It is a national holiday observed in every Aussie town, large and small, it is a day so sacred that merchants once required special permission to open their doors, Anzac day and its memorial services, honoring our soldiers, becomes increasingly popular with every passing year, and this year, the 100th anniversary is, by far, the biggest event yet.   IMG_20150425_055230 (Small)

Together with New Zealand, Australia has few non-indigenous traditions and as such, we have clung on to this one event in our history, and made it a tradition observed by young and old alike. The proud, egalitarian, happy-go-lucky spirit, our friendly ‘larrikinism’, our casual “she’ll be right” Australian attitude is epitomized in the ANZAC forces (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps), in WWI.  Anzac memorial services have become a tradition, not because they were a wonderful success, (the original campaign was, in fact, an abject failure, and led to the dismissal of Winston Churchill), but rather because this event has so defined our nation and become entrenched in our psyche and because we, as a nation, need to remember April 25, ANZAC  Day, “Lest We Forget.”

Memorial services are held at dawn, and are attended by millions of  Australians, like me,  across Australia, whether or not they have family members who are military veterans. Why dawn, you might ask? Stand 2, or dawn, is seen by the military, as the best time to launch an offensive strike. Anzac day’s dawn service commemorates the exact time the ANZAC (Australian and New Zealand combined Army Corps), forces attacked the Gallipoli peninsula in the Dardenelles, in Turkey in 1915, 100 years ago.

The most moving tribute of all is the laying of the wreaths on the community monument to the sounds of the Last Post. A truly poigant moment….

A few naysayers think  Anzac day is becoming over-commercialised, but I would rather see this, than forget the sacrifice of those young men and indeed their families who lost loved ones; rather see this than forget the lessons learned in the “war to end all wars”, rather see this than have the general public forget the true meaning of Anzac day altogether and instead think of it as just another day off from work. Pondering the lessons learned in quiet remembrance will ultimately fade away in time without the awareness of the meaning behind the holiday, driven mainly by the media, won’t they?

In almost every suburb in the community, there stands a statue with a soldier (known as a digger – presumably because they dug trenches in which to fight), or that of a light horseman. We owe many things and perhaps, even our liberty, to brave young men who without much thought, willingly signed up to fight someone else’s war. In particular, those that gave the ultimate sacrifice, giving all that they had to give: like my 2 Step Great Uncles that gave their life. My Great Uncle Ted was a Gallipoli veteran who survived the campaign and was left with respiratory problems for the rest of his life, from mustard gas inhalation.

The Gallipoli conflict was not one that involved Australia directly, but rather our allies. So it was due to the strong colonial ties that prevailed at this point in our history, and  the fact that Australia was not permitted, by Britain, to have a fully autonomous military force, that we sent our bravest and strongest young men to fight in the war in Europe. Firstly, to protect the Suez Canal, Churchill then wanted to make a quick strike to knock Turkey out of the war, who was allied with Britain’s enemy, Germany. But how wrong can one get? Very wrong, as it turns out…

Gallipoli, the Turkish Anzac campaign, was a much documented disaster, for which Winston Churchill was entirely to blame. He could not have chosen a worse location: landing troops on a beach under a steep cliff atop where Turkish snipers were waiting to pick them off. The allied forces were forced to withdraw * months later long after the first landing. Churchill was later sacked as Prime Minister.

The Australia population was then around 500,000. Australian casualties for the campaign were 26,111, comprising 1007 officers and 25,104 other ranks. Of these, 362 officers and 7779 men (total 8,141) were killed in action, died of wounds or succumbed to disease. These were our bravest and strongest men, our genetic best, and many were not to return or were to return incapacitated in mind or body. For a young nation struggling to find its feet, their loss was devastating.

Even though the name ANZAC (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) pertained to the original WWI conflict in Gallipoli, the name has become synonymous with military personnel fighting under the Australian and New Zealand flags until they were formerly separated into distinct military forces. And so, the event lives on in our community, with children wearing their father’s medals from conflicts in Vietnam, Korea and Afghanistan, and  younger people wearing their grandfather and great grandfather’s medals, from WWI and WWII, with pride and remembrance.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning, we shall remember them…. Uncle Ted and the others…. lest we forget.

More about the history of Anzac day here:

Significance of ANZAC day from Wiki


Anzac Day is a national day of remembrance in Australia and New Zealand, and is commemorated by both countries on 25 April every year to honour members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who fought at Gallipoli in Turkey during World War I. It now more broadly commemorates all those who died and served in military operations for their countries. Anzac Day is also observed in the Cook Islands, Niue, Samoa and Tonga.


