Tag Archives: BLOG IT ALL

FULL MOON

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THE YAAN: There’s a full moon about at the moment. A much acclaimed full moon. It came up big and yellow and then settled over the mouth of the Bellinger River like a big white star. The tide was high and the ocean roaring. Some people said it was very cold. Some said it was mild. One family was fishing down near the Lido. They didn’t appear to be cold. In the annex of the first row of caravans in the caravan park, one man was watching television with his back to the water and the moon.

Two streets back from the water the Urunga Bowling Club has been completed. In 2009, floodwaters rushed through it. They rushed through most of the middle of the town, including the Ambuland and Fire Stations. Somehow the Bowling Club managed to claim enough insurance to build the flash new Club. It even has a café and a children’s playground. Urunga is known as the Little Town that Time Forgot. It seems with the New Bowling Club that time has briefly remembered us. It had all kind of modern equipment. A machine that recognised driving licences and other 21st Century contrivances.

It also has a cafe . Chinese Restaurants have a monopoly on most of the small clubs along this stretch of coast and it was nice to have the option of a caramelised onion and camembert cheese tart for $7.

The moon is up high now. It will shine through the passionfruit vine tonight.

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THE LAST DAY OF WINTER 2010

31 AUGUST 2010 RALEIGH

AN IDLE ROAM.

http://nellibellingen.wordpress.com/

NEIL WHITFIELD, my first real blogging encounter, is re-locating to West Wollongong. I had not ever been there till early this year with Izzy  whose academic years were spent at UOW. NEIL’S SECOND DECADE.

31 AUGUST 2010 BALI AND MISTS AT RALEIGH SCOOB 31-8-2010LAST DAY OF WINTER 2010 RALEIGH 

Let’s take a look at this Winter. June, July and August. Hmm. This morning the mists were down and Bali the Brown Dog was out front early. All dogs were out and about during the night and Scoob the little dog is dirty and shamefaced.

THE WINTER OF 2010.

FROST IN JULY 2010 RALEIGH 

Down here at the Coast, we had a July frost. I saw only the one although there might have been light ones for the early risers.

Up in Armidale on the New England, it went as low as –12 degrees in July.

The garlic had been taken in by the time of the frost and the citrus fruits were sweet and abundant. Next door they have lemonade trees and I have been drinking them with new life water.

Seems to be a catbird in there as well and I know there is a Jabiru.

 

I took a trip to Macksville, one Wednesday. 34.4 kms, so they tell me, from Raleigh to Macksville.

MALE SATIN BOWERBIRD

My winter has featured BIRDS. A lot of birds. A lot of different kinds of birds.

Its had me posting photographs and asking about the species. This black one is a Satin Bowerbird. Now, I was under the illusion that they were elusive and timid but here there are masses of them. At least 3 males and 10 or more females – all aggressive and squabbling and shrieking.

So much for my delusions of the romantic bower bird secreting pieces of blue in some hidden nest.

WUNDERLAND BELLINGEN

Much of the Winter has been taken up in Bellingen Shopping with my daughter and her little lady. Bellingen is a one street shopping centre. Up one side and down the other, with one side street of cafes.

Its almost a meditation walk for me with the Maclaren Pusher. Up one side and down the other. 3 generations of women from one family.

On this last day of Winter, 2010, a Winter which has certainly blued with the chilled winds of our own personal ice floes, I have a hose out and am washing the concrete verandahs where the chooks and horses have been and am waiting for visitors to come.

 

 

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I have , of course, been sharing a child’s first Winter and now Springtime is coming. Dresses and sand and lagoons – for the very first time.

I have other little girls to show things to, as well. Haven’t had much chance this year and I miss them. I do believe that only one of them has seen a flathead.

We need poncho towels and thongs. We also need a caravan as spare room. We have tents but – the caravan would be a far, far better thing to do than anything I have done before.

Better, even, than the Main House at Bilambil. Possibly. Its going to be a hard act to follow. There we had our own Old Gentleman, large heart shaped pool and tennis court.

BELLINGER VALLEY

Here, we have the things of the Valley, the Beach, the River and the Towns.

We have verandahs all around and flat land where children can play. We have gardens to plant and trees where we can hang swings. The nearest shop is at the Raleigh Tip – the Ecohouse.

When the Spring time comes, we can go there and look for things we need. Books and Toys and planks of wood.

Me, I want a claw bathtub out the back, near the laundry tubs.

They say there’s a black snake living out there at the moment, just behind the big shed. They saw it sunning itself.

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It has been a Winter of horses. My own favourite is this one. He comes a-visiting from time to time and stays a week or two eating coastal grasses.

