the goatherd’s faithful dog

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The goatherd sleeps, his faithful dog at his side.

It’s autumn, and ConcertFM are asking what animal is musically referred to in Vivaldi’s spring concerto! Sorry, wrong season; something from the Sleeping Drunkards (Autumn) would have been more appropriate, rather than the Sleeping Goatherd. Both have dogs in them.

Lay in bed last night thinking about the tasks I have to do before next Tuesday for my assignment. Eventually I disciplined myself to ‘hand my fears over to god’, and soon after fell asleep.

Can I do the same tonight? I’m a little closer to understanding my tasks.



My current weight. I must be at the heavy end of my workouts.

Last day of my Easter holiday, technically Anniversary Day. I went to a midday seminar organised by the Council of Jews, Muslims and Christians in Dunedin called “Keeping the Faith in Dunedin”. Representatives from the local synagogue and mosque spoke, as well as a Catholic Lay Chaplain. It was held in the Gazebo lounge on campus. Seventeen people turned up, which is possibly an acceptable attendance in the middle of the day. I wonder when we will see an active Muslim Party in New Zealand politics?

The heavy rain over the weekend seems to have affected the shops on Princess Street south of the Octagon, including Bag End. No comics stash yet. I was a little taken back by that when I encountered it.

Doco Who

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On Saturday I visited Nexus Games because I was debating buying Gurps: Characters. I walked into the shop. It was full of people people playing table-top card games. There was no one minding the counter. I glanced around quickly and did not seen anyone who stood out to me as minding the store. I found the book I wanted on the shelf. I picked it up and flicked through it. I glanced around again and decided to put the book back on the shelf. I walked out again, probably a minute after I walked in. I saved myself $90 until another week when I will buy the book.

I went for another session of GURPS on Sunday evening. Tao followed me down the hill to the corner of Hatfield Street then I lost her. I thought I would have to collect her on my way home. Instead she found her own way back and met me inside.

Should have started formulating my thoughts for an essay today, due in a week’s time. I weighed up that against doing some initial translation work on a eclectic language I have left languishing for a couple of months. It was an easy choice to make and I spent the afternoon working on a paragraph of funny languages. Panic begins tomorrow.

Watched a documentary the BBC played before screening the Doctor Who pilot. Joe had downloaded it from the internet. It included a one-scene character of the last human at the end of the world voiced by Zoe Wannemaker. The cgi character consisted of two eyes, a mouth, and a skein of skin! Since the last character I saw Zoe Wannemaker play was Lady Clara of Gormenghast I thought she was a good choice to play such a fantastic character. It is not the last time the Doctor has witnessed the final demise of the Earth. He has done it twice before.

Visited Harry. His sister and niece were visiting from England. Played Last Card and Cheat. It was fun as Last Card I haven’t played since I was a child; and Cheat I played once or twice at high school – and that is now twenty years ago. I was never any good at Cheat, I’m too moral to do a good bluff. I take too long in deciding my cards. Last Card, which is about the only card game I was ever proficient at, was a great pleasure to play again.

Easter Day 2005

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Crist is astië! Hy is astië húro. Allelúja!
Det schaft freelst in wynn. Wy freelst and singt. Allelúja!
Wy singt herness toe God for’m wynn of ben deel áns niews schaft.
Allelúja! Allelúja húro!

Rev. Susan talked about our resurrection like we are dragged through the gorse bush. Resurrection, beginning to grow again, is no less painless than dying itself. It is a cycle that we will repeat, over and over again; for the length of our lives. The congregation, the broken people of god, went forth to receive communion, children and adults together. Graeme wanted to know if god loved him, even when he was going to have a hernia operation. He had a nightmare and wet himself badly that the bedclothes had to be changed.

Glass on the footpath outside the church. I went home and got my yard-broom so I could sweep it down to the drains.

work displacement


Easter is defined by 24 hour periods when non-essential services are suspended. The only other day when this happens is Christmas. It is necessary to stock up before these days come around with supplies of bread and milk. We had a larger than normal shopping expedition and picked up a few things that the supermarket were selling today because they wouldn’t keep until they opened again on Monday.

Tessa got venturesome and followed us down the hill to the Salmond Hall driveway on Knox Street. We came back that way up the hill in the dark to collect her. She was fairly tuckered out when we got her home again. I wonder if this will mean that she will follow me in the mornings to the archives.

Went to the gym today. With the weather as it was there wasn’t much else to do. I have now got the treadmill up to shambling speed for three minutes at a time.

