Showing posts from July, 2013

Two Cows

You have 2 cows.
You give one to your neighbour.

You have 2 cows
The State takes both and gives you some milk.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and sells you some milk.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both, shoots one, milks the other and then throws the milk away.

You have two cows.
You sell one and buy a bull.
Your herd multiplies, and the economy grows.
You sell them and retire on the income.

You have two cows.
You sell three of them to your publicly listed company, using letters of credit opened by your brother-in-law at the bank, and then execute a debt/equity swap with an associated general offer so that you get all four cows back, with a tax exemption for five cows.
The milk rights of the six cows are transferred via an intermediary to a Cayman Island company secretly owned by the majority shareholder, who sells the rights to all seven cows back to your listed company.
The annual report says the company owns e…

That's Rubbish

We've lived here over two years now and we still can't find the darn trash bags when we go to the grocery store.  EVERY TIME.  And then once we do find them we by heaps so that we don't have to find them again for awhile.  Why do they hide them?  In a US store they would be right next to the plastic wrap, sandwich bags, etc.  Here, they are in separate rows.  Why?  The flour is in a separate row from the sugar and other baking stuff also.  It is still such a scavenger hunt doing the weekly shop, trying to think like an Aussie but failing miserably because I love LOGIC.

Yesterday I went to my local Coles where I had finally found the trash bags in a back row next to the frozen foods.  As you do.  Until now.  Apparently now the grocery store sells clothes instead of trash bags.  I couldn't even find the ziplock bag section anymore.  But that's ok, I can just wrap my sandwiches in shirts now.

And then there's the car insurance.  Can someone please tell me why a g…

Port Vila, Vanuatu

So I'm a little behind with the posting.  My brain has been busy thinking up quilt patterns lately to the point that it keeps me up at night.  Sad, I know.  I wrote of the wonders of Tanna, Vanuatu but neglected to write about Port Vila so here goes.

We arrived into Port Vila late Friday night and stayed at the casino hotel right in the middle of the downtown area.  It was right on the water, but one of those places that made us glad to be leaving the next morning.  It was just a stop over on the way to Tanna.
After a few days on Tanna we returned to Port Vila and stayed at Nasama Resort on Erakor Bay.  It was a little ways out from town which was exactly what we were looking for.  We had heard that food was very pricey in Vanuatu so booked a place with a kitchen in preparation.  This worked out very well because we didn't have to go out for every meal.  We could just hop on a "bus" (any mini van with a B on the license plate) and for $1.50 each way stock up on food …

Any Way the Winds Blow

Last Wednesday I flew to Perth for a customer meeting.  Perth is on the West Coast, the flight can take from 2.5 hours to a lifetime depending on how the trade winds and the political winds are blowing.  Last Wednesday apparently there was a political typhoon, because when we took off Julia Gillard was the Prime Minister of Australia and by the time we landed Kevin Rudd was now in charge.

As ridiculous as politics might seem in the States, they are even more so in Australia.  The country holds elections at least every three years and 140 days where they vote for their House of Representative and Senate members.  Whichever political party holds the majority representation in the House chooses a leader who the Governor-General commissions to become Prime Minister.  Apparently elections can be held whenever they want with a minimum of one month after the last election.  Got that all?  So sort of exactly like the US but not really at all.

So rewind three years ago, Kevin Rudd was PM and …


Lately it has been dark by 5 pm and not light until 7:30 am.  When the sun finally does come up it lights up the frost covering the ground.  And we are feeling lazy :(  I am starting to understand why some animals just hibernate for the winter.  It's cold and dark and all you want to do is curl up someplace warm and sleep.  Earlier this week we went to bed at 7:30 because we were cold.  Our hot water is connected to solar panels so if we shower before it gets light out the showers are not quite warm enough.  Not even the dog can get up out of bed in the mornings!

The good news is it's all uphill from here.  We've passed winter solstice, aka the coldest shower of the year.  Eventually it will be Spring again.  In the meantime thank goodness for quilts, electric blankets, hats, mittens, soup, and lots of animals to keep us warm.