Anzac Day marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.[1] The acronym ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, whose soldiers were known as Anzacs. Anzac Day remains one of the most important national occasions of both Australia and New Zealand.[2] This is a rare instance of two sovereign countries not only sharing the same remembrance day, but making reference to both countries in its name.

The Gallipoli campaign

When war broke out in 1914, Australia had been a Federal Commonwealth for thirteen years. In 1915, Australian and New Zealand soldiers formed part of an Allied expedition that set out to capture the Gallipoli Peninsula, under a plan by Winston Churchill to open the way to the Black Sea for the Allied navies. The objective was to capture Istanbul, capital of the Ottoman Empire, an ally of Germany. The ANZAC force landed at Gallipoli on 25 April, meeting fierce resistance from the Turkish Army commanded by Mustafa Kemal (later known as Atatürk). What had been planned as a bold strike to knock Turkey out of the war quickly became a stalemate, and the campaign dragged on for eight months. At the end of 1915, the Allied forces were evacuated after both sides had suffered heavy casualties and endured great hardships. The Allied Gallipoli casualties included 21,255 from the UK, an estimated 10,000 dead soldiers from France, 8,709 from Australia, 2,721 from New Zealand, and 1,358 from British India. News of the landing at Gallipoli made a profound impact on Australians and New Zealanders at home and 25 April quickly became the day on which they remembered the sacrifice of those who had died in war.

Though the Gallipoli campaign failed in its military objectives of capturing Istanbul and knocking Ottoman Empire out of the war, the Australian and New Zealand troops’ actions during the campaign bequeathed an intangible but powerful legacy. The creation of what became known as an “Anzac legend” became an important part of the national identity in both countries. This has shaped the way their citizens have viewed both their past and their understanding of the present.

Anzac Day is a national public holiday and is considered one of the most spiritual and solemn days of the year in Australia. Marches by veterans from all past wars, as well as current serving members of the Australian Defence Force and Reserves, with allied veterans as well as the Australian Defence Force Cadets and Australian Air League and supported by members of Scouts Australia, Guides Australia, and other uniformed service groups, are held in cities and towns nationwide. The Anzac Day Parade from each state capital is televised live with commentary. These events are generally followed by social gatherings of veterans, hosted either in a public house or in an RSL Club, often including a traditional Australian gambling game called two-up, which was an extremely popular pastime with ANZAC soldiers. The importance of this tradition is demonstrated by the fact that though most Australian states have laws forbidding gambling outside of designated licensed venues, on Anzac Day it is legal to play “two-up”.

Despite federation being proclaimed in Australia in 1901, many[who?] argue the “national identity” of Australia was largely forged during the violent conflict of World War I,[9][10] and the most iconic event in the war for most Australians was the landing at Gallipoli. Dr. Paul Skrebels of the University of South Australia has noted that Anzac Day has continued to grow in popularity;[11] even the threat of a terrorist attack at the Gallipoli site in 2004[12] did not deter some 15,000 Australians from making the pilgrimage to Turkey to commemorate the fallen ANZAC troops.[13]

Something Sombre to Ponder About

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Proverbial Thursday – Proverbs and Sayings from around the World

I find there to be profound wisdom in proverbs, sayings and quotes and I marvel at the way they are so succinct in communicating messages to the reader. Mostly anonymous, they come to us from past generations and from across cultures. They speak of the experiences of lives lived and lessons learned. Quotes, like proverbs, make us think more deeply about something.

Each Thursday, I post a Proverb or Saying and a Quote that I find thought-provoking.  I hope you will too.

Proverbial thursdfly sml 3932“Hunger er den beste kokk”–Hunger is the best sauce –Norwegian Proverb

People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in their true beauty is revealed only if there is light from within.
Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

and a final anonymous quote, but a very poignant comment on society today:

Hate is easy. Love takes courage.

Something to ponder about today.

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Monday Mystery Photo – Last week Mezzagra, Italy

Each Monday I post a mystery photo, or occasionally a mystery object on my blog. I encourage you to leave a comment, if you think you might know where this week’s mystery photo, was taken. If you guess correctly, I will credit you the following week and post a link to your site/blog. Guest contributions are always welcome.

Leya brings us this week’s mystery photo. Where in the World is this photo taken? Can you guess?

