says.

“Of the rural area mapped, 75.5 per cent has no cellphone coverage and 6.1 per cent can access four bars of reception,” she said.

Tararua District Mayor Tracey Collis said the statistics were incredibly powerful, even if some weren’t good to hear.

“Those statistics don’t include Tararua’s three biggest towns, but do include Norsewood.” . . 

Synlait to double lactoferrin capacity following new supply agreement:

Synlait Milk  has secured a multiyear lactoferrin supply agreement[1] that will underwrite an investment of approximately $18 million to double lactoferrin manufacturing capacity at Synlait Dunsandel.

“Lactoferrin is a high value, specialty ingredient used in a range of nutritional food products around the world. This agreement is a major step forward for our growing lactoferrin business and delivers to our strategic commitments,” says John Penno, Managing Director and CEO.

Lactoferrin is an iron-binding protein recognised for its anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. As a naturally occurring milk protein, it is commonly used in infant formula products throughout the world. . . 


Friday’s answers

06/04/2018

Teletext gets my thanks for posing Thursday’s questions and didn’t get a single bite so can claim four  virtual punnets of kiwiberries for stumping us all by leaving the answers below.


Pepperoni & seagulls bad mix for hotel room

06/04/2018

Take a suitcase of Brothers pepperoni, add a flock of seagulls . . .

Why would anyone do that?

The very funny answer is here.


Govt acts on threat to irrigation

06/04/2018

The government has acted on its pre-election threat to axe funding through Crown Irrigation Investments.

Three schemes already under way will keep the funding promised.

The government will help fund the construction of irrigation projects on the Canterbury plains and near Kurow and Nelson as it winds back support for large-scale water schemes.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson today said all existing Crown Irrigation Investments Ltd development contracts will be honoured, and that the three named schemes will receive funding for their construction phase given how far down the track they were.  . . 

IrrigationNZ bemoans the lost opportunity.

 . . .“In Crown Irrigation Investments Briefing to Incoming Ministers, the socio-economic gain to communities from planned future irrigation projects in New Zealand was over $1.2 billion per year. With a number of these projects being unable to access loan funding, this is a huge lost opportunity for these rural communities,” says IrrigationNZ Chief Executive Andrew Curtis.

“The Hurunui Water Project, Hunter Downs and Flaxborne irrigation projects all have local community support and also meet strict new environmental requirements around river swimmability and nutrient limits. In addition to this they plan to undertake additional activities to help improve existing water quality – for example the Hunter Downs scheme was planning to augment river flows into the Wainono Lagoon which will help to restore this culturally and environmentally significant ecosystem. A recent UNESCO report – Nature Based Solutions for Water, has highlighted the importance of ‘green infrastructure’ initiatives such as this for improving water quality globally,” he adds.

The Hurunui, Hunter Downs and Flaxborne projects aim to provide water security to predominantly beef, sheep and cropping farms in drought prone areas.

Over the past summer we have experienced droughts followed by unprecedented wet conditions. This is indicative of the climate change impacts we can expect to see in the future,” says Mr Curtis. “It is critical for rural east coast farming communities to have access to a reliable water supply in order to help them manage through these effects,” says Mr Curtis.

Mr Curtis says that when farming communities experience significant droughts, it’s not just farmers who suffer but also the rest of the community and local businesses.

“Local councils see the value of investment in water infrastructure and recognise this as one of the most pressing issues for their communities. We would like to see the merits of these projects considered through the Provincial Growth Fund. These projects will build more resilient rural communities and provide significant community benefits.”

Irrigation would be much better use of regional development funding than a Minister’s pet projects.

Axing the fund continues the government’s raid on the regions.

The Government’s confirmation it will axe major irrigation projects is the second major blow it’s dealt to regional New Zealand in a week, National’s Paul Goldsmith and Nathan Guy say.

“Fresh from whacking a major new fuel tax on New Zealand motorists the Government has announced it will leave regional farmers and growers at the mercy of prolonged droughts by canning support for important irrigation projects,” National’s Agriculture spokesperson Nathan Guy says.

“This is a huge blow to regional New Zealand which is facing an increasingly uncertain future as a result of this Government’s raid on our regions.

