Angoram Club Photo — Do You Recognise The Two Women?

November 28, 2012 at 1:05 am (Angoram, Angoram Club, Commentary, East Sepik District, Papua New Guinea, Sepik River)

https://deberigny.files.wordpress.com/2008/01/sandra-king-sue-treutlein-luke-blansjaar-frank-faulkner-janine-wyatt-ella-lucas-ronnie-lucas.jpg

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Two distinguished Francophiles!

November 25, 2012 at 1:29 am (A.C.T. Marke, Commentary, Love in a hot climate, Love on the Run, Temlett Conibeer, Twixt Semites and swastikas: Temlett Conibeer's greatest challenge)

Subject:Letter to Dr J.P. Priestley (copy)

24 November, 2012 
Dr J.P. Priestley
c/o Monsieur Terence Pfafflin
Sydney 2001
My dear Dr Priestley
May I say, as the editor of the above mentioned blog, how much our readers have enjoyed your contributions in the past!
I’ve taken the liberty of researching something of your illustrious academic life. Your distinguished career includes the occupation of chairs in some of Europe’s finest universities. You are a famous Anglophile and Francophile! With Monsieur Pfafflin, another celebrated Francophile, you employ French as your main medium of communication.
Given all of this, I realize, that what I’m asking of you might be considered by you as somewhat beneath what you would usually do – a mere actor in a film!
As you can see from the enclosed we are trying to find a suitable person to take the part of Temlett Conibeer, in a film of A.C.T. Marke’s novel, Twixt Semites and swastikas.  You will also notice  from reading the reviews that this fine work is in the same category as War & Peace !
So, please give this request your serious consideration!
I am, dear Sir, your admiring and obedient servant,
David Andrew de Bérigny
P.S. Don’t let my French name fool you – I don’t speak French, and I have little knowledge of French culture, though I admire both! I look to our mutual friend, Monsieur Terence, to address these deficiencies in me!

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An excellent review of A.C.T. Marke’s latest novel

November 23, 2012 at 1:51 am (A.C.T. Marke, Adolf Hitler, Book review, Commentary, East Sepik District, expatriates, Famous Old Wellingtonians, Fiction, Israel, Love in a hot climate, Love on the Run, malaria control, Papua New Guinea, PNG Health, Sepik River, Somerset, Temlett Conibeer, Third Reich, Twixt Semites and swastikas: Temlett Conibeer's greatest challenge)

Click on the links below:

Book review 1

Book review 2

Book review 3

Twixt Semites and swastikas…

Frogmouth Press

187 Low Head Road,

Low Head Tas 7253

$30.00  Posted $35.00

Email: frogmouth07@live.com.au

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The perils, and aches and pains, of self-publishing!

November 21, 2012 at 11:44 am (Biography, Book review, Commentary, David Wall, Jim Wall)

Recently I had published a shortish biography of my father:

Jim Wall An Australian Life 1893-1965, to be released in a batch of 50 copies.

The publishing and printing costs came to $28 per copy, and to post a copy within Australia is about $2. This means that to charge $30 per copy there is no profit made. Of course, added to this one is also inclined to give most copies away for nothing!

I have to admit that the quality of my work is nothing compared to the books written by my friend, the Commander! He also self-publishes, but it is rumoured that his latest novel is being looked at with interest by MGM!

In the line of authorship I’m talking about; after the actual work has been printed, one often finds mistakes that one has made – be they grammatical, factual, or other ability lapses, much to one’s embarrassment!

How much more so must I suffer if ever the work I’ve produced should come to the notice of a legal friend of mine, a noted grammarian and specialist in the uses and abuses of ‘whom’ and ‘who’ in written English. He is said to have an eagle eye in spotting  split infinitives – never would he allow one ‘to boldly go’, but only ‘to go boldly’! He might say that he heard a reader express an opinion that he or she could have written better!

It’s not all gloom and doom in relation to the above work. Some have paid me handsomely to receive a copy. Many readers have made interesting comments, which I’ll attempt to summarize.

From a reader:

“I’m afraid I found your father … well, not the saint you attempt to portray him as. The picture on the cover shows a nervous boy totally out of his depth. What were they thinking allowing him into a women’s hospital? He marries a first cousin, knowing the risks, and then he keeps her permanently pregnant! He says ‘how absurd’ when he is told his wife has an exhausted uterus. By now, I was, really disliking him. I thought the cartoon your mother copied and sent to him was telling … ‘Mussolini says so.’ It obviously went right over his head. Perhaps a more honest portrayal would have humanised him more?? All I could see was a reason for you to be a very long way away and out of touch. Whatever happened to you and why on the plantation? Keeping your mother in the dark is not protective, it’s controlling! I hope the writing helped you… what is the saying? To damn by faint praise??? Have you ever read Christina Stead? The Man Who Loved Children… Thank you for sharing, and I hope the critique does not wound.”

