Posted by: jkirkby8712 | February 2, 2012

Wednesday, 1st February 2012 – and so we move on to the second month of 2012, already!!

I wrote back to Lesley in Scotland the other day, as a follow on from our brief discussion about Scotland becoming independent of Great Britain.  I said that

 ‘According to various articles I’ve read over recent times, it’s obviously a subject of debate in some quarters, but on the basis of your comment, almost seems a point of division between generations. Much the same out here in respect to Australia becoming a republic and ‘disowning the Queen and her representatives’ [our various State Governors, and Federal Governor-General]. I’m trying to read up on Scottish history a bit lately [again], and am currently [though not all Scotland related] reading a book by Nora Chadwick about the history and origin of the Celts from their ‘beginnings’ through parts of Europe and the Mediterranean world – currently ‘wading’ through the early centuries of the AD period and the Roman ‘invasion’ of Britain. Interesting that the Romans never bothered to go too far north into Scotland’……………………………Lesley’s brief response was rather interesting  itself  –  ‘I live on Roman Road and we Strathaven has an old Roman fort in it. Would love to get a metal detector as sure there is an old wall under one of our fields’ .  Now that would be a rather exciting activity, searching for an old Roman fort!!  While equally important in their own way, the only archeologocal finds here in Australia will relate to our Aboriginal populations – don’t think the Romans got this far – not until post World Two anyway, when they came in their thousands!

Meantime, I see my calendar is telling me we have reached the first day of February.  This is the last month of our Australian summer, and certainly in most of the continent, it tends to be the hottest month of the year [just after the schools have gone back]. Up in the top end of Australia, this month is in the middle of the Wet season, which is often accompanied by rain, floods, cyclones, etc, as we saw with disastrous consequences 12 months ago. I’m rather pleased that I’m not working this February – some of those peak hour afternoon drives back from the city in high 30 degree heat used to become quite unpleasant. The weather has cooled down a little for a couple of days, which I enjoy – I’m thinking that somewhere like Tasmania, our island state to the south of Victoria, should be my ideal climate to retire to, being somebody who doesn’t mind the cold weather we get here [is not too extreme] but am finding it difficult to cope with heat and humidity. One reason I have reneged so far on the numerous requests over the years of my sister & her husband to move up to Brisbane. The humidity of that city at certain times of the year can be rather unbearable,  although that needs to be balanced against the relative warmth of their winters compared to down here.

Now this was a ‘feel good’ story in today’s media……………….’Company boss gives his employees $15 million in bonuses after selling up………….Employees at the Grenda bus company have been left feeling overwhelmed with gratitude after owner Ken Grenda gave them $15 million in bonuses.   Etty Talauega, who plans to use some of her bonus to help her children with their hip-hop dancing dreams, said she was reduced to tears when she found out.  “I really didn’t expect this to happen,” Ms Talauega told Nine News.   Vernon Franklin, a driver with Grenda for five years after moving to Melbourne from India, said the bonus was just part of what made the Grendas a great family to work for.  “I was overwhelmed with the generosity of Mr Grenda,” Mr Franklin said.  Mr Grenda decided to sell the company after 66 years and thank staff by sharing some of the profits. Some are receiving as much as $30,000.  “I think we are losing a great man,” Mr Franklin said.   Iain Beberidge, who has driven with the company for 15 years, insisted the appreciation the employees felt was not all about the money.  “Ken looked after his employees, he treated them like family,” he said.  “Every time he comes past the depot, he shakes everyone’s hands, and says ‘g’day’.  “He knows everyone by their first names.”  Another employee Jeff Winfield told Nine News that the new owners would have a lot to live up to.  “Hopefully the new boss will get the hint,” he said.

I imagine there would be a few envious employees out there in working land, wishing they had a boss like that. However, I think people like that only come along every now & then, mostly the latter.

In the meantime, while I generally have less interest in the shorter form of cricket [as compared to the traditional Test matches], I noticed that the first of a couple of 20/20 Games between Australia and India was played tonight in Sydney [20 overs per team] – a rather different makeup of players for the Aussie team for this competition, with the only member of the recent Test series being the opener, David Warner. Nevertheless, the match outcome was the same – Australia 4 for 171 defeated India 6 for 140. I think the 2nd game is scheduled for here in Melbourne, in a day or so.

PS, not sure why the first part of this article has a different font size, etc, seems to hve a mind of it’s own, won’t change for me!!




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