I  know little about horses but a recent trip to the now almost defunct Brigalow caravan park reminded me of Old Tom who lived there when I did in the 1990s. He still does, so I am told, down in his little corner of the world on the riverbank.

I saw him once with a horse. I think he was the original Horse Whisperer. It was a beautiful thing to watch. He carved from bone and rode a big white motorbike.

 

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We did one trip to Armidale during the Winter. I waited until I was hearing no whispers of –12degrees or ice on the inside of the windows.

Then we went a-visiting for a couple of days. We went to the movies and laughed and talked, and talked and laughed- about it all again.

There seems to be a new coach service doing the Bello-Armidale run and I will be looking at taking a ride on it. After years of travelling on public transport, I am now often a Starwagon passenger. Each method of locomotion has its points – but I do like my coaches and trains and planes.

I wonder whether they will still have a movie on the journey.

 

BELLINGEN MARKETS JULY 2010

Winter saw us at the Bellingen Markets. A new normal is forming. 2nd and 4th Saturdays are Growers’ markets in North Bello. They are small and communal and friendly.

3rd Saturday is Bellingen Community Markets. They are HUGE. We meet up with the Maclaren Girls and do our Saturday mornings. 

Clothes and books and food and music and people.

Seem to be rather a lot of little fairy people as well and a wonderful face painter.

And my favourite young band HEART TRIBE.

http://www.myspace.com/heartribe 

CENTENNIAL PLACE BELLINGEN

The Bellingen Winter. Well its almost done and we begin the Springtime. The magnolias are in flower. My mind is turning to the Urunga Sea Lido and the beaches. I don’t know what Springtime is going to bring. I know there is one sad element in it. Two, indeed.

It seems to be enabling me to walk within each day and grasp sanity.

Someplace in this Return is a ferocity of purpose. A gnarly ancient tree ferocity. A deep rooting  sturdiness.

I watched a grandmother slowly building a rock garden yesterday. One rock at a time. She could be crazy or she could be granitically wise.

Wise, so methinks. 

 

URUNGA FOOTBRIDGE

URUNGA FOOTBRIDGE.

SUMMER COMES AND SO DOES MY 10,000th HIT.

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How good is the  Internet ? A few years and a few tears back, I could no more have accessed a public forum for journals, images, music, videos, genealogy than I could have knitted new clothes for my coming grandchild. My father, Bruce Sanders, wanted his 2/3 Pioneer Battalion Story published but we simply didn’t have the resources. Now – here it is! How good is that ? This Particular Blog  of mine is about to hit 10,00 and I thank you all.

The mutual sharing is another dimension that works for me. I am not always able to travel and sometimes I don’t get out much at all. I also have a tendency to be overcome by what I like to call Acedia – in various forms – and NOW – I am no longer locked in at home alone. This is truly the Global Village for me.

Now – as we come into an Australian Summertime. and the closing of 2009 – I shall take a look at 2009- as it has been.

It was the year in which Izzy and I both turned 60 – 1949 children. I think I had best rephrase that. We were born in 1949.  2009 was the year in which we moved from the Tweed to the Clarence, in which my daughter newly turned 30 became pregnant with her first child. My granddaughters  turned 5 and 10. A most interesting time it has been.

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Last Christmas, we, as a family,  were to meet in  Kalang on Boxing Day for Kati B’s 30th birthday and Christmas Day, Izzy and I were to spend alone at Bilambil Cottage where we were living.

We were out and about in the morning and received an impromptu invite to Lorraine’s for lunch with a dozen or so guests. Plenty of good foods and good company. A sober affair so it was and I enjoyed it up behind Scenic Drive in Tweed Heads  West.

Spent the rest of the day at home with our swimming pool and tennis court. 

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The next home for us was already starting to be listed on realestate.com.au.  I didn’t realise then that it would become a place of rather deep emotional and mental impact. 2009 is the last year of my 50s and time seems to have wrapped itself around me and curled into the core of me. Memories of 20 years of Addiction and 20 years of Recovery were waiting for in this 100 year old house as well as the history of my family and my childhood.  I intended entering my 60s  consciously and cautiously, knowing this – IT WILL BE DIFFERENT. And it has been a gentle, explorative time with a good deal of ‘ thinking’ going on.

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MT WARNING OVER BILAMBIL.

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THE TWEED RIVER NEAR TUMBULGUM 

Briefly this is my locational history.

