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Mt Warning across the Tweed River from Tumbulgum.

Mt Warning across the Tweed River from Tumbulgum.

A Tranquil Trip.

Another view of Mt Warning from Tumbulgum.

Another view of Mt Warning from Tumbulgum.

For our friend June’s birthday we decided to take her and her husband for a scenic drive and lunch. That is what we did for Rex’s birthday and we all enjoyed that. Pauline did the organising, we are fortunate having Pauline and living in the midst of a scenic wonderland.

A tree on the green strip between the river and the road at Tumbulgum.

A tree on the green strip between the river and the road at Tumbulgum.

It was a perfect day but that’s what they say about this area one day sunny the next day perfect. We headed south across the border turning off the highway to drive beside the Tweed River to our first stop at Tumbulgum.

Looking from the river the Tumbulgum Tavern.

Looking from the river the Tumbulgum Tavern.

The Tumbulgum Tavern was established in 1887 it was the regions first unlicensed grog shop providing for the Red Cedar timber cutters. It is now licensed, still serving up refreshments but to far different type of person.

Photo displayed in Murwillbah regional museum.

Photo displayed in Murwillumbah regional museum.

This is not to be missed.

This is not to be missed.

Passing the fields of sugar cane and the processing plant is a beautiful drive. The steam billowing from the chimney of the plant in puffy, white, swirling clouds against the clear blue sky is a fascinating sight. We parked at Murwillumbah Visitors Information Centre, this is one of the best Information Centres in Australia and they are all good. On our trip around Australia the first thing we would look for was the big blue ‘i’ leading to the local Visitors Information.

From the Information car park, note steam from sugar processing plant.

From the Information car park, note steam from sugar processing plant.

My photos only give you an idea of how good the Murwillumbah visitor’s information centre is.

There is a 360 view from Mt warning covering the 4 walls of one room.

There is a 360 view from Mt warning covering the 4 walls of one room.

What makes it special is the Caldera Art Gallery. You may not be able to visit but I urge you to click this link.

http://calderaart.org.au/gallery.html

We were fortunate in having the resident artist to show us around. He was a busy man but I got him to pose with his latest painting.

Then we had a leisurely browse around. Watching the videos and soaking up information on the area, it is really a wonder-land.

The Hippies icon and we are not far from Nimbin.

The Hippies icon and we are not far from Nimbin.

https://jacksjottings.wordpress.com/2013/04/25/nimbin-no-alcohol-needed/

We enquire about places to have lunch.

Information with a smile.

Information with a smile.

If one had more time a hike to lunch at the Rainforest Cafe in Mt Warning National Park would have been enjoyable.

Walkers working up an appetite at the entrance to café.

Walkers working up an appetite at the entrance to café.

The cafe is in 6 hectares of rustic gardens where you can sit at secluded tables by a calming stream. That makes waiting for your meal a pleasure if I did not have friends for company I could quietly meditate here.

The fruit is about half ready.

The fruit is about half ready.

We each chose different meals and savoured the delicious taste and enjoyed the whole experience. The authors of the book ‘The Happiness Hypotheses,’  did a survey and found that having a meal with friends is one of the most enjoyable things we can do. With this exquisite food in natures tropical garden we feel the ‘Force’ is with us or perhaps we are blessed.

One can dine by the stream.

One can dine by the stream.

I thought we will have to bring our next visitors out to this cafe there is so much to enjoy around what is referred to as the scenic rim. Link to the café,

http://www.tripadvisor.com.au/Restaurant_Review-g1162426-d3618615-Reviews-Rainforest_Cafe_Mount_Warning_National_Park-Uki_New_South_Wales.html

Ordering lunch to be served in the garden.

Ordering lunch to be served in the garden.

It was all formed by volcanic action 23 million years ago. The bubbling lava formed geodes that can still be found in the streams. These gem stones are known as Thunder eggs and can be cut with a Diamond saw and polished.

Thunder eggs on display at Murwillumbah museum.

Thunder eggs on display at Murwillumbah museum.

Back to sightseeing, we visited the Tweed Regional Museum back in Murwillumbah. I found some interesting things about the past history of local people.

drive Rex n June Info office 091_3135x2772

This was not much recognition for the original owners.

This was not much recognition for the original owners.

Insightful of how life was for those pioneers and the indigenous people.

