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Our friend Narelle was calling the Hoy at a social meeting that Olivia and I have been going to in recent months fortnightly on Fridays, her daughter Katie makes use of the wi-fi in the foreground, coincidentally it was also Narelle's birthday last Friday.
Until a fortnight ago I had never played Hoy which is merely a game of chance that fills in time but does give the mind a little bit of exercise as we have to react to the called card. We are given 13 cards from a deck and many decks may be used if the house is large but the tendency is to deal any persons hand from a single deck, the game ends when your 13th and last card is called.
My reason for long windedness is on my first ever game a fortnight ago the very first five cards called were in my hand, odds that by my calculations are a bit over the 1 in 2000 mark, then of course things rapidly returned to the usual failure and I didn't win, nor have I ever won a game but we do get to socialise a little, something for me that was lacking for many years.


Lost and found but it's not all bad.

Olivia lost her eyes a week ago and we found them tonight, however I don't consider them repairable, due by the looks of it to being used for parking practice for a few cars, a shame because they were a lovely set of eyes.
What's not bad is that we have closure to the mystery, closure being an important release when tragedy strikes.
The loco is added just to make the picture a bit happier, not to illustrate the train wreck it's become.


Rest in Peace Errol.

Our friend Errol Handy died last night, this slightly blurry photo was from Sunday when Olivia went to their place for the weekly Philippine girls get together, he looked pretty good then but he has been crook lately and had a heart procedure recently. Errol was about the first Aussie husband of a Philippine lass who we met and helped Olivia to join into the social circle here so she doesn't feel as isolated, he was a good man.
Again from Sunday Errol's now widow Van whom we give all our best wishes to.
Errol from the information I have was 68 years and 335 days old, sadly and coincidentally his aunt died within hours or even minutes of his death.


A couple of Jimby modifications to a Nikon S7000.

I grabbed this useful little camera some time ago at the right price but a couple of things I didn't like was the shutter button didn't feel right and the selector dial twisted far too easily, too often causing drama by turning whilst being pocketed/unpocketed.
After testing it out I figured I had no real need to change it from the green auto setting so I've used a bit of UV setting fingernail paint to fix it in place, if needed the knob can still be rotated after a bit of extra force breaks the seal.
Some rhinestones padded the shutter button to give it a nice feel.
This S7000 camera ticks a lot of my boxes for what I like in a camera, fairly good picture quality, a useful 20x zoom, comes in a non-black colour, is USB chargeable, small and light enough to carry anywhere in a pocket, and at the time I bought it a sharp price.
I have used it to post a fair number of shots to this weblog but you'll have to check the EXIF (which I leave in the shots I take) to see where it's been used.



The lens on Olivia's Nikon J2 has been cactus for quite some time and I got serious today about effecting a fix for it, the problem has been the aperture iris thingy shown in the middle here stays in the closed up position, rendering the lens quite useless.
After much work I finally gained access to it but the years do condemn and I consider it somewhat beyond my ability to fix.
Happily this prompted me to seek a replacement lens which to my surprise I found one at a not too outrageous price and grabbed, the new lens is a 10-30mm job which is a technically superior unit to this base model 11-27.5mm one. I say technically because I was struck by how good the images were from this inferior lens.


I may have to prod the council about this.

The gutter outside our place doesn't drain, due to water being reluctant to flow uphill, I suppose I can be fairly laid back about it for now but if a council inspector ever comes here and says anything about mosquito breeding places in our yard I'll let fly about their gutter.


Not the sort of skidmark you'd expect but whoever laid this one in the small hours of this morning did manage to awaken me. We don't get many incidents here so this can be put down to boys will be boys.
Note the lovely blue sky and lack of breeze, now thanks to the wonders of satellite we know there's a cyclone approaching but in the past it would have come as a surprise. I don't think that "Debbie" has our name on it, for us I just think we'll have a bit of wind and rain but nothing major, I'd be more concerned if I was further South in Ayr.


Out with the girls this morning.

