27. God's L - REAL
Exactly three months after heading east to Melbourne, the green Suzuki again headed eastward. On Friday January 12th, my son Jon and I were looking forward to 12 days of fun and games together. Of course, his description of fun and games is somewhat different to mine. I was thankful, nevertheless, that he took up the offer at all. It took Jon much weighing up, right until the last minute: He may have been thinking: "Twelve days without C. (girlfriend), only Vater, who might embarrass me with his antics? He took the risk and we were happily cruising east that Friday morning.
Long term readers of my story may recall a journey I undertook, which also led me along the Sturt Highway, the Highway of Trust, as I called it. (Wind Chapter 24). Having experienced some remarkable encounters at the time, I knew this trip was not only to became a trip down memory lane, but God would, if HE wanted to, lead me to see things and guide me, wherever he wished.
We followed the Sturt Highway, travelling through a large orange growing region, called the Riverland, the river being Australia's lifeblood, the Murray River. On the outskirts of Renmark the signs of a recent storm were clearly visible. Tree branches were still lying on the ground. Some houses looked badly damaged, roofs torn away.
Locals on the news had reported they had never seen anything like it. Described as a mini hurricane the storm, on Saturday 6/1/07, had struck in total surprise. It only lasted a few minutes, but caused millions of Dollars in damage, both to property and crops.
Our next major stop was Mildura, 400 kilometres from Adelaide in the state of Victoria. Walking around the town I read on a blackboard a quote in white chalk: "The most important thing in the world is today" - Johann von Goethe. (It was the same Hotel I had mentioned in a previous chapter, following my last trip through the town).
I was not wearing my Today cap at the time. Had I done so, I may have been tempted to walk into the place and correct them: The name of the German poet is Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Jon would have been embarrassed, so I refrained.
Moments later, just before we returned to the Suzuki I spotted a familiar face. It was that of a friend we used to know very well years earlier. He and his family, his wife was with him, only lived in the suburb next to us in Adelaide's North. We got chatting, how he was in Mildura on business, buying machinery and en-route to Broken Hill.
Jon and I shared the driving. I trusted him one hundred percent. He appears very confident behind the wheel and told me off a few times, when I would have overtaken, but he decided not to. We made it to Hay, New South Wales, by approximately 5.30 pm. We planned to only stopped for a few minutes for a drink and a snack. Jon parked in the main street of Hay, right beside a motorbike, rego YNT ... I had noticed it, because a blue helmet was attached to it.
Before commencing the last leg of our journey, 170 kilometres to Narrandera, I noticed a peculiar business name, just where the motorbike was parked - TINT KING. It was as if the NT went together with the TINT. (On the return journey, again via Hay, the motorbike was again parked in the same spot, more later). Were it not for the extra two hours of daylight, it would have been temping to overnight in Hay. Except we would have missed something rather special.
Jon was driving. I snoozed most of the way during that evening. But there were two things I clearly recall: I nearly missed it, but happened to open my eyes at the right moment to see in large letters, outside the entrance to a property, GRE GRE. I then realized it was right near the Glencoe turn-off, where I had taken a photo during the earlier trip along this highway. (Photo in Book 4, Chapter 24). The next day there was to be another funny double name, starting with G.
Approx. 20 kilometres from our destination for the day, Narrandera, I looked out the window to my left. All I saw was Australia's bare, dry landscape and not a cloud in the sky, except one. I said to Jon: "Hey, look at this. A L in the sky."
Jon, one eye on the road, the other trying to see out of the passenger window, corrected me: "It looks like a seven". Then I also saw that it was more of a seven. It seemed to follow us and unlike other clouds, it did not change shape. At first I wanted to just forget it. But then, I had seen other clouds in the sky. I had to take the photo (below), while Jon was driving. I was intrigued about this unusual shape, plus the fact that it seemed to stay at the same location, as if it was travelling with us; and it did not change shape.
