Rotary Club of Port Nicholson Bulletin

Wednesday 25 March, 2020


Weekly meetings are currently suspended due to the situation with Covid-19

David Shackleton
I hope the first few days of isolation are going well for you all. So far, the only ones really enjoying the forced self-containment in our household are the dogs. They almost seem to say “no more walks” as we once again get out their leads.  But at least we are following the guidelines and keeping fit.
As you know we have started our telephone tree and the feedback so far has been very positive. We truly believe that staying connected during these times is most important and we need to continually look for ways to show we care and giving hope despite the passing calamity surrounding us.
As we all seem to be inundated with the constant stream of news, advice, warnings etc about COVID-19, you don’t need any more information from me. As such I want to talk about Rotary acronyms.
The multitude of Rotary acronyms can be confusing for old and new members alike. Terms such as DG, AG, RYLA, RYPEN, RLI, PHF’s the list goes on. These are District Governor, Assistant Governor, Rotary Youth Leadership Award, Rotary Youth Programme of Enrichment, Rotary Leadership Institute and Paul Harris Fellow. These terms are not critical to our purpose and in future we will try to simplify what Rotary is all about and focus on fun, fellowship and service.
We received one piece of good news last week and that is the 1st Ian Paterson Rotary Club of Port Nicholson Award (try saying that quickly) was awarded to Dr Nathaniel Dasyam for his work with Freemasons CART T-cell research programme. We will present Dr Dasyam with his award when we start meeting again. 
Stay well and stay healthy


Our weekly report....

This week from "Miss Piggy"
I am a very handsome chicken – a Light Sussex – but I have been given the undeserved name Miss Piggy by my owner. This name came about because at one point a lot of sparrows were sneakily eating all my food and he thought I was eating it all myself.

You may be asking why this diary is being sent to you. My owners are Julian and his partner Sue and I live in the Wairarapa. I have been in self isolation for two years since I was attacked by a stoat. I was quite badly injured but recovered well, although my arthritic legs mean I now have to live in my own apartment which is stoat proof. My sisters have their own place not far away with plenty of ground to run around in, and from what I hear, they seem happy without me although I am sure they miss my banter.
Julian has been around the place a lot more over the past week or two and although his good humour is still there, you can sense a certain amount of stress. Sue is a bit more relaxed, but still a bit worried. I get fed a good diet and over the last few weeks, a lot of home-grown grapes which I never get enough of. Julian always has a long chat with me when he feeds me the grapes as I think it helps him to relax. I am a good listener and offer advice but he has not yet got the hang of chicken and just thinks I am clucking.
I can see and hear a lot going on from my cosy shed, I mean apartment. It is close to the man’s shed and Sue’s studio so I hear them talking as they walk past. Julian keeps saying that although he planned for being isolated, it is still quite hard to manage. Sue says she is OK and is getting on with making more of her jewellery even though she knows there will be no sales for a long time.
I am not sure why they are concerned about isolation. As I said earlier, I have been on my own for nearly two years now and it works fine. The food and water is always there and the regular grapes are a luxury. I do get other visitors, mice and rats keep turning up at night, skittering about looking for food, but then there is usually a loud snapping sound and they go completely silent. Sparrows occasionally drop in for a feed but Julian does not like that and he keeps blocking the holes they find, using words I find difficult to understand.
Julian is busy with his usual day-to-day activities which I will tell you about over the next few weeks. He is very good at making lists of things which need to be done, and then doing something which is not on the list. Yesterday he was busy adding more protective netting around some of the native trees he has been planting over the years. The deer are always looking to feed on these trees and he does not like them doing that. But the work is not on any list.
One of the things he had on a list which he actually attended to was to check the back-up generator was working properly. He gave it a half hour run to remove the cobwebs and charge the starter battery. This generator is not used very often, and only in the winter when there is not enough sun, wind or water to charge the batteries. However, he says it needs to be ready for action.
He and Sue seem to have plenty of food as their waistlines do not seem to be shrinking. However, I have heard them planning for a food shop next week as they discuss how to protect themselves when mixing with other people. They seem to think this will be very different from normal food shopping.