Last week there were many guesses, but we were in the small village of Guilina de Mezzagra at the church, enjoying a fantastic view over Lake Como, in the Italian Lake district. Little did I know at the time that the village has an infamous history. Benito Mussolini was shot and killed here in April, 1945, at a spot just below the ledge where I took this photograph. I am guessing the Italians by and large, do not want to remember this part of their history, but it is a part of history, nonetheless.

Lake como orton picmonkey

AnnChristine was correct, after first thinking it was Switzerland, or perhaps Austria.

The village itself features some beautiful examples of Italian villa architecture, namely. Villa Carlottta. and you are but a short walk from the ferry to Bellagio.

Monday Mystery Photo is often something to ponder about.

Monday Mystery

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Proverbial Thursday – Proverbs and Sayings from Around the World

I fin profound wisdom in proverbs, sayings and quotes and I marvel at the way they are so succinct in communicating messages to the reader. Mostly anonymous, they come to us from past generations and from across cultures. They speak of the experiences of lives lived and lessons learned. Quotes, like proverbs, make us think more deeply about something.Proverbial sml 3932

Each Thursday, I post a Proverb or Saying and a Quote that I find thought-provoking.  I hope you will too.

Only your real friends will tell you when your face is dirtySicilian proverb

“Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress . But I repeat myself.”  ~ Mark Twain

Something Proverbial to Ponder About

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Monday Mystery Photo – Last week Liberty Bridge Budapest

Each Monday I post a mystery photo, or occasionally a mystery object on my blog. I encourage you to leave a comment, if you think you might know where this week’s mystery photo, was taken. If you guess correctly, I will credit you the following week and post a link to your site/blog. Guest contributions are always welcome.

Where in the World is this photo taken? Can you guess?

Lake como orton picmonkey

Thank you to those who guessed the last submission from Ann- christine, including M.R. and Gerard @ Oosterman Treats blog, but it was Drake who was able to name the bridge and the location. Well done, Drake!


This bridge has an interesting history according to sources such as Wikipedia:

The Liberty Bridge is the third southernmost public road bridge in Budapest, located at the southern end of the City Centre.The top of the four masts are decorated with large bronze statues of the Turul, a falcon-like bird, prominent in ancient Hungarian mythology.

The bridge was built between 1894 and 1896 and was opened in the presence of Emperor Franz Joseph; the last silver rivet on the Pest abutment was inserted into the iron structure by the Emperor himself, and the bridge was originally named after him.

In 1945 its exploded middle part was reconstructed partly from remolded materials of the uplifted ruins of it.  The bridge was repainted with brown instead of the original green painting. The monochrome photography of the time did not show what shade of green its former colour was exactly. The exact shade of its original colour was found out from written archives in the 1960s and the bridge was repainted to this colour during its next maintenance.

During the 2007-2009 complete reconstruction,all war damages of shape were repaired, added to the complete structure-reconstruction water discharge pipes held by the bridge were replaced, and noise and impulse-absorbing tramways were rebuilt. For economic efficiency, the lower part of the floodlight was considered not to be realised, after judging that it would not enlighten the principal parts of the bridge, it indeed was left out from realisation.

Monday MysteryMonday Mystery Photo gives you Something to Ponder About

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Proverbial Thursday – Proverbs from Around the World

I find there to be profound wisdom in proverbs, sayings and quotes and I marvel at the way they are so succinct in communicating messages to the reader. Mostly anonymous, they come to us from past generations and from across cultures. They speak of the experiences of lives lived and lessons learned. Quotes, like proverbs, make us Proverbial sml 3932think more deeply about something.

Each Thursday, I post a Proverb or Saying and a Quote that I find thought-provoking.  I hope you will too.

A closed mind is like a closed book, just a block of wood

-Chinese Proverb

“Those who try to control others are out of control internally…because if one is in a state of inner peace, they do not fear another persons free will.”   

~A Window of Wisdom

Something Proverbial to Ponder About

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Traditional Art – Painted Easter Eggs

Everyone loves chocolate eggs at Easter time, but for some cultures, eggs have always been much more significant than a sweet treat, and have evolved into a traditional art form in itself. This month, in Traditional Art From Around the World, I showcase some examples of Painted Easter Eggs from Eastern Europe.


