Friday, April 26, 2013

quite write

Andrew’s recent post about graffiti reminded me of a time when graffiti, though vandalism, was at least witty.

Just one of the great chestnuts:

--What would you do if Jesus came to Hawthorn?
--Move Peter Hudson to centre-half forward.

No credit to me for the following, but they prove that people can have witty exchanges without destroying property – if they have the right workmates, that is.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

one dunk or two?

It’s confession time, folks: I’m rather fond of ANZAC biscuit tins. Running out of places to stash them, I’m thinking of moving some out of the kitchen. Perhaps one or two could be put to better use as a place to keep photos?

Maybe one could hold all those postcards I’ve collected [an obscene number of which seem to be of churches].

Seriously, I've just been looking for an excuse to use a new expression Grace introduced me to, so I shall say these tins are just 'the dog's bollocks". He he.

Thinking that if I could find more uses for them I might find excuses for them, I had a peek on ebay. [- at the tins, not the bollocks -]. Check this out:

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

retail 101 multiple choice test

Q1.  If I bought stuff online from an overseas source would this be
(a)  unAustralian
(b)  cheaper
(c)   easier
(d)  just to upset Harvey Norman

Answers to Question 1
a) is incorrect. Making purchases online from overseas sources is NOT Un-Australian – everyone is doing it, just ask Harvey.
b) is correct. The high Aussie dollar and the cost of petrol are too high a price to pay for buying locally
c) incorrect. I can’t even work out those Live Mail enquiry thingies that keep popping up, and I can never think of/ remember passwords
d) this is also correct, but is worth six points more than b)

Q2.  If I went into a local retail store, looked around and then left without buying anything, would this be
(a)  cause I have no money to spare
(b)  didn’t see anything I wanted
(c)   knew I could buy it cheaper elsewhere
(d)  because it was “house-wife hours” and there were 340 people queued up at each of the only two check-outs open and I had an important appointment the next morning I didn’t want to be late for

Answers to Question 2
a), b) and d) are all correct.
c) is a trick answer. I only went in there hoping to find a toilet.

Q3.  If I went into a local electrical goods store and a staff member asked if they could help, would I
(a)  keel over in shock
(b)  immediately twit a tweet thingy to tell everyone I know to come on down
(c)   get any real help if I said “Yes please, I need your advice”
(d)  use their advice to decide what to buy on-line

Answers to Question 3
a) is the only correct answer. Give yourself an extra 4 points if you immediately thought of Myer
b) is highly unlikely. We all know a twit is a pregnant fish.

Q4.  If the government imposed a GST on goods bought online from overseas suppliers this would
(a)  make me more likely to shop locally
(b)  not generate any revenue for the government because the two employees left in the public service can only do so much in one day
(c)   make Harvey’s day
(d)  lead to a definitely/ might/ maybe written in stone policy announcement from Tony Abbott

Answers to Question 4
a) is incorrect. See answers to Question 1 re high Aussie dollar and, in light of this high exchange rate, the puzzlingly high cost of petrol. In fact, add to this the cost of parking, and the possibility of having my vehicle “car-parked” – the auto equivalent of tagging.
b), c) and d) all go without saying.

Q5.  If a store wanted to charge me $5 to browse, this would
(a)  be reasonable
(b)  be Julia Gillard’s fault
(c)   be $2 cheaper with a supermarket voucher
(d)  make me more reluctant to shop

Answers to Question 5:
c) is a strong possibility.
a), b) and d) are incorrect. Score an extra 62 points if you chose d) – nothing on earth could possibly make me loathe shopping more than I already do.

Q6.  The thing most likely to influence my purchasing decisions is
(a)  what I want
(b)  after sale service
(c)   whether the little miss behind the counter can tear herself away from her mobile phone some time in the next 10 minutes]
(d)  low price

Answers to Question 6:
None of the above.
a) I have no idea what I want or what I am supposed to do with half the crap I already have.
b) is incorrect as there is no such thing
c) highly improbable
d) next time you are in a car park, take a look around. Count how many makes, models, colours, features and extras each car has. What proportion are the cheapest car on the market?