Long Friday

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A very wet day. We had a service at church to celebrate the life and death of Jesus of Nazareth as set shortly after the first Good Friday. There was veiled cross leaning against the communion table in the place of the body of Jesus. Graeme had been brought along. In the middle of service he got up and prostrated himself in front of the cross for a few minutes. The cross was placed in the foyer and flowers were placed at its foot. After the service the cross was placed upright in the lawn.

Despite the rain the Procession of the Cross was still held. I arrived to meet the procession at the garden’s gate at ten past eleven. Instead of moving from the Rose Garden to the Herb Garden, the Kiosk and the Bandstand, all of the meditations were held in the shelter of bandstand. The numbers were smaller this year, no surprises in the falling rain. A number of people from Sacred Heart church asked after Mike: Ellie Kennedy, Peter Appleby, the Thompsons….

Putting off my reading for my paper. If I finish the reading and the last exercise in the first module, then I can start the essay that is due in a week and half’s time.

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The archives staff are waiting for the computer man to come in and fix the hiccoughs with the new printer and our network.

The only day I could get into the gym in Holy Week. Fortunately it is open on Saturday. I will take the opportunity to go in again then.

The gray rains herald that the drying days of summer are over. No more washing will get completely dry outside now until October.

I had Muke‘s work desk open on my screen when Joe walked in. He thought it pretty. I can’t quite make out the script on the pad.

Only one comic this week: Beta Ray Bill: cosmic powers and portentious writing! I enjoyed it. Maybe this mini-series has got up to speed.

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I had an enquiry about the bike on our porch. It isn’t mine to give away. I made the effort of getting Mike’s old bike out of the shed. They decided that it was not the kind of bike that they were looking for their son. For a start it needs new tires.

A person asked me where to go for an ISBNumber. I knew the answer to that one. In New Zealand ISBNumbers can be obtained off the National Library website.

The Archivist’s Wellington son is in Dunedin. He had to give a lecture on behalf of the Prime Minister’s office. He found the Law students disinterested. The Political Studies students were more canny, especially interested how his career has led him to his current job. Lawyers, like accountants, study for careers that are easy, rather than interesting, to enter.

Met with the minister, and the representative from Sacred Heart down at the gardens kiosk to discuss our part in the Procession of the Cross on Long Friday. Afterwards I enjoyed a cup of coffee and a discussion with the minister as we watched people go past, an occupational habit. I watched a family of seven from church at the duckpond. One of the older boys held his baby brothers stroller right over the water so that only the back wheels were on the paving. Then he dipped the front wheels into the pond. Fortunately the baby was strapped in. At this point a woman in the kiosk scarpered off to intervene. They had moved away from the water by the time she had arrived.

That family will make a good children’s story one day. Which ones fit into the recognised categories of siblings: the hero; the clown; the lost; and the mascot?

From the Infinite Tarot Card: the Un-Theologian

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Tarot Cards

A priest, a goth chick, and an existentialist philosopher walk into a bar; and the bartender says: what! is this same kind of zen koan?
Divinatory Meanings: An encounter, good conversation, wine shared, illumined by candles, in the dark. Artifice in opposition to death. Religion as play, hypocrisy as virtue. Dreamscape and conviction in harmonious conflict.
Reversed: disillusion, stasis, depression, a single reality. Do not pass go. All things stop as the dance of atoms ends. The automatum in ascendency.
Human Agency: Orderly Progression

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Daylight saving reprieves the morning for a while, at the cost of the swift and dull close of the day. Eastermonth is the herald of the cold dark time.

My mother rang to give me the answer to the competition on Concert FM: the season of fire in the church’s year following Easter is Pentecost. Someone has been to see her about her computer and advised her to change from Eudora Lite to other software as Eudora is heavy on being regularly updated.

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Took part in a meditation at church, narrating the voice of Jesus. Read very well. Graeme has been back for a couple of weeks now. He is still having problems with his anger. In the last couple of days he assaulted two of the other residents in his community house.

Dull Sunday afternoon. Got most of the way through a Brithenig translation. A couple of words to note and write up, and I can add a new text to my website. After tea I visited Max and Anna for a GURPS session. Anna moderates a challenging roleplaying game. This time we used prisoners to guide us in breaking up a brigands’ lair. Our followers were army followers and mercenaries. One of the prisoners mentioned a two year old child of the brigands in the lair. I went looking for the child; and found it, with its mother, its head smashed in. I was completely thrown by that.

I was out with Felicity and Robert today. Felicity wondered what to do after the memoirs were finished. Take up blogging, perhaps? I pointed out that I already did. She found her way to this journal easily enough. I wonder if this means I have picked up an other lurker? We shall see!

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