Fifteen minutes or so later we reached Narrandera and followed the signs to the Caravan Park. At one point the 7 was still visible, right above a church. I asked Jon to stop, I wanted to take another photo. Combining the two, the church and the cloud, in a photo, would have made an interesting photo. This is where my family believes they have a right to override my behaviour. To be taking a photo of a cloud, just because it looks like a 7 and visible just above some heavenly real-estate, must be classed as a mental illness.
Is it an L turned upside down, or the Number 7?
Seven is God's number. L stands for Love. God is Love.
Friday 12/1/07 - around 8 pm - Approx. 20 kilometres west of Narrandera, NSW on the Sturt Highway.
Did anybody notice this, except my son Jon and I? The cloud 7 was still visible, unchanged when we arrived at Narrandera.
Had I been on my own, I may have got excited to the point of thinking I was on Cloud 9. I said to Jon later - what if you saw your name JON in the sky as a cloud?
We had some interesting conversations along the way. Our difference in understanding life was even bigger than that to my wife.
It was a perfect evening for camping. However, I did not want to leave this town and only see the caravan park. It was almost 9 pm when we took the Suzuki downtown. Being a Friday night, the Narrandera nightlife was in full swing - in the churches. We parked on the Newell Highway, right near a church. Seeing people outside, young people, I asked them what was on. It was a farewell for...
As we continued strolling around this country town, certain places and events came back to me. Who would forget the "Ditch-Witch" truck or rego 4 Joy, which I think had happened here. Plus I had bought the latest edition of Every Day with Jesus and enquired about a friend, who I thought had his roots in this town, and now lived near us in Adelaide. At the time I didn't receive a positive response, but this night I did.
From a distance there were signs of something going on, lights, parked vehicles, children running around on the footpath. Walking closer, I realized it was a church. Now I remembered it from my previous visit. A service was just concluding. Some worshippers were still at the front singing, while others already were talking in the foyer.
Speaking to a lady, she told me that it was the final night of a week-long evangelistic campaign. Out of curiosity I asked, if she knew a person named Tom ... "Oh, yes! He used to be my prayer partner." I explained that Tom and I know each other: "Was he not a lay-pastor at this church many years ago?" Before leaving I asked for a brochure. I liked the address - 35 Bolton Street.
Back at the Caravan Park Jon tried to get to sleep, while I updated my diary. A water sprinkler was keeping him awake. I had seen it almost immediately on arriving - Camp site No. 7 was being watered thoroughly. I didn't worry about it any more until Jon mentioned the nuisance. I suspect the caretakers had just forgotten to turn it off. A fellow camper was able to produce a torch; we found the valve in the dark and turned it off.
Only now, as I am putting this together, I am entertaining a very distant thought. Could there be a rational explanation for the 7 in the sky?
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Jon, outside the magnificently restored Narrandera Railway Station. He may be sleeping longer in the mornings, but his driving skills came into good use, when I needed a snooze to stay safe after lunch.
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My travel companion was an even better sleeper than the one in Bendigo. I did not mind, because it gave me again the opportunity to go for a walk in the district. Unlike Point Lonsdale a year earlier, on this trip we did not carry any bicycles. Despite all intentions to just go for a walk, my mind was unable to ignore my surroundings, picking up small items and connecting them. It's something I had done for a number of years, why should I now stop, unless there was the chance of becoming addicted. (So far so good).
A lookout outside the caravan park, above a lake, featured a plaque. It informed that a gentleman named ... Gordon, opened the walking track on May 2nd 81. Without effort, immediately my numbers brain recalled, later that day we were planning to visit friends, who lived near Cootamundra, NSW. Their property number was 1258.
Two kangaroos were grazing peacefully nearby, until a vehicle drove up to the locked gate of the lookout-road. The male driver turned the car around and left. The kangaroos hopped away. I kept walking, exploring the out-skirts of Narrandera. (Anyone not hundred percent in English, please note, this has nothing to do with skirts, women wear).
A street sign read Shady Street. I followed it and the fun started. A five cent coin on the roadway teased me. It was exactly opposite house No. 13. The day before writing this those figures made the date, my birthday. (Read on for some birthday fun below).