1949-1950 – CANTERBURY ROAD HURSLTONE PARK SYDNEY. SANDERS FAMILY HOME.
1950-1970 -  27 PAXTON AVENUE, BELMORE. SYDNEY. HOUSE BUILT BY DAD.  
1970 – TUMBARUMBA . TEACHING AT ROSEWOOD.  
1971 – QUEANBEYAN SOUTH. TEACHING.
1972 – PAXTON AVE.  TEACHING IN LAKEMBA.
1973 – DRUMMOYNE, BALMAIN , CHISWICK, PORT DOUGLAS – CAMPING ON 4 MILE BEACH – YAHT UTIEKAH III- URUNGA.
1974-1977 – URUNGA IN VARIOUS LOCATIONS, INC WHITE ROSE TRADING COMPANY.
1977 – SYDNEY – GLEBE AND TAYLOR SQUARE.
1978 – 1987 – BELLINGEN AND  URUNGA – MARRIAGE AND CHILDREN.
1987 –1994 – SYDNEY. DRUG REHAB. BONDI. SOUTH COOGEE AND BACK TO TEACHING.
1994 – 2001 – URUNGA AND BELLINGEN.
2001-2009 – TWEED RIVER INC TUMBULGUN, BILAMBIL WITH SHORT TIMES IN TUGUN AND BRISBANE.
2009 – ULMARRA.

 

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In January of 2009, the Armidale Mob came to Bilambil Cottage for a Summer Holiday. That was a ‘ classic’ summer holiday. I must have had some sweet stars shining on me this year because, despite the transitional turmoil and my own inclination to distress, I have had a goodly share of Sweet Moments, Classically Good Experiences and of events turning out just as I had planned and hoped for.

The Summer holiday was one of them as was the 30th birthday of Kati B.

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We took the Poppy to the beach at Pottsville. They have been living in Armidale for years now and she hasn’t been beaching since she was a baby. We also continued our cafe experience which is rather extensive . The EATZ CAFE at Pottsville featured real Beach Food. None of which I can now recall but they had tropical names and strange drinks – a 60s flashback which I enjoyed after one too many trendoid, generic eateries such as the infamous Blue Frog in Toowong, Brisbane.

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I lived in Bilambil Cottage for 4 years and in deciding to leave, we took our time in choosing where we wanted to go and when and why and how etc. The Cottage was tiny but exquisite with a view over the Bilambil Valley and out to the Coral Sea, During the Mob’s Holiday, we sat outside of an evening and watched the bats fly over and the long nose come out to feed from the long grasses.  The Poppy learned to swim and discovered the wonder of being a Mermaid.

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We also visited the beach at Kingscliff. The Mob had lived at Kingscliff before going up the mountain. I thought that when we moved south we might miss the exotic birds and plants of the Tweed. Tweed is on the NSW/ QUEENSLAND border.

Are these baobab trees ? I like the word and haven’t checked to see whether these are baobabs or not.

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One thing I knew I wouldn’t miss was the BILAMBIL SPORTS CLUB.

I enjoyed it for a goodly length of time but things went amiss and the decor was never a good look. The Club is set in the Valley. A lovely setting with a creek beside it and playing fields, paddocks with horses and the hills rising on either side.

The Bilambil Village is tiny and part of a loop drive enjoyed by Many. However, the Club doesn’t open till  3pm, serves food only a couple of nights a week, doesnt cater for vegetarians AT ALL and is decorated as you can see on the left. The music scene which thrived there has shrivelled to nothing. Lots of potential going unused.

SOUTH GOLDEN BEACH 001 Leaving blue skies and palm trees took some serious decision making.

BIRTHDAYS, BABIES AND CIRCUSES

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This weekend, Charlie came down from Armidale for a visit.

For me, its working well, being near the Family.  Izzy is battling a little with the music which is still mainly situated further north. This weekend was circus and celebrations. That’s a fine thing, that is.

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I had concentrated on our black and white cows all week , wondering what on earth the four black and white cows at the CIRCUS ROYALE were going to do as TRICKS.  My cows didn’t appear with anything specially impressive but the cows at the circus surely did. They stood on hind legs with forelegs on small podia while a miniature white horse danced and ducked under and between their legs. Marvellous!

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The day before the Mob came, a mist settled on the area and stayed there till almost lunchtime. The BookMan said that on his way down from Maclean, as he turned onto the Pacific Highway, he couldn’t see whether or not there was traffic coming at him. Must be the river flats, methinks, that let it sit so low for so long.

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We located the CIRCUS in the park in SOUTH GRAFTON.  We had phone booked for four adults and two children and picked the tickets up from the Circus Office. Circuses haven’t featured greatly in my life so each step was a ‘learning experience’.

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They say its a million dollar big top tent and are advertising for clowns. There were no photos allowed at all inside the Big Top and there were enough heavies to make it look a wise idea to be obedient to that one.

