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Thinking about leaving Guam. Nah, bought a house!

Naemanson 23 Mar 07 - 04:00 AM
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Subject: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 04:00 AM

Yes, indeed, we are thinking about heading out of here. I have never been good at settling into one place for a long time. The longest I ever stayed anywhere was Maine and it always seemed like it must be time to move along down the pike. And so it seems here. Wakana is not happy working at Liberal Academy and I am starting to think that I want to see more of the world. We'd been talking about going to Japan but someone told Wakana that the eastern European countries are looking for English and Japanese teachers.

Of course, we are just THINKING about moving. We're nowhere near going yet.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 04:04 AM

Here is the last thread, Working in Guam.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 04:05 AM

Would some kind JoeClone please move this thread to where it belongs... NO! Not the trash, the BS list

your wish is our command! BS-faery


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 09:50 AM

It kinda sounded as if you were thinking that way in the other thread, Brett. As long as you are together, it should be a wonderful experience wherever you are.

I have a cousin and his wife who are teaching in Albania. They are there with some church and are teaching English. However, they are doing so in a very rural area and, from what I read, it's not something I would rush to do...electricity only part of the day and never at the same time, extreme cold with little heat in winter, etc. etc. Lots different from tropical Guam! Of course, there are other places. The neat thing about living where they do is they are able to travel Europe fairly easily and inexpensively. They are coming home this summer but plan to go back. They really love it.

My sisters had jobs teaching school on a reservation in AZ and were paid quite well as well as had a house provided for about $100 per month. It was isolated but great bennies.

Have you ever looked at The Caretaker's Gazette? Someone posted about it years and years ago, here. I subscribed for about a year. There were some VERY interesting situations offered.

You'll know when the right comes along. Good luck and keep us psoted, please!

luvyakat


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Leadfingers
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 10:29 AM

Brett - Where ever you finish up , I just hope that you still have good internet availability ! Your posts are always well worth reading .


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 10:45 AM

Brett, I think you should probably ignore these two threads as they are appearing right now. Take your time - unless of course you want to come to Oz. You can do that as soon as you like :-)

Thinking about leaving Guam. / You must leave now!!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 12:25 PM

Brett, move to Hawaii, we can have a Mudgathering at your place. Just think of it we can all stay for the month. Nce, eh?

Well, it no wonder you keep moning around,. That what comes of ya being born on a schooner. That's it, buy a schooner & you can wander till your hearts content. Wait does Wakana like living aboard?

Good luck what ever you do, just let us know where you'll be.

All my best

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 12:52 PM

If you come to Oz, you can buy a schooner every day - a schooner of beer! That's what we have instead of pints. I don't know how they came to be called schooners...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 08:31 PM

Maybe we should all take a vote on this first! ;~)

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 10:58 PM

wherever you think about living, check the internet connections first!

see ya both whenever

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 24 Mar 07 - 08:24 PM

I would love to live in Australia and Wakana would probably have no trouble finding work teaching Japanese but it appears the Australians think they speak English (God knows where they got that idea.) so I would not be able to find any work there.

On the serious side, Wakana was not very comfortable on her only visit to Australia so she is at best lukewarm about going back. She experienced some bigotry from some Aussie rednecks, I guess. If any of you guys want us there we'll need some help finding work and reassuring Wakana that all of Australia is not like that.

As for anyplace else we do not have any target yet.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Mar 07 - 08:38 PM

There are all types of kids. Some are cynical and angry. Some are apathetic. And some are just plain sweet. Yesterday I had a student who fitted into that last category. Aya is 18 and smart as a whip. She's cute as a button and her eyes are full of intelligence.

She came to Guam with an older friend of the family for her first trip abroad to see the sights and intending to practice her English, which is nearly impeccable, at Liberal Academy. She was nervous about meeting a big bearded gai-jin at first. By the end of our four and a half hours together we were the best of friends. She came for a three hour class. After the class I took her to a bookstore where she bought a copy of Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants on my recommendation.

Some students make you feel frustrated. Some make you proud. She made me proud and happy, not just to be a teacher but to have had the chance to get to know her. She has a great future ahead of her.

She wants to be a flight attendant. If you are ever in the air and your attendant is named Aya please say hello from me.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: maeve
Date: 28 Mar 07 - 06:59 AM

refresh...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 28 Mar 07 - 09:53 PM

It's hard to believe that it has been two years since Wakana got her green card but it has. Today I stopped by the immigration office to get the forms to change her provisional residence status to permanent residence. We'd been told we needed to file WITHIN ninety days of the two year mark. Well, we are within that time frame and two months late according to the immigration officer. Sigh. English is a difficult language, even for native speakers.

I also got our tax forms. Eep! April 15 is coming!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 29 Mar 07 - 08:07 PM

There's room here in Maine for you two.
SINS


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: kendall
Date: 30 Mar 07 - 07:58 AM

I could never live on an island.

Come back to Maine, bring Brett with you. :-)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST,Peter Woodruff
Date: 30 Mar 07 - 09:55 PM

I could never live on an island without a boat or a bridge.

Peter


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 30 Mar 07 - 11:13 PM

I will come back to Maine one of these days but I'm not finished looking at the world yet. We might try Thailand. Or we might try Eastern Europe. Not sure I'm ready for cold weather either.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 31 Mar 07 - 04:16 AM

I looked at going to Oz myself a while back, and the requirements once you reach 35 are pretty onerous. They operate a sort of points system, and if you don't make the points then it's down to money in the bank, and I mean big money!
I would think that any of the latest intake into the EEC would welcome English teachers, don't know about the Japanese tuition though.
BTW because Wakana sang Grandfather's Clock at the last Getaway I attended, I have learned the song myself, albeit in English. It was a song I seemed to have known forever, but realised I never did know all the words.
Good luck wherever you move to folks.
Giok


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 31 Mar 07 - 07:58 PM

Gordon called this morning to tell us a typhoon is on the way. It is forming up over Chuk and MAY come through here. When he saw the weather report it had not yet formed a single eye. It had two. When I saw it on my TV it had formed its eye and was moving north. If it holds that course we will only catch the western edge but it could swing west enough to give us its full attention.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 31 Mar 07 - 08:48 PM

Brett-

Maybe you should change the name of this thread real fast!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Apr 07 - 03:23 AM

It looks like the typhoon, Kong-Rey, is headed to pass just north of the island. By the time it gets here it will have have maximum sustained winds of 115 MPH. Remember it just materialized this morning. We don't get the luxury of time that Florida and the east coast gets.

Can't sit here. Gotta start preparations.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Apr 07 - 03:53 AM

Please, PLEASE, PLEASE do not leave.

The gooney birds and I will be lonely without you.

Recognize your religion, recognize your calling, recognize that no other can take your place.

You will not be happy or content untill you find your resting place....walk, pray, explore, then proclaim, on the island, the place for your grave. It is simple and you will become happy.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 01 Apr 07 - 04:09 PM

I'm telling you Brett, you & Wakana should buy a boat & live on that. Transportation is easy & cheap, no packing when you decide to haul up anchor, all your shipping is in house, you go when & where you want, as long as there's a breeze in the same direction, you can sing yourselves across to where ever, you can catch your lunch all day long.

Wait until the Typhoon passes first before you buy one though.

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Apr 07 - 04:36 PM

Yeah, Barry, boats are cheap after a typhoon. All you have to do is refloat them. There is a big one on the reef in Apra Harbor. I'm wondering what it will look like after Kong-Rey passes.