(As I write I remember thinking a few nights ago - SHADY - HAD5 Y, then I see the word DAY ...etc etc...).
Since it was early Saturday morning, not many people were around, I was perhaps more open in investigating bits I saw in the street. As I progressed, following Shady Street, I came to an intersection. In the middle of the intersection was a bit of clear plastic. It looked like it had been used as funnel for oil. A cap, possibly the top of an oil container, lay beside it. Again, not far away at all, was a coat-hanger.
I took the items and tossed them into a bin in a reserve to my left, a little further on. Except the oil container top. I kept it, just in case. It's imprinted AMR. Another reason emerged to link this with my story - the intersection was the crossroad of Melbourne Street and Elizabeth Street.
Did I not experience some magic in Elizabeth Street, Melbourne? With this in mind, I wanted to keep part of the coat-hanger, which was made of plastic, not wire. I detached a small section, the part, which is used as a hook (for your knickers I presume - more on that subject in a minute).
I never claimed my actions were normal; only that they happened as reported. Allow me to be amazed about the amazing ways some things worked together with previous events.
5 cents, found opposite No. 13 - love it.
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Two items, found close together, not far from Shady Street.
Top: Alpine Village card with pass code: ACC 500
Bottom: Cut out of plastic bottle, showing size (500ml) and use by date (05 Jan).
Using the letters ML & C, I saw mainly the digits 1 & 5 in both items.
The caravan Park we stayed at, which I only realized later, was called Lake Talbot Caravan Park, LTCP. So much Da Ninci, so little time.
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That morning in Narrandera I discovered something else. My son Jon must have inherited a fixation regarding underpants (knickers) from his mother. When I suggested we have one plastic bag for our dirty clothes, he insisted, he'd rather have his own. "I'm not going to put my underpants in the same plastic bag with yours!" I am still trying to work out his logic.
Despite pledging the night before, we're going to be up and on the road early, it's usually 9 am before we hit the road. (Perhaps I should lure Jon with free beer. Just kiming (sic), he doesn't drink).
On the outskirts of Narrandera we briefly stopped to take a photo of the railways station, and to admire a vintage car for sale on the side of the road. It was an Austin A 40 Devon. If A 40 was meant to be a code, it could have come from the postcode 2700 and 427, with a zero left over. The A is printed on above Alpine Pass. But who is worried about codes?
At Grong Grong, probably still thinking about Devon, we took the wrong turn-off from the Newell Highway. Instead of crossing the railway line, we drove at least 5 kilometres on the Grong side of the railway line. 'We should not be coming to an unsealed road", Jon protested. We turned around our brum brum and drove back to Grong Grong. The locals call it Grongie, the lady in the Supermarket-Deli Post-Office Newsagent Tourist Information Centre Shop told us.
We encountered some really interesting looking, small towns and villages along the way, both with architecture from a by-gone era, plus real cool names:
According to the Random House Motoring Guide, the railway station was opened in 1881, and named Cowabbie Road. Seven days later it was changed to Cooleman and in 1895 to Coolamon.
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Matong - a tiny town, with a Wild West flavour.
The parked van carried rego No. 111, but this was not the only cookie. I got talking to a local outside this Antique Shop. His sweet little daughters were called Elizabeth and Abbey.
Other towns on the way were Ganmain (Go man in) Marrar, (where I saw rego plate SM70), Wallendbeen (sounds like 'Been Wallend) and Binalong. These are the places we'd been along, but did not stop at.
The day before a story made headline news: A large area of Cootamundra had to be evacuated. I had listened to the street names, as they were read out one by one. Something sounded fishy, grabbing my attention. The upheaval came about, so the official story went, because a wheat silo was in danger of exploding, after gases developed in the incessant heat. I have never heard of a possible explosion, caused by wheat gases.
Not far from Cootamundra, on a country property (No. 1258), lived our friends, who had moved into a grand, old-style mansion, surrounded by a few hectares of land. Being right there, on the land, the extend of the drought was most visible. Their dam had dried up too. No doubt after good rainfalls, their property would be a picture of green meadows among rolling hills.