The two things I liked best were the Cows and the men in black running back and forth with ropes pulling up the rigging. Hadn’t seen anything like it since being on the UTIEKAH III in 1973.

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We were also inspired to create a SLEEPOUT. One of the things which had attracted us to Grafton months ago was the advertising in the real estate sites of homes with SLEEPOUTS. Under this inspiration and despite the plentiful supply of spare rooms, we took ourselves to RIVERSIDE Centre in South Grafton, acquired a single bed, brought it home and bolted it together  ready for the Sleepout for Granddaughter No 1.

One problem – the bed was longer than the sleepout area was wide.

THAT DID NOT STOP US.

   

A VERY WEALTHY WOMAN

 

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In my own way, I am a very Wealthy Woman. I now have the Fridge. That’s the two lads delivering it a week late and refusing to carry it up the 8 steps unless we paid another $15 which Izzy refused to pay. Fortunately, we seconded our next door neighbour and Izzy and the neighbour brought it up the stairs. So, we now have a fine fridge.

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These are the signs at the intersection of COLDSTREAM STREET and the PACIFIC HIGHWAY, ULMARRA. Andrew from WIDE RIVER says – SEE ULMARRA – IT WON’T TAKE LONG.

Well, theoretically it shouldn’t take long but in practice, we have been known to take hours in the Village.

THINGS WHICH MAKE ME WEALTHY  
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Include the many mandarines on the trees beside the house.

may 2008 006 A lot of laughter and gentleness and no violence at all. Lots of music as well.
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I have read poetry at an Austlit Breakfast at the WORDSMITHS CAFE in the ST LUCIA CAMPUS of the UNIVERSITY OF QUEENSLAND in BRISBANE.

 
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I lived for many years in the small town of Urunga and over the last year have eaten there with my daughter at the BOARDWALK CAFE. We have wonderful breakfasts at the BOARDWALK and are served by young men whom I once taught.

KATHMADNANA My Grandchildren learned to swim in my own very excellent swimming pool, way up on the Queensland border.

FROST ON THE LAWN

Floods and now frost. One month we have been here. I have been in the North for 8 years and not had frost on the lawn at all.

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I am not very “good” with the cold so frost has been a shock. From Bellingen years, I have a small recollection of frost being the thing which sweetens the mandarines on the tree and I have a lot of mandarines on the tree. There are 2 other citrus trees as well so we will see how much sweetening is happening.

A LONG WEEKEND

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WIDE RIVER CAFE ULMARRA http://www.gcountry.com.au/about.htm
FLOOD FREE AT LAST.

The MOB from ARMIDALE were down for the weekend. We lunched both days at WIDE RIVER CAFE just down the road in COLDSTREAM STREET. Long meandering lunches they were too – with food and talk and music.

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All the food is prepared locally and home made. From APPLE PIES to Kangaroo. Juices ,  Coffees and GOULASH from an old Russian Recipe. Sunday we encountered the music arvo in the courtyard and Izzy had his bass out with Andrew Hegedus Prop. WIDE RIVER has been a real bright spot in our Ulmarra life.

MONDAY IN BILAMBIL.

Izzy is off to his Unwork with the Salvos where, today, they deal with THE HIDDEN JOB MARKET. He seems quiet cheerful about it. 

The bottom paddock is being slashed  and I am going into a meeting in Coolangatta a little later. Qld time that is.  The border is just over the far ridge of the Valley. 

16 rescues off Gold Coast Beaches yesterday, so they tell me on COASTFM. The local ABC. Our plans continue towards the Clarence with all the attendant excitements and doubts. One thing I shall miss is COASTFM. I also suspect that mobile internet will be an issue. GPRS only I would think and perhaps not in the original abode which is being offered to us. The Residence looks – quite beautiful. In 100 acres. From there we can look about and get a better feel for what we’re planning. 

I have been promised one lifelong communist and that makes the area look even more appealing. I don’t like a country where one cannot vote Communist or Socialist. I don’t even know that I want to vote for them but I do want to be able to do so. When the Greens are the furthest Left we get – I don’t feel so good. 

I grew up a Carpenter’s daughter in Belmore. Granddaughter and Great Granddaughter of  tramways men. Descended from servants and farm labourers, convicts and assisted emigrants. Then I arrived at adulthood amidst Vietnam War and all that came into being in the late 60s and early 70s – The last few decades haven’t fitted me very well at all. 

As for today, the weather is back to normal. Cool and fresh and sweet. The Coucal is up near the Cottage, due to the slasher having disrupted his ground nesting home. I have another month or two of my NORTHERN BELLES Calendar Online to finish off and then I am going to town.