The typhoon will run over Rota, the next island north of us. According to the National Weather Service we will only get 50 to 60 mph winds while Rota will get 80 to 90 mph winds. Of course WE doomed Rota. On Friday we are going up there for the weekend. I hope they get cleaned up in time for us to enjoy their island.

Guest, I am actually very comfortable and happy with moving. I am out here on what the Australians would call 'walkabout'. I need to trim back the number of possessions that clutter up my life but once that is done I will head on out.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 01 Apr 07 - 07:27 PM

Guam as Brett's attic!

I like the sound of that. Can we all send our surplus "stuff" to you?

Maybe I'll wait until after the typhoon.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: bbc
Date: 02 Apr 07 - 02:42 AM

No suggestions, but I wish you happy, when- & where-ever you decide & I'll look forward to hearing about it. You were on my mind recently when Duane & I took part in the John Roberts gathering at SINSULL's. I saw many of the same folks we had seen at the Press Room several years ago when we drove down with you & Charley. Happy memory!

best always,

Barbara


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 02 Apr 07 - 09:32 PM

Any survivors from the typhoon?

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 03 Apr 07 - 05:52 PM

Errrrr, Brett!!!!

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 03 Apr 07 - 07:25 PM

We survived the non-typhoon. It turned more northerly on Monday and blundered over Saipan and Tinian, brushed against Rota, and gave us a cloudy rainy day with little wind. All safe.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 03 Apr 07 - 08:39 PM

Brett-

Thanks! ;~)

I guess we don't have to send out the Mudcat First Responders.

That's probably a good thing, given that we'd first have to agree on our official name...

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 07:47 AM

Sorry about that. I should have posted earlier.

Some of my students are wonderful exciting people. Some are not. I'm working with one of the latter types now. Tomorrow is the last day. There's nothing I can put my finger on but she is just not interesting. I don't understand it myself. I try to be very non-judgmental but this one is hard to take. I seem to use more energy working with her than any other student. I enjoy it less than any other student. I don't get it.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Apr 07 - 01:09 AM

OK! The classes are over and it's time to pack. Wakana and I are headed for Rota this weekend. It's not much, just the next island in the chain but I've never been there. Wakana had been to Rota many times before we met but this is the first time she has taken someone with her. She's looking forward to the tour guide routine.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 08 Apr 07 - 06:50 AM

Wow! We are just back from Rota and it is an amazing place! I'd love to give you the whole story now but I've got toothpicks holding my eyes open. More later.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 08 Apr 07 - 11:08 AM

Have a good Easter, Brett & Wakana

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 08 Apr 07 - 11:39 AM

Hope you took the toothpicks out and got some sleep!**bg**


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 08 Apr 07 - 12:58 PM

I want the whole story now!

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 09 Apr 07 - 09:08 AM

Well, the WHOLE story has to wait on this late breaking news. I got a call from my older daughter, Kelli, today. She said she had big news. I asked what it could be. She said it was the biggest news. I asked if it meant she and her husband hadn't been paying close attention to birth control. She said it did.

I'm gonna be a grandfather!

I'm not ready for this....


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 09 Apr 07 - 09:09 AM

By the by, she and her husband PLANNED this. It hasn't really taken them by surprise. I'm the only one surprised by it.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 09 Apr 07 - 10:31 AM

Who-Hoo!! It's a Wonderful Life, being a grandparent!!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 09 Apr 07 - 12:38 PM

Brett-

Well, I consder that grand news, even if it means that you and Wakana have to get used to the idea that you will be grandparents. But for your parents it's GREAT NEWS; they become Greatgrandparents! Are they ready for that?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 09 Apr 07 - 08:26 PM

Actually this is their THIRD greatgrandkid. It is the first legitimate greatgrandkid, a fact my ex enjoys rubbing in their faces.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 10 Apr 07 - 03:41 AM

how come so many of my contempories are grandparents? Surely I can't be that old?

In the olden days, Grandparents used to be old & grey - oops.

sandra (maybe I need to start dying my hair again)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 10 Apr 07 - 08:07 AM

Well, my beard is pretty white. At work Kimiko's daughter is convinced I'm Santa Claus. Must be the belly and the beard.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JudyB
Date: 10 Apr 07 - 12:04 PM

Wonderful news, Brett! Must admit I have trouble figuring how a youngster like you could possibly be a Grandpa - maybe it's related to global warming!?!

All my best to you and Wakana, and to Kelli and her husband!

JudyB


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 17 Apr 07 - 08:58 AM

Well I suppose I should get started with the description of our weekend. After all, another weekend has gone by and the dream that is Rota is fading. Here is the first installment.

Now, you must understand the difference between Rota and Guam. Here on Guam life is pretty good. We live in the southern part of the island, the rural area, if you will. The Northern part of the island is pretty much an urban center, probably one of the most urbanized areas in the North Pacific (i.e., north of the Equator) if you leave out islands like Japan, Taiwan, and the Philippines. Rota, on the other hand calls itself Nature's Treasure Island and they are not wrong.

Rota is the next island north of us. It is smaller than Guam, only 85 square miles as opposed to Guam's 210 square miles, and it has a much smaller population. Rota has only about 3,000 people. Guam is fairly crowded with 170,000. That makes a world of difference. When we got back to Guam I commented to Wakana that it was like going to Boston after a weekend up at my parent's place. We went from clean country living to the big city.

The geography of the island is very interesting. It seems to have raised itself up out of the ocean in layers. The highest, smallest layer is relatively flat on top. Each layer below that one is larger and also flat. The lowest layer rises steeply from the ocean in places while it is at sea level in others but that does not mean you can actually get to the sea for all around are razor sharp ragged edges of the limestone that makes up the whole island. The only easy access to the ocean are the shores around Songsong Village.

Wakana has been to Rota many times. She wrote her master's thesis on ecotourism on the island. She spent a lot of time there talking to people and getting to know the ins and outs of the place. She loves it and she wanted me to see why. So, she gathered up her secret money stash and bought two plane tickets.

We flew out on Friday at 7:00 AM. The plane was small, only 27 seats, and we expected to have it all to ourselves until a tour group of Japanese showed up. They were having fun and we got to talk to them. They all belong to the same company. It was a company trip, paid for by their firm and overseen by their CEO. The people were all in their twenties and thirties, men and women.

I learned a lot about Japanese corporate thinking on this trip. Wakana explained that the companies provide such travel opportunities in an effort to create a team mentality. I asked about the possibility of office romance and learned that it is common, not frowned on, unless it is an extramarital affair. I guess the idea is that the man and woman can spend time together and still work for the company.

ANYWAY, the flight was uncomfortable because the seats were so small but it was short. We landed on Rota in the cool morning air. It was quick work to get through immigration, collect our luggage and get through customs. Wakana rented a car and we headed off to find a hotel.

Yes, we had no reservations anywhere. I didn't think that was a good idea, it was a holiday in Japan and the Easter Weekend in the States. The hotels must be full. Unfortunately for Rota, they were not. We drove by the Rota Golf Resort and saw an empty Golf course. We stopped at the Rota Hotel and found a deserted lobby. When we finally found the manager he explained that they had only one room booked in a one hundred room facility. We found the same story everywhere we went.