What surprised me, was that during the hour we talked, nobody ever mentioned the drama, which unfolded at their doorstep, and which was making front page headlines. Afterwards I remembered, I should have asked, how it happens, how wheat develops gas, which may blow up inside a silo. It was hard to not see the German word mund, meaning mouth, in the name Cootamundra. (Perhaps I ought to email Mr. G...and ask...?).
As we followed the detour around the evacuated area, there was little to see of the drama taking place in the town. If news reports are correct, hundreds, if not thousands, of people had spent the night with friends (or strangers) on the other side of town or in Motels. (One way of getting to know your fellow citizens).
According to the news, trains were also prevented from passing through Cootamundra. We noticed this at a place called Harden, a town further on, where we stopped for a bite to eat. Outside the railway station was a large group of people, resting on or beside their luggage in the shade or on the footpath. The train carriage was there too, just waiting.
To travellers from Adelaide, Goulbourn signals that Sydney is just around the corner. We exited the Hume Highway for another break. A green, vintage Bentley sports car, was parked near Belmont Park (?) for all to admire. When we owned the green Wolseley 4/44 I had suffered from old-timers decease, polishing the chrome bumpers and radiator grill, just for the fun of it. Today I am happy for any lucky enthusiast, who owns a restored treasure, such as this Bentley. (Did I hear somebody ask for the registration number? Sorry, I didn't take notice).
I took a brief, but brisk walk around Goulburn. Behind a theatre complex I spotted some graffiti. It clearly read: SK8ordie. At first I considered taking a photo. Then decided that I had outgrown such foolishness.
As if drama was following us, only 1/2 hour after leaving Goulburn, we got stuck in a massive traffic jam. After much stop/start/stop/start we finally passed the accident, which triggered the traffic to build up. A Tarago had mounted the median strip.
Had it not been for a little disagreement and confusion, as to which is the quickest way, we may have arrived in Dee Why earlier than 8.13 pm.
My daughter and her partner, in whose home-unit we were staying, were back in Adelaide. We had spent a week together with them, celebrating Michelle's 30th birthday. We took this opportunity to stay in their newly acquired bright, third-floor unit, to enjoy a few days in the big city with the beautiful harbour. For the poor migrant from Germany, Sydney holds many fond memories - memories without number.
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A card I received for my 57th Birthday
To pick a card 5 x 7 on my 57th Birthday was rather unique.
The sender herself, so I found out later, did not realize, how many clues were in the card, she had purchased.
Can you decipher a simple message? Clue: It consists of two of the above symbols.
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Here is another puzzle, just for fun, which came in an email newsletter. It was claimed that only 2 % of minds could work it out. (I think the other 98% just gave up too soon).
It took me about 3/4 hours to solve, which was good exercise for the brain.
THERE ARE NO TRICKS, ONLY PURE LOGIC.
1. In a street are five houses, which are painted in five different colours.
2. In each house lives a person with a different nationality.
3. The five homeowners all drink different drinks, smoke different brands of cigarettes, and keep different pets.
Here are the clues required to work out the answer.
1. The British lives in a red house.
2. The Swede keeps dogs as pets.
3. The Dane drinks tea.
4. The green house is next to the white one, on its left.
5. The owner of the green house drinks coffee.
6. The person smoking Pall Mall keeps birds.
7. The owner of the yellow house smokes Dunhill.
8. The man in the house in the centre, drinks milk.
9. The Norwegian lives in the first house.
10. The man who smokes Blends, lives next to the one who keeps cats.
11. The man who keeps horses, lives next to the one, who smokes Dunhill.
12. The man who smokes Blue Master drinks beer.
13. The German smokes Prince.
14. The Norwegian lives next to the blue house.
15. The man who smokes Blends, has a neighbour, who drinks water.
THE QUESTION IS: WHO KEEPS FISH FOR A PET?