Friday, April 19, 2013

here’s why part 3

Why Aboriginals think and live the way they do
[a necessarily over-simplified version]

here's why 2 looked at the evolution of western ideas that are totally incompatible with Aboriginal culture: Savings; Planning; Accumulation of Wealth; Permanent Settlement; Individual Responsibility;

There are many different indigenous peoples in Australia, as well as a range of different ecosystems and micro-climates.

aboriginal languages map

rainfall in oz


most orstraylyuns live where there is water

a lot of aboriginals don't live in urban areas

The Gunditjmara people Near Lake Condah in Victoria, lived a settled life, capturing and breeding eels and fish in a series of man made weirs. They built permanent stone dwellings.


stereotypical Aboriginal is a desert-dwelling nomad. Perhaps because desert areas have been the least appealing to white settlers, some desert dwelling peoples have not been quite as “assimilated” as other Aboriginals.

Unfortunately, [former] desert nomads are possibly the most marginalised Aboriginals today.


Whether the climate was kind or harsh, western style agriculture could not develop in Oz before white settlement.
  • In many areas, the soil is poor, and water supply unreliable.
  • There are no native plants suitable for cropping.
  • There are no native animals that could be domesticated except for the dingo.

With few exceptions, survival on pre-invasion Australia’s mainland required a nomadic or semi-nomadic lifestyle.

Planning and saving and the accumulation of wealth – key aspects of western culture – were irrelevant and impossible.

Water was not saved, it was “stored” at its source. Game was hunted when needed, not hunted in quantities and then stored. Deferred gratification, or what westerners called “saving” was not just impossible, but counter-intuitive. People took what they needed while they could and, while there was no waste, feeding was opportunistic because tomorrow was uncertain.

A successful hunter-gatherer existence means gratification cannot be deferred, people must live one day at a time and move purposefully from one area to another according to natural cycles.

A hunter-gathering lifestyle necessarily involves co-operation and a team effort. If a little tacker 4 years old manages to dig up only a small number of the grubs or yams an adult could, then he was learning essential skills at a reasonable pace.

Resources were shared more or less on a basis of “from each according to his means, and too each according to his needs”.
Life is a series of “reciprocal obligations”. A gives B a kangaroo tail, and B shares some grubs or seeds. Old look after young and vice-versa.


Sharing open space at night when there is little shelter means no one has any chance of privacy. Just one of the rules of Aboriginal society which had tragic consequences was the idea that it is rude and invasive to look at any but the most intimate relation when talking to them.

In a white courtroom, Aboriginal witnesses or prisoners appeared downright shifty and untrustworthy because they avoided eye contact.
[Today, Judicial Bench Books provide a heap of information about communication issues, but these inclusions were a long time coming, and other problems with language or legal representation continue.]

Traditionally individual responsibility meant that everyone was responsible for upholding the law. If a law was broken, justice had to be swift. There were no circuit or travelling courts, or judges who could split hairs about the severity of a crime, criminal intent, the need for rehabilitation and so on.

What more traditional Aboriginals point out is that 
  • everyone knows the rules and 
  • if punishment is inflicted it is accepted, 
  • punishment means the matter is done, and 
  • the law-breaker starts afresh with a clean slate. 

In the context of a hard nomadic life-style, this is just a practical application of John 20:23*.

There was no law to deal with living off-country, or interacting with a white world. There is often a vacuum of guidance or certainty about what is expected, replaced by a distorted and inadequate set of inherited rules.

Governor Davey's proclamation that if Aboriginals acted the same they would be treated the same by the law was a nonsense. It assumed that the benefits of agriculture and permanent settlement, of saving and of long-term planning to achieve change were self-evident, and assumed Aboriginals could readily understand western law.


Land was not wealth, it was life. While westerners talk about “mother nature”, in traditional Aboriginal culture, the landscape is literally mother. It is an instruction book, and the relationship between land and the people who belong to it carries the same reciprocal obligations as other relationships within a group.

See e.g. my post on  Yepenyere Dreaming 

There is a great deal about traditional Aboriginal culture to admire. But the traditional lifestyles have been compromised by land titles, the degradation of landscape and sacred sites by cattle or buildings, and “ownership” of water rights, murders and forced evictions from peoples’ mother/landscape. 

We cannot wind back the clock.


There were extensive Aboriginal trade routes across the country, and there was interaction with Macassans and other seafarers, but trade was a social and practical business rather than something done for profit.

Aboriginals have proven repeatedly that they are quite able to adopt and adapt new ideas where
  • the resources exist and
  • the idea is useful to their current reality

In the North West, Aboriginals took to cattle farming with relish. Just one of the benefits was that cattle stations offered them a chance to stay on their own country, often influencing station managers’ decisions that might have affected dreaming sites.
They were finally awarded "equal wages" for their work just as helicopters were starting to make them redundant. Once they were redundant, they were usually evicted from station properties.

