Miracles

Ukraine will create its own Christmas miracle, says President Zelensky

It’s now Monday December 25, 2022; it’s Boxing Day. Kia ora!

I am very tired today, but we don’t have to do anything. The rubbish and recycling (bottles) are being collected, as usual; presumably the fact that it’s a public holiday doesn’t interfere with the contractors engaged to do these tasks. JD has expressed an interest in visiting Boxing Day sales; we’ll see if that desire persists.

It’s another beautifully fine, warm day – even better than yesterday. This morning I took another RAT test – it’s negative again, thankfully.

Some remarkable things have happened. President Zelensky of Ukraine has called Ukrainians’ resistance a miracle, saying “Ukrainians will create their own miracle this Christmas by showing they remain unbowed despite Russian attacks that have plunged millions into darkness”.

https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2022-12-24/ukraine-will-create-its-own-christmas-miracle-zelenskiy-says-in-defiant-message

President Zelensky is Jewish, but Christians celebrate a Christmas miracle that occurred over 2,000 years ago, when our Saviour Jesus Christ was born. “The word became flesh and dwelt among us”, John 1: 14. John’s Gospel is rather more intellectual than the preceding three.

I also watched King Charles’ III Christmas address, which I found very moving. He spoke about his visit to Bethlehem, where Jesus was born, and he spoke from St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle where his mother, the late queen Elizabeth II, was recently buried.  After he spoke, the choir sang O Little Town of Bethlehem. The town of Bethlehem is currently occupied by Israeli forces.

Here is a link to a piece about the speech from the UK’s Guardian newspaper:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/dec/26/kings-speech-tories-compassionate-conservatism

Moving to US politics, the huge report of the January 6 Committee has been released, and I’ve so far listened to an Emergency podcast from the Lawfare team discussing and evaluating different sections of it.  This has been very interesting, especially learning that Trump wanted to march on the Capitol with his fellow (armed and dangerous) protesters, stating that the National Guard would protect him – this being the same National Guard that he would not call out to protect people such as politicians and police or even his own Vice President. Opinions are divided, with criticism of the FBI that the unrest was  foreseen and not acted upon, and the lack of testimony from the current Director, Christopher Wray. There are also several typos in the released report, although it’s acknowledged that the January 6 Committee worked under significant time pressure to achieve what they did. Benjamin Wittes, with his wry sense of humour, is upset that he’s not on Roger Stone’s friends list, unlike many well-known names involved in the January 6 2020 insurrection.

Transcripts of their interviews are to be released; so far, the transcript of Cassidy Hutchinson’s testimony has been released, and it’s even more shocking than her televised testimony, revealing the pressure a Trump-associated lawyer put her under not to testify truthfully.  When others say “I don’t recall”, it now seems very suspect indeed.

The Skullduggery podcast also released its final episode, interviewing both Congressman Jamie Raskin and Judge Michael Luttig.  It’s very sad that this will be their final episode; I do hope they’ll come back in another guise; I do find Michael Isikoff, while provocative, a most interesting commentator, I will surely miss these three. I doubt that Michael Isikoff can remain quiet for long, however.

It’s now Tuesday December 27th.

Last night we watched the Call the Midwife Christmas special, and then the first episode of Litvinenko on television one. The CTM episode was pretty cheesy, but had some lovely moments, like the beautiful thalidomide child Susan being included in the Talent Quest;  her dad going to Al-Anon, and Miss Higgins getting papers and an allowance for the young teenage mother who’d been abandoned by her “fiancé”.

This is a quiet and strangely boring time, after being very busy before Christmas.  It’s very welcome to get more sleep now, and not have to get up early.  Today we went shopping, having established from the Dompost that Boxing Day shopping was somewhat less than expected. JD had indicated that he wanted to take advantage of the Boxing Day sales.

We went to the Big Save Furniture store in Porirua.  I had given JD permission to buy a new recliner, and two and a half years later, he was happy to take up the challenge. Sadly, the prices have risen in that time. However I think we good a good deal, with a recliner operated by a hidden lever, that won’t take up a lot of room, and should fit in well with existing décor. We were the only customers in the shop! 

We also went to the North City Shopping Centre, and to Dress Mart in Tawa. The latter was perhaps the busiest;  no where was crazy busy and we didn’t have trouble driving around or finding car parks.

We did not go supermarket shopping, so still we will be without green vegetables or lettuce, although we have heaps of food. I do miss my greens, but I hope we’ll be able to get some tomorrow.  I tried to eat some fresh apricots at lunchtime, but sadly, they’re not as ripe or as soft as I like them.

There have already been several tragic water deaths in New Zealand, as well as some road accidents.

It’s now Thursday December 29th.