We decided to stay at the Coconut Village Hotel. This is a very pleasant wooden set of buildings, actually like an old style American motel with cottages instead of a large block of rooms. The grounds were nicely landscaped. The cottages were little duplexes, two rooms each with a Japanese style bathroom (i.e., cramped) and two full size beds. Do you remember the full size bed? Not small enough to be a twin but not large enough to be a double. Do you know how tall I am? Let's just say that my feet got lots of air time.

To get to the hotel we drove from the airport. This is a good point to talk about the roads we used in Rota. The main road from the airport to the two villages is a nicely maintained asphalt two lanes leading down by the shore. The roads in the village are also asphalt and though narrow are easily followed. But, you see, we didn't stay on those roads.

There are many names for roads. Some of you are near superhighways, some near interstate highways. There are roads with four lanes and a median and those with a turn lane. Then we get down to the simple roads, two lanes and a shoulder if you have to stop. At the lowest level are those that we call unimproved. Many of us are familiar with the dirt road. What you don't know about are the roads below that level… Rota's roads.

Consider the washed out road, rocks and gravel under the car, the popping sound the tires make and the grind of the grit under the car, the sickening side slip as you try to climb a steep grade with a cliff on one side and tree tops below you, the bumping and thump of the road rubbing the bottom of the car, the swish of the grass that grows high between the low ruts, and then you have an idea of a Rota road.

And in what did we brave these winding tracks? What could stand up to such punishment? Do you imagine a four wheel drive truck with oversize tires and a roaring engine. Oh no, gentle reader, we didn't have anything like that. Our chariot for exploring the depths of Rota was a 1994 Nissan Sentra sedan. My respect for Nissan went way up over that weekend.

On the first day Wakana wanted to show me everything but we settled for the Swimming Hole, the Fishing Cliffs, and the Bird Sanctuary. The water was too rough for the swimming hole which is a very large tide pool carved out of the coral that makes up the shore. The waves wash over the reef and into the pool filling it with clean new seawater. At low tide it is supposed to be a lovely place to go for a refreshing swim but we never saw it at low tide.

From there we went on to the fishing cliffs, As Matmos. We drove out a long track that brought us on to a large shelf, maybe half a mile wide between the cliffs that towered over us and the sea that stretched out beyond. When we walked over to look at the surf we found we were at the top of a cliff that fell fifty to seventy five feet to sea level. And what a sight! Those waves that kept us out of the swimming hole were crashing into the cliffs and sending white sheets of spray high over our heads. And it wasn't just a localized event. The cliffs run on for at least a mile with white water crashing all along the length. There are blow holes and thunder holes. The sound is deep and constant. The cliff tops are wet with seawater from a long way down. It is an amazing sight.

From there we headed for the Bird Sanctuary. One of the amazing things about Rota, for me, is the multitude of birds. Guam's bird population has been decimated by the brown tree snake. We have some sparrows, lots of pigeons and chickens, and a few protected species like the Guam Rail. But Rota has a full population. As you drive down the roads doves fly up in front of the car. Black Drongos cling to tree branches and fences. You see an occasional francolin and plover. We also saw huge collared kingfishers and once I saw a scarlet honeyeater flash among the trees.

At the sanctuary you can follow concrete walkways through the trees to yet another cliff edge. The actual sanctuary is at the bottom of the cliff, way below you where the trees look like toys. Among the trees are white dots that are the egrets that migrate through the Marianas Islands. Flying out to sea are the boobies and frigate birds. Small black sparrows flap swiftly by. And this was in the sleepy afternoon. In the early morning the sky is full of birds as they head out hunting for food from the sea and forests.

From there we headed for the latte stone quarry. In the old days, long before the Europeans found Guam, the Chamorros lived in house held up off the ground by carved stone posts. The upright carried a half round stone on which rested the timbers that made up the floor of the house. The two pieces are called latte stones. The more important the family the larger the lattes. The quarry we visited holds the remains of lattes that were never finished and they are huge. Nobody knows why they quit making and using lattes but I have my own favorite theory. After seeing the size of the stones in the quarry my imagination went to work.

In my theory there were a bunch of people working on carving the stones when one of them piped up and said, "You know, we have to move this to the chief's hose and set it up. Then we have to lift this big bastard up over our heads."

"You know," said his buddy, "you're right." He turned to the guy on his other side and they all talked about it and concluded they were being jerked around and they weren't going to take it anymore. And that was the end of the latte period.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 17 Apr 07 - 01:12 PM

What about moving south og the equator? They got plenty of island groups. Just looking for more interesting island reports.

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 18 Apr 07 - 04:54 AM

Brett, thanks for another beautiful description

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 22 Apr 07 - 08:22 AM

Dad tells me that old Ed Toner died yesterday. Ed was a former co-worker of his in the early days on the border. Occasionally they'd go hunting or fishing. A couple of times I got to go along. Ed was an interesting old sod. He once bought a new rifle for hunting. He carried a handful of shells for it. He used that rifle for three hunting seasons before he realized the shells did not fit that rifle. He never fired it. Hell, he'd never even loaded it.

One year we took his boat way up past Ripogenus Dam into Chesuncook Lake. We camped out up there, explored the village, ghost town really, of Chesuncook, And finally crept back to the boat landing on the last fumes of gasoline. Great trip.

Ed always liked to go camping with the best equipment. His motto was, "It only costs pennies more to go first class." I'll never forget him making dinner in the old camp on Duck Lake.

But my point isn't that I will miss the old bugger though he was a nice guy and I have good memories of him. My point is that I seem to know a disproportionate number of people who are excessively interesting. I was reflecting on that while thinking about someone else who had recently died, a friend of a friend. My friend mentioned this other person and talked about him as being a nice guy but he had no stories to share. I got the feeling that his friend had not led a very interesting life.

Is that the fact or do people not tell stories of the people they know? When I think about the people who have made up the cast of characters that I have known in my life I see people who have done more than inhabit an office and go on vacations. I see people for whom a visit to a bar is not necessarily and effort to impress the girls but more a chance to talk with old friends and enjoy their company. These are people who have reached a little farther for what they want and have not been afraid of grabbing the ring no matter what the social risk was. None of my friends are of the keep-up-with-the-Joneses ilk. Very few of them live to own a fancy car and a big house.

Am I alone in this or are there a lot of people out there with a diverse and interesting group of friends and acquaintances?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 22 Apr 07 - 09:33 AM

Brett-

Have I told you about the new van I'm looking at?

More seriously, it's really up to us to retell some these stories, and create a few stories to pass on as well. You're certainly doing your share.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 22 Apr 07 - 11:30 AM

Congratulations on the baby to be. Wonderful news!
SINS


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 22 Apr 07 - 05:55 PM

I dunno Sins. It means I'll be a grandfather. I'm not ready to assume that mantle.

Let me explain. Many people say they are not old enough. That's not my problem. Some are adamant about what they should or should not be called, i.e., Grampa, Pops, etc. Well, we have no choice in the first and, in my family, there is no choice in the second. All grandparents are either Papa or Nana. Now my grandfathers were special men, men with stories and talents. My own father is one of those men. My kids think he is some kind of god or something. I can't see myself as ranking up there with those men. I fall short somehow. I don't think I am deserving of the name, Papa.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: curmudgeon
Date: 22 Apr 07 - 08:50 PM

My father referred to his grandfather as Grandsir. You are worthy of such a title - Tom


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 23 Apr 07 - 07:07 PM

Let me see. How to explain it? My mother's father sailed on an ocean tugboat ferrying barges to Cuba during the depression. before that he also worked as part of the road crew on the road that runs from Bangor to Bar Harbor, Maine. He met my grandmother while driving around Maine installing gas lights in farmhouses. Later he taught himself math and surveying and became a surveyor in Connecticut. He rebuild boats and sailed them in Long Island Sound.