Hand painted Easter eggs from Budapest


Poland, The Czech  Republic an d other Eastern European countries, follow a tradition of decorating eggs, in specific designs and colors, at Easter. The designs themselves are painted on hen or goose eggs, not wooden eggs, as some might think, and are executed with great care using age – old techniques.  The egg yolk and white are either allowed to dry up over time, or are removed by blowing through a small hole in the egg.

The designs are highly indicative of not only a cultural region but, in some cases, also a particular family, as can be seen in the following photo, from  http://polishfolkdolls.blogspot.com.au/

Czech Republic

The practice of covering an egg,with knotted wire, first developed as a Slovak tradition, but is also used in egg creations in the Czech Republic. Motifs and color combinations can at times appear cross cultural, and while traditional styles prevail, egg artists add their own individual form of inspiration in order to personalize the decorated Easter eggs.

Folk art - Czech egg

The most recognizable symbol of Easter, in Prague and the Czech Republic, is a hand-painted or decorated egg known as “Kraslice.” These eggs are made from ordinary eggs and ink, by the village girls, and are given to the village boys, on Easter Monday. On Easter Sunday, the boys make a kind of twisted cane/whip that usually decorated with a ribbon. On Easter Monday, they then travel to the houses, to visit the girls, and hit them around the legs with this whip, (an old tradition supposedly thought to increase fertility), after which the girls then give the boy an egg which the girls themselves, have decorated!

[Where were women’s rights in those days?]

These days the eggs are not so much a gift of love, from girl to boy, as a general reminder of the heritage and beauty from the region according to the differing techniques unique to each geographical, or cultural, area.

Kraslice eggs from httpforeignholidays.net

In Valassko, (Wallachia, Romania), Easter eggs are decorated in red, orange, and black with figural motifs like girls and roosters, whilst South Moravia is known for eggs created using the scratching technique.



Painted and decorated eggs is a traditional art form that dates back to ancient times in the Ukraine. As such, each regional area and indeed, each family developed rituals, symbols and meanings for Easter, along with their individual brand of decoration for the Easter Egg.

Pysanka” is often taken to mean any type of decorated egg, but it specifically refers to an egg created by the written-wax batik method, utilizing traditional folk motifs and designs. In the western Ukrainian town of Kolomyya, there is a museum dedicated to ‘Pysanky’, with several thousand eggs on display.

ukrainian museum eggs

The word pysanka comes from the verb pysaty, “to write”, as the designs are not painted, but ‘written’ with hot beeswax, using a stylus or a pin-head. Wooden and beaded eggs are also known as “pysanky,” because they mimic the decorative style of pysanky, but in a different medium.

[Source: Wikipedia]


Several other Ukrainian techniques of decorating eggs can be identified throughout the region. All but the krashanky and lystovky are meant to be decorative, (as opposed to being edible).

  • Krashanky –from krasyty (красити), “to decorate”– are boiled eggs dyed a single color (with vegetable dyes), and are blessed and eaten at Easter.
  • Pysanky –from pysaty (писати), “to write”– are raw eggs created with the wax-resist method (batik).
  • Krapanky –from krapka (крапка), “a dot”– are raw eggs decorated using the wax-resist method, but with only dots as ornamentation (no symbols or other drawings). They are traditionally created by dripping molten wax from a beeswax candle onto an egg.
  • Dryapanky –from dryapaty (дряпати), “to scratch”– are created by scratching the surface of a dyed egg to reveal the white shell below.
  • Malyovanky –from malyuvaty (малювати), “to paint”– are created by painting a design with a brush using oil or water color paints. It is sometimes used to refer to coloring (e.g. with a marker) on an egg.
  • Nakleyanky –from kleyaty (клеяти), “to glue on”– are created by glueing objects to the surface of an egg. Eg Lace
  • Travlenky –from travlenya (травлення), “etching” – are created by waxing eggs and then etching away the unwaxed areas. This is not a traditional Ukraine practice, but has become popularized recently.
  • Biserky –from biser (бісер), “beads”– are created by coating an egg with beeswax, and then embedding beads into the wax to create geometric designs.
  • Lystovky –from lystya (листя), “leaves”– are created by dyeing an egg to which small leaves have been attached.