A comment from a relative:

“Thank you very much for the information about our family, and especially about Uncle Jim. It makes me proud to feel one comes from such a substantial family.”

From a reader:

“You could have called it: The life of a Catholic doctor in Australia, 1893-1965. Although a lot of it is for the benefit of the family, you can’t write a biography without raising a lot of wider issues and brushing the socio-political background. This short bio factually and succinctly paints the life in the country at the beginning of the 20th century. A bit like the impressionists: little brush strokes that, together, create the feel of the time and place, even though most of it is left to the imagination. I quite enjoyed reading it and looking for context that was hidden behind, such as diseases, education, religious and moral issues or surprising facts such as the nuns of Chambéry in Norway, which puzzled me. I worked in Chambéry, France, but I did not know that St Joseph of Chambéry had opened in 1865 and spread throughout Europe. I often walked to Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s house of Les Charmettes, at night at the light of sodium lamps piercing the ubiquitous fog; and admired the famous Elephant fountain “des Quatre-sans-cul” celebrating Hannibal’s crossing of the Alps at that place. Thanks for bringing the past back to life so vividly. I also enjoyed the many old photographs.”

From a would-be reader:

“I think I’ll wait till I’ve finished this novel before acquainting myself with the delights of Jim Wall’s life. Wonderful picture on the front, though I hope the setting isn’t some Catholic baby farm or punitive home for unmarried mothers.”

From a well wisher:

“I’m sure those 50 copies will be gone soon! (meaning bought by friends)”

From a thrifty and hopeful reader:

“The book would be fascinating, but I will decline. I’ll borrow it from a library!!”

From an impressed reader:

“Thanks for the book it’s so great!! Congratulations.”

From my sister:

“Thank you for the book. I enjoyed reading it & thought it was well written & a good account of Pa’s life. He would have been upset with the scandals in the Church.”

Deborah, my wife, thinks this article is ‘ridiculous’, and she wonders about what I’m trying to do! I guess she’s right, and I wonder too!

By the way, there are 20 books left at $30 a copy!

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Don’t miss out — not many copies left!

November 16, 2012 at 1:29 am (Book review, Commentary, David Wall, Medical practice in Australia)

Jim Wall  An Australian Life 1893 – 1965 

by David Wall

Click on link below to see the book cover:
Jim_Wall — An Australian Life
Published by Chargan, Perth — $30 with postage within Australia.
Let me know if you are interested to receive a copy.
One reader made the comment below:
“You could have called it: The life of a Catholic doctor in Australia, 1893-1965. Although a lot of it is for the benefit of the family, you can’t write a biography without raising a lot of wider issues and brushing the socio-political background. This short bio factually and succinctly paints the life in the country at the beginning of the 20th century. A bit like the impressionists: little brush strokes that, together, create the feel of the time and place, even though most of it is left to the imagination. I quite enjoyed reading it and looking for context that was hidden behind, such as diseases, education, religious and moral issues or surprising facts such as the nuns of Chambéry in Norway, which puzzled me. I worked in Chambéry, France, but I did not know that St Joseph of Chambéry had opened in 1865 and spread throughout Europe. I often walked to Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s house of Les Charmettes, at night at the light of sodium lamps piercing the ubiquitous fog; and admired the famous Elephant fountain “des Quatre-sans-cul” celebrating Hannibal’s crossing of the Alps at that place. Thanks for bringing the past back to life so vividly. I also enjoyed the many old photographs.”
David Wall
152 Wilson Street
Newtown 2042 NSW
Phone:02 95505053
Email: tokples32@gmail.com
For online payments please email for details

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Where is my Greek Australian friend/acquaintance?

November 11, 2012 at 10:08 pm (Commentary)

Yesterday I wrote something of the Ancient Greeks, and today I reflect on a Modern Greek.

Indeed where is he? He is a Sydney builder. I first ran into him in the early years of this century when he was involved in a rather large building project in the vicinity where I live.

He told me that he wanted to get this venture finished as soon as possible, and take off for the Island of Majorca, and get amongst the Spanish women there, before as he said: ‘the lights go out!’

Well, it took him years to finish building — in fact he didn’t ever really completely finish as the banks took over the last stages of his scheme. But there was a finish to it anyhow!

As I’ve not seen him for some time, I wonder if he got to Majorca. Is he to be found in Palma surroundered by beautiful Spanish women? I can’t at this stage speculate on the state of his lights, but I can only hope that they are still shining!

