365 days of gratitude

April 25, 2018

At the first dawn service I attended, the service people marching were of my father’s generation and the ages of those whose deaths we remembered were many years my senior.

A few years later, those men and women who died in the wars were the same age as my contemporaries.

Now those who died could have been my children.

Today, I’m grateful for the sacrifices and service of those who died and those who survived and I’m very grateful that my contemporaries and those of my children haven’t had to face a world war.


Word of the day

April 25, 2018

Obarmate – to arm against.


Rural round-up

April 25, 2018

Water the new gold in Central Otago – Sally Rae:

Irrigation New Zealand held its conference in Alexandra last week. Agribusiness reporter Sally Rae joined a media tour in Central Otago to see  the benefits of water.

It gives John Perriam such a buzz to see “rabbit s…  being turned into world-class pinot”.

But to do that on Bendigo Station, in the heart of Central Otago, it has taken technology, resources and water.

Bendigo —between Tarras and Cromwell — is a very different place to when the Perriam family first arrived in the late 1970s, having been literally flooded out of their previous property by  the Clyde Dam hydro development.

They took over 6000 superfine merino sheep from the previous owners, the Lucas family, and fine and superfine merinos remained a core part of the operation. . . 

Bonding time:

Determined to realise the potential offered by triplet-bearing ewes, Chris, Julia and Richard Dawkins have, with the help of Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s Innovation Farm programme, set-up an indoor lambing system on their Marlborough sheep and beef farm.

This is part one of a two-part series looking at the benefits and the economics of this system.An on-farm trial aimed at economically improving lamb survival by lambing triplet-bearing ewes indoors and rearing mis-mothered lambs has got off to an encouraging start.

The Marlborough-based Dawkins family is running the three-year trial on their sheep and beef property as part of Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s Innovation Farm programme. . . 

Gypsy Day start of new chapter – Toni Williams:

Trudy Bensted is planning the next chapter in her life, packing up her family and moving farms.

She is motivated to succeed in the dairy industry, but also driven to give her children life experiences.

Trudy has a sole charge position in Temuka milking 260 cows but on June 1 – the traditional Gypsy Day – she moves to a new job.

She will be taking on a new venture joining the team at Kintore farms in Mid Canterbury.

”Kintore consists of two sheds south of Ashburton, 1500 cows, excellent apps and systems in place for an efficient and effective farm,” Trudy said. . . 

Politicking put aside on livestock rustling:

Federated Farmers is greatly encouraged by the cross-party support for tougher livestock theft deterrents being shown by members of the Primary Production Select Committee.

Meat and Wool Chairman Miles Anderson spoke to the committee on the Sentencing (Livestock Rustling) Amendment Bill this morning. He said it was heartening to see there was no politicking on the issue, just determination to work out the best ways of combating the problem.

“There’s good momentum to put in place effective measures to tackle this serious and growing scourge.” . . 

Digital core to future of New Zealand farming – Ballance:

Ballance Agri-Nutrients’ today announced changes to its lead team that reinforce digitisation as core to the Co-operative and the future competitiveness of New Zealand farming.

Chief Executive, Mark Wynne, says the creation of a new Chief Digital Officer role reflects a strategy to become a truly customer-centric organisation, with digital at the heart.

Ballance was the first New Zealand organisation to go live with SAP S/4HANA in 2016, providing a foundation for the launch this year of the MyBallance customer experience platform that puts customers in control – providing real-time data and the capability to place and track nutrient plans and orders online 24/7, and with digital mapping the ability to report accurately on nutrient application on their farms. . . 

Tech will have profound impact on NZ agriculture:

The New Zealand IoT (internet of things) Alliance believes cutting-edge technologies will have a profound impact on helping improve New Zealand’s agricultural productivity.

Alliance executive director Kriv Naicker says a major study into the potential benefits of IoT last year found that better use of IoT across agriculture could provide more than $570 million for the economy.

“In an earlier study by the Sapere research group found that if New Zealand firms made better use of the internet it could have a major impact on GDP, potentially lifting it by $34 billion,” Naicker says. . . 


Land Girls

April 25, 2018

Farming was a reserved occupation which exempted farmers from conscription during World War II.

Many country men enlisted anyway leaving a shortage of labour on farms which in those days had little mechanisation.

Young women were enlisted to fill jobs vacated by men in the services, some of them became Land Girls, one of those was Sadie Lietze (nee Stuart):

. . .  Lietze was interviewed and she chose the Womens Land Service. A week later tickets arrive in the post. She was being sent to Omarama to work at the high country station, Tara Hills.

“Omarama was a place I had never heard of, never been. I had to look in the map to know where Omarama was. It was quite an experience for me. I was just 19. I had never travelled much or been away from Dunedin.”

The 94-year-old recalls the trip to the high country station, where she would remain for two years, vividly:

“I left in the morning by the Mail Bus … My new boss met me in Omarama. As we travelled the three miles to Tara Hills Station in a jogger, a two wheeled cart pulled by a horse, similar to a trotting sulky. Little did I know I would stay two years as a cowman, a gardner, assistant rabbiter and horse breaker, a musterer, a wool classer and a general rouse about.