Other Eastern European countries also may use wax resist techniques to decorate their Easter eggs:

Belarusians (пісанка, pisanka)
Bulgarians (писано яйце, pisano yaytse)
Croats (pisanica)
Hungarians (hímestojás)
Lithuanians (margutis)
Romanians (ouă vopsite, incondeiate or impistrite) Russians (расписанное яйцо “rаspisannoe yaitsо”)
Serbs (pisanica)
Slovaks (kraslica)
Slovenes (pisanica,pirhi or remenke)
Sorbs (jejka pisać). [Source: Wikipedia]


Marie Jukubickova (R) and Ludmila Vlasakova wearing traditional costume decorate Easter eggs in Vacenovice, South Moravia, Czech Republic. The women use the old method of scraping colored eggs with a nail file to decorate them and are the last two women in southern Moravia who know this method decorating Easter eggs for almost 70 years. [Source: http://forum.lovelimes.com/general-disc-f13/hand-painted-easter-eggs-t31235.html#.VSTRAuHE7Dc%5D

Traditions that are in danger of dying out.

Something to Ponder About.

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1 case of measles can infect up to 15 others. Imagine how many children will suffer complications of measles if vaccinations are not given as per the health schedule.

Originally posted on Bewitching Kitchen:

Disclaimer #1:  This is not a food-related post

Disclaimer #2: I am taking my gloves off

Few things upset me more than the disturbing movement to stop vaccinating babies and kids. For a while now I’ve been debating whether I should write about it. Having watched an episode of Frontline the other day that dealt with the subject, and almost succumbing to cardiac arrest while screaming at the screen, I decided I cannot stay silent any longer. First of all, let me get this straight out up front: I have a doctoral degree in Biochemistry, three years post-doctoral experience in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Stanford, and I taught Microbiology to Medical students in Brazil at Universidade de Sao Paulo. I also worked for about 10 years on basic research into the biotechnology of vaccines.   I’m not bragging, but I am stating my experience, that hopefully will convince…

View original 2,544 more words

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Scones with Tea – A Morning Tradition

In my husband’s family, it is a tradition to have morning tea. That is, a cup of hot tea with a scone of two with butter or jam. My husband’s paternal grandmother was a brilliant farmhouse cook and used an old wood burning stove – one that was without thermostat or temperature gauge. Yet she cooked everything to perfection, testing the temperature only with the back of her hand. Wouldn’t we all love that skill? Granny Mac was of German heritage, so perhaps her cooking skills came from a  background of generations of women cooking in the kitchen? Or perhaps from necessity?

Together with her husband, they owned a dairy farm atop ‘Clear Mountain’, so it is self-evident that there was plenty of fresh cream available. Thus, making scones was a way to supplement the farm’s income and feed Granny Mac’s ten hungry children at morning tea time. This same recipe made the scones served to the State of Queensland’s Governor, as well as many tourists, or day trippers, in the 1950’s, who drove up the steep, Clear Mountain Road, for a weekend picnic.  This is that never-fail secret family recipe!

Granny Mac’s Scones


NB. the quantities of ingredients were never measured by the original cook, just estimated. However, for the rest of us, I have provided the following measurements:

2  1/4  cup Self Raising* flour

*(Self raising flour can easily be made by combining 2 teaspoons of baking powder per cup of plain flour and sift well)

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp baking powder

3/4 cup milk

3/4 cup cream

Optional: a good handful of currants/sultanas/chopped dates – my kids love that)


  1. In a large bowl, place all the dry ingredients, (and fruit), and stir to mix thoroughly.
  2. “Cut” the wet ingredients into the mix by stirring thoroughly with the blade of a flat butter knife.

  3. Knead mix a little with extra flour, if needed. (You will want a dough that is smooth enough to handle, but not too dry)

  4. Roll or pat out on a floured board, to 1 inch high  (no less)

  5. Cut 6 cm rounds with a scone cutter or as Granny Mac used: a used, empty, small baked beans tin, (cleaned and dried, of course)!

  6. Bake 12 -15 minutes @ 210 degrees on a metal scone tray

Delightful served with butter or jam and cream.

Best eaten while hot, however they do freeze well.


Is there a traditional recipe within your family heritage? Do you still make this food?

Will you keep up this tradition for generations to come?

Something to ponder about….

Posted in Cakes, cookies, biscuits and Home Bake, Cooking, Food, Handy hints & Kitchen tips, History & Traditions | Tagged , , , , , , , | 30 Comments

Phoneography Challenge – Editing and Processing


Lens and Pens Phoneography inspires me every week to look at a photograph differently and to see more possibilities. Especially when it is Week 5 – Editing and Processing

Camera apps are lots of fun (and a little bit addictive). I enjoy creating some visual art from a humble photograph. Have you tried using camera apps? If so, which are your favourite ones to use?

