Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Martin and Helen Lock

Our kids; Helen and Martin, 45 years ago in Papua New Guinea

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Monday, August 7, 2017

Anti Vaccinators

In the news here in Western Australia, is a story about a young man who attends a private alternative school quite close to my house.   The school has a clientele of  kids who,  it has been shown, have parents who are doubtful of the efficacy of  vaccination against such diseases and many claim vaccination to be dangerous.
This lad went to Italy with the family for a holiday and upon returning to Australia has presented with a case of measles at his school.  As there is an estimated 40-50% non-vaccinated student population at the school  there is a worry that it could spread rapidly amongst the general school population.

Have they not heard about Polio?

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Sleep Apnoea

I attended the specialist monitoring my Sleep Study.  He outlined the various treatments which are standard for Sleep Apnoea management and their % effectivity.
The treatment which suits my case includes Posture Modification; CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure), MAS...virtually an expensive mouth guard to extend the lower jaw and Nasal Resistive Patches. He ruled out surgery of the throat.  Thanks for that Doc.
The Dr also reminded me that during the overnight study I spent 3.5 hours sleeping on my back which is where I had the 27 non-breathing episodes. When I slept on either side of my body I had almost no breathing interruption.
So, we decided to give a two-month trial of the Posture Modification method and at his suggestion I purchased a plastic block which when fastened onto my back is to make it so uncomfortable that my brain tells me to sleep on my side. I stopped off at a $2.00 shop and bought a dogs toy which has hard lumps all over it.  Last night I placed that inside a tight T Shirt on my back and I did not wake once during the night.  

After two months I will have another overnight study done to assess the results.
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Monday, July 17, 2017

Mazda 929 1993

I bought myself a present.....a 1993 Mazda 929. It was just $3,000 and runs quite well for its 24 years. Done just 145,000 kilometres. There are a couple of things to get it back to original condition.  One is a driver's door window motor.  I have sourced one and will buy it during the week.
I have previously owned three 929s so know my way around them.  The body and paint is in good condition and the interior is good for its age. 


I like it!
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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

The State Engineering Works

This last Friday I had a meeting with a lady who was documenting memories of the long-gone industrial strip at Leighton, near north Fremantle.  I was an apprentice Turner Machinist starting my 5 year apprenticeship in 1953 at the State Engineering Works. The SEW was a large state government owned establishment.  When I worked and trained there it had around 600 employees in carpentry/joinery, metal machinery, foundry, pattern making, boilermaker, draughting, meter shop departments.
During WW2 the SEW gained some large machinery from the USN to service U.S. Submarines homed in Fremantle Harbour.  Bren Gun Carriers were also built at the SEW during the war.

I was asked a number of questions about how I selected the SEW to commence my apprenticeship and the background of my family and about the many projects I had either worked on or observed.  The information gathered is to be collated and some sort of report is to be made.  The SEW was situated on prime elevated land in Rocky Bay, probably the nicest part of the Swan River and at the time of me working there, there were rumours that the Liberal State Government would close the SEW and sell the land off to developers.  Much consternation by labour unions and the Labor Party in opposition.  As it happened, it was the Labor Government who eventually sold the State Engineering Works.

I guess it was no longer an era of government in competition with other engineering companies.  
In the last couple of years of the SEW, one of the projects was the casting of the winged keel for Australia 2, the winner of the America’s Cup in 1983.  The U.S. had successfully defended the cup for the previous 132 years.
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from Google Earth

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Sleep assessment

I have just returned from St John’s hospital after an overnight sleep assessment.  I arrived at around 8.45pm and descended into the bowels of the hospital to try and find the Sleep Unit.  After being redirected several times, I found it and was allocated my room and told to get into pyjamas ready to have all the electrodes attached all over my body.  For info about all those wires see here.
The sleep technician, Marikah, attached all the electrodes and went to the control console to test the connections.  There were a couple of electrodes that had to be replaced and then the function test began.  Blinking of eyes; eye movements, pointing toes etc, all passed the test.  I found the tangle of wires a bit constrictive of my usual tossing and turning during sleep and the duty technician had to visit several times during the night to change or reset electrodes.

Both young lady technicians were pleasant especially Marikah who had around 50 minutes with me setting up and testing all the wiring.  We covered a few stories (admittedly, mostly mine) whilst she was with me.  At one stage she took my blood pressure and it was 166 over 85....a bit high!     I attributed it to having a very attractive technician fussing over me.

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Sunday, June 11, 2017

Memories of a wild land

Yesterday had a visit from a friend Greg, who recently returned from one of his regular business trips to Papua New Guinea.  He brought me a most welcome gift package of two PNG coffee mugs featuring the names of 20 provinces of PNG and a collection of PNG newspapers all in a ‘Steamies’ shopping bag.  Steamies is a large department store which as well as supplying townspeople in Port Moresby with their goods, ran a small shipping line supplying goods to coastal government stations around the coast of Papua when I first taught in PNG starting in 1962.

In the 10 years I taught in PNG, I taught in six of those provinces.

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Inside the cups...'it's finished'
Pidgin English