There are reports that during the very early years of cattle stations, Aboriginals had copied white ideas, building corrals and helping themselves to cattle. Spear heads have been found that were made of porcelain insulators from the first telegraph line.


In the early 1970s, the Whitlam government implemented some land rights initiatives which sought to give Aboriginals access to their land [or some of it] and provide ongoing access to important sites.
In many instances, portions of cattle stations where Aboriginals had lived [outstations] before helicopters made them redundant were returned. This restored access to country important to Aboriginals' spiritual and mental welfare.

These land rights decisions marked the end of an era of “assimilation” [total destruction of culture], without necessarily encouraging the compromise of integration.

Fast forward a few hundred years from settlement, and here is what we have:

  • people living on outstations with little access to services, and little reason to integrate
  • people suffering cognitive dissonance or anomie because their entire belief system is at odds with where and how they must live
  • drunks and diabetics who don’t understand that not all food or drink has been given to them by benevolent landscape spirits
  • diabetics because people do not understand the concept of deferred gratification, or do not have access to decent food, or that it is possible to continually eat too much;
  • people who eat junk food and too much of it, but have no reason to walk it off;
  • people who are brutal to each other when drinking, because the concept of summary justice has become perverted
  • people who might integrate except there is no point because they cannot save. Reciprocal obligation has become corrupted, and now results in “humbugging” [you must share any money you have, even if I’m going to use it to poison myself]
  • kids with no sense of planning, and nothing to plan for so they use grog drugs or anything available to numb their numb existence
  • people unaware of western hopes/expectations and too often even incapable of communicating properly in English
  • people who must travel long distances to stay with family/relatives, sometimes to commune but mostly to attend funerals following suicides, murders etc

One of the unsurprising things about fringe dwellers is that they tend to congregate in clusters which face the direction of their home country. Town Camps [townships] grew up spontaneously to meet this need.

poor quality footage from 2010? - a lot has happened since then [and a lot hasn't]

In town camps the number of people living in one house can fluctuate from 2 to 40 over the space of 24 hours, but hospitality is mandatory.

Imagine a teenager who is literate and keen enough and lucky enough to land a job, trying to turn up for work rested, showered and properly dressed if they live in conditions like this.
Because of the hospitality obligations and the noise levels when they congregate, marginalised Aboriginals are rarely welcome when they move into houses within urban areas.

In many instances housing is destroyed because living in a house seems crazy. For example, it’s often a lot cooler outside than it is inside when you live in a very hot environment. There is no “school of life” inside a house. Outside, sand is the blackboard.


The idea of “assimilation” – now taken to mean the total destruction of Aboriginal culture - was cruelly misguided. Suggestions that we must allow Aboriginals unfettered access to their own country, preserving every aspect of their culture[s] without hoping for any adaption are equally misguided.

We must stop assuming whites have no right to make decisions on behalf of Aboriginals, and start accepting that in some cases we have no right to not make decisions.

Nothing will improve until coming generations of marginalised Aboriginals grasp concepts like savings, deferred gratification and planning. Where traditional law is inadequate or there is no longer any “authority” within individual communities, this must be replaced by the rule of personal responsibility.

*“If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained”

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

here's why part 2

Why do westerners think and live the way they do?

[This is a sketchy opinion, not a PhD thesis. Hopefully there are no glaring errors of fact.]

Western culture emerged principally from the westerly areas on this map. Go figure.

1. The Industrial Revolution began in Britain

2. In Scotland, Adam Smith observed that “self-interest” is part of God’s wonderful system to ensure nobody goes hungry.

These two key events occurred 250 - 300 years ago.

The westerly part of this map also marks the birthplace of whitefellas’ most recent “ages of empire” from Holy Roman, to Latin American, to the rush to claim a bit of Africa right through to putting red bits on a map to boast about how big the British Empire was.


The other parts included in the map are not all whitefella parts, but they show where a lot of ideas originated that made the Industrial Revolution possible/likely.

Most of the northerly areas on the map have something in common – similar climates and resources.
Mountains and valleys, rivers and lakes, animals and plants, and four seasons.