In the first photograph, a highly saturated version of the original, I like that you can’t see the details of the figure in the foreground. It is still a bit intriguing, a bit of a mystery. This allows one’s mind to create a story, whilst the second photograph is all out there, blinding in its intensity. To me, this expresses how I feel in the bright, summer light of midsummer, in Australia. It is blinding hot and extremely bright. Just like the feeling I get when I look at this photograph.

Something visual to ponder about

camera apps

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Monday Mystery Photo – Last Week Dali’s home – Spain



I wish to thank again our guest contributor, for this series, Ann-Christine,

whose beautiful blog is called Leya


The location of last week’s Mystery Photo pictured above, was Figueiras, Spain –  Salvador Dali´s home and Drake guessed correctly.  The impressive building contains some fine examples of Dali’s surrealist art. But Ann-Christine can tell you much more about that, I am sure. As 365dniwobiektywielg commented, ‘these eggs will not fall’, referring not only to the eggs on Dali’s building, but the egg that often featured, standing upright, in Dali’s surrealist artworks.

Monday Mystery

Monday Mystery photo – Something to Ponder About


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Environmental Catastrophe – can it be averted?

The tsunami that destroyed much of the Fukashima nuclear plants in Japan, led to an environmental catastrophe that has set in train a lethal juggernaut of biblical proportions. American has 23 of the same kind of Nuclear reactors (made by General Electric).

Do you eat fish or sushi imported from Japan? This fish is radioactive and every minute 102_0218amounts of this can and does cause not just genetic mutations, but a multitude of cancers. Hilary Clinton signed an agreement to continue importing fish products from Japan into the United States after the Fukashima disaster. So I have to ask you do you eat fish/sushi? You may not after watching this video.

Everyone, especially those in America and the Northern hemisphere needs to be especially aware of this problem. The following video link is long, but extremely important to listen to. Helen Caldicott is a Paediatrician and author and understands the many complexities of this issue and the potential dangers for every human.

Helen claims another Japanese earthquake could result in the collapse of the Fukashima No 4 reactor and the radiation then released would be the equivalent of detonation of 14,000 Hiroshima sized bombs. The radiation would then move with the wind currents, westward to eastward, around the northern hemisphere.(i.e. heading for the United States). In the event of another nuclear accident at Fukishima, the safest place is the southern hemisphere is Australia and New Zealand, as the two hemispheric air masses do not mix.  And Australia and New Zealand  have NO nuclear reactors. Yet Australia sits on 1/3 of the world’s Uranium supply and it was Australian uranium in the Fukashima reactor!

But we live in the one world, so no one country is really safe from the long lived arm of radioactive waste and contaminants. Once radiation gets into the food chain, it intensified with each step and thus those (like us), at the top of the chain, are doomed to feel its full effects as it enters the world’s ocean, fish, birds, plants, animals and ultimately, us.

Mutations are already appearing in plants, animals and people after Fukashima and they don’t disappear after one generation:

What can WE do?

Watch Helen Caldicott’s video to become informed of the extent of the problem.

Initiate action to make your governments and communities aware. Write letters, to politicians, post to social media or add blog posts, spread the word about this issue, as hardly anyone is aware of the real extent and pervasiveness of this problem.

Promote renewable energy in your own life.

Share and re-blog the aforementioned videos/links.

Keep a stock of Potassium iodide tablets handy in case of contamination. This will help protect your Thyroid.

Be a leader: Love our Planet, care for our world. Think of the longer term. What will be our legacy to future generations? Will there be future generations?

An informed democracy will behave in a responsible fashion – Jefferson

This is our chance to save our planet. This is something we should ponder and read more about:






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Travel theme: Outdoors

Come with me  on a little walk – Outdoors

outdoors 2Lake Como – Italy


The dog loves walking on the beach outdoors…


You never know what you’ll find outdoors; like this “Thong Tree” (Australian thong)


Outdoors can help one see things a little differently….

outdoorsCompare notes and opinions with a few friends – outdoors….