Overall, life seems to be going well, but it is early days.  I will keep you all up to date over the coming weeks.  


Julian Bateson
John Bishop's Column for this week...
There are 27 synonyms for boredom according to that fount of all modern knowledge, Wikipedia on Google, and two of these words I had never even heard of before.
However, I have now expanded my mind and included pococurantism and taedium vitae into my vocabulary.
Likewise with frustration: thirty synonyms, but this time I had heard them all – although I would have been challenged to name them all. (I can do all the states of the USA but not anymore their capitals – sorry about that.)
I did get a pdf of a story I wrote about Memphis which appeared in an Aussie newspaper chain – heart-warming to see one’s words in print even if it was written a good while ago.
This column is almost the most productive thing I have done this week, except for a couple of mentoring sessions with a new mentoree – I do this through the local Chamber of Commerce. It’s unpaid but good fun.
Also chasing up a number of people who promised to get back to me about various inquiries I had made of them for travel stories. There is no demand from publishers because no one is able to travel.
The NZ Herald was promoting visit your own backyard and I was gearing up for that, but the move to level 4 has locked that petrol pump right tight.
So what do I do? Rise a bit later than usual. My wife is working from home but her first call is a teleconference at 9.30.  So tea, breakfast, the daily checks on the NYSE, NZX, Stuff, Herald et al, shower, dress (not always in that order) and by then its coffee time.
Bit of reading at the table outside, and good grief it’s lunchtime, a walk, an attempt at a nap (almost always a failure – truly) and then it’s time to get dinner and more tedium on the telly.
Yes, House of Cards was great, but I have seen it before! Ditto the lives of Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt.  One positive act from all this is that I have cancelled SkySport, as none is being played and I don’t want replays.
John Bishop
Links that are interesting reading......
From one of own.....Lindsay Chitty's very interesting story.....Here is the link
How about some good news for a change?.....Here is the link
Hammer and Dance...….Here is the link
Worldometers…..update statistics daily....
Wise words from our local business man. My thought for the day.....Here is the Link
7 years ago at the top of Mt Victoria
How many can you recognise?
Source: Howard Tong

I am thinking of everybody at the moment and send special thoughts and wishes as we all adapt to the nation’s shutdown in our various ways.

Yesterday was our second daughter’s 40th birthday. With children in California, Melbourne, Hawke’s Bay and Wellington, we met up via a virtual link last night for an hour of bubbly and banter. Staying connected has never been more important, and while it was not what we would have planned, we still had our party. It also included grandchildren coming and going with the freedom of expression and degree of happy chaos you would expect from the very young.

The attached photo is of our four 32 years ago.... they grew up to be our best friends so you actually can’t wish for much more than that.

Hope the next week goes well for us all. I know that there is much activity going on behind the scenes and the Rotary approach of being resourceful and positive whatever continues more strongly than ever.

Tony Robinson

Upcoming Events
Anzac Day Breakfast
Apr 25, 2020 6:30 AM
Rotary Weekly Meeting 29 April 2020
No meeting at Wellington Club this week.
Apr 29, 2020
7:00 AM – 8:30 AM
Charity Auction & Quiz Evening
May 01, 2020
6:30 PM – 10:30 PM
Rotary Weekly Meeting 13 May 2020
No meeting at Wellington Club this week.
May 13, 2020
7:00 AM – 8:30 AM
District 9940 Conference -
May 15, 2020 5:00 PM –
May 17, 2020 12:00 PM
View entire list
Rotary Oceania Covid-19 information
 Click here for link  
Goalsetters Award  Monday
30 March 2020
This event has  been postponed. 
Richard Brodie 
027 439 2424
A poem by Sarah Wallace - Paraparaumu

Stay at home, Jacinda says - For the next few weeks and days -
Don’t go driving down the road -
Keep tucked up in your abode
Learn to like your kids a lot -
For the time, they’re all you’ve got -
Play a game and read a book
Teach your horrid teens to cook -
Watch a movie, chat online -Check that friends are feeling fine -
Walk the dog and stroke the cats -
Give the husband friendly pats -
Lie in bed and snooze a bit -Learn to crochet, learn to knit -
Do your work from home on time -
Play charades and do a mime
Clean the bathroom, sweep the floor -
Wipe the bench and dust the door -
Eat some chocolate, have a drink -
Take the time to sit and think
Remember, you will save a life -
Someone’s mother, someone’s wife -
Someone’s dad or someone’s gran -
We can do this. Yes we can.