“I milked cows morning, night – every day of the year and never had a break. You would get Saturday afternoon off to do your washing. I just did everything that was asked. I did it. People say to me, ‘why did you do it?’ I say, “well, you did it because it was a war effort’.”

Growing up on a dairy farm, Lietze was using to milking cows. But the back-aching task of rabbiting was hard, she says.

Rabbits were real problem. Trapping rabbits was a fulltime job in winter. Rabbits were trapped, gutted and hung in twos on a fence at the road gate. These were picked up an hung on the rabbit truck and taken to Pukeuri Freezing Works near Oamaru to be later sent to England for food.

“After trapping we poisoned the rabbits. A furrow was scratched along the foothills, carrots were packed into saddle bags and I would walk along dropping sliced carrots into the furrows.

“Two days later I would do it again. I had to dig a huge hole big enough to bury a horse in.

“Then the next day I would drop carrots which had been laced with strychnine. The following day we would pick up hundreds of frozen rabbits, take them in the saddle bags to the big hole. Here we would skin them.

“It was a back-aching chore. In the evening we would stretch the skins on wires and hang them on a line to dry. When we had almost forgotten the pain we would start again on another block.”

The biggest hardships were the conditions and the cold, she says.

“There was no electricity. A Delco engine charged batteries for light and the wireless, which we listened to for the War News at nine o’clock. Then I would go to be and be up again at 6am. I just slept in an old hut. You take the sack off the floor and put it on you – it was freezing. Omarama is cold and you put the sack on top of your bedding to keep you warm. I wasn’t the only one.” . . . 

Some Land Girls had been brought up in the country and relished the opportunity to work on farms, often those of their families. But when the war was over and their fathers and brothers returned they weren’t given the choice of keeping their jobs.

Some women who farmed during the war were farmers’ wives who had no choice but to step into their husbands’ boots to keep the farms going.

It wasn’t easy work and it often wasn’t easy for either partner when the war was over.

One returned service man told me when he came home both he and his wife had changed and his children didn’t know who he was.

They called us the heroes, but it was the women who stayed behind who were the heroes.

My wife took over the farm and ran it while looking after the children and managed it all by herself.

She’d been doing it all for all those years then I came home, thinking I knew it all and took over.

These days, one of us would have walked out, but then you got on and made the best of it.

 


Oh Valiant Hearts

April 25, 2018

Mr Scott, the music teacher at Oamaru Intermediate School was a returned service man.

We might not have appreciated the stories he told of World War II but we took his preparations for Anzac Day seriously and approached the service with the solemnity it was due.

Among the songs he taught us was Oh Valiant Hearts, words written by John Arkwright and Charles Harris, music by Edward Hopkins, and sung here at Menim Gate by Emma Brown.


Lest we forget

April 25, 2018

Anzac Day is not for celebrating war but for commemorating those who served that we might have peace.

Anzac Day is not for judging the actions of yesterday by today’s standards and knowledge, but for learning from mistakes.

Anzac Day is not for resurrecting old enmities but for repairing relationships.

Anzac Day is not for forgetting but for forgiving.

Anzac Day is not for hate but for healing.

Anzac Day is not for glorifying war but for glorying in peace.

 

 


Quote of the day

April 25, 2018

It is very seldom that one encounters what would appear to be sheer unadulterated evil in a human face; an evil, I mean, active, deliberate, deadly, dangerous. Folly, heedlessness, vanity, pride, craft, meanness, stupidity – yes. But even Iagos in this world are few, and devilry is as rare as witchcraft. – Walter de la Mare who was born on this day in 1873.


April 25 in history

April 25, 2018

1214  King Louis IX of France was born (d. 1270).

1228 Conrad IV of Germany was born (d. 1254).

1284 King Edward II of England was born (d. 1327).

1599 Oliver Cromwell, English statesman, was born (d. 1658).

1607 Eighty Years’ War: The Dutch fleet destroyed the anchored Spanish fleet at Gibraltar.

1707 The Habsburg army was defeated by Bourbon army at Almansa in the War of the Spanish Succession.

1775 Charlotte of Spain, Spanish Infanta and queen of Portugal, was born (d. 1830).

1792  Highwayman Nicolas J. Pelletier became the first person executed by guillotine.

1792 – La Marseillaise was composed by Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle.

1829 Charles Fremantle arrived in the HMS Challenger off the coast of modern-day Western Australia prior to declaring the Swan River Colonyfor the United Kingdom.

1846 Thornton Affair: Open conflict began over the disputed border of Texas, triggering the Mexican-American War.

1847 The last survivors of the Donner Party were out of the wilderness.

1849 The Governor General of Canada, Lord Elgin, sigeds the Rebellion Losses Bill, outraging Montreal’s English population and triggering the Montreal Riots.

1859 British and French engineers broke ground for the Suez Canal.

1862  American Civil War: Forces under Union Admiral David Farragutcaptured the Confederate city of New Orleans, Louisiana.