We do not know what pain is.

We do not know what pain is.

We enjoyed walking once more in Murwillumbah as it is one of those towns that has not been swallowed up by the modern trend. It is a reminder of our childhood and youthful days. And appropriate for our generation to have a birthday outing.

Lovely old house and magnificent tree.

Lovely old house and magnificent tree.

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South Burleigh Surf Club.

South Burleigh Surf Club.

The old boys get together.

Activity at the surf club.

Activity at the surf club.

Once a month I get an email to say The Boys will be meeting at the South Burleigh Surf Club, if I am not on walkabout with Pauline. I get on the muscle machine and ride down and there they are looking just like the blokes on the birthday card Rex gave me for my 83rd.

Some of the old boys.

Some of the old boys.

The manager said there is 2000 years of wisdom sitting at our table. The day he said that one of us was absent there was 8 of us on deck. “8×8=64, add the zero and we got 640 years at a rough estimate you are about1300 years out.” said Trevor.

My 83rd birthday card.

My 83rd birthday card.

No calculator required, we are from the days when your change was counted out into your hand and your brain got a workout every time you pulled out your wallet.

Seen from the club.

Seen from the club.

There actually is a lot of knowledge sitting at our table these men have forgotten more than teenagers of today have learned.

What a buzz.

What a buzz.

Brian was in on the business side setting up computers and printers from the early days. Al is our photography expert been professionally in the game and in on digital cameras when they first came on the market. He is a expert on Photoshop. Every one of the Boys is a store of information. My specialty is picking the right people to associate with. My advice is pick your friends carefully.

The opp shop pre-loved shirt.

The op shop pre-loved shirt.

I am wearing a shirt with camels on it and Rajasthan India, “Have you been to Rajasthan Jack? “Says Brian “no I’ve been to the op shop.”

 My Grand son Michel flying a kite in frount of the surf club.

My Grand son Michael flying a kite in front of the surf club.

I am pleased to let everyone know I do my bit for conservation and buy second hand.

More old blokes heading to Broadbeach Blues Festival.

More old blokes heading to Broadbeach Blues Festival.

There is a lot of light hearted conversation about current affairs and technology. With a bit of concern for each other’s wellbeing. “You are looking a bit thin Jack isn’t Pauline feeding you.” “No it is the bike, it needs a new engine.” They are full of wise cracks. “What are you on about?” I ask. “Are you hard of hearing?” “No my ears are ok except I left them at home.”

The Festival runs for four days.

The Festival runs for four days.

I should wear my hearing aids because I miss a lot without them and I do not realise I am speaking too loud.

There is dancing in the street.

There is dancing in the street.

 Like some people do on their mobiles phones, they hardly need a phone, they shout so loud they could be heard in Rajasthan.

S. Burleigh from Ambience Apartment building.

S. Burleigh from Ambience Apartment building.

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Rainbow Lorikeets in love.

Rainbow Lorikeets in love.

Finding peace.

Kookaburras pay a visit.

kookaburra pay a visit.

The white dove, symbol of peace, will not land on a grasping hand. Everyone is chasing after the blue bird of happiness. Hunting the elusive blue bird of happiness, we realize if you succeed in capturing it you cannot imprisoned it. The happiness soon diminishes and dies and you are off on safari again. Happiness needs to be let free for everyone’s pleasure. There is not much rest for a person obsessed with desire always wanting pleasure and happiness. Pleasures are fleeting the only joy is in being free and sharing.

 Corellas  stand in for white doves

Corellas stand in for white doves

To have the pure white dove alight on your open hand is a truly worthwhile goal in life. The line between these metaphors and actual reality merges. An open hand like an open heart brings peace and contentment. Relaxed, calm and tranquil not wanting to possess offering a welcoming open helpful hand. I have found birds and most creatures sense danger and recognize kindness. With time and patience we can create peace around us. To quote Confucius “One step is the beginning of a thousand mile journey”. Opening our hand and our hearts brings us one step closer to a world of peace.

Blue Wren for happiness.

Blue Wren for happiness.