Online Buy The Box
Hayley Burns
I was all geared up to buy it before I went away on holiday....THEN because I returned via Seoul, I had to go into isolation for two weeks...
My news is that I am 26 weeks pregnant!!
But that's not all.... my partner and I bought our first house while I was away in Europe (as you do!!!). We moved in last week, and are absolutely ecstatic about it.
This one's for
movie lovers
That's all for this week, hope some of them you haven't seen already

Gillian Robertson - a profile by Jean Sloan
Smirks and giggles…interviewing Gillian was fun! She referred to me as dear or darling which was cute, and I would not have thought that ageism could be so endearing. But, as a member of the cohort she’s describing, her jokes are self-deprecating, and funny. “I’m ancient darling,” she tells me several times.  “What else have I got to do besides volunteer.”
I did get caught in a bit of a time warp when Gillian suggested the Club needs to get younger people involved. I agreed whole-heartedly, but she added, “Rotary needs to recruit people who are retiring,” and I realized the discrepancy of about 30 years in our definition of who qualifies as a person. Given Gillian’s vitality and the many contributions she’s made to our club I can’t fault the premise that bringing in retired people would be a great benefit.
Gillian joined the club in 1993 and served as President in…. “Oh. Dear. Dear. Dear. Dear. Dear. Don’t ask me how many years ago darling, because I’ve lost track of all that.” Now, at 77, Gillian serves our Club as advisor to the Port Nicholson Interact Club which has grown from 0-130 members in four years. She rattled off a great many of the projects the kids do to raise money for various causes and it’s obvious they are ambitious in their efforts to contribute to their community. We’re not talking a few hundred dollars here or there, but tens of thousands of dollars for a great many causes. “They do practical things,” says Gillian, and she adds, “Useful things” in a tone that expresses her pride in their work. Gillian is no doubt sowing seeds for Rotary’s future.
In fine Rotarian style Gillian has always lived our motto of service, above self. Volunteering has just always been an important part of her life. “I like visiting older people,” she says. “Problem is, I have trouble finding people older than me. I call it visiting the even-olders.”
There are a number of themes, besides humour, that weave their way through Gillian’s life and stories, among them: volunteering, music and church. “I was born in Nelson in 1943 and was baptised in the Nelson Cathedral,” Gillian tells me. I may have passed over that fact except a great deal of her professional life was spent as General Manager of the Anglican Church Pension Board. When we chat about modern secularism and religion, she comments quite accurately, “It’s very fashionable not to have one, isn’t it?”
Gillian doesn’t consider herself a women’s-libber or feminist, but her attitude and actions defy her, “Bloody heck, I just always did things I wanted to do,” she said. “I was one of only three women in the Bachelor of Commerce programme at Auckland University. Women didn’t do accounting then.” It’s relevant to note that Gillian worked as business manager for the Students’ Union. “It was a big job, balancing the budget. I was positively innocent then.”
Gillian recounts a story during her school days when the Head of Accounting asked on more than one occasion, “Do you type?” Gillian recollects unhappily, “they had young male students that never got asked to do the typing.” She adds defiantly, I still don’t type.”
Our interview lasted much longer than this article and what I learned is that there is depth to this woman. The more you learn, the more there is to know. The process is a sincere pleasure.
Gillian ends our conversation with the not unexpected words, “Thank you, darling.”

Rotary Predator Free Waterfront Project 

Dear Trappers - 

In light of the Prime Ministers directive for us to go into isolation, our trapping activities are on hold until further notice.

The traps will be released and left in-situ until we are able to resume.

Again thank you for your support

Brenda and Dave Lazelle