My father's father was a boat builder in Clinton, Connecticut. Dad remembers him repairing boats that had been stitched with machine gun fire during Prohibition. He became a mailman and suffered a heart attack while walking his route. They forced him to retire and he went back to building boats and working as a commercial lobsterman in Long Island Sound. He would build a boat over the winter, fish it all summer and then sell it and build another over the winter. He quit that after he built Pot Luck the boat I remember helping him with on my summer vacations in Connecticut.

There are lots of stories about those two men. My uncles are the same way, except Uncle Bob who married into the family. We won't go there except to point out one his kids was the only one of us to die in prison.

I just don't feel like I measure up and there is too little time to try.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Apr 07 - 07:10 PM

They probably weren't trying at all, Brett, and that would be part of why they became so revered, same as you. You have it in you, too, whether you realise it or not. Can you imagine what a thrill it will be for your grandchild to read about your grand adventures in Guam of all places? And, marrying a beauty from Japan?! IMO, you are carrying on the tradition of your grandfathers, uncles, etc. and need to give yourself some credit and time.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 23 Apr 07 - 09:40 PM

Brett, why not add you grandfather's stories to the Grandpa thread?

sandra

google ad below!!

Grandparents - Great deals on everything ...

maybe I can buy myself a grandpa, I've never had one!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 30 Apr 07 - 06:32 PM

Last night was my last class in the Master's course I was taking. We have two weeks to submit our final project. For this course I finished a short story I was writing. It was voted very good by the class but it lacks depth. I guess I need to go back to work on it.

Wakana's friend, Chris, is associate dean for the English department. He has been advising me, through Wakana, as to what I should do next. It feels like a shotgun wedding. "You gonna take these classes, boy!" "Do get to decide?" "NO! Godamit!" "Sigh, yessir."

I fooled them, though. I haven't paid for the first class and I can't register for another until I do! Ha-ha-ha. Actually I started this process one semester too early. Next semester I will be 55 years old and eligible for free tuition.

Now I have to find the money to pay for this semester...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 30 Apr 07 - 08:26 PM

Brett-

Isn't it nice that there is free college tuition for geezers? Too bad we have to be geezers to qualify! But not to worry, I turn 65 this year. I'm way ahead of you!

Cheerily,
Charley noble, ready to retire


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 May 07 - 09:56 AM

Only ten years. I'm running hard to catch up.

This morning Gordon called for help moving Quest. I went down to the yacht club to help load the canoe on to the trailer. I'd forgotten how heavy that beast is. There were five of us. We had to drag it into the water, walk it down to the ramp and then up to where the trailer could reach it. We had to set a stack of four cement blocks under each end to get it high enough for the trailer to slide in between the hull and the tam.

Later Wakana and I stopped into the new Mermaid Tavern for dinner. Yes, the tavern is open again. Unfortunately they are not brewing yet. Looks to be another month for that to happen. While there the manager asked me if I wanted to perform again. Nice shot in the arm. We'll talk later to set up a schedule.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 01 May 07 - 11:52 AM

Brett-

Excellent news about the Mermaid Tavern.

Did you ever check out "Mid-Watches" on my website? As an old Navy retiree, I think you'd like it.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 02 May 07 - 05:41 AM

Hey, that's a good one. When your voice came on the words reminded me of that fateful midwatch when I hit double digits in the Navy, i.e., I had less than one hundred days to go till the end of my hitch.

I had been preparing for that day by teaching myself how to stitch words on to cloth. That night, during the midwatch in the engine room I stitched 'Two Digit Midget' across the back of my working jacket and 'FTN' (F--- the Navy) into the space between the eagle and chevron on the arm. Next day when people saw those words they new I was short enough to play handball on a curb, if I put on my hat all you could see were my shoes. I was short!

When the XO saw my FTN he had only a few words to say to me. They were gruff and to the point. He didn't believe that my girlfriend's name was Florence T. Nelson.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 02 May 07 - 11:05 PM

Last week I was treated for another respiratory problem, not quite pneumonia. This week the lungs have cleared up but I still have an annoying cough. Actually, it is more than annoying. Every once in a while, after a painful coughing jag, I find I cannot breath. My lungs are empty, thanks to the coughing, and all I can pull in is a very thin stream which wheezes loudly. Very annoying. This morning I woke up coughing and sat on the edge of the bed fighting for breath for a long time.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 03 May 07 - 02:35 AM

As you've noticed, coughing depletes your lungs. If you're not already doing do, breathe deeply thru your nose, not mouth, it's more efficient. Gulping air into your mouth can lead to hyperventialtion, compounding the problem.

That's what got me into the emergency ward last year. My only problem was rapid heart beat & hyperventilating made it so bad I needed an ambulance.

sandra

actually, rapid heart beat was not the problem, the problem was very fast irregular heart beat, however the irregularity was so irregular it was missed on my first 8 hour session on the heart monitor. Second visit caught it & the cause was electrical irregularity, & a tiny tablet daily fixes it.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 May 07 - 03:57 AM

Today I am doing better. My coughing is reduced to normal coughs with no loss of breath. Much better.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 05 May 07 - 01:36 PM

Brett-

Breathing is good!

So are "rusty nails": two parts Scotch moderated down with one part Drumbuie.

Have a round on me.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble, still adrift in NYC


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 May 07 - 09:45 PM

NYC! What are you doing in that hell-hole? You get your ass back to civilization before one of those people decide to decorate your carcass with gun or knife.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 06 May 07 - 08:50 PM

Brett-

I'm just doing my family duty. There are a couple of art show openings doing retrospectives on my grandparents' art (the Zorachs): the Gerald Peters Galleries or the Goldberg Galleries for those who share such interests. So last Wednesday I chauffered my mother down to attend. We've been based at my brother's place in Brooklyn; they're all out still bar-hopping at the pubs my niece runs along Atlantic Avenue.

I've just got back from a concert at South Street SeaPort with Don Sineti and assorted local sea music folks. Sineti's concert went well. Afterwards we raided a new tavern, The Paris, for drinks and a bite to eat, and some imprompto singing. Don regaled us with the story of his recent surgery to remove a kidney stone, which I promptly christened "The Sineti Stone." He didn't bring it along for show and tell. Apparently the surgeon was amazed at its size and kept it to frighten his students. Everyone seemed to enjoy my rendition of Bob Watson's "Tasmin Buster." Now I'm safely home and I think I'll just hang out here.

However, some knucklehead armed the alarm on this house when they left so it's a good thing I came up with the combination, on the second try, or it would be real noisy around here!

We head back to Maine tomorrow morning.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 07 May 07 - 02:28 PM

It is 4:20 AM and I am high as a kite. It was not my intention. Yesterday I went to the doctor's office because of the annoying cough. I THOUGHT the pneumonia symptoms had cleared up. Uh-uh. If anything they were worse. It was the cough that kept me from exerting myself and therefore thinking I had gotten better.

Sooo, the good doctor gave me another round of inhalation therapy and some really strong cough medicine. I told him the codeine based cough syrup didn't do much so he gave me some stronger stuff. This stuff was based on hydrocondon or something like that. Max dosage: 2 teaspoons.