We performed at the Canossa Aged Care place today and had a pretty good time, they even gave us some cake afterwards, correction delicious cake, I suppose I'll be in trouble now.
I wish my chest would clear up so I could put a bit of effort into things but I have grave doubts about it ever coming good again.
Kudos to Rita our boss on the far right here who plays piano, she's really quite superb and she makes our Ingham group of Sing Australia a very fortunate one.


This spark plug is still clean.

I wanted to play fancy buggers and eyeball how Daisy's piston and bore are doing but the tablet I chose to use didn't want to get along with the borescope camera I bought.
For whatever hardware/software reason after about one second of use the camera consistently locked up resulting in more frustration than I wanted to put up with, so with further motivation from the mosquitoes draining my life giving blood I promptly gave up with this image of the piston crown the only one I managed to take.
Sometime in the future I'll attack it with a windows laptop, which in past testing was vastly more reliable.

A heartbreaking tumble.

Olivia bought this ceramic piece last week from the Salvos in Townsville after I'd seen a fancy doctor at the hospital, sadly today after I walked past where it was it took a heavy fall and broke, oh dear $6 ruined, but being fixit Jimby I attacked it with some glue.
I also added some felt feet to it as it didn't sit steadily on hard surfaces, hopefully Olivia feels a little better now.


Partial success.

This is a vent out of Daisy, the pivot holes for the link that joins the vanes had broken, and the wire I've melted into place and formed a new link with is my attempt at a repair.
It does work but the problem is the post at the lower left here, it's misshapen and binds slightly at this fully closed position resulting in a bent link wire if it's opened by pushing a finger in the spot cast on it, but that isn't a real problem here as we always have vents open and even if shut it's easy enough to push the other vane to open them.
This is the second vent on Daisy to break so a definite design weakness methinks. To be fair to Proton though there's bugger all else I can moan about.

Lorna's water pump.

This is the water pump that I changed on Lorna's car the other week, one thing I should say that may help anybody who does a job like this is to changeover the studs for the fan before you bolt the new water pump in place, I didn't and it made for a more awkward job for a short chap like myself.
The impeller side was very good, that rust is only from sitting about for a while.
There's some sign of seepage from its blowhole but I'm far from an expert, I'm just good at gaining information online that helps me to take on tasks.


Almost 100 years ago, a little tribute.

I'm a fortnight early but in case any of my family see this it may jog a memory.
On the 24th March 1917 my Grandmother's brother Sgt. John (Jack) McGregor 4881 was killed in action by a sniper's bullet to the head.
War service has largely been missed by my family, one grandfather was too young for WW1 yet a family man and too old for WW2, the other grandfather was asked by his family to just stay and do one more harvest after he was old enough to join WW1, but the war was over by then, he too was a family man and too old for WW2. My father was too young for WW2 and Korea never crossed his mind at the time, perhaps a good thing given how Korean veterans were shunned upon their return.
Myself I was too young for Vietnam, given Australia withdrew from action by the end of 1972.
So really of my blood kin I'm limited to Jack, my maternal Great Uncle who was killed in WW1, and John Smyth VX48125 who was a Rat of Tobruk and survived WW2.

This is the war service record photo of John Smyth, I'd say because he had about the same lack of tallness that I have that his remaining a private throughout his many years of war service is quite believable.

Now I'll add copies of what I have from the Red Cross file into Jack's death.

Jack didn't receive any medal and he mother certainly couldn't have as she had died shortly after my Grandmother was born, something her father always held a grudge against her for.
This is from Jack's commanding officer Captain Trainor, a write up to be proud of, of course Jack had already achieved the highest rank possible for someone from a non-privileged family so gaining a medal was just that step too far.
Sgt. Hills testimony here to me is a good straight facts one that I favour is correct about the place where Jack was killed.
I've marked in pink where I suspect Jack was shot. On the edge of Doignies chasing Germans back to the Hindenburg line.
And to end my little tribute a photo of my Grandmother with her older Brother Jack.


Tight squeeze.