“This summer alone saw six regions declared in drought as dry weather hammered primary producers right around New Zealand. These irrigation projects would have given them the certainty they could deal with future dry spells but that certainty’s now been ripped away.

North Otago used to be wracked by recurring droughts which caused widespread financial, environmental and social distress.

Now large areas are irrigated the district is virtually drought-proof.

Irrigation has enabled the production of more food, the provision of more jobs and provides insurance against dry weather.

Mr Goldsmith says the Government’s regional growth strategy is a mess.

“It’s Jekyll and Hyde and seems to come down to which of Labour’s two support parties wins the day.

“One day Shane Jones sticks his finger in the air and doles out taxpayer cash for pet projects, the next day four ministers announce the Government will rip $5b out of regional road funding but tax motorists more and the next it is stripping millions out of important and demonstrably effective regional irrigation projects. . .

It just shows the Government has no clear strategy.

“It says it supports regional New Zealand but it continues to put the boot in. Axing irrigation projects makes it harder for farmers and growers to do their jobs, harder for them to create jobs, harder to grow our exports and harder for New Zealanders to get ahead.”

It’s ironic that the government wants us to take climate change seriously, including the risk of more droughts, yet has striped funding from irrigation projects which could provide insurance against dry weather.


Quote of the day

06/04/2018

Men always love what is good or what they find good; it is in judging what is good that they go wrong.  – Jean-Baptiste Rousseau who was born on this day in 1671.


April 6 in history

06/04/2018

46 BC Julius Caesar defeated Caecilius Metellus Scipio and Marcus Porcius Cato (Cato the Younger) in the battle of Thapsus.

402 Stilicho stymied the Visigoths under Alaric in the Battle of Pollentia.

1199  Richard I of England died from an infection following the removal of an arrow from his shoulder.

1320 The Scots reaffirmed their independence by signing the Declaration of Arbroath.

1327 The poet Petrarch first saw his idealized love, Laura, in the church of Saint Clare in Avignon.

1385 John, Master of the Order of Aviz, was made king John I of Portugal.

1483 Raphael, Italian painter and architect, was born (d. 1520).

1652 At the Cape of Good Hope, Dutch sailor Jan van Riebeeckestablished a resupply camp that eventually becomes Cape Town .

1667 An earthquake devastated Dubrovnik, then an independent city-state.

1671 Jean-Baptiste Rousseau, French poet, was born (d. 1741).

1773 James Mill, Scottish philosopher and historian, was born (d. 1836).

1782  Rama I succeeded King Taksin of Siam who was overthrown in a coup d’état.

1793 During the French Revolution, the Committee of Public Safety became the executive organ of the republic, and the Reign of Terrorbegan.

1808 John Jacob Astor incorporated the American Fur Company.

1812 British forces assaulted the fortress of Badajoz under the command of the Duke of Wellington was the turning point in the Peninsular War against Napoleon led France.

1814 Napoleon abdicated and was exiled to Elba.

1824 – George Waterhouse, English-New Zealand politician, 7th Prime Minister of New Zealand, was born (d. 1906).

1830 The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was organized by Joseph Smith, Jr. and others at Fayette or Manchester, New York.

1832  Indian Wars: The Black Hawk War began when the Sauk warrior Black Hawk entered into war with the United States.

1860 – René Lalique, French sculptor and jewellery designer, was born (d. 1945).

1860 The Reorganised Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints—later renamed Community of Christ—was organized by Joseph Smith III and others at Amboy, Illinois.

1862 American Civil War: The Battle of Shiloh began when forces under Union General Ulysses S. Grant met Confederate troops led by General Albert Sidney Johnston.

1864  A British patrol was ambushed by Pai Marire warriors near the present-day township of Oakura, south-west of New Plymouth.

Pai Marire ambush in Taranaki

1865 American Civil War: The Battle of Sayler’s Creek – Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia fought its last major battle while in retreat from Richmond, Virginia.

1866 The Grand Army of the Republic, an American patriotic organization composed of Union veterans of the American Civil War, was founded.