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(Back to Sydney, Sunday 14/1/07)
It so happened, from a previous visit, I remembered that there was a Baptist church, not far off Pittwater Road. After a refreshing walk, I arrived right on starting time. But the service was to be in the Chinese language. Somebody said, another church was right across the road. So it was. Again I struck it lucky; the small, mostly elderly congregation was about to start their service.
I enjoyed it, even the songs very much, (Hymn No. 315). At one point a well meaning official apologized for the late start, plus the pianist was on holidays. I replied: "I did not come here to be entertained. If I don't receive a blessing it is entirely my fault."
An usher handed me a magazine ... Volume 11, Issue 1. Some days later, during a moment of relaxing, I casually picked it up and started reading. In an article about attitudes I spotted a spelling error. The page 18 article gave as an example King Saul's bad attitude towards the young hero, David, who had just chopped off the head of the giant Goliath.
In the third paragraph I read: Saul was king oat the time. Something was definitely not right. It should read, no question: Saul was king at the time.
Seeing the extra o, (ao = God) together with the cross, I wondered, if it had anything to do with No.1. The address of the church was 1 Fisher Street. I was left with a sense of awe. It all sounded so unreal. There is nothing I could have invented, neither No.1, nor my surname, minus c.
At the end of the paragraph the scripture reference was 1. Samuel 18, 7. Perhaps the page number (18) did have a meaning? Take it out and all that remains is 17. On 1/01/07, barely 9 hours into the New Year, I had experienced my first bit of magic for 2007. It involved the numbers 1 and 7 and lead right to this city on the Harbour, Radio 2 CH Sydney, 1170 am.
1. Samuel 18, 7 reads: "Saul has slain his 1000, and David his 10 000." It was the song everybody sang, celebrating young David's great victory. Little wonder King Saul got in a bad mood. Jealousy is such a destructive force. He wasted so much time and effort to kill David, hating him without a cause.
Saul's bad attitude was that of a loser. David's child-like, humble yet firm, belief in his God, was the right attitude, which pleased God. David together with his master went on to become one of history's Greatest.
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Popular Manly Beach.
If you lift to your eyes higher, from the red cap (Adelaide Classic) to HIRE, and again hire (sic), the Catholic monastery on the hill was the chosen location for the wedding of Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban on 25/6/06.
Sydney always has me fascinated, the international atmosphere, the colourful crowds, but most of all, its harbour and beaches. The rest of Sunday 14/1, Jon and I spent most of the day visiting relatives. One family lives in Manly. We took the opportunity for a relaxing walk along the Esplanade and the Corso, the pedestrian mall, which links the harbour with the ocean.
While Jon was eating his bought lunch, we sat on a seat right on the Esplanade. I had just finished saying, that I can spot all the German tourists, when I heard the lady right beside me talk German to her husband. It was their fourth visit in the five years, since their son had migrated from Germany. They were from Kleve. Before I had found out, I thought to myself: This gentleman would fit well into any play, where they require a typical German, middle aged, Government official. He indeed was one.
Every time I cross the Middle Harbour, over the Spit Bridge, I think to myself that this corner of urbanized Australia must be one of the most picturesque (and expensive). How fortunate I had been, in the early 1970's, to have lived only a kilometre away! Whenever, we pass the block of flats on Spit Road (147), I point it out to whoever is in the car. Every time they say: "Yes we know, you told us last time."
I had confused Jon, when instead of following Spit Road, I turned left and explained, I just wanted to check out something.. It took me a few attempts to find Superba Lane. I actually found and stopped right at the spot, where I still could see, only faintly, the yellow road markings 2.10. (Wind, Chapter 28). During my previous visit, and many times since, 210 kept popping up regularly. No Merc or Lexus was parked anywhere this time.
As I wrote my diary on 15/1/07 about this, I recall hearing an ad on TV. The company's phone number consists of 1, 3, 5 with two zeros in between. A man named Jamie, mentioned 10/2, much like this code. It teased me, because of the timing.