The blue bird sings for our happiness and we should recognize the power of a song. I am occasionally over taken by a negative frame of mind. To be mindful of our thoughts is the first step in the process of correcting unhelpful thoughts. The way to peace and contentment is to control unsavory thoughts that arise in our mind. For a quick short-term fix I use music. To cure the blues, I may get Fleetwood Mac to give Doctor Brown a call, he is that loving man if Doctor Brown doesn’t cure you, nobody can do you no good. With Credence Clearwater Revival and Jeremiah the bullfrog it is joy to the world all the boys and girls, joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea, joy to you and me.

A bird on the head is worth two in the bush.

A bird on the head is worth two in the bush.

I call some songs mood music depending on the mood I want to encourage. I may want recovery music if I am fatigued or get-up-and–go music if I am lethargic. I have music that inspires me. According to Doctor Brown with music you don’t need any prescriptions you don’t have to pay no bills. You can choose the music that presses your buttons, we all have different tastes. Music can temporarily alleviate minor upsets. For prolonged peace and contentment it takes meditation practice. This is the aim of meditation to calm and gain control of the mind. Thoughts can invade our minds arising from conscious sensory input and also subliminal causes. Thoughts precede actions repeated actions, become habits that form our character. Understanding basic things that govern our life are often overlooked in the frantic hunt for, the passing blue bird, the fleeting pleasure of possessing.

Love at first sight.

Love at first sight.

A long time ago a million years it seems. The best things in life were free. But no one appreciated a sky that was always blue. And no one congratulated a moon that was always new. So it was planned that they would vanish now and then. And we must pay before we get them back again. That’s what storms were made for and you should not be afraid for, that is the beginning of an old song that helps me appreciate what a wonderful world it is. Although it is not always as we would like it to be. But every time it rains it rains pennies from heaven. Since the days of pennies, it seems a million years now with the flood of inflation; it is now a deluge of dollars.

Birds of a different feather get together.

Birds of a different feather get together.

The sky is not always blue, not only because of rain clouds but because of carbon emissions into the atmosphere. The best things in life are becoming polluted. Air the number one free necessity in life, cleansing fresh free water and wholesome vegetables to sustain life are no longer free. Is it in natures plan or God’s plan that we must pay before we get them back again? Is that what the extreme weather is made for, should we be afraid for, this being the end to our carefree sing along?

I lend my friends a hand.

I lend my friends a hand.

There is a true blue bird of happiness. Life is sweet tender and complete when you find this blue bird of happiness. You will find perfect peace of mind when you find the blue bird of happiness. When he sings to you though you are deep in blue you will see a ray of light come shining through. Yes somewhere over the rainbow blue birds fly, so why can’t you and I.

My wild Aussie friends.

My wild Aussie friends.

 

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Both beauties.

Both beauties.

Lucky Jack.

The Captain and Cabin Boy.

The Captain and Cabin Boy.

I have often been called Happy Jack or Lucky Jack. I wonder is it because I am happy that I am lucky or am I lucky because I am happy and smile a lot? People ask, “Why are you always smiling?” “It is vanity the wrinkles are rearranged and I look better.” I joke. In fact I am advertising a good emotional state. People know I am friendly it is a win-win situation that promotes good.

Not this young, this is my grandson, but similar smile.

Not this young, this is my grandson, but similar smile.

I hitchhiked most of my way around the world in the sixties. I was young the world was mine; mankind was at the peak of extravagance, before thoughts of conservation, I had not realized there was a limit to the world’s resources. Success in thumbing a ride relies on your appearance, clean and tidy, not too big a bag and most important a smile. Choose an easy and safe place for your lift to pull-up and it is a good idea to display a sign showing where you going to.

 Happy jack smiles run in the family.

Happy jack smiles run in the family.

When the lifts are scarce and the sky is clouding over it is easy to forget to smile and instead get a worried look on your face. The driver has to make a snap decision and cannot decide what the desperate grim look means so does not take the risk. I learned a smile is the same in any language it says “I am happy, at ease and friendly.” People are attracted and respond positively to a smile.

Smiles are like boomerangs they return.

Smiles are like boomerangs they return.

I feel sorry for people who look for sympathy airing their troubles with a dismal gloomy face. Many people burdening others with their hard luck stories. What they do not realize is they are keeping their troubles alive, magnifying them and turning friends away. I feel admiration and compassion for a person that smiles when plagued by misfortune.

Smiles are beautiful in any language.

Smiles are beautiful in any language.

