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Monday, 27 February 2012

Withdrawal of ATM Services

It was brought to my notice last week that one of South Africa's largest banks had blatantly withdrawn an essential community service, as a result of which many thousands of people around the country are having to travel many extra miles in order to withdraw a little cash. I occasionally used to withdraw cash at an FNB automatic telling machine located in the village shop and butchery in Bathurst in the Eastern Cape. The machine was used by many of Bathurst's mostly retired residents, as well as local farmers, farm workers and pensioners. Some minor employee of the said bank, presumably hoping to make a name for himself (or herself) up at Head Office, took it upon themself to order the withdrawal of ATM machines from a large proportion of the country's smaller communities. Pensioners, retirees and farm employees alike now have to find the time and the money to travel 35 kms each way to either Port Alfred or to Grahamstown in order to withdraw a little cash, a huge expense and inconvenience, especially for the district's pensioners.

The only comment I have is - Shame on you, FNB . As if the banks don't make enough money out of us already!

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

A Visiting Amphibian

Living out in the African Bushveld, one expects to see plenty of wildlife – sometimes though the wildlife is not quite what one would expect. We have a – here I hesitate to use the word “pet”, so let’s say “tame”, we have a tame frog – I think from studying pictures that it may well be a Tremolo Sand Frog. It measures about 9 to 10cms from nose to tail (i.e. legs NOT extended). It is a frequent visitor to our lounge, hopping across the room while we are watching the goggle box. When we don’t see Froggie of an evening there is sometimes evidence the next morning that he has been around the night before. This is usually in the form of gathered dust or cobwebs in Katie’s bowl of drinking water, or occasionally in the form of a calling card, usually solid but from time to time liquid. Katie is our white shepherd, by the way.

The other evening Liz called me to “rescue” Froggie. He had somehow found his way into our bathroom and was hopping around the base of the loo looking for a way out. I caught him in a plastic container and put him out onto the lawn, still wet from a recent rain shower. The following morning, as I was feeding the cats, there was a splash as Froggie jumped out of their water bowl. It didn’t take him long to find his way back. Our pets generally ignore Froggie. The two cats are just not interested, although Katie occasionally gives him a quick sniff if he happens to cross her path. Living in the countryside does have its rewards.

Friday, 17 February 2012

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Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Positive Thinking

I don't think that anyone can dispute the power of positive thinking. It is the basis of many prayers, schemes, spells and of much corporate teaching. I can personally recall a number of times when positive thinking has, in one way or another, altered my life. The big question, therefore, is not whether positive thinking works, but rather, how it works. I place it on a par with telepathy or with ESP. The former I have personally witnessed many, many times, as I have positive thinking. I rely on others for any facts regarding ESP, but have no misconceptions about its existence. Without actually trying to communicate, I frequently find that I have been thinking of the same thing at one and the same time as my wife, Liz. Indeed before we actually met face to face, we frequently chatted on the Internet - she in Colorado and I in Johannesburg. I would frequently (not just once or twice) be thinking of a particular item or idea (such as the Red Sox) when through the ether would come the question "Did you see the latest Red Sox game?". That was over a distance of 9,000 miles. Today I can be thinking of closing the curtains when up will stand Liz and do just that, with nothing being spoken at all.

I think it's all to do with Quantum mechanics, or that dark or hidden force or whatever. I'm happy with the idea of identical happenings many thousands of miles apart being instantly linked by that quantum forcefield. I don't profess to understand it, but am happy to accept the theory as being a fact. I believe that the same concept is responsible for ESP and indeed, positive thinking. I will try to add an article about this concept to my website.