But there was more - on 15/1 again - the daily Bible Reading of the In Touch Magazine, the one I was reading at the time, starts like this: "God has a purpose for our lives and work for us to do" (Ephesians 2, 10).
My diary says I was amazed that I happened to be in Sydney on that very day.
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The Sydney Opera House with Jon in the foreground.
In the afternoon we picked up the key for the beach house, we planned to stay at for a few nights during the week. A few suburbs away lived a missionary couple, one I had upheld in prayer for a number of years. (They have a son Caleb). They are on an extended stay in Australia. The lady missionary was recovering from surgery. It was nice to exchange thoughts and meet them face to face.
For a number of weeks I had known that I was meant to be in a meeting in Sydney's South that evening. I had picked up the thought during a 10-second announcement back home in church. At the time, the familiar, strong impression floated around my mind: You will be there.
A traffic jam near Brighton-le-Sands, having dropped Jon off in Dee Why first, made me arrive much later than I would have liked to. While in Sydney my radio was mostly tuned to Radio 2 CH, 1170 am. I smiled to myself, as I arrived in the suburb of Cronulla, my destination that evening, when a familiar song came over the airwaves. Demis Roussos sang: My friend the wind will come from the North ... I had just travelled approx. 40 kilometres or so from the north, and after 1/1/07 I may have even become their friend?
A similar scenario had happened one Saturday evening, back in Adelaide. Just as I had tuned into EBI FM, this very song was playing. At the time I was furiously writing my fourth book, Candle and the Wind. We live in the northern suburbs of Adelaide, so I gave my friends a call.
(Reading an early part of my story, Sand Chapter 22, I was reminded that I had been listening to EBI FM during my first "supernatural" radio experience. I had typed the words "supernatural powers" into the P/C, when they came out of the radio at the same time. The time 11.50 - 31/10/01 were all the right numbers, but I had not as yet discovered the magic of 135.
My first stop in Cronulla was to say Hi to the Baptist Church. I found their address 9-11 Gosport Street rather interesting. (Gosport was the only street by that name in my borrowed street directory). When I parked in the almost deserted carpark, a lady walked up to me and told me, the service had finished. Only three young people had turned up. The Pastor, who I vaguely knew from Adelaide (one of our children went to school together) was on holidays.
This Baptist Church was not the reason for my dash to Cronulla. It was another service. A group of young people, who liked doing church differently, met on Sunday nights in the Cinema Complex. I was only a few minutes late, as I sat near a mature age couple, the only ones anywhere near my age. Their names were Pat and Sam. The gathering was rather small, less than a dozen in the congregation. I noticed that the deep blue seats of Cinema 6, matched almost exactly the shade of blue in the shirt I was wearing.
As was the case in the morning service, the music came out of the audio system. It was up to me, as I had expressed before that morning's service, to receive a blessing, even worshipping to piped music, or return home empty.
The main message, the subject was meditating on God's Word, was more a relaxed conversation between two pastors, rather than a sermon. The audience was involved, asking and answering questions. Interaction between message giver and message receiver is one way of getting the message across. In a smaller setting, of course, this is easier to achieve, than a mega congregation.
If there was a change needed in the way we do church, it is this: The message, the music, the Eucharist (communion) must all be relevant, meaningful and done with purpose. How often do I feel like stopping the singing and ask the people: "Do know what you are singing? When mountains fall I stand, by the power of your hand?" It's easy to sing, piped music or otherwise. But how often have we seen molehills fall, and Christians retreated for fear of getting hurt!
So far I had not one clergyman contact me and stand beside me in my quest for justice. Not one has ever sat down and even listened to the full story first hand. (Please, cross above lyrics off your song sheet).
To conclude the service, the small gathering was to practice meditation. We all looked at one verse in the bible, in silence, and meditated on it. To my brain - that's a dangerous exercise. The verse was from the Psalms, Chapter 8, Verse 3:
"When I consider the heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have ordained. What is man that you are mindful of him, and the Son of Man that you visit him?"
The text on the screen quoted the scripture as above, as Verse 3. The second part, however, is found in Verse 4. The work of someone's fingers forgot to add ... and 4.
