An Interesting week.

One of my beds.

Monday 22nd. April.  It rained for  quite a few hours from Saturday evening into  late Sunday afternoon. The rain has really not made all that much difference and we really need a lot more. I think, overall we received about 5-7 mil. – not a great amount. Certainly didn’t make much difference to the Wetlands. We had a bit of a “play date” this afternoon where we got to spend some time with Max, the Pug. Was both good and not so good. Started off well enough,  bit of sniffing and the like but all three walked well enough together – except Max is older and we had to stop a lot more and only went halfway round.  All of that was great the dogs were fine and  Jenifer ( his mum) was pleased. Only one dark spot was when  Benji jumped up on my lap and Max wanted to get up and Benji snapped at him. Other than that they were fine. Still no word about what’s happening with Dougal or if/when Sam is coming home. Today is 26 days since Dougal arrived.  I feel sorry for Benji and I don’t think I am being fair to him.   He was about four years  old when  I adopted him from the shelter and I am led to understand that  they were not  great four years. But now he is adopted, he has a home, a warm comfortable bed and food and a daddy who loves him. Then………… comes the WaWa and fifteen months later, she goes home and Benji has his  home back again. Then comes Yogi and after Yogi, Dougal. He has hardly had more than a few months of  having  his house and his toys and his daddy to himself. Now we have Max so he did get a bit miffed when Max wanted him to get off my lap so he could sit there. Benji is not an aggressive dog and perhaps today was his way of trying to tell me something. Over the next  little while, even as Dougal is here, I think I am going to give Benji a little extra attention.  As I said, Dougal has now been here, this time, for 26 days and he could be here for a while yet;  these two get on well enough but  I  think perhaps Benji is not getting as much attention as he should.

Friday 26th April.  I have been off line for the last week. My computer was hacked and  rather than  stuff about I  took it into the Computer tech and asked them to clean it. I also contacted the bank who asked me to destroy both  cards and  new cards with new numbers would be issued in due course.

Dougal – now gone back home.

It has been a difficult and concerning week but my computers were returned late this afternoon.  According to the Tech. there  was a few things on there that should not have been there but he didn’t elaborate and said that he has destroyed them  – he ran  several spyware and malware programs and was quite satisfied that the units were clean and could be returned to me.  The downside is that I have lost about seven or eight days worth of work, but the upside is that it could have been worse, much worse Yes it cost but I thought the cost was ‘reasonable”considering the work that he had done. Before we  parted  we talked about grandchildren ( he has three) and  showed each other photographs. What can I say – it’s a country town,,,  On  Thursday I attended the Anzac Day Dawn Service at the  Memorial Gates, and, since I can be lazy, I went to Maccas for breakfast rather than go home, cook something and perhaps disturb Annabell.  Later on that afternoon, Dougal went home, so Benji has his house all to himself again. However, I think Dougal will be back again for a little while since Ina is still in Adelaide.

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Promotion, Fund-raising and Aeromedical Jet

Part of the Team at  OTR / with Ambulance Service.

It’s been a very busy end to the week. Thursday  we were involved in a promotion with the opening of the new  On The Run (OTR) Service Station. OTR are one of the sponsors of the Royal Flying Doctor Service so we help them out but we also have the opportunity to promote the RFDS. The OTR is the “home”of the Krispy Kreme Donuts, which we gave away for free on opening day. Personally I don’t like them. They are great in most people’s eyes and I know people in Adelaide that go for them in a big way, but I find them just a tad too sweet for my taste. But we had a good day – talked to a lot of people and gave out flyers . On Friday the Prime Minister visited the Governor-General and  a General Election was called for the 18th May, so we can expect the letterboxes to be crammed with election material for the next weeks. Friday I  took Annabell to the doctor for a check-up, called John (my son) and reminded  of the RFDS Fundraiser on Saturday. Spent the afternoon working in the garage. Saturday morning I decided to have some time off so, I did not set the alarm and slept until almost 6:30. The dogs slept too and we didn’t go for our walk until almost 7am.

The dogs are well and enjoyed the walk this morning. It was interesting in that everything was quiet. Generally it’s still dark when we go out but it was light today and perhaps the other dogs were asleep which means that Dougal didn’t go ballistic like he general does if he hears a bark – or, indeed, any undetermined noise.  The Kangaroos  were few and far between this morning but  because it was light I saw for the first time some of the damage the Kangaroos had caused. I have walked the same area for a long time and watched it change over the years. I have watched a man  lay in concrete slabs and  edging to mark out his lawn area, cover the area in new topsoil, plant seed and water the area ( got wet a couple of times) and watched the grass take root and  finally become a nice lawn, which,  thanks to the Kangaroos, is in the process of being destroyed.  I can understand the frustration that must be involved here, but I still think leaving out water for them is the right things to do.