Take a trip somewhere new with a view – outdoors….

outdoors4nBergen Norway

1077049_10200703181115396_282015302_oor a bit closer to home – Nudgee at Sunset

Travel theme from Where’s My Backpack – theme: Outdoors

 Something to Ponder About


Posted in Community, Environment, Mountains, Photography, Scandinavia, Travel, travel photography | Tagged , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Left to Pick Up the Pieces

There can only be one thing more nightmarish than hell itself, and that is to lose a child to  suicide. Gut-wrenchingly sad and tragic that a young life is lost. Gut-wrenchingly sad and tragic that the person has felt such emptiness and despair. Gut-wrenchingly sad and tragic that someone could feel so lacking in hope, so consumed with mental pain and anguish that this was even considered an option. And yet for their own family, who are left somehow to pick up the pieces, the consequences of this act can be so viscerally devastating, it is akin to a nightmare without end. Is it a selfish/revengeful act? An aberrant impulse? A distorted  or dysfunctional thought?

Family 2013 268While the tortured soul focuses completely on their inner world, of thoughts and feelings, they fail to realise the contagion of misery and desperation will afterwards infect the rest of their closest allies, their own family or friends. How does one face the world and continue with life, after the loss of a close family member or child?

Many lives have ended here

Many lives have ended here

The strength humans display in the face of this kind of tragedy, is nothing short of awe-inspiring. To bury one’s own child is heart-breaking, but to experience a child who deliberately ends their lives is completely unfathomable. How do people get over such an act? How do they lift themselves out of the depths of  misery?


And now, this week we have a man appear to conceal a mental illness and commit suicide on a German aircraft, taking 150 innocent lives with him. Not only that, but he has also taken his own family’s normal life and that of the victim’s families, on the path to a living hell, that is only just commencing. These people have to pick up the pieces of their own lives, and continue on, somehow.

Last week, a young boy from Australia drove a car filled with explosives into an army base, intending to cause maximum death and destruction and in the process, killing himself. A selfish act? A nutter? A kid with nothing to live for? A criminal? A sociopath?

Family 2013 272

I don’t have an answer. I don’t have a magic solution. Perhaps there isn’t one.  Each case of suicide is different, and each individual is different. Every socio-economic group, every ethnicity can be affected – no one is immune. But it is cowardly and selfish. The most selfish act imaginable. Australia, the egalitarian vanguard, has the highest rates of youth suicide in the world.

And so Life cis a roller-coaster. It is unpredictable, full of hard times and challenges, and if you are so blessed, many good times too. For some of us, success doesn’t happen and when life becomes too overwhelming, we feel like quitting, or we might feel like ending the pain, yet there is always Hope, waiting, watching, willing us to believe that things will improve. There is always Hope.

Can we stop suicide?  What can  we do:

We can be there to comfort and support our loved ones and our fellow man and woman.

We can make an effort if others appear stressed or unhappy.

We can appreciate every moment we have with each other, no matter how bored, tired, hungry, frustrated we may be feeling.

We can encourage others to seek help and reassure them of our support.

We can speak up, without shame, to others, when need dictates. Secrets kill….

And We Can  Listen to each other!

Reach out to one another – There is always hope!

Take a break – and relax!

Every person is a child of the Universe and has every right to be here.

Remember, “Everything, like the weather, passes.”

A final word from Marc: Whatever you believe to be true about yourself and life in the long-term becomes your reality.  Your beliefs are ingrained patterns of thinking that you build up over a lifetime.  They are habitual ways of processing the world around you.  If those beliefs don’t work in your favor, you can change them.  How?  In the very same way the negative beliefs formed in the first place – via repetitive thoughts that you accepted to be the truth.  Ingrain new beliefs by consciously choosing and repeating messages that lift you up.

Something sobering to ponder about.

If you need help or wish to talk to someone:




Posted in Anxiety, depression, Mental Health, Motivational, Self-Help, social anxiety, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Proverbial Thursday – Proverbs and Sayings from around the World

I find there to be profound wisdom in proverbs, sayings and quotes and I marvel at the way they are so succinct in communicating messages to the reader. Mostly anonymous, they come to us from past generations and from across cultures. They speak of the experiences of lives lived and lessons learned. Quotes, like proverbs, make us think more deeply about something.

Each Thursday, I post a Proverb or Saying and a Quote that I find thought-provoking.  I hope you will too.Proverbial sml 3932

Gaa til glasset med din glede, ikke til flasken med din sorg!

Go to the glass with your joy, not to the bottle with your grief !!!!!

– Norwegian Proverb


“You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks” -Winston Churchill

Something to ponder about today


Posted in History & Traditions, Language, Proverbs, Scandinavia, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , | 6 Comments