The way to improve your chances, not only in getting a free ride, is a sincere smile. By caring, being helpful and being friendly your chances of making new friends increases and it starts with a smile. When you increase your circle of friends you increase your good fortune. The more friends you have the more chance you have of hearing about opportunities that can benefit you. It is called networking in business circles in religious groups it would be fellowship and in all walks of life it is commonsense. Smiling, being helpful and friendly promotes happiness and luck.

Smiles love and peace a bit of reggae.

Smiles love and peace a bit of reggae.

An example, Pauline and I went to at a music venue we got there early. Sat at a table in a good position all available tables were soon taken. There were no empty tables but some unoccupied seats. Two seats were available at our table. Four people came in looking for a place. I smiled and said “There is room at this table you just need two more chairs.” After introductions we became friends, Terry belonged to a ukulele club and invited me along next time they met. I was looking for a ukulele club but none were advertised in the area. I went along and made more friends willing to pass on their knowledge. I am really lucky and the nicer I am to other people the luckier I get.

Be happy smile don't worry.

Be happy smile don’t worry.

The music was lively blues guitar; everyone was rocking or tapping their feet to the music. I let the music take me out on to the dance floor and did a solo uninhibited dance. I am not worried if people think I am a crazy old bloke or high on loco-weed. Musicians play better if they have an appreciative audience. I am the detonator that set others off dancing, it only takes one and others lose their self-consciousness. I do not need any stimulants other than the music, two beers is my limit. As for marijuana, one must be careful as it is sometimes mixed with other substances. You are pushing your luck if you try drugs to make you feel good. All that is needed is music a smile and good attitude.

Music, and loving smiles it is family trait.

Music, and loving smiles it is family trait.

Music is a good way to psyche you into a good mood. On a treadmill in a gym is a good cardiovascular exercise but dancing is also a great workout. I am no longer young and fit but I now realize the world is not mine to exploit. Simple pleasures are the best the higher you go the further you can fall. Sharing a meal with friends is one of the most enjoyable things you can do. Smile and be kind to others, if you are lucky the meal you share will not be your last.

Smiles make us one loving family.

Smiles make us one loving family.

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Sun set solitude.

Sun set solitude.

         Words Thoughts and

Actions.

Relax and meditate.

Relax and meditate.

I want to write something especially nice. Nice is not the word. What is the word I am looking for? One nice word will not suffice. I need a page of nicer than nice words. Then these words need to convey exactly what I want to say. I want to let you know in a wonderful way, all the things I find a joy that make me smile with delight or marvel in spellbound awe. Then look around and find much more. This world is full of things to delight. The splendor is never far from sight. The only time I do not see is when I only think of me. I turn away in a despondent mood to stagnate with a miserable attitude.

Pauline and me and a cup of tea.

Pauline and me and a cup of tea.

We hurry past the beauty of now forgetting beauty is everywhere anyhow. The beauty is here to appreciate, we hurry on then it is too late. Always wanting not content we wonder where the miracle went. The treasure is always close at hand. The world is wonderful it is always grand. Any fault or flaw we find is coming from a disturbed mind. Calm down and you can share this wondrous world’s abundant wealth. That gives us nourishment, beauty and health.

A garden in Korea.

A garden in Korea.

Mother Nature provides all that is good. So toast to health, your greatest wealth, with a glass of her sweet water. T V ads may tell you, Pepsi is the drink for you and to eat chocolates, cakes and hamburgers too. For my health I know what to do, drink water, eat fruit and veggies too. This is what I wanted to say nice words just got in the way. Now I have had my negative commercial, it is back to my old rehearsal.

Montage for DVD of Paulines family.

Montage for DVD of Pauline’s family.

A return to beauty, splendor and the sublime, I will put charm and loveliness in every line. To make this post whistle and sing, to amaze, delight and elation bring. Calm down remember balance and moderation. The balloon will burst with over inflation. Pleasures are fleeting, happiness does not last. We dream of the future and live in the past. Life is now if you can see, contentment is the way to be. Wanting all the temptation advertising has to entice us to buy things that are not always nice. Cars faster than the speed limit the law allows. So we can get to work on time and working overtime to pay for the labor-saving appliances.

Park picnic.

Park picnic.