The New RFDS ICU Jet.

We did fairly well at the fundraiser  today. Started at 9am and finished at 1pm. It was interesting in that a number of people wanted to ask about the new RFDS  aircraft – the world’s first – and at the moment, only – aeromedical Jet – a Flying Intensive Care Unit. We wont see this here and it will be used for the long haul runs to the far north of the State.  At the meeting last week were were  told of the Whyalla Child Care Center.  This Center, like  a number of places, is on the flight path to the airport and every day the children see the RFDS Aircraft fly overhead. They sort of adopted the RFDS and some of the children said they wanted to be nurses and  go on the aircraft, some wanted to be pilots and one wanted to be a

Friends together.

doctor for the RFDS. Knowing the children like to play with boxes, one of the mothers brought in some empty boxes. The children made their very own RFDS aircraft and since they see it every day, they new which colours to use.  We thought this was fantastic and contacted Central Operations, who were very impressed. They sent me up a box of balloons, wrist bands, colour-in pages and a heap of put together  aircraft.

Annabell had a telephone call from Ina in Adelaide. I was out with the dogs at the time but Annabell says she was sounding really good and she hopes

to be back home in  about ten days. This means that Dougal might not be with us for more that another week or so – if Ina is correct. Not that I want to see him go, really, but Benji has been a bit odd this time – have no idea why. They have not been fighting or causing concern. apart from two spats, but that happens. Perhaps Benji doesn’t want to share anymore, whatever the reason, it feels different this time.

Wetlands, Lighthouse and Dust Storms

Dougal and Benji at Wetlands

Dougal came for a stay last Thursday.  Being flat out for much of last week we didn’t get out much but I did manage to get  them both to the Wetlands for a walk. Still no rain to speak of so there is no change in the water levels. It might not seem like that from the photograph, but then looks can be deceiving , however, the main pond still has water in it. Still it was a good time together and if he is still here, I  will take them both for a drive  out to the Lighthouse at the weekend.  At the end of this month we may be looking after a new dog for two weeks. One of the ladies at the church asked me if I would be willing to look after her dog for two weeks . Annabell was there at the time  and she said we would love to. I totally agree since the lady in question is one of the coffee ladies group and she has a Pug called Max – that should be fun.

During this week we experienced one of the  consequences of the drought.  The weather up until last Thursday was  fair – bit warm but fair- Friday was a different thing

This was at Port Wakefield , I believe.

altogether. Friday we had high winds – as high as 95 klms per hour in places. The traffic ground to a halt in Port Wakefield area as visibility was  zero, due to thick dust storms. We had high winds here and some experiences of the dust storms but nothing like the other areas of the  peninsula. Port Lincoln faced winds of over 100 kms. per hour and it was so bad that the power company shut off the power to Port Lincoln and the surrounding area – some 15,000 people without power. The reason was to protect Port Lincoln.  The power company was concerned that the high winds would bring down trees and branches onto power lines sparking a fire, which, in the high wind conditions, could take hold and spread very quickly. Adelaide also took a bit of a

Wont look at the Camera.

battering. As I said, we were not too bad – things happen above us or below us,

In the far north of the State, things are different  and the desert is blooming again. The flood waters from Queensland have made their way down and are currently pouring into Lake Eyre – normally  dry. As the waters have made their way down from Queensland and filled the dry river beds, the desert is now watered , everything along the way is blooming and there is an abundance of wildlife, swans, ducks, wild geese and pelicans. The  water will create islands in the lake where the birds can breed and raise chicks without foxes and dingos being able to get to them. Lake Eyre is 9,500 square klms however the Lake Eyre Basin and catchment area is 1.14 million square klms. It’s a big, big basin and lake Eyre itself is some 15 meters – about 50 feet – below sea level.  Last time it flooded my  son, John,  took the  flight up there and flew over Lake Eyre and the surrounding area. I did see the photographs and it was quite a spectacular sight to see the water flooding into the lake.

I took the dogs to the lighthouse and we had a good wander around the place and a good long walk  around the point. The weather was nice – bit on the warm side (34c) but quite nice. Benji did his usual and refused to look at the camera.  The drive to and from the lighthouse is 76 klms. or 46.25 miles, so it’s not something I do  too often but there’s no where else we can go – everything else around us is either a conservation area, or a  reserve area and  the whole of the Flinders Ranges are National Parks.

One of the things I enjoy doing is taking photographs. I agree I’m not all that good at it but I like doing it. I did go to a photography club some years ago , but  wasn’t too impressed with it. I am thinking I might give it another go. It seems to have a  different attitude to it these days so perhaps I might not find it quite as I did last time. One can but try. But then I have also changed since then and and I do believe I have quite mastered the Box Brownie now.