For oodles of thousands of years,
  • Spring was the time when some plants started to bloom or fruit, and when seeds were deliberately sown.
  • Summer was a time for moving around, trading, collecting some food and firewood, making things, building and hunting.
  • Autumn was a time for harvesting, collecting more firewood, doing more hunting, and preserving food.
  • Winter was a time for huddling in shelters, burning firewood, and surviving only because of  what was saved when all that hunting and harvesting and preserving was going on.

The two key words in this simple outline are SURVIVED and SAVED.

If you lived in a temperate or arctic zone and you didn’t save, you didn’t survive. 

If you survived by saving, you were really just asking for trouble, though. Sooner or later someone else who hadn't done their own saving would come raiding and raping, pillaging and pilfering. This made it even more important to save even more. If you managed to save/steal enough, this gave you power and made you even safer [unless you were the sibling of some ambitious royal].

The more you save, the better off you are and the more secure your future. Stuff that can be stored or used for money and trading for profit make sense in this sort of world. Money is light to carry if you suddenly need to escape an invading horde.


Most of the countries across the north of this map are joined together. Allowing for a couple of big hills, it is possible to travel from one end to another, or travel partway and move goods and IDEAS as part of some giant relay. Some one or some thing or some idea could travel from one end of the known world and back again along trade routes.

China came up with a way of printing; the Germans perfected printing, and the British gave us the Financial Times. East or west, people traded ideas and then tinkered with them to make them even better.

Crappy weather and the opportunities for millions to exchange ideas created two of the conditions necessary for an industrial revolution. The third and only remaining condition necessary was resources. Fertile soil, water, plants that could be cropped, and animals that could be domesticated.


Savings is an idea so central to western culture that most countries have some sort of Little Red Hen Story, a story that's been used to justify both capitalism and soviet collectivisation.

The plot of the story is about co-operation. 

The moral of the story is that if people don't do their own share of the work, then no one else is likely to share their food. INDIVIDUALS are responsible for their own future.

The subtext of the story is this: You have to PLAN if you want to SAVE. You have to defer gratification, and not live "in the moment". You can't afford to live one day at a time. 


The southerly part of this map did not give rise to the Industrial Revolution, but it was the birthplace of a lot of IDEAS that had an enormous impact on the northerly bits.

  • Mathematics
  • Anatomy
  • Drama and Philosophy
  • Empire, and
  • The idea that knowledge could be collected and stored

The first Empires were built on theft. People, labour, goods, crops – there is no need to save if you can just take what you want. If you couldn’t save, then you had to help yourself. 

Empire after Empire came and went but in each of them there was a single idea that was not questioned. People are a commodity, and life is cheap.

Slavery is a time honoured tradition that still goes on today.

the floggings will continue until morale improves

Not all parts of the middle east are "Arable" [sorry, just had to say it] and some people relied on herding and a semi-nomadic life to survive. For them, animals were an investment, a means of production, a measure of wealth and a means of saving. But resources were limited. The usefulness of some other peoples' ideas was limited. Plans weren't changed and improved all the time because the most sensible thing to do was keep recycling the same ones: move yer goats and sheep around in search of feed.

The most useful thing about the Bible is that it is a great history book. The Middle East was the birthplace of Monotheism – the Jewish/Christian idea that there is only one god, that god is all powerful, and that we will be punished if we don’t do what he says.

And, as the king is appointed by god then by god you’d better obey the king.

The Bible reflects/approves of lots of western ideas, including:
  • Some people are more entitled to land than others
  • Some people are superior to others
  • War is okay
  • Slavery is okay
  • Saving is important
  • God takes sides
  • Agriculture is important
  • Men are more important than women
  • Whites are more important than blacks 
  • Be nice to each other.

On the plus side, the Bible gave us the Ten Commandments and some other rules to live by. On the not-so-plus side, these are open to interpretation. For example, does “an eye for an eye” mean the punishment must fit the crime, or does it mean revenge is vital?

Thankfully, organised religion exists to save us worrying about interpretation. Most of us need a messenger like Moses or a Pope to tell us what God really thinks. Not having to work out for myself what God really thinks helps me sleep at night.


When whites reached Australia – at least, those who didn’t take one look at the place, laugh hysterically and then sail off again – they brought with them a bunch of unquestioned assumptions about how the world should work.

Governor Davey’s Proclamation of 1816 sums it up nicely, I think:

The natives and the whiteman are equal before the law. If they act the same they will be treated the same.