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P.S. In Skinner Street, South Grafton is a cafe with a Bedouin Tent. 

 

 

DAY AT BANGALOW.

Took the chance to DO Bangalow today. byron-na-conv-014

I finally made it to ABRACADABRA. Now that’s not something you will understand unless you have raised flocks of small children during the 80s to the TV advertisement – THE BIGGEST BUNCH OF BASKETS UNDER THE SUN and had said children leaping and singing in a strange Northern Rivers Manner along with the ABRACADABRIANs on the Ad.  I didn’t look at the baskets but they had some nice stuff there. Floaty clothes. I almost bought one of the floating garments for next week’s wedding of Izzy’s nephew at Nerang but erred on the side of sophistication. The Wedding is a wedding planner job so methinks the yellow silk pants and other Chez Elegans 2ndhand garments are more in order. Joanne’s mother mostly provides me with that section of my wardrobe. I think I would be less uncomfortable in the yellow silk up there at Nerang than in the slightly faded hippy floater. Mostly I am black on black with a tinge of purple or faded black. I have a pair of blundstones which I have had since 2001. I almost renewed them last year in Dorrigo but was hesitant. a) because I am really NOT a new clothes buyer except the Blundstones. and b) because I heard that Bludnstones had sent their business to China – and despite the Rose’s delight in having all her clothes come from overseas, namely China( she is only 9) I don’t fancy my Aussie Boots being made there then sailed across oceans wide for me to pay for them to travel more  and further than I have travelled in 60 years.

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I have been to Bangalow only a handful of adult times. One was as I returned from my mother’s funeral. I turned off the highway and into this small town where she had spent a lot of time in her youth.40-13-bangalow-1947

When I was standing behind the A and I hall today I glanced up and felt a flash of recognition. I think its the same place as the shot above. Mum used to stay in Bangalow with her cousin Maisie. Johnston as was and became Beckinsale. We had a fine time today and lunched with Jo and Sherif at the cafe on the corner. Then headed north. Got off the freeway and took the leisurely Burringbar Ranges. I was wearing my Casino MooCow shorts which I thought a daring move in Cool Society. I believe it was very hot today because people were wilting en masse. That sort of weather suits me well. We stopped in Mooball where they now have one of the Automatic Door closing toilets which play Muzak while one is in there.  I didn’t enter it at all but Izzy informs that the tune was WHAT THE WORLD NEEDS NOW IS LOVE SWEET LOVE – but hurry up says he because the door’s about to open.

We moved on to the VICTORY HOTEL where we heard a stompbox rhythm and caught a few minutes of SLIM PICKENS which was a real treat. Slim gave us a CD . The new one he has done with Dr Baz. NEXT TIME its called.

A truly hot day. I took a swim when I came home and here on The Hill its not too bad at all. I shall be looking out for the crescent moon right there beside Venus shortly. byron-na-conv-032

Before I return to work on my NORTHERN BELLES Calendar of DAILY READINGS

I add and leave you with this split slab construction at CRABBE’S CREEK. CRABBE’s is another tiny village up here in the North. Between Mooball and Burringbar. The Store was manned bya beautiful young Englishwoman who loved the heat and loves the country. Next door was this very interesting construction. Along with wheelbarrows of bottled wine and lots of local vegies and fruit.  We do not have anything like this in Bilambil as far as I know. Then again, I have not yet made it to Ray and Norma’s Slab Hut just down the road and across the street.   

 

 

 

ALPHAINVENTIONS.COM

http://alphainventions.com/

Was working through yesterday on SILVER THREADS AND GOLDEN NEEDLES and noticed the Hits going through the roof. I thought for a time that I had stumbled upon a blog writing technique that really appealed to people. However as the Hits continued to climb, the wee Saturnian Voice began to mumble that something was odd about these figures. On investigation, I tracked down the referrers for the day and came across alphainventions.com. http://alphainventions.com/ 

I was a little disappointed at first due to my theory of personally being a genius was demolished but its a very interesting concept – like a massive leaflet drop or letterbox assault on a suburb. Take a look. You can post your blog or any other blog you fancy onto alphainventions.com and it goes on a reading list. Saturating the Interverse with all our blogs and by passing the Megas by the look of it. I am quite impressed so far. Will see what holding traffic remains after the initial Tsunami.  It could be a radical new departure. That would be something nice instead of Google search pages of drivel.

http://alphainventions.com/ 

P.S. Still a lingering regret that I hadn’t earned the attention all by myself. Ah well.

One should worry about fame just as pigs about being fat.