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Billboard at the Black Diamond Corner Port Adelaide.
At the time, the day before Christmas 06, I saw the message: All I want for Christmas. I quickly snapped the photo, standing on the roadway.
Only while looking for a photo to break the text, I stumbled across much more in this photo: The code L REAL.
I am out of my mind to see it? Port Ade ...aide / First Nation... ..al Estate.
(This photo has only been cropped top and bottom. Horizontally it's original.)
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Before driving home to Dee Why, I took a brief stroll around the foreshore on Cronulla Beach. I became a little too friendly with the police dog, a German shepherd. He barked at me. Luckily, he was locked safely inside a police van. A year or so ago, the same square on the Cronulla foreshore, was the scene for Australia's worst ever street violence. That time the police dog would have had plenty of reasons to bark.
I returned the same way as I had come. What was the reason, it had cost me $ 3.00 toll on the freeway going south, but driving north I paid $ 4.20? Don't we all hate paying - full stop?
Just for fun, how silly, on Military Road, I again took a short detour down memory lane - Superba Lane - and returned via Mandolong Street.
(Hey, I just looked up the steep street, which runs off Military Road - (Upper) Almora Street. Apply the LA-born a-e code to create - more LA Street?).
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Free flight to Paris?
What a blunder in Sydney's Sunday Paper (a flight to Paris for 000). The Apology was on Page 41, the mistake on Page 4 of the Travel Section (Love it - 44 with the I ...).
I came across this by pure chance, skipping headlines in the newspaper, left on the coffee table. I first saw the apology for the error, then searched out the advertisement in the Travel Section.
If Paris was meant as - part Is, and the 000 a symbol that it's urgent, here is my answer:
"You just can't keep a good man down"
The Adelaide Advertiser, 24/7/06 (our 35th wedding anniversary).
The next morning Jon dropped me in downtown Sydney, before parking the car. Without any prior knowledge, it was very near a branch of the Travel Agent, who had to apologize for the 000 misprint.
Just to play the game, I walked in and queried: "Is $ 1465 to Paris one-way or return?" I found it hard to believe that the staff did not know anything about the error, which had been made in the weekend paper.
But there was more - Having just uploaded a joke about Mango, right next door to the Travel Agent was a (not opened) Cafe - Red Mango. (More Mango was to meet me later on this trip).
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A few moments after leaving the travel agent, I saw a poorly dressed man, with a huge box in front of him, standing on the footpath, obviously begging. Judging by the size of the box, which easily would have fitted the largest pizza you can buy, he must have expected a brisk trade that Monday. If you can call it a trade? The way I see it, it may be a conspiracy theory?
"I stand here and look poor. You walk by and feel guilty. You donate a few coins, which makes you feel better. So I made you feel better, for less money than you'd pay for headache tablets; and you will most likely walk away, blaming the Government for not doing enough for the poor - so you will very likely vote for the Opposition next time."
I genuinely did not have a coin in my pocket. So I asked the relatively young man (only in his late 30's, perhaps) if he was receiving Government benefits? He gave a vague answer, as he stood right underneath a huge, brass plate - the number of the premises - No. 19! (This was five days after the NBL basketball match, as reported in the previous chapter).
That morning I took the opportunity to score a goal in my mission to find justice. I went to a place, where I had hoped to find a listening ear. I handed over a letter, with supporting photographs, proving that my online photos were real. Anyone could tamper with photos online. To alter a hard copy of a photo was beyond my scope, if this were possible at all.
Within a day, in response I got a message. Don't ask how it was sent, but it was very clear: "Back off - I see problems".
Not everybody see problems as challenges. Not everybody knows how to draw on a power beyond themselves. Often I dream and hope that there are moves under way, behind the scenes. On the day of writing Mrs. Liddy on the telephone made a comment to that effect.
I did what I had to do, I stated my case, of which I am more certain than ever.
The ultimate result is in God's hands. HIS ultimate objective is peace on earth, where truth and justice reign. Our God Reigns.