Well where is Jono at any rate?

For the next 3 months I'm staying on a farm in Eureka. It's great to have a bit of routine and normalcy and to unpack the suitcase for the first time since October.

Now that I'm in Australia for a few months - I'd love to catch up in one form or another.

21 May 009 My phone is: HM. (02) 6688 4323  MOB. 0421 446 853

Address is: 101 Whian Road, Eureka, NSW, 2480

You are welcome to drop by and visit. This is one of the most beautiful parts of Australia.

Or for those a bit further away you can often find me on MSN or Yahoo Messenger. Just use my email address jono@jonomiller.com

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This morning marked the opening of the 42nd parliament of Australia. Incoming Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, delivered his first speech and first commitment as Prime Minister of Australia.

He said sorry.

He apologised to the Aboriginal people of Australia for the crimes and injustices committed against them in past generations. I was impressed with his speech.

If you did not hear it, I encourage you to click here to read it on the web, and at least please read the story he told of Nanna Nungala Fejo.

Mr Rudd told Nanna Fejo's heartbreaking story but then finished by repeating her wishes. She said that for her the most important thing to be remembered and emphasised over this whole issue - is a mother's love.

A child should have a mother's love and a mother should have the right to love her child.

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Here I am spending time in NZ with various family members. The other day I was at my sister Priscilla's place becoming acquainted with my niece and nephew. I was 'watching' Jacob in the lounge room and decided to have a tinkle on the ebony and ivory. Some time later Jacob was wanting to get out of the room and I looked down to discover the lounge room almost completely covered with little white balls. Jacob had managed to open the bean bag and spread much of its contents in every direction. Sjoerd and I had fun cleaning it all up and I retain the absent minded professor title.

Good one Uncle Jono!!

48 HOURS IN JOBURG - What I did - What God taught me

December 13 I arrive at Joburg from Cape Town to find the plane tp Perth has already gone. The time on my ticket was wrong. My agent's fault so no compensation or accommodation. Tomorrow's flight is full but I can go on standby. Now I have to go and find my bag. I sit in the luggage area for over an hour reading "A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian". Actually it's written in English and a book I recommend. I have to head back to Domestic to find internet to alert my friends in Perth. Then I wander on up to the viewing platform - find a fourseater bench - get the sleeping bag out and try to sleep (see article "Gate Crasher").

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Are you holding on or bailing out?

The day starts being picked up at 7:45 and we head off to the Zambezi for breakfast and a briefing. We sign the indemnity form, listen very carefully to the safety instructions and before too long we find ourselves with a life jacket, helmet and oar cautiously making our way down below the falls to The Boiling Pot. Choongo our guide gets us seated. Lucas and I up front. Behind me are Maria and Michelle with Kristin behind Lucas. Choongo is our man at the back. We practice forward, back, over left, over right, get down and then it’s time to head down the mighty Zambezi. The first rapid is a real beauty, and I thought we were going over. After we came through no worries, I knew it was going to be a great day. But the first casualty of the day was none other than me on rapid number 3, a grade 3 fall, not too difficult, but a big wave caught me by surprise and I found myself spluttering in and out of big waves floating down stream.

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I have travelled to 25 countries in 6 different continents. I’ve seen rich and poor. But never before this week had I been so far away from civilization as we know it. We all take electricity for granted. Even those of us who live where it is irregular – irregular electricity is a huge step up from NO electricity. Here in Lunda province of Zambia, near the Angola and Congo borders there is a hospital and school that have been here for decades. Just this year, a hydro station was opened here which services the hospital. The lines are still being built to the school, and the grid is still being built to provide lines to some of the villages. Most people here live in a mud brick hut with a thatched roof. A few have tin roofs – which I believe is a requirement for the government to allow them to have electricity. The hospital, where I am staying, for many years was running on generators, having a huge diesel bill and electricity just 3 hours a day.

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Well glad you asked that question. I'm in Kalene in the north west of Zambia near the borders of Congo and Angola. Right near the source of the Zambezi River. I'm staying in a small Hospital here.

Yesterday I saw a small power station which has been built here recently on the Zambezi. They now have power most of the time instead of 3 hours a day on expensive diesel generators. I have helped out at the hospital by replacing broken window panes where the rain has been coming in on patient's beds.
Where to next? Maybe Kabwe, maybe Zomba in Malawi.

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