The Ancient Greeks looked to the heavens, my Modern Greek wanted to be in heaven!

I wish him all the best, and should I run into him in Sydney or Palma, I would be more than ready to conclude that the world is his oyster!

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“A god from afar looks graciously upon a gentle master…”

November 11, 2012 at 6:40 am (Commentary, Education, philosophy)

Yesterday I viewed the 1951 British film, The Browning Version, starring Michael Redgrave — thoroughly recommended! The film is based on the play by Terence Rattigan, and he wrote the screen script.

The words from Aeschylus’ Agamemnon, struck a cord with me, and awakened something within me which I would like to think is a part of my better self! The ring of them remains with me: “A god from afar looks graciously upon a gentle master…”

The wisdom of the Classical Greek Writers comes alive in Hellenic studies, and the failure of our present education system in not teaching the glories of antiquity in language and literature is a glaring deficiency in Australian pedagogy!

Get back to the Ancient Greeks!

There are some who feel that the answer lies in the soil, and they look to New-Age remedies to solve world problems. Western societies seem largely disillusioned with their Christian heritage, and somehow feel that preliterate peoples had the answers. It is common to hear indigenous cultures called civilisations. On the other hand, I suppose, one has to allow each to his own!

I think that much of the ancient civilised world was a precursor to the coming of Christ and the Christian message. Agathon 446? – 401 B.C. — maintained that: Even God cannot change the past. The Seven Wise Men of the Ancient World were said to say: Know thyself. Another saying of the Ancient Greeks was: Nothing in excess. We have on record St Thomas Aquinas’ acknowledgement of his debt to the great Aristotle 384 – 322 B.C.

In all of this I’m reminded of Belloc’s words: Europe is the faith and the faith is Europe — or roughly this!

Hilaire certainly did write: When I am dead, I hope it may be said: ‘His sins were scarlet, but his books were read.’

I now wander the earth baffled by humanity’s problems — I’m sure we are all going somewhere; but the big question is where?

Did the Ancient Greeks have the answer? Perhaps there is an answer in the words of G.K. Chesterton: The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.

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Hand-written letter from Billy Hughes to Herb Larkin

November 8, 2012 at 8:03 am (Commentary, Commonwealth Shipping Line, E.G. Theodore, H.B.G. Larkin, W.G. Mahoney, W.M. Hughes)

Herbert Benjamin George Larkin was appointed manager of the new Commonwealth Shipping Line in 1916; in 1923-26 he was chairman of the Commonwealth Shipping Board. He subsequently joined the P &O in a senior position and retired in the late 1930s. He died in New South Wales in 1944.

William Morris Hughes was Prime Minister of Australia from 1915 to 1923. At the time he wrote this letter to Larkin he was the Federal Member for North Sydney. He and Larkin had worked closely during the War on matters dealing with shipping. Hughes strongly opposed government moves to dispose of the Commonwealth Shipping Line in the late 1920s.

In 1937 Alice de Bérigny, my grandmother, married Herbert Larkin in London.

The pages from Brennan, Niall, 1971 John Wren gambler: his life and times, Hill of Content, Melbourne were supplied from my late brother Frank’s notes to help those who might be interested in the letter.

I was pleased to receive the letter and the extract from Brennan’s book today, from Winifred, Frank’s widow.

Click on links below:

Hand-written letter from W.M. Hughes to H.B.G. Larkin 1

Hand-written letter from W.M. Hughes to H.B.G. Larkin 2

John Wren Gambler 1

John Wren Gambler 2

John Wren Gambler 3

John Wren Gambler 4

John Wren Gambler 5

John Wren Gambler 6

John Wren 7

John Wren 8

John Wren 9

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A notice served — book Wall into the Sepik Ironman Swim for 2013!

November 6, 2012 at 5:03 am (Commentary, David Wall, East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea, Sepik Ironman, Wewak)

Click on the link below:

Sepik Ironman

I’m sure that this booking will not mean that D.A.de B. Wall will be the last white man standing in this event!

When the booking is confirmed he intends to start his training; which will eventually mean 20 daily laps at the Sydney University Pool!

By June of next year Wall intends to be in top physical form, so Wewak be prepared!

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Recommended article!

November 1, 2012 at 10:20 pm (Commentary)

While listening to some of my favourite jazz pieces like: Laura, Tenderly, A haste of honey, Stardust, Green Dolphin Street and Lullaby of Birdland, I came across  the following writing in The Canberra Times:

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/opinion/the-persistent-prejudice-youve-never-heard-of-20121030-28hp3.html

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