1869 Celluloid was patented.

1886 Osman Ali Khan, Asaf Jah VII, The Last Nizam of Hyderabad state, was born (d. 1967).

1888 Hans Richter, Swiss painter, film maker, graphic artist and avant-gardist, was born  (d. 1976).

1888 Thomas Green Clemson died, bequeathing his estate to the State of South Carolina to establish the Clemson Agricultural College.

1890 Anthony Fokker, Dutch designer of aircraft, was born  (d. 1939).

1892 Lowell Thomas, American travel writer, was born (d. 1981).

1893 Salt Lake Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was dedicated by Wilford Woodruff.

1895 Oscar Wilde was arrested after losing a libel case against the John Sholto Douglas, 9th Marquess of Queensberry.

1896 The opening of the first modern Olympic Games was celebrated, 1,500 years after the original games are banned by Roman Emperor Theodosius I.

1903 The Kishinev pogrom began, forcing tens of thousands of Jews to later seek refuge in Israel and the Western world.

1909 Robert Peary and Matthew Henson allegedly reached the North Pole.

1911  Dedë Gjon Luli Dedvukaj, Leader of the Malësori Albanians, raised the Albanian flag in the town of Tuzi, Montenegro, for the first time after Gjergj Kastrioti (Skenderbeg).

1917  World War I: The United States declared war on Germany.

1919 – NZ (Māori) Pioneer Battalion returned from war.

NZ (Māori) Pioneer Battalion returns from war

1919 Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi ordered a general strike.

1923 The first Prefects Board in Southeast Asia was formed in Victoria Institution, Malaysia.

1926 Ian Paisley, Northern Irish politician, was born.

1928 James D. Watson, American geneticist, Nobel laureate, was born.

1929 André Previn, German-born composer and conductor, was born.

1930 Gandhi raised a lump of mud and salt and declared, “With this, I am shaking the foundations of the British Empire.”  and started the Salt Satyagraha.

1936 Tupelo-Gainesville tornado hit Gainesville, Georgia, killing 203.

1937  Merle Haggard, American musician, was born, (d. 2016).

1938  Paul Daniels, English magician, was born.

1941 – Germany launched Operation 25 (the invasion of Yugoslavia) andOperation Marita (the invasion of Greece).

1943 – Roger Cook, New Zealand-English journalist and academic, was born.

1943 – Ian MacRae, All Black, was born.

1946 – Paul Beresford, New Zealand-English dentist and politician, was born.

1947 The first Tony Awards were presented for theatrical achievements.

1955 Rob Epstein, American filmmaker and journalist, was born.

1957 Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis bought the Hellenic National Airlines (TAE) and founded Olympic Airlines.

1962 Leonard Bernstein caused controversy with his remarks from the podium during a New York Philharmonic concert featuring Glenn Gould performing the First Piano Concerto of Johannes Brahms.

1965  Launch of Early Bird, the first communications satellite to be placed in geosynchronous orbit.

1965 – The British Government announced the cancellation of the TSR-2aircraft project.

1968 In Richmond, Indiana’s downtown district, a double explosion killed 41 and injured 150.

1970 Newhall Incident: Four California Highway Patrol officers were killed.

1972 Vietnam War: Easter Offensive – American forces began sustained air strikes and naval bombardments.

1973  Launch of Pioneer 11 spacecraft.

1982 Estonian Communist Party bureau declared “fight against bourgeois TV” — meaning Finnish TV — a top priority of the propagandists of Estonian SSR

1984 Members of Cameroon’s Republican Guard unsuccessfully attempted to overthrow the government headed by Paul Biya.

1994  The Rwandan Genocide began when the aircraft carrying Rwandan president Juvénal Habyarimana and Burundian president Cyprien Ntaryamira was shot down.

1998 Pakistan tested medium-range missiles capable of hitting India.

2004 Rolandas Paksas became the first president of Lithuania to be peacefully removed from office by impeachment.

2005 Kurdish leader Jalal Talabani became Iraqi president.

2009 A 6.3 magnitude earthquake which struck near L’Aquila, Italy, killed 307 people.

2010 – Maoist rebels killed 76 CRPF officers in Dantewada district, India.

2011 – In San Fernando, Tamaulipas, Mexico, more than 193 bodies were exhumed from several mass graves made by Los Zetas.

2012 – The Independent State of Azawad was declared.

Soucred from NZ History Online & Wikipeda


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