Well, yesterday I took the max dosage and coughed a little less than before. At bedtime I took the max dosage and still had a few coughing spells. So, about two hours ago, when the coughing woke me up, I doubled the dosage.

Wheeeee! Let's go flying! Balance shot to hell, I itch all over, and I've got the munchies. Haven't felt like this since college. I should go to bed.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 07 May 07 - 09:13 PM

Bretttttt!

Can you come down from the ceiling and give us another report, or are you hung up in a tree?

I'm back from NYC to Maine. No problems, and Mother had a great time, although I think she had a hangover this morning from the bar-hopping.

You know it's still early spring here in Maine. Down in NYC the leaves are popping and there are blossoms everywhere. However, Mother was pleased to see about a hundred daffidills in full blossom around her house when we drove up, yellow and white ones. And her poor kitty was verrry pleased to see her.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 07 May 07 - 09:22 PM

Doubled the maximum dosage????? THat can't be good. Don't you know - we old folks die every day from taking the wrong dosage or mixing the wrong drugs. Be careful out there!

I had pneumonia (not really, the technician said it was pneumonitis with fluid in the lungs). Felt like crap for two weeks and coughed until I hurt. No fun. Take care of yourself.

SINS


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 07 May 07 - 10:56 PM

Hug a pillow when you cough...it helps a tiny bit. Take care!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 08 May 07 - 08:38 AM

Can I hug Wakana instead?

And who are you calling old, Sins? I'll have you know I'm still just a kid, a sober kid at last, but just a kid.*grin*

I have to admit it was an interesting experience. It exhausted me. Like I said, I haven't felt like that since college. I still wonder why people WANT to feel like that.

Anyway, I spent a quiet day at home. One run out to take the rental movies back to the store and check on the mail.

I have put the Buick up for sale. Anyone interested? 1991 Buick Regal Custom Coupe? Gets about three gas stations per mile. Only two phone calls today. Hmm. Hope things pick up. I'd like to dump that thing.

Tomorrow I am going to try to go to work. Big experiment. When you are working across a table from a student and you break into a hacking cough that leaves you breathless then it tend to make them upset. It's one of those service industry things.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 09 May 07 - 09:03 AM

Well, that was quick. I got two phone calls on the car. The first person who looked at it bought it and the job was over! I paid off a loan I made to buy the Mercedes and now all is right with the world... sorta.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 09 May 07 - 02:22 PM

Kewl! A change in the tides, eh?

Yeah, you can hug Wakana as long as she doesn't mind full force blasts from your coughing and grasping her around the ribs as tightly as possible. A pillow might be better for your relationship, though, they tend to not mind being bended and held in a steel grip to cut the pain.**BG**


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 10 May 07 - 04:40 AM

Well, I haven't had to work for a living for a long time. I'd guess my grip is less like steel and more like Jello.

The latest windmill I like to tilt at is to add some spice to my (our) life. I wanted to celebrate the end of the semester and the sale of the car but Wakana vetoed the idea of going off to a fancy hotel for the night. Grumble, grumble, gripe, gripe.

But I have another idea. There is a massage shop down in Tumon that she really likes. I am going to take her there for "the works"... for both of us. She keeps saying she'd like me to go with her. Tomorrow, after work I am going to stop in and make the arrangements.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 15 May 07 - 06:43 AM

Today is May 15. My older daughter turns 26! My God! Where has the time gone? It seems like only yesterday she was sitting in my lap helping me watch 'Doca Who" on TV.

This also seems to be a hell of a long time ago that I first reported on my cough. No change. The doctors have confirmed there is no problem with my lungs. It's something in my throat. They think it's an allergy! I say, impossible!!! I don't have allergies! Allergens do not affect me. Well, OK, i did smoke one but I didn't inhale!

Anyway, I am still coughing my lungs out and still feel like crap at the end of the day. Ugh.

This morning I went out to make some progress on cleaning up the area under the canopy. The closet door was still open from my last effort. As I approached the closet a rooster ran out of it. Then, as I reached in to pick something up a chicken exploded off of the second shelf with an annoyed cackle and the thunder of wings! I noticed that my adrenal gland is still functioning.

I investigated further and found she had laid three eggs on the life jackets. I'm afraid I was less than graceful about it. Certainly less graceful than the flying arcs those eggs made into the jungle.

The closet door is closed now and will stay closed unless I am out there working. If the chickens can move the car battery holding the doors shut then I am not going to mess with them.

Tomorrow Wakana has to get up at 6:00 AM. She has to hold her Japanese 102 final at 8:00 AM. It is the end of the semester and we had a few things to celebrate. First is Kelli's news. Then there was the sale of the car. Then Wakana's survival of a full semester at UOG. So, I took her to Outback Steakhouse and we pigged out on real meat! We are so full now we can hardly stand it. And the leftovers are in the refrigerator... hmm.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 15 May 07 - 09:39 AM

The cough heard round the world...we've all had some kind of crud and all reports are it's allergies, too! Rog sounds the worst...esp. in the morning when he becomes vertical and all the stuff in his nose starts to drain. Ugh! He has sounded that way for at least two months. We've been using benadryl, but I think it's about time he gets something a little stronger OR quits smoking!

Congrats on all of the accomplishments and the massages sound lovely.

kat


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 16 May 07 - 08:06 AM

The massages did not happen. She yielded to the Logic gene that all wives seem to have. We need to "save" money, we can't "waste" it. Thus the night in the hotel, the massages, all gone like dust in a typhoon. She DID let me take her out for a steak dinner...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 19 May 07 - 08:47 AM

My pregnant daughter called tonight. Too cool! She is NOT enjoying her pregnancy. Hunger and nausea in combinations too awful to contemplate.

As for long term planning, I expect I will visit England around the April time frame. If anyone wants a visitor from the Pacific Ocean let me know. A couple of weeks with my daughter and (gulp!) grandchild, then I will head home. She still lives near Loughborough. I might experiment with flying through Dubai and not go anywhere near the USA this time. I have a friend who says it would be cheaper to fly through Hong Kong or Singapore and Dubai.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 May 07 - 09:35 AM

Whatever may have caused the initial coughing, you can set up a chronic, self-induced bronchitis by not suppressing a cough to let the bronchial passages calm down. The mucus can be a result of irritation caused by.... the coughing.

But there's also a bug that lurks and lingers and is hard to find, that some folks I know have had, that needs long-term antibiotics to stamp out. I think that's condiered a form of walking pneumonia.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 19 May 07 - 12:52 PM

Brett-

Loughborough appears to be somewhat in the middle of England, an hour from the Yorkshire coast to the East or an hour from Liverpool to the Northwest. All these places are infested with fine singers and folk clubs. Maybe someone closer to the ground will provide details, or more likely will do so if you initiate a new thread.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 19 May 07 - 02:51 PM

I mentioned it to Micca, today, Brett. If you pass through London on your way there he is.:-)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 23 May 07 - 06:04 PM

I'm a little depressed today. My throat is still giving me trouble. I cannot sing. Talking too long leads to coughing. Singing leads to coughing. Yawning leads to coughing. Hell, everything leads to coughing. I can exercise without coughing so that's something but I don't want to go snorkeling because I worry about having a coughing fit in the ocean.

What really bothers me is the singing. Back when Kendall was going through his bout with throat cancer we all sympathized but I'm not sure how many of us truly understood what he was experiencing. Now, I believe (hope) that this is just an allergy and that I will win out in the end but I also have this dread that it may be something that medicine cannot cure. I don't buy into all the hype about doctors and I have no faith in the American medical system.