I mentioned to the driver when he returned from a delivery that his height clearance was marginal at best, but he knew, that's why he always reverses out of that bay.



I saw this as I was heading into the doctor's place today, hidden fairly well out in the open.


A new toy but it's not mine.

My old friend Mario Torrisi who lives his job at the weather bureau in Townsville asked if I could host a weather station and after agreeing to it a fancy big carton arrived in the mail a few days later. Of course I had to get some aches from that car job out of my system before playing with it but today I've had a go at it.
This is the main unit and I've only made a temporary mount for it until I think a bit more about it.
dunno whether (almost a pun) this URL should become active sometime in the near future IINGHAM5
Those who have eyesight may notice that the solar panel for measuring radiation will have accuracy problems in the tropics.


A pink heart.

I spotted this on the wall to our wash house today, Olivia must like something.

That timing belt job is finished but it reinforced why I prefer smaller vehicles and bikes.


A much tougher job than expected.

I figured quite a while ago that Lorna should get the timing belt changed on her Nissan Pathfinder, checking online led me to believe it was a pretty simple job so I volunteered to do it for her.
Then I discovered that it's a vastly more difficult job than I expected.
Here's the reason, my legs are far too short for me to gain any comfortable access, and the bullbar makes things even harder, oh well live and learn, I should be finished tomorrow.
Here's the new belt fitted as well as a new water pump but I'm doubting now there was any issue with the old pump but access isn't easy so it may have been a good idea.
Interesting that the RH bank previously had been set one tooth out (retarded) so there's a chance it may run differently when I finish this chore.
Olivia has banned me from working on cars in future but it's a reminder to me why Daisy is a small 4 cylinder.



You get what you pay for I suppose but this cheap watch that I've had for a reasonable while now is showing its age, maybe I should replace it so Olivia has a dressier Jimby to accompany her.
It gets harder to find a watch too as I've aged, I need to be able to easily read it and that eliminates a fair proportion of them, also it's no use watches with hands having a day and date dial as I just can't read them any more unless the light is superb. Just something pretty and simple will do.
I took this watch on my trip to Philippines in 2013 but I have a feeling it was bought around 2008, I've replaced the battery in its cheap Chinese movement a few times.


I hope it survives.

We transplanted this tree from a pot that Olivia has nurtured for a while, now we hope it thrives in a natural environment.


Another filling falls out.

While eating a Chiko roll last night another whacking great filling fell out but at least I heard on Wednesday night that Ingham once again has a public dentist in town, and since I was advised some time ago that my time had come up on the waiting list but was on hold until they could find a dentist again that I expect to be called in soon enough.
I also expect that I'll have to have plenty of patience.
My finger here points to the newly created hole.

Only one day late.

My seniors card arrived yesterday which made me very pleased even though I have no plans to ever use it, to me it's just a badge of honour.


A real birthday surprise today.

I received a lovely 60 card today in the mail from my Auntie Shirley and Uncle Ken, great timing, unlike that seniors card I'm waiting for.

A damp anniversary.

It would have been our 20th wedding anniversary today so I gave Grace a change of flowers. I had to dodge the rain to do it and worse was that after one more photo the rest of my shots were file error jobs that this otherwise wonderful Samsung sometimes makes, I think it's from the TF card sneaking out.
Thinks too that I should tell Olivia about the horizon marker on screen that turns green when it's happy.


Sad news.

I've just heard that my Auntie Beth has died. After a bit of a search I finally found a photo I took of her in 2005, here she stands beside husband Ken who is my Father's brother.
Beth was a very upright and decent woman.


Australia Day.

We visited the Shire hall this morning for the Australia Day singing, which somehow we didn't partake in this year, despite a lack of practice they were very good.
The controversy about this holiday isn't going to go away, the difficulty is that if we move Australia Day to its correct date of 1st January then it would create a difficulty with morning events like this.
We only had one new citizen signed up this morning, in a few years hopefully Olivia will get all the limelight.
Speaking of Olivia here she is about to return home, showing off her lovely colourful top.