Having a heart attack? Cough

Having a heart attack? Cough like your life depends on it. According to this article your life does depend on it. Dr Tadeusz Petelenz, a researcher in Poland, said the technique, called cough CPR, forces blood to the brain while the heart is starting to fail and keeps patients conscious long enough to call for help. It may also rectify their heart rhythm, he told a meeting of the European Society of Cardiology. If you can’t cough, keep a packet of Winfield Red ciggies handy – guaranteed to work for you. Posted in the interests of us mature people staying around long enough to spend our kids inheritance.

Who the hell is LEADING

Who the hell is LEADING Aboriginal activist Warren Mundine? I’m a news junkie but if I have ever read of him, the article wasn’t significant enough to stay in my head. He’s opposing Carmen ‘I can’t remember’ Lawrence in the ALP presidency so just the fact that he is breathing will make him a better canditate. Mr Mundine, a cousin of boxer Anthony Mundine, is chairman of NSW Country Labor and chief executive of the NSW Native Title Service. I see little merit in his CV, particularly the bit about being a cousin of Tony, and I sincerely hope he loses. Nothing to do with him, I just think the ALP under Carmen will have less credability than it does now. One can always hope.

The Australian Defence Force has

The Australian Defence Force has placed orders for twelve new patrol boats to replace the Fremantle Class. More ammo to stop the invasion of bludgers and rev up the asylum lawyers and friends who are long on rights of children but neglect to mention the parents of these kids put them in the circumstances in the first place. Don’t like being incarcerated and weep for your children? Then take them home and give them a life – stop appealing against the courts. Senator Hill said it was a great honour to announce the boats will be named Armidale, Bathurst, Bundaberg, Albany (my home port), Pirie, Maitland, Ararat, Launceston, Larrakia, Wollongong, Childers and Broome. Collectively the class will be known as the Armidale Class.

Melbourne’s CityLink is a great

Melbourne’s CityLink is a great revenue raiser for someone. This guy is up for $70,000 worth of fines, most of them accrued from CityLink travel in Melbourne. I sympathise with him. On my recent trip I used the CityLink to get from Wantirna in the east to Essondon. The next morning I dutifully fronted at a CityLink office and said” Be gentle with me, I’m from Brisbane” The counter jumper laughed as he charged me $18.40 whilst having crack at unsophisticated Queensland. All I wanted to do was travel back to Wantirna but I was charged $18.40 for a weekend pass that I didn’t want, thus representing $9.20 for each use of the system. Queensland may be unsophisticated but a similar use of our bypass, the Gateway, would have cost me #2.20 for each trip. The weathers better too!

On Staturday Katherine arranges for

On Staturday Katherine arranges for a ride on a ski-doo up to Kofflers Hut. The driver kept asking me if I was OK and I resisted the temptation to tell him that in my time I had driven a 50 ton Leopard tank over a creek gap at 80 km/hr and this little toy was unlikely to scare me. I enjoyed it though, and he was only being responsible. Katherine and I shared an apple struddle and coffee while watching and snapping pics of the intense activity. The weather closes in (read approaching blizzard) and we catch a chair back to the village. Sleet driven by gusts introduces me to the cold and I’m glad to get inside. Later, Tom, the radiographer, and his delightfull wife Leanne play host as she prepares dinner. Leanne had once owned a Chinese Resturant and it showed. Mmmm…special fried rice, chinese chicken and more……so good. The village priest, Father Frank Bellet, donates a leg of pork in exchange for a dinner invitation and the already great company is enriched by his wit. Kerryn, nurse, wife and mother prepares the best sticky date pudding I’ve tasted and tells of her young son Luke sking black slopes while I think ‘Wow! – and I was concerned being near the slopes taking happy snaps’. Younger son Morgan is heading the same way. She is obviously proud of them and should be. Later that night we went to the Whittaker Clubhouse of the Victorian Ski Club for drinks. Whereas I’m not a skier, I had slipped over on my arse earlier in the day and maybe that qualified me for entrance. The club was full of young people playing the mating game, a great spectator sport for those like myself whose marriage vows precludes running on the field. Eddie, prospective son-in-law, has to drink ten Tooheys New pots to qualify for another cap and is busy doing that while Kerrin and Katherine, my daughter, talk of men and how to mold them. Good Luck! I think. I don’t see much maleability around here. Trainability? Maybe. To stop me slipping on the ice, Katherine had borrowed shoe chains from one of the doctors. I proceeded to put them on backwards but even then they worked a treat and the cost of $70.00 per pair was after all only equal to one visit to the Physio or an XRay or a percentage of a broken limb repair cost, so good value. The second bottle of red I shared with Kerryn set the standard (as low) and I slept that night in what the Medical Centre staff call the Ops Room. I think after my visit they may take my suggestion and call it the ICU. The medical Centre handles up to 80 cases per day of ski junkies injured with broken limbs and other traumas – all frantic about the fact they have paid big money to sit on the sidelines with plastered limbs. Sunday evening we dined at Pension Grimus, a very Austrian resturant run by a very Austrian Hans There was a Porsche 4WD parked outside and we asked how much does it cost? $240,000 and the guy pays $400.00 to have it cleaned before he leaves the mountain. Earlier that day, standing back and observing the crowds, all I could see was serious money. A young mother of three with Nanny in tow, instructing the Nanny, in the manner born, to get the kids into the Merc for the trip home. I figured the clothes and gear adorning this small group would have cost more than my car let alone what a Mercedes 4WD would have cost. The dinner was good, the red wine better and later Hans came around and offered snuff. Yes, the stuff the Poms used and now I know how they colonised the world. Man, that snuff clears the sinuses and helps concentrate the mind. It is peak season and on Monday 4,000 kids were due from Melbourne private schools. Tom, the Radiographer told me the state school kids come up much later in the season when the resort operators do deals for children of lesser gods. Don’t get me wrong, I subscribe to elitism but when my children went to private schools it was a struggle and my wife and I worked three jobs to do it. No ski holidays then! Maybe I noticed it more because I have seldom had time or money to pursue hedonism. Good to look around though and good luck to all of them. On Monday morning, I depart appreciating the company I had kept over the two days and also the priveledges of no-cost accommodation and free parking I had been accorded. Others have to settle for parking miles below the village and shuttle up by bus. I, for whatever reason, was issued a VIP pass, allowing access and parking in the village with all the monied folk. The VIP pass surpised my daughter who had orgainised free access only, but me, Hey! maybe the lady at the gate thought I looked distinguished (grey hair does that) or, more likely, thought I was a visiting Medico. I had said ‘Visiting the Medical Centre’ in my best “visiting proffessor” voice. I worry about the Disco – will it start with a frozen block but she kicks in and I start to de-ice/snow the body. The Ambo driver tells me to scrape off the 6 inches of snow/ice off the top of the vehicle as police have been known to book vehicles so adorned for having an unsecured load! This amuses me but on reflection, makes sense. The trip down the mountain was slow but once we were below the snow line all was OK. I had to ask my passenger to turn on the heater in the car as living in the tropics I had never had to heat the car. The heater had never been used. Breakfast, point the car north and hit the tow!