Monday, April 15, 2013

here's why part 1


Let me say it: I don’t hate Aboriginals but…
Nah, just kidding.

Facts: A lot of Aboriginals having a drinking problem, a lot of Aboriginals seem to fight a lot, and Alice Springs is the knifing capital of the world [on a per capita basis].

Fact: Some whitefellas get very huffy and judgmental about this, as if the problem is genetic or something. They forget whitefella thugs sometimes mix pills and booze then “glass” somebody else for no reason, or that Australia in general has a culture that’s sometimes a little too focused on getting pissed as if this is something only gifted over-achievers can do.

Fact: Some whitefellas get very huffy and judgmental about people even talking about Aboriginal issues. If we can’t acknowledge that a lot of Aboriginals have a drinking problem, or seem to fight a lot, or that Alice Springs is a great place for nurses to learn about stab wounds, then how in heck are we supposed to help?

My question is this:
Why is it Australia, out of all the world’s successful former colonies, is finding it so hard to close the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous people?

What follows is not addressed to the yobbos who are just racists. Only an idiot argues with a total idiot. What follows is addressed to anyone who genuinely cares about Aboriginal welfare.

To understand how this situation came about and why it’s so hard to close the gap in such an enlightened and rich country, we don’t need to indulge in a lot of guilty breast beating. In fact, that approach is counter-productive.

Sure, our early settlers were ignorant and horrible and a product of their time, and anyone living a modern lifestyle here – including many westernised indigenous Australians – is a beneficiary of that past.
We need to acknowledge the truth openly and honestly.
But we also need to understand the reality of what is holding us back today – guilt on its own won’t change a bloody thing.

PS From here on I’m going to use the word "Aboriginal" in a politically incorrect way but only because it’s a lot less tedious than typing something like “Aboriginal, Torres Strait Island, Tasmanian and other Indigenous Australian” culture[s].

A whitefella is any non-Aboriginal.

Today’s reality begins with understanding many aspects of Aboriginal Australia’s traditional cultures are totally incompatible with western culture.

It’s all very well to say it would be nice if we protected these cultures and kept them intact, but this is a load of impossible bollocks. Should Aboriginal children be exposed to smallpox because inoculation is not a 40,000 year old Aboriginal tradition?

I’m not for the cavalier eradication of Aboriginal culture, just for considered adaption [or adaptation depending on your own political views]. Better Aboriginal culture should adapt than disappear altogether.

While we are at it, let’s acknowledge that when we accuse someone or are accused of racist callousness because of Aboriginal living standards, today’s reality is being judged by western standards.
In other words, if you want to leave what’s left of Aboriginal culture 100% intact, stop bitching about the gap. You can't have it both ways.

Sometimes the application of western standards is appropriate. Sometimes it’s unnecessary. Personally, I’d rather sacrifice some aspects of remaining Aboriginal culture than accept today’s reality.
As a white person do I have the right to make this decision on behalf of Aboriginals? 
Do I have the right not to?

Cultures, like people, adapt or die.


Fake boomerangs made in China and painted in ridiculous patterns and colours are not culture, they are simply an ugly form of exploitation. Likewise the notion that all boomerangs are supposed to come back, as if they were some kind of pre-industrial frisbee.

My focus here is on Aboriginals in isolated [mainly desert] areas of Australia, on fringe dwellers, and on people from Arnhem Land. These are the peoples who had the least contact with early invaders, and who are the most marginalised today.


Just what is culture, anyway?

Culture is about how we view ourselves in relation to the natural world, and to each other. What are our personal rights or our responsibilities to each other, and what should be our goals in life?

In a totally westernised and capitalistic world, the individual is responsible first and foremost to himself, and for himself. Greed [or at least some advantage] is good. Although co-operation is good, competition is more important. And SAVING is central to all of this.

In a totally traditional Aboriginal context, culture is about the natural world and “our mob” [group]. Co-operation is essential, while saving and competition are suicide.

To understand incompatibilities between Aboriginal and western cultures, and to understand why an understanding of them is essential to closing the gap, we need to understand how each evolved, and look in detail at what each culture really is.

here’s why part 2 = why whitefellas think and live the way they do
here’s why part 3 = why Aboriginals think and live the way they do

Sunday, April 14, 2013

making the most of opportunities

Life expectancy in the Philippines is steadily improving [77 years compared to 99 in Australia] but, as we know, the gap between rich and poor is growing everywhere around the world.

