Biographical Log of Michael Furstner - Page 268

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Martinshof Story - Happiness - Awareness - Maps, Text & Photo series - Dolmen Tour - Travel

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Friday - Tuesday, December 21 - 25 2012 (diary)

Camino Francés, from the French/Spanish border Paul Jnr. from Walks in Spain just told me they are preparing a new walking adventure on the Camino Francés, starting point in Roncesvalles, NE of Pamplona near the Spanish border with France.
That should be a wonderful walk too with mountain views galore, but I am in 2014 committed to their Costa Brava walk ranging from 9 to 15 km per day for the likes of me (longer for younger enthusiasts).

On an entirely different subject : Americans !
Just after WW2 they had a caricature image in Europe of a loud tourist in shorts, checkered shirt, loud tie and camera around their neck. The typical GI revisiting the places where they had fought for our freedom.
In due course, as America's economic might and business acumen where beginning to be recognised in Europe, this naive image gradually faded away.

But now a different image of America is shown to the world :
(1) immature, still stuck in the mould of early 20th century religion,
(2) politicians on both sides more bent on self-interest than on the good of the country, and
(3) an attitude towards guns which seems child like and hilarious if it was not so tragic.

Will they grow up any time soon ?
On point (1) statistics reveal that gradually more Americans are starting to give religion a miss.
About points (2) and (3) we will find out soon : will their politicians get a reality check and avoid the fiscal cliff and succeed in getting a new bill through parliament on gun control ?   One can only hope !

Meanwhile I wish you a

Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy 2013 !

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Wednesday - Monday, December 26 - 31 2012 (diary)

Don Quijote in San Sebastian, N Spain I exchanged Seasons Greetings with most of my contacts in Europe, including Pension Edorta and Rakel of Pension La Perla in San Sebastian. But will I ever visit that lovely coastal city again ?
I initially thought not, but after Paul Jnr's announcement that Walks in Spain is planning a new walking tour on the Camino route starting from Roncesvalles near the French border, perhaps I will.
Looking at the elevation profile from the French border via Pamplona to Logorno or Burgos, rather wets my appetite as much of the trail is down hill and the possible climbs appear to be smaller than the one I climbed this year.
I don't think I will attempt two walks like this in the same year, so it would have to be in 2016, if by that time I am still in sufficient physical shape to do it. If so I will be close enough to pay San Sebastian another visit. We'll see.

The political situation in the USA is becoming more depressing by the day. The National Rifle Association's (NRA) attitude is unbelievably infantile, even after a second slaughter of some innocent people (lured into a gunman's trap) this past week. Will these guys ever grow up ??
Also the Republican representatives appear to remain hell bent on saving their own re-election chances at the expense of the good of their country. In my view this borders on criminality, holding the entire country (and the rest of the world) at ransom.

As we end this calender year its gloom and doom all around the world wherever you look and the daily news is very depressing. In Australia at least the situation is not so bad although many businesses are struggling and more people are being helped by the Salvation Army and other charity groups this Christmas period than ever before. But there is some hope for the new year : a Federal election is coming up when hopefully the present incompetent and overspending Government will be thrown out.

Here on the farm the rain has been very patchy this month, with nearby Palmerston (10 km away) getting lots of brief downpours while we got next to nothing. But this past festive week things have improved and we had 64mm (compared to only 22mm the first 3 weeks of this month). This brings our total rainfall for December to 86mm, still only about half of each of the previous two months.
However everything here looks fresh and green, the sun is shining and the mango geese are quiet (because there is no fruit left to fight over) so that I can sit peacefully on my veranda with a cup of coffee and two sleepy dogs as company, not a bad ending of, what for me personally has been, a good, positive and interesting year.

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© 2012 Michael Furstner