Yesterday I had an appointment to see my doctor in the afternoon. So why did you come she asked me. I came because she asked me to.  There were some lab results, and I had run out of some of my medications.  I did not go into my frustrations at her and the medical centre. I may still change doctors.  No one takes me seriously! It is so frustrating.

After this debacle, I collected my scripts, bought a diary for 2023, and we went shopping. New World in Thorndon was pretty quiet. They didn’t have salads, but they did have potato-topped pies.  I couldn’t find the Havarti cheese slices I like, but we got most of what I wanted.

Yesterday the Covid 19 report came out, since Monday and Tuesday were public holidays.

There are 32,010 new cases of Covid-19 in the community and a child under 10 has died with the virus, reports the Ministry of Health.

The ministry also reported a further 78 deaths, including the child, related to the virus for the period between December 19 and Christmas Day.

As of midnight on Sunday, 413 people were in hospital with the virus, including 15 in intensive care.

Of today’s reported deaths, four were from Northland, 23 were from Auckland region, eight were from Waikato, 11 were from Bay of Plenty, one was from Lakes, three were from Hawke’s Bay, one was from Taranaki, seven were from MidCentral, two were from Whanganui, six were from Wellington region, one was from Nelson Marlborough, nine were from Canterbury, two were from Southern.

Six were in their 50s, six were in their 60s, 15 were in their 70s, 30 were in their 80s and 20 were aged over 90. Of these people, 40 were women and 37 were men. Of the community cases reported today, 9660 were reinfections. The seven-day rolling average for new community cases recorded each day has decreased to 4,565.

There is an article in today’s Dompost about the Honourable Grant Robertson’s achievements as Minister of finance. He’s also been Deputy Prime Minister. Here’s a link to the story:

https://www.stuff.co.nz/opinion/130872334/morgan-godfery-topperforming-minister-but-you-wouldnt-know-it

There’s to be a General Election here late next year, and there is a definite feeling in the right-wing media that the Labour Government has done its dash, and it’s time for a change.  I guess people just forget how awful a National government can be, although it was interesting to see Act’s David Seymour claiming that Christopher Luxon as leader of National wasn’t conservative enough. Or some such.

I personally think Labour have done a good job, especially of managing the pandemic, but the long lockdown in Tamaki Makaurau (aka Auckland) last year did a great deal of damage. The government’s strategy has been to delay the impact of Covid 19 here, and in that they’ve succeeded, with vaccines available now and a milder strain of Covid 19 prevalent.  Their main focus seems to be how much strain is there on the health system?  This is summer; we’re “living with” Covid 19, and for many people it now seems to be a milder illness.

In China, on the other hand, all their strict Covid 19 rules have quickly been relaxed, and millions of people are now infected, with many dying. There ar e queues of hearses at crematoria.  Their vaccine is not particularly effective, and many older people have resisted it, so now, exposed to the virus like never before, it’s spreading wildly. There are fears that a new strain may be forming there. Given that Covid 19 started in China, and the authorities’ management of it has been severe, it’s difficult for me to feel too much sympathy for people there. Of course, I’m deeply sorry for the many people affected by Covid 19, and their government’s drastic policies.  I’m sorry that they’re so badly affected by Covid 19 now. I’m thankful that we no longer need to be as scared of it, given that we have vaccines and anti-viral treatments, although 78 people died last week.

It’s now Friday December 30, the eve of New Year’s Eve.

Yesterday was very hot. I went into town to get a blood test. It’s nice to go when it’s so quiet!  This morning my cleaner came from Access. I didn’t cancel after all because the cleaning really needs to be done.

There’s a shortage of eggs in supermarkets evidently. That seems strange, given that there were plenty of eggs at New World in Thorndon when we went there on Wednesday. 

This is a strange time; a time I call the “interregnum”.  It seems a bit weirder and lonelier than usual; I do find the heat (Ha! Ha!) hard to take, although it’s chickenfeed compared with the heat overseas, or in Australia. But it gets very sticky here sometimes.

I plan to go to church in Wadestown on New Year’s Day. JD has promised to drive me there, and bring me home, as I pick there won’t be much in the way of public transport on New Year’s Day. I’ve no idea what they’ll do, but it’s a nice church (when I’ve been there previously), and they have padded seating. Furthermore, I remember it’s opening, back in 1957, on a fine sunny Sunday. Women wore hats, back in those days!

In Ukraine, Putin continues rocket strikes on cities that are supposedly not in the “war zone”.  Putin has offered sperm freezing for free for Russians who enlist to fight in Ukraine. That seems such a cynical move, as though it’s near certain that those who enlist will ne maimed if not killed. 

That’s it for now. Slava Ukraini! Ngā mihi nui.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s