I wonder why there are windows in Imelda’s limo, when she’s blind to what’s on the outside?

There is poverty everywhere in the world, and no one can help everyone. It is one thing to look after oneself or share just a little, but quite another to steal from hungry people.


In my two previous posts I’ve spoken about Muslim Terrorism on Mindanao in the Philippines, and about JJ, our new house guest who is here on a student visa.

After finally coming out of her shell, she’s revealed some snippets about her life back home.

JJ speaks a Spanish dialect at home, a different local dialect outside her home, another dialect from Cebu/Visaya, and Tagalog with other Filipinos when all else fails.
But I wondered how she came to have such an extensive English Vocabulary as well.

“We receive all of our tuition in English, our books are from America” was an answer that made sense. She hopes if she can migrate to Australia, her daughter will have a chance to survive, and get a good education to boot.

JJ was only lucky enough to go to school herself because the village where she grew up was sponsored by World Vision. Australian sponsors often sent postcards of “Kangaroo, Mount Uluru, and Opera House”.

She believes that she is very lucky. As a nurse back home she earns enough to pay rent and bills and buy food and necessities.

Her husband looks after their daughter, and works in a “drug store” belonging to his family. Because there is so much poverty, if the average Filipino wants an aspirin, they go to a drug store and literally buy “an” aspirin. If they can afford it.

Many of the poorer locals, she says, “eat rice, with salt as a side dish”.


TO often comes home from work, de-briefing by rabbiting on about patients, their conditions, and treatments given at the hospital up the road. At first JJ was shocked.

In Zamboanga, no one goes outside after 5 or 6 pm. When the power goes out after dark [on rotation if not because of a breakdown] you will always hear gunshots.

In Isabela City, patients are rarely over 40. No stents, pacemakers or oncology are given at the community hospital where JJ works: If someone needs a defibrillator, the patient is loaded into a dinghy with an outboard and taken to a bigger hospital.

In Zamboanga if someone is diagnosed with cancer or other serious illness, they are usually sent home because no one can afford to be in hospital. JJ says the standard illnesses she deals with are diarrhoea, pneumonia and bronchitis, knife wounds and gunshot wounds. She is an expert in gunshot wounds.

It seems many Filipino hospitals don’t provide a lot of treatments that actually cure people.


If her mother was not here would JJ have thought about migrating to Australia?

Everyone wants to go to America, she says, but it’s very hard. There are more tests to pass than for Australia, the US English test is harder than the IELT*, and they are too expensive for most Filipinos. For one of the USian tests, the closest place to sit the test is Macau, Hong Kong.

*IELT is the International English Language Test, set and controlled by Cambridge University
A pass in each of four test parts is mandatory for immigration applicants, but she needs a minimum of 7 in each category before she can do a bridging course to register as a Nurse in Australia. In one reading task she has only managed 6.5 both times she took the test at home, though her overall score has been 7.5 .


The nearest place to re-take the IELT test here is at the Clayton campus of Monash. 
While I was looking for details, I discovered Monash University run a special coaching course in Melbourne's CBD. It only costs $790, for 32 contact hours.

One of her class-mates had already signed up for a similar course at a TAFE, and it cost $3,100 - for 20 contact hours.

I guess the TAFE system can afford the pay increases recently granted to TAFE Board members.


Most mornings she leaves home around 7 am. From TAFE she then goes into the city for her IELT coaching. To kill time she visits St Francis’ church in the city.

As generations of Irish Catholics have stopped going to Church, Vietnamese and Filipinos are replacing them. I’m now a committed atheist, but Catholicism is a heritage which informs the way I think, and St Francis’ is the best Catholic Church I’ve ever walked into. 

the Ladye Chapel

It’s a community sanctuary and a great place to just be quiet.


Although she is quite independent about changing buses and working out train lines, I suggested JJ get off the train at Mordialloc when coming home so late after her English Coaching, and I pick her up from there.

She sits in the front carriage near the driver’s door, and there are still heaps of "normal" people on the train when it arrives at Mordialloc. Personally, when I’ve taken trains late at night to Franger I’ve been stressed out every time.

At first I had no idea that she would be so relaxed about late night trains, or why.

Her English is improving, but more importantly she has learned heaps of tips about how to score higher marks in the tests, and is positive and confident.
She just prays God will help her, and one way of praying is to work hard.

We are, as the USians say, rooting for her. She’s more than earned a break.