Well, that's depressing. On a brighter note... IT'S MANGO SEASON! The trees are dropping mangoes like there is no tomorrow. Every morning we have fresh mangoes. Soon Wakana will be cooking with them in an effort to eat up all she gathers.

Also, yesterday we got a telephone call from Father Duenas School in Mangilao. Wakana and I had dropped off applications to teach there. They were calling to schedule an interview with Wakana. She goes to see them at 9:00 this morning.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 24 May 07 - 02:52 AM

it's a bummer not being able to sing, are there any alternative treatments that help an allergic throat?

I love the smell of mangoes, but for some reason don't eat them too often, probably cos they are very sweet. And messy!

best wishes to Wakana for her interview & to you for getting past tis allergic time.

I'm all snuffly at the moment. I got a call 2.30ish (it's almost 5pm now) saying my 2 new bookcases were on their way. Eeek, I sez, can you ask the lads to deliver something else before mine, I have to empty the old ones (5' x 4' & full of books & magazines)

So now I have stuff everywhere, on the floor in each of my 4 rooms, on my bed, on the freezer, stove & bench, on my washing machine & dryer, in the bath & even sitting on the (closed) toilet!

Naturally all the books were covered with far more dust than I'd realised, & I even managed to vacuum away 26 years of paint dust behind the bookcases, as well as the flakes of paint that had fallen over the years from the flaky ceiling paint!

If they don't turn up, apart from killing someone, I'll have to eat out, & somehow drag my camping bed out from under my bed ...

and what was even worse, I broke 2 fingernails!!!

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 24 May 07 - 06:39 AM

stuff everywhere............sitting on the (closed) toilet!

So what happens when you need to go to the toilet, Sandra?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 24 May 07 - 08:12 AM

I remember that apartment, Sandra. How on earth you found space to shift the bookcases is beyond me. Very fine memory, sitting in your place looking at all the fine things you've collected and made. My place would be like that if Wakana allowed... actually I have two rooms in the house she has given up on... one is this one, my office, and I can't remember what's in the other one.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 24 May 07 - 09:02 AM

Brett-

If you and Wakana would like my mother's chutney recipe, that will take care of several barrels of mangos. I'd be happy to post it.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Gua
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 24 May 07 - 09:58 AM

The blokes arrived at 5.30, & after a lot of backing & forwarding they brought in the new taller bookcases, & removed the battered old ones. I finished re-loading the bookcases at 9.30, & could finally sit down. Too much exercise & lots more dust as I continued dusting books before putting hem in their new homes. The books that were on the on top are now inside, & I have jigsaws on the new top!, but the shelves aren't quite as long as they include a support, so I had fun fitting each shelf load back.

The bookcases are beautiful, they are solid pine with a dark-stain, and they will last forever, I'll take pics & send them to you Brett.

sandra (first I stepped carefully into the bathroom around & over all the stuff, then moved the stuff off the toilet lid ...)

I also had fun getting to the intercom across my scattered possessions when the bookcases arrived. Then the blokes rang again as they had not propped the door open, so I had to clamber over everything again.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 24 May 07 - 10:08 AM

On Mangoes:
http://www.conviviobookworks.com/pages/puttingupmangoes.html

This is a friend's website. Their mango tree - Grandma Mango, who shamed them yearly into putting up her babies before they rotted on the ground - was lost last year in a hurricane. The book was written long before the disaster and is a beautiful funny tribute to the tree.

STOP singing, talking, and most of all whispering. Give your throat and voice a rest.

That damn cough turned into pneumonia on me a month ago. I am still in shock. I have never had it before and don't understand why I got it this time. First a cough, then bronchitis then pneumonia in a bout three days. Rest.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 May 07 - 06:47 PM

Sandra, those bookcases sound good, a worthy repository for your collections. Congratulations.

Sins, I'm resting as much as possible. The cough is just too persistent. However, I did go to an eye, ear, nose, and throat doctor. He was very mean to me but told me the real problem was not in my throat. My throat is clear but irritated. No nodes, cancer, etc. I apparently have a deep post nasal drip that is the root cause of the problem.

Still coughing and losing my breath, though.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 27 May 07 - 08:28 PM

and what treatment did he offer for the sinus drip?

I have a very tiny allergic drip which doesn't cause problems, but yours needs attending to.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 28 May 07 - 01:10 PM

I suggest, Sir Brett, that you begin a regular course of enjoying fine cigars after each meal and again as needed. Make sure, though, that you get the best Havana, or the cure won't work.


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 28 May 07 - 07:36 PM

The EENT doctor gave me some more antibiotics and a nasal spray. No go.

Amos, I can only offer this as a reply to your suggestion. One man's meat is another man's poison. In other words, and I say this with all the respect and friendship I have for you, Gaaaah! Bluck! Yuck!

In the meantime I am eating mangoes hand over fist. They plummet to the ground with every breeze. Wakana goes out every morning and afternoon and picks them up. We take bags of them to work and pass them out whenever we meet people who like mangoes. That is 100% of the population.

The other day we were leaving the school carrying a bag of fruit. There was a woman at the front desk (the school has moved into a building of mixed condos and offices). We went up to the desk and Wakana said, "Excuse me, but I have a very simple question. Do you like mangoes?" The woman smiled and said she did. So I put the bag on the desktop and said "Here you go!"


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Jeri
Date: 28 May 07 - 08:19 PM

Ask your doctor about GERD. That can cause a whole load of symptoms you wouldn't normally associate with reflux. (Like asthma, sinus problems, hoarseness)

As for your mango problem, over here it's zucchini, so things could be worse.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 28 May 07 - 11:44 PM

I should have a mango problem like that!

With us, it's lemons. I love lemons, but it's a full time job keeping up with them, and they seem to be year-round now. I give them away, and I used quite a few when I was making lilly pilly jelly - but that's finished till next year. I have containers of lemon juice in the freezer, and I use them in a lot of different ways. And still the lemons keep on coming.....

Unfortunately, Guam's a bit far away for a lemon / mango swap :-(


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 29 May 07 - 06:30 AM

Yeah, Jenny, even if we were closer I'm sure Customs would take a negative view to swapping fruit.

Tonight, on our way home, we stopped at a new place, the Nacho Doghouse. Sure enough, in keeping with its name it serves nachos and hot dogs. Not much to recommend it. However, as we were leaving we started to talk with the owner. She will be retiring from Federal service soon. Wakana was sure she'd met the woman before and sure enough she had. She is the park ranger at Ritidian Beach. She conducts tours into the jungle to show people the caves that are so special to the Chamorro people.

The customs of the people hold that there are spirits in the forest. Before you can enter the forest you have to ask permission. There is a chant used to ask the spirits to forgive the intrusion. The ranger always uses it before she goes in. Today, she told us, a media company was filming the tour. She took them to the cave and along the way they saw a huge monitor lizard, about 3 feet long, a coconut crab, and a huge hermit crab. She said she never sees so many creatures on the trip. The path is well used and avoided by most animals.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 30 May 07 - 07:02 PM

I mentioned the applications we dropped off at Father Duenas Boys School. And I mentioned the interview Wakana had. Well, they hired her. She has to go to the school today to do whatever they do to induct someone into their ranks. I am very proud of her. She is very happy.