1864 American Civil War: The Battle of Marks’ Mills.

1873 Walter de la Mare, English poet, was born (d. 1956).

1898 Spanish-American War: The United States declared war on Spain.

1901 New York became the first U.S. state to require automobile license plates.

1905 George Nepia, New Zealand rugby player was born (d. 1986).

George Nepia 1935.jpg

1915 New Zealand troops landed at Gallipoli.

NZ troops land at Gallipoli

1916 Easter Rebellion: The United Kingdom declared martial law in Ireland.

1916 – Anzac Day was commemorated for the first time, on the first anniversary of the landing at Anzac Cove.

1917 Ella Fitzgerald, American singer, was born (d. 1996).

1927 Albert Uderzo, French cartoonist, was born.

1929  Yvette Williams First New Zealand woman to win an Olympic gold medal, was born.

1932 Foundation of the Korean People’s Army of North Korea. “4.25″ appeared on the flags of the KPA Ground Force and the KPA Naval Force.

1932 William Roache, British television actor (Coronation Street), was born.

1938 U.S. Supreme Court delivereds opinion in Erie Railroad Co. v. Tompkins and overturned a century of federal common law.

1939  DC Comics published its second major superhero in Detective Comics #27; – Batman.

1940  Al Pacino, American actor, was born.

1943 The Demyansk Shield for German troops in commemoration of Demyansk Pocket was instituted.

1944 The United Negro College Fund was incorporated.

1945 Elbe Day: United States and Soviet troops met in Torgau along the River Elbe, cutting the Wehrmacht in two, a milestone in the approaching end of World War II in Europe.

1945 – The Nazi occupation army surrendered and left Northern Italy after a general partisan insurrection by the Italian resistance movement; the puppet fascist regime dissolved and Mussolini tried to escape. This day is taken as symbolic of the Liberation of Italy.

1945 – Fifty nations gathered in San Francisco to begin the United NationsConference on International Organisations.

1945 Last German troops retreated from Finland’s soil in Lapland, ending the Lapland War.

1948 Yu Shyi-kun, former Premier of Taiwan, was born.

1953 Francis Crick and James D. Watson published Molecular structure of nucleic acids: a structure for deoxyribose nucleic acid describing the double helix structure of DNA.

1959  The St. Lawrence Seaway, linking the North American Great Lakes and the Atlantic Ocean, officially opened to shipping.

1961 Robert Noyce was granted a patent for an integrated circuit.

1963 – a six-strong New Zealand civilian surgical team arrived in Qui Nhon, South Vietnam as part of the Colombo Plan assistance programme.

New Zealand medics start work in South Vietnam

1966 The city of Tashkent was destroyed by a huge earthquake.

1972  Vietnam War: Nguyen Hue Offensive – The North Vietnamese 320th Division forced 5,000 South Vietnamese troops to retreat and traps about 2,500 others northwest of Kontum.

1974 Carnation Revolution: A leftist military coup in Portugal restored democracy after more than forty years as a corporate authoritarian state.

1975 As North Vietnamese forces closed in on the South Vietnamese capital Saigon, the Australian Embassy was closed and evacuated, almost ten years to the day since the first Australian troop commitment to South Vietnam.

1976 Chicago Cubs’ outfielder, Rick Monday, rescued the American flag from two protestors who had run on to the field at Dodger Stadium. The two people covered the flag In lighter fluid but before the match was put to the flag, Monday, sprinted in and grabbed it away from them.

1981  More than 100 workers were exposed to radiation during repairs of a nuclear power plant in Tsuruga.

1982 Israel completed its withdrawal from the Sinai peninsula per theCamp David Accords.

1983 American schoolgirl Samantha Smith was invited to visit the Soviet Union by its leader Yuri Andropov after he read her letter in which she expressed fears about nuclear war.

1983 – Pioneer 10 traveled beyond Pluto’s orbit.

1986  Mswati III was crowned King of Swaziland, succeeding his father Sobhuza II.

1988 In Israel, John Demjanuk was sentenced to death for war crimes committed in World War II.

1990  The Hubble Telescope was deployed into orbit from the Space Shuttle Discovery.

2003 The Human Genome Project came to an end 2.5 years before first anticipated.

2005 The final piece of the Obelisk of Axum was returned to Ethiopia after being stolen by the invading Italian army in 1937.

2005 Bulgaria and Romania signed accession treaties to join the European Union.

2005 – 107 died in Amagasaki rail crash in Japan.

2007  Boris Yeltsin‘s funeral – the first to be sanctioned by the Russian Orthodox Church for a head of state since the funeral of Emperor Alexander III in 1894.

2010: Flight Lieutenant Madsen,  Flying Officer Dan Gregory and Corporal Ben Carson, were killed when the Iroquois they were in crashed on its way to a Wellington Anzac Day service.

2011 – At least 300 people were killed in deadliest tornado outbreak in the Southern United States since the 1974 Super Outbreak.

2015  – Nearly 9,100 were killed after a massive 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal.

2015 – Riots broke out in Baltimore, Maryland following the death of Freddie Gray in police custody.

Sourced from NZ History Online, Wikipedia & Manawatu Standard


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