I get caught up in all this technology. It is a wonderful era full of super inventions and I am not immune to wanting these incredible things. Then I remember moderation, balance and freedom and these are pleasing words. Like family, friends and all those superb free gifts of nature. After an extensive survey investigating what makes people happy it was found having a meal with friends was rated highest. There was no mention of who was footing the bill but if you can afford to pay the bill you will get an extra buzz of joy if you do. Those nicer words would be appreciation, empathy, reciprocity, respect, compassion, attentive, sharing, caring, perseverance, practice moderated by  balance, good humor and cooperation.

Garden picnic.

Garden picnic.

I have left out some words with admirable attributes, if you have an especially nice words that I have omitted I would like it if you could share them with me. Words are what thoughts are made of and nice thoughts give rise to nice actions and if practiced these nice thoughts and actions will become habits. Refrain from negative language and encourage the use of good words and good actions will follow. Practice this and ultimately this becomes second nature, a reflex action or habit. Be aware of your thoughts and control them by practicing meditation. This will bring contentment and some fleeting pleasures sprinkled with happiness.

Meet my Magpie mates.

Meet my Magpie mates.

 

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This was home not so long ago.

This was home not so long ago.

Good fortune.

Ring of friends or birds of a feather.

Ring of friends or birds of a feather.

Your luck depends on your attitude. If you throw a smile into a pool of people, it will radiate out same as a ripple from a stone would in a pool of water in ever enlarging circle. Smiles are very infectious if you smile, somewhere in that pool of people, a smile will bounce right back. That is a link in your chain of luck.

Linked together.

Linked together.

The more links in your chain of luck the more you will smile. This increases your circle of friends like ripples around you changing your luck. It is a chain reaction that changes your outlook. A positive optimistic attitude increases your popularity and you will want to respond with cheerful kind and caring actions. You will attract positive like-minded people increasing the links in your long chain of friends. Here is a cliché ‘friends are worth more than gold’ this has been repeated so often because it is true. Friends have your welfare at heart they tip you off to good stuff and warn you of dangers.

This spideris beautiful and not dangerous.

This spider is beautiful and not dangerous.

Smile, be mister nice guy and you will have luck, but for your luck to last you must strengthen those links in your chain of friends. To do this you need to be reciprocal by caring and sharing. Out in the big pond it is the people with the right attitude, honest and trustworthy that are always welcome. The irony of luck is when you share your good fortune your luck increases. When you achieve this you will be respected and opportunities will pop up from unexpected places. The more links in your chain the more chances you have of winning and the stronger the links the luckier you will be.

Everyone is beautiful when they smile.

Everyone is beautiful when they smile.

In business this is called networking, like a web stretching out in all directions, catching food for the big business spider. Statistic shows that networking pays off for business people but this is not luck this is a numbers game and not always sincere. Links built on genuine unselfishness that are of mutual benefit will bring rewards of happiness and contentment. Sales people who work in a forthright way do well in the long run by referrals. To share and help others does have a chain reaction that brings good fortune.

Don't push your luck.

Don’t push your luck.

These are old hackney clichés ‘It is better to give than receive,’ ‘As you sow so will you reap’. We have stopped repeating them because they are not original. You do not have to be a parrot repeating them, you only need to remember them and practice them and you will have good fortune. If you want to become a lucky person you must share your good fortune. Then you will not want luck you will have all you want in abundance, no chains attached, a free windfall, a winner without even buying a ticket you will be a smiling success. You will live a charmed life protected from harm and be a positive force attracting favorable conditions.

Web

Like a web attracts morning dew drops.

Your destiny is governed by your deeds. Knowing yourself is to become aware of your moods and feelings. With this knowledge you can control your thoughts. Your thoughts have the power to elevate you from depression to joy. Think of all you have, not what you are lacking. Concentrate on the blessings in your life and be thankful. There are many less fortunate, concentrate on how you can help them. Forget yourself and your attitude will change from ‘poor me’  to “I am lucky”.

Beauty reflected in the circle.

Beauty reflected in the circle.

Unaware of your feelings of impatience you will become agitated, and then get angry. Ignorant of your feelings of anger you blame others. When you are mindful, observing your feelings, you will change your thoughts and stay calm. Look at inconveniences as an opportunity to practice patience and self-control. No one makes you angry they may irritate, annoy and test your patience, but you are at fault if you allow yourself to lose your temper. When people criticize you do not be upset, if it is valid they are doing you a favor, as when you are aware of faults you can take steps to fix them. If the censure is groundless or hurtful it is foolish to get annoyed, stay calm and composed. Thoughtful, right actions contribute to your wellbeing as well as your good fortune. This is how to become one of the lucky ones.