Two years ago when we were wandering around England my friend Gordon developed a bad infection in his left leg. As usual he let it go until almost too late. Then, around the middle of May, the infection returned. He has been laid up for the last couple of weeks. This time he hustled his butt to the doctor's office at the first sign of trouble. He's doing OK but the doctor is worried about the repeat.

I only mention this because I had the same problem shortly after coming back to the island from that trip. I am keeping a close eye on my infection zone.

Last night, on the way home from work, I stopped off at the Chamorro Village. Every Wednesday they have their Market Night. The place is crowded with people from many nations and cultures. The air is scented with barbecue and other foods. Music filled the air. I sat with Gordon at his booth keeping him company as he sold his jewelry and talked with the people. On the stage across from us the traditional dancers wove there way through the island rhythms. Chinese, Japanese, Chamorros and other Pacific islanders, and United Statesians of all races filled the spaces and wandered between the market stalls. It was a lovely evening, cool and pleasant, with lights adding to the festive air.

Larry had come down to help out so I wasn't needed and left after a while to buy supper and head home. It was a lovely drive with the wind blowing through the car and the moon sparkling on the water. Life is good.

By the way, is anyone interested in some jewelry made from snake bone? Gordon makes necklaces and dangling earrings using the vertebrae of Brown Tree Snakes. PM me and I will get prices for you.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 31 May 07 - 09:31 AM

Best wishes to Wakana on her new job.

And, Brett, how exactly does Gordon acquire the vertebrae of the Brown Tree Snake for his jewelry? You're not climbing trees for him, are you?

The weather was perfect last Memorial Day weekend here in Maine. Weird! It's probably the last time we'll see the sun all summer.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 31 May 07 - 06:07 PM

Now Charley, quit being a pessimist. Remember, sunlight is bad for you!

Gordon's friends bring him dead snakes that they find or kill. He rots the meat off the bones then cleans them up. The vertebrae have sharp points so he has to use a Dremel tool to dull them down a bit.

Wakana got her employment contract from Father Duenas yesterday. They had been working with two Japanese teachers. Those have left and they are hiring her to be the only Japanese teacher at the school. She will have two beginner classes, two intermediate classes, and one advanced class. With this job her income will more than double. She is very happy. I expect this happiness will last until she encounters the reality of teaching high school boys.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Ebbie
Date: 31 May 07 - 09:16 PM

No problem, Brett; she'll have them all in love with her by the end of the second day!

Why are both the previous Japanese teachers gone? No problem there, I hope.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Jun 07 - 06:58 AM

I don't know. Neither one of us asked... The school is one of the better schools on the island. It is dedicated to Father Duenas, a priest beaten and executed by the Japanese during WWII. It is built on the spot where he was executed.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 03 Jun 07 - 06:34 AM

Today I saw a note in the newspaper that the Ukelele Hut is going to be running an open mike at their store on Fridays and Saturdays.

That's good!

But it's only open to people who play the Uke.

That's bad.

I have five guitars!

That's good!

But one has a broken tuning peg.

That's bad.

If I take off two strings and play it with a capo on the fifth fret I have a ukelele!

That's VERY good.

But I don't know how to play a uke.

That's bad.

But I bought a book today!

That's good.

I have to go turn a guitar into a uke. Have a great weekend!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 03 Jun 07 - 11:12 AM

one of our uke players runs workshops at Festivals & sells pretty pink ukes to his students! If they can play their pretty pink ukes, I'm sure you can play your homemade (handcrafted?) uke.

I just found his website & here are his instant instructions!

have fun

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 03 Jun 07 - 01:19 PM

Brett-

You're in luck! The bottom four strings of your guitar should be tuned the same as a uke (that's assuming you hold the guitar in a normal position and are not standing on your head!).

But you'll be accused of bringing in a "Hummer" of a uke.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 03 Jun 07 - 07:31 PM

One of my goals in this experiment is to bring real ukulele music back to the east coast, and wherever I go from here. I have learned since I got here that the uke is not a toy to be strummed to simple chords for a silly song. The book I bought lists 800 chords. The songs and playing styles people use are very complex. The playing styles range from the simple strum through to complex finger picking. If I can unlock just a few of the bits that make the uke such an interesting instrument then I will feel I have succeeded.

Thanks for the website, Sandra. I will explore that and see what he has to offer.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 04 Jun 07 - 08:41 PM

I would love to know more about Snake Bone jewelry, Brett. Any chance of a ring? BTW, Screech to be mailed this week. Hope it gets by Customs.
SINS


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 04 Jun 07 - 09:28 PM

If I know anything about Screech they might stop it for being an explosive. Your next post might be from a prison PC.

Gordon's never made any rings. The bones are too... pointy. The dangly earrings are very nice. One of my students bought some and wore them to class several times. I wonder what her friends back in Japan thought of them when she got home?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 04 Jun 07 - 10:59 PM

Great looking site, Sandra, thanks!

Oo-koo-lay-lays rule!I love my sister's baritone uke. Remember that video someone posted a few years ago of the kid in Central park playing classical on a uke? I think he was Japanese. Lemme go look...ah, it was "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" and his name is Jake Shimabukuro. You can watch it on youtube right here.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 05 Jun 07 - 01:53 AM

Mike Jackson is an amazingly versatile performer who knows zillions of songs. I've had a great time at nostalgia sing-alongs with him (Grandfather's clock!)

The most amazing uke player I've ever seen was Cameron Murray, whose hand was a blur as he played.

Another famous uke player is
Mic Conway , also a very versatile performer!

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Jun 07 - 03:54 AM

Thanks for the links. Jake Shimabukuro is good, almost as good as the guys here on the island. But then, I haven't heard these guys trying to play While My Guitar...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 09 Jun 07 - 04:20 AM

Yesterday I went to the open mike at the Ukulele Hut. It was held in the center court at the Agana Shopping Center, about as unfriendly a spot as you can get. The acoustics go way beyond terrible. The speaker were turned up too loud and the voices, on the rare times that anyone tried to sing, were unintelligible.

That being said the talent was impressive. There was a 16 year old kid who played While My Guitar almost as well as Jake S. And his other stuff was much better.

Wakana and I met Paul and Greshna there. They are from Poland. Paul is a physical therapist and she has a Ph.D. in Math. She teaches at the university. They have two kids but the kids are in Poland now with the grandmother.

Paul wants a sailboat. He hungers for it. He lusts for it. It was my unhappy mission to explain the reality to him. I think he has settled for a kayak. We will go out tomorrow and paddle down to the Spanish bridge in Agat. That should be fun. If the weather is good we might go out to Anae Island.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 10 Jun 07 - 07:06 PM

Paul, Greshna, and I went out kayaking from Nimitz Beach yesterday. It was a nice day but we went in the middle of the afternoon to take advantage of the high tide. They used Gordon's two person kayak and I used TISK (The Incredible Sinking Kayak). I had tried yet another repair on Saturday. Thankfully this one is holding. At the end of the trip I had no water in the boat.

It was a nice trip. We went south along the shore and then doglegged out to Anae Island. At the southern end the brown boobies were fishing and we got very close to their colony. There was a rental boat from the base there. Two men were snorkeling and there was another man and two women on the boat. We paddled back to Nimitz and went on from there to the boat basin. We looked at the boats, some were in very sad condition, and some (fewer) were in very nice shape. Then we headed for home where Wakana had iced lemonade, a nice rice casserole, and her mango bread pudding waiting for us.

