Narooma Rotary Beacon 28 September 2017

Bob’s Blog

 Hello Everyone

Regular marketer Jerry Raeburn heads to the Rotary van for breakfast.

The weather was reasonably kind to us at the Markets on Sunday with the wind staying away for the first few hours. Treasurer Lynne reports we took $875.00 at the gate and $567.80 at the van, not a bad effort. With a few of our regular helpers away and some sick, numbers were tight so some members did double shifts in the van to cover slots. Thank you to everyone who helped out either marking out the oval, manning the gate, or helping in the van. Your assistance was greatly appreciated.

Next Thursday 5 October PDG Maureen Manning will join us as DG Steve Hill’s representative. Maureen has been a great friend of Narooma Rotary for many years and I am sure she will fill us in on Rotary’s agenda for 2017/18. Maureen would like to meet with the Board before the meeting; we can discuss timing at this week’s meeting. As is usually the case with the DG’s visit, partners are most welcome to attend the dinner meeting to hear Maureen speak. We will also use the occasion to present the remainder of the funds from Michael’s epic walk to the Friends of Rang’I.

The Renewable Expo Committee is working very hard to bring this year’s Expo together. The Expo will provide great insights into how we can reduce our energy consumption, make it less carbon intensive and also save costs. We will assistance from most of our members on 25 November to help make the event successful, so please try and keep the date free.

Have a great week .

Cheers Bob

The Week that Was

Thinking of Puerto Rico’s Rotarians

Last week Charmaine toasted the Rotary Club of San Juan in Puerto Rico in the Caribbean, noting the damage wrought by Hurricane Maria which directly hit the island country the day before. The country has been devastated by high winds, flash floods and mudslides, and its entire power infrastructure destroyed. It will be months before power can be restored. Charmaine pointed out this comes on top of Puerto Rico’s ongoing economic crisis. The Rotary Club of San Juan prides itself on being the oldest continuously operating Rotary Club south of the Tropic of Cancer, this year celebrating its 99th anniversary.

The telegraph revolution

Dr Eleanor Robin after her fascinating talk on the coming of the telegraph, was thanked by Charmaine.

The introduction of the telegraph in the mid nineteenth century was as revolutionary at the time as the mobile phone and internet were in the late twentieth century, possibly even more so, said last week’s guest speaker historian Eleanor Robin OAM PhD.* Up until then, communication had depended on the mail conveyed by horseback or by ship. Before the extraordinary construction of the overland telegraph and on to London, news and mail could take three months to reach England; the telegraph reduced this to about seven hours.

Eleanor was born in Sydney, finished school in Canberra and did her first degree at ANU. However she became fascinated with Tasmania and its history during an eight-year sojourn (2006-2014) during which she did her doctorate. Hence her talk particularly focussed on Van Diemen’s Land, as it was known in the early days.

The Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce had been watching closely developments with the telegraph overseas, but the first telegraph network in Australia was not built until 1854. It was built by young Canadian engineer Samuel McGowan; it ran for 11 miles between Melbourne and Williamstown. McGowan had only arrived in Melbourne the previous year, encouraged by his former work colleague Samuel Morse, inventor of the electric telegraph. Morse saw the potential for the telegraph in the booming Victorian economy. McGowan was soon appointed Superintendent of the Electric Telegraph for Victoria.

The telegraph soon spread across Victoria, linked with other Australian colonies and rapidly became essential for government and commercial activities. Eleanor said the first submarine cable connecting Tasmania and Victoria became operational in 1859, but frequent breakages meant it was abandoned after a couple of years. A more robust and therefore more successful cable link was established via King Island and Launceston in 1869.

Eleanor also noted:

  • the overland telegraph between Adelaide and Darwin and on to London was built in 1872
  • telegram usage in Australia peaked in 1945, with the telephone gradually usurping telegrams
  • Interestingly the last Morse code message on the eastern seaboard was sent in early 1963.

* Eleanor now lives in Narooma. She received the Order of Australian in 2013 for services to protect the environment and conserve Indigenous and cultural heritage. She has worked with the Department of Aboriginal Affairs, Heritage Tasmania, Australian Heritage Commission and Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation.

PCYC and Rotary D9710 sign MOU

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed recently between NSW Police Citizens Youth Clubs (PCYC) and our Rotary District 9710.  There has been a long association between PCYC (and its earlier form) and Rotary, particularly in regional NSW, and this relationship has been strengthened in recent years. The main elements of this MOU are:

  • PCYC club managers and executives are encouraged to join a local Rotary Club and Rotarians are encouraged to join the PCYC Club Advisory Committee
  • Rotary clubs are encouraged to support  the PCYC’s annual Time4Kids fundraising efforts and provide volunteers to assist with PCYC programs
  • Rotary Clubs are encouraged to make places available on our youth programs and on RYLA for their participants
  • Rotary Clubs are encouraged to recognise PCYC staff, volunteers and police with vocational and community service awards

No doubt PDG Maureen Manning will tell us more about this next week.

Tonight we welcome Daiva Ceicys, standing in for Gabe Eichler, who will be telling us about the Animal Welfare League and the wonderful work this dedicated team do locally.  Look forward to seeing you on Thursday.

Cheers Laurelle

Random thoughts, courtesy Peter Bull

To suit the occasion tonight… These are classified ads actually placed in UK newspapers.

FREE PUPPIES: 1/2 Cocker Spaniel, 1/2 sneaky neighbour’s dog.

FREE PUPPIES: Mother is a Kennel Club registered German Shepherd. Father is a Super Dog, able to leap tall fences in a single bound.

FREE YORKSHIRE TERRIER: 8 years old, hateful little bastard. Bites!

And one from the Courts…

ATTORNEY: Now doctor, isn’t it true that when a person dies in his sleep, he doesn’t know about it until the next morning?

WITNESS: Did you actually pass the bar exam?