Don't worry he will not hurt you.

Don’t worry he will not hurt you.

Does worry help, most of the things we worry about never happen?  

   

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Australian gum tree as seen in the bush.

Friends.

I received a comment that inspired me to write this post. Comments are very valuable, without encouraging comment a beginner is apt to give up. I had doubts that I was qualified to write a blog. I have had little formal education, my wonderful childhood not shut up in a school room, it was spent wandering in the bush. With my only friend Pinto a bits’a dog (bits of this breed and bits of that breed). He was a valuable friend warning me of snakes. Snakes, after hibernation, look for a sunny place to warm up their cold blooded body. They often find a dusty, well trodden animal track is just the place, and this is just the place for a bare-foot carefree child to run. Snakes, or any animal, normally, are not aggressive, they will not hurt you unless you frighten or disturb them. Most people that have been bitten by snakes were trying to kill them; fear and hate are a big problem in our world.

Australian gum trees have many different bark patterns.

I learned a lot bare-foot in the bush, Mother Nature is a good teacher and totally impartial, making no favorites, you either obey her or you pay the consequences. Not to listen to her, disregarding her, and trying to change the rules to suit yourself, will inevitably incur punishment. What I have learned from my observations will that enable me to write an interesting, entertaining and blog helpful to others? I have my doubts, therefore I am thankful I am receiving enough likes and comments to encourage me, an extrovert does not need a lot.

Broken off trunk of the (Xanthorrhoea) Grass Tree.

In my youth I was ignorant I took on my first job knowing nothing, except what I had learned from helping my mother on a small poultry farm. I still love to hear the sound a hen makes when she is contented, a clucking no, chirping no I have not the words to describe this soothing and trusting sound of contentment. You will have to listen yourself. Be mindful in the presence of birds, they are easily startled you have to be quiet and not disturb them and they will reward you with the sounds they make, song or whistle is an inadequate descriptions. Words are only descriptions the word food does not feed the hungry.

Fowls visiting at Bivouac camp ground.

Nature’s garden is a magic place for you to spend time. Mans garden is too manicured and sterile and has few insects, consequently birds do not visit. Wu wei! Why does man make all this work, ironically he believes it will save him work. Without the knowlidge that a garden needs the balance provided by all creatures. Like yin and yang, Lao tzu knew this that is why Taoists go with the flow of nature. Without this knowledge we are ignorant of what our garden needs.

A different view point.

People with big egos do not like to be told they are ignorant. Wise men know a lack of knowledge is a great handicap and appreciate knowing where they are lacking. I think I would like to know if I am lacking in any way but am not sure that I am wise enough. Will I act like a wild bull or accept it like a wise man? I think we can take the metaphorical bull by the horns in our blogs and comments and find out.

Natures abstract bark painting, I called this one Jesus.

I am carried away my mind is not focused on the subject; I will take a deep breath. After eighty years of practical experience in the school of hard knocks I only need a little encouraging comment to spur me on. My V.I.P.C.F. has given me encouraging comments when I needed them. He also introduced me to a host of writers, people noted for their wise insight. My friend took on a mammoth task of doing a post every day for one year, with a photo and an extract from a noted writer; these words were from a wide range of beliefs and philosophies. As well as that my V.I.P.C.F. used his valuable time to answer all comments.

Trees can be seen like people with a bad hair day.

Acronyms and text short cuts and technical jargon need explaining.  V.I.P.C.F. you know V.I.P. stands for very important person. All friends are very important so we will let that stand. As for the P all preconceived understanding must be put aside and see the p in the full context P.C. we clearly see now the relevance of the p, the F please put right out of your mind any associations you may be considering, When I write F it means exactly what I want it to mean nothing more nothing less, F stands for friend. When I write something please consider it without any preconceived ideas you may have. You may see things from a new perspective. Now you know I have a very important personal computer friend. If you would like to know why he is important to me go to his blog, hit this “Shantideva Life is a dream.” hyper link.

 

I asked this Black Headed harmless Python about the apple story, he would not comment.

      

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