The last sentence of the

The last sentence of the last post reminded me of another time at the bar. On ANZAC Day 1976, as a new Lieutenant, I stood at the bar with two old and bold soldiers. The mess concerned was the Officer’s Mess of 9th Battalion, Royal Queensland Regiment. This Battalion was the first to land at Gallipoli and these two men were the first from the battalion. They argued over who was the first between them as they drank beer with rum chasers, as you do in Queensland. They were both taller than me, both had been awarded the DCM (Distinguished Conduct Medal for bravery – one step below the Victoria Cross), were in their eighties and were drinking me under the table. I had to skip the chasers and acknowledge ” You’re a better man than me, Gungda Din”.

At Wagga I stood at

At Wagga I stood at a bar with three other men, two of whom had lost one eye in Vietnam while the other was totally blind. He had a magnificent black Labrador as his companion. The dog sat at his feet all of the four days of the reunion patiently listening to the the same stories I’m sure he’s heard a thousand times before. A tiny splinter of shrapnell has severed my friends optic nerve and although his eyes are perfect the braion doesn’t know. One of the others told me a story of a barroom brawl that had happened when he was young and angry. In the bathroom at the bar he had got involved in an altercation with a peacenik and had headbutted him in frustration. This action had dislodged his glass eye and it was pointing hard to port. He wasn’t aware of this and when he went back to the bar his good eye was pointing straight ahead while his glass eye was glaring at the rough character to his left who started another conversation with the oft-head precursor to brawls “What are you staring at you bastard?” Time to go home. I met Kerry who I had last seen in Vietnam in the same platoon as myself. One night, whilst on sentry duty he set the standard for all sentries when he waited for the approaching enemy to come within one meter before he initiated contact. At one meter he fired, guaranteeing a hit that unfortunately struck a pack of C4 explosives the Vietcong was carrying in satchel on his chest. The explosion robbed Kerry of his eye, wounded his mate and splattered the rest of us with gore. Kerry was demobbed back to Australia and has got on with life, albeit with a one eyed view. I met Reginald Bandy, the Regimental Sergeant Major of the Battalion in 1970. He left his home in Western Australia in 1942 to help stem the flow of the Japanese in the Pacific. By wars end he was a platoon sergeant and went on to serve in Morotai where the Royal Australian Regiment (the Australian Army’s regular infantry) was formed from battalions of the Second AIF (Australian Infantry Forces) He stayed overseas and eventually fought in the Battle of Kapyong in Korea. I asked him what part he played in this battle. He said he was a platoon sergeant but actually operated as a platoon commander because “We were running out of Lieutenants” His mother complained to the Minister for the Army that she hadn’t seen her son for ten years and he was brought straight back home to a posting Instructing new officers. Well he could, couldn’t he. He went on to serve in Malaya, Borneo and was one of the experienced Warrant Officers that formed the initial draft of the Australian Army Training Team in 1965 that became the most decorated unit ever to serve overseas under the Australian flag. In 1970 he lent his experience to officers and NCOs in the 7th Battalion in Vietnam. If Australian soldiers have a good reputation it is because of men like Reg Bandy. At the reunion this month he played golf most days and went for a walk in the mornings. He was 80 last birthday. I see Yobbo is discussing great Australians and whereas I don’t disagree with any mentioned in Yobbos’s weblog or in others I will say I have known some great Australians and the comon theme amongst them is that they wore the uniforms of the military and all had heard the call of the bugle.

Back from travels, glad to

Back from travels, glad to be home but bouyed by the people I’ve met and the places I’ve seen. On Tuesday it occured to me that I would rather be home so I drove straight from Albury to Brisbane in one hit (1700 km). Crossing the border into Queensland I had to turn on the airconditioning in the car- Yes! I’m home. The day before I left Albury I had been at Mt Buller in Victoria where for two days I had endured two blizzards at minus temperatures. This was only made possible by the warmth of the company I was keeping, the staff of the medical centre (my daughter included), where I resided for my sojourn. This picture of the car indicates the temperature at Mt Buller. The Abominable Snowman alongside is myself.
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