The whole time we were in the water we were in smoke from a grass fire up in the hills. We couldn't see the fire, it was on the other side of the ridge, but the smoke swirled up, over the ridge and down on to the water. Occasional burned bits of grass floated down around us. It didn't ruin the day but it took some of the magic out of it.

All in all a very nice experience. We plan to go again next weekend.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 14 Jun 07 - 06:13 AM

Some news.

Yesterday, for no reason at all, the radio in my car started to work. You gotta love a car that fixes itself.

I got a call today from a member of the canoe club. He says they want me to be the construction manager on the new canoe. We are building a full size version of the Anson Proa. For those who do not know Commodore George Anson visited the Marianas Islands in the 1740s. He captured a proa and kept it on board bringing it back to England with him. There is a drawing of that proa available that is the only known record of the shape of the Chamorro Flying Proa. The only problem is that nobody knows if the drawing is accurate. The only way to find out is to go ahead and build the thing.

I love the idea BUT! I do not want to get involved in petty politics. Somebody else wants the job and if I take it then we may never get it done. The bickering and fighting will consume all the good will and leave a trail of misery that I just do not need.

We will talk it out on Saturday.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 14 Jun 07 - 08:12 AM

The wise man looks well before he leaps!

"Chamorro Flying Proa" sounds like a killer name for a folk-rock group. Consider that as a fall-back position.

It's time for me to get back to re-patching my old Boston Whaler.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 15 Jun 07 - 07:48 AM

This is what the Chamorro Flying Proa looks like. Check out the other drawings in the atlas. Especially look at those of "Tenian".


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: MMario
Date: 15 Jun 07 - 08:47 AM

The 'Tenian' pictures are 34,35,36,and 37


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 15 Jun 07 - 10:02 AM

Those are really neat, Brett! What an honour to be involved with building one of those.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 16 Jun 07 - 08:30 AM

For those who don't know I have been fighting depression for a long time. Well, today I went to my therapist for a regular visit. He made a comment about being consistent and I had to explain to him that I have never been consistent in my life. One thing led to another and after a whole rash of questions and explanations he told me I was ADHD. News to me. He gave me a new pill that apparently will not only fix that but screw up my appetite. I like that idea. Don't need to eat.

Poor Wakana has a cold. She is miserable. She's swigging Nyquil and sleeping a lot.

Tomorrow Paul, Greshna, and I will go kayaking again. I think this time we'll go out on Agat Bay and see if we can visit the dolphins.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 16 Jun 07 - 10:47 AM

hoorah for a proper diagnosis.

hope you both are feeling better

sandra (& you certainly will be when the postcards arrive!!)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 16 Jun 07 - 11:07 AM

Brett-

Do monitor carefully the side effects of your new ADHD medication, or mention the need to monitor them to Wakana and other friends. The side effects for one person I know were paranoid fantasies, which totally disappeared when her doctor was convinced to switch medication.

Of course, it's entirely reasonable to think others in this world are out to get us...

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 16 Jun 07 - 03:22 PM

Hey look, Charlie, even us paranoids got enemies!

I understand what you mean. I will talk to Wakana in the morning when I take my first pill. I'm not sure what to expect. As I explained to Doctor Ismael my mind is a fog. Things emerge from that fog occasionally and I work at them until they disappear into the fog again. Then I don't even think of them until they re-emerge. So, I might play my guitar for a few evenings and then one day I notice the guitar sitting there and think, "Huh, it's been two weeks since I picked it up." That doesn't mean I start playing again because the next time I notice the guitar six weeks may have passed.

I hope the side effects are limited. I am excited about this.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 17 Jun 07 - 02:43 AM

I just returned from the kayak trip, my second in two weeks. We set out from Agat and headed straight out to where the dol


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 17 Jun 07 - 03:14 AM

I just returned from the kayak trip, my second in two weeks. We set out from Agat and headed straight out to where the dolphins were playing. We sat there for the better part of an hour watching them. There was a big whale watching boat there also. The dolphins are used to the big boats but our little kayaks were new and strange so they stayed away from us.

After they,and the boat, left we paddled out to Turtle Island. We had the wind at our backs so that part of the trip was easy. The problem was that we had to get home again. That part wasn't so easy. But we stayed close to shore to take advantage of what calm water we could get into and made it back to the cars OK. It was a good trip. We must have paddled about three miles or so. Paul and Greshna love it and were thrilled to see the dolphins.

After the trip we came back to the house where everyone changed into dry clothes and then we went to Jan Z's for lunch. Jan Z's is a bar and grill down at the Agat Boat Basin. It has pretty good food though we were surprised to see they'd changed their menu. And the prices have gone up. C'est la vie.

Now, I am tired. My arms are, at least. Maybe I'll go take a nap.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 20 Jun 07 - 08:42 AM

New student. Ryoko came from Japan to learn English. She is on the island for a month and attends class two hours every weekday! She's wearing me out. She is a competitive swimmer and has been to Guam nine times but has never actually gone out to see any of it.

Another new student is a Korean mother. She runs her own business here on Guam, a convenience store. She says she has been on the island for twenty years but when I pulled out a map of the island she confessed she has been nowhere other than her home, store, shopping, and Ypao Beach. Some people live such enclosed lives.

One of my former students came back today. Yulia is Indonesian. Two months ago she left to have her baby. Today she showed up thin and stylishly dressed and very happy. BUT NO BABY PICTURES! Humph! She says she will bring the baby tomorrow.

Life goes on. My car continues to repair itself. When I bought it NONE of the accessories worked. Now the four-way flashers work, the radio and CD player work, the clock works, the dome light works, and the windshield wipers, which would not turn off now can be controlled. I did nothing to make this happen. Go figure. Any ideas?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: MMario
Date: 20 Jun 07 - 08:47 AM

YOu (or your vehicle) seem to have attracted the attention of a reverse entropy gnome - sometimes known as a Maxwell's Daemon


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 20 Jun 07 - 09:52 AM

OR you may have latched on to one of the few anti-cyclic models ever produced -- there were just a handful turned out by the graveyard shift on September 19, 1983, a period when that part of the world was haphazardly enveloped by a vortex reversal which spread from the Sedona Vortex through the ether across the United States, was picked up by harmonic induction by the Stonehenge Vortex, and follwed the meridian lines of aethereal force across Western Europe. These few cars looked strangely patchy and ran poorly when they first came off the assembly line and began improving themselves every month. Seers believe it is connected with the sign and phase of the moon, but it is hard to prove this.


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 20 Jun 07 - 11:57 AM

Or maybe it's just the fact that the car is bumping along on all those back roads, shaking loose some of the corrosion.

What you do need to watch out for is if Hisenberg's Uncertainly Principle is varying as well. You'll know it varies if you can't find your car where you think you left it.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Ebbie
Date: 20 Jun 07 - 12:59 PM

What Amos said and what Charley implied.

On the other hand, have you considered the fact that molecules, whether in animal life or in "inanimate" objects are lively things?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 20 Jun 07 - 10:26 PM

Ebbi-

Yes, the perversity of the inanimate object! I know it well...

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 06:13 AM

Kayaking again. I love having a kayak and someone to go with. Wakana hasn't been up to it lately but she bravely stays home and feeds us when we return.

Today we planned a two part trip. The first stop would be a run out to see the dolphins, if they were around and the second run would be a trip out to explore the western side of Apra Harbor.

There were no dolphins. We paddled out to the two islands nearest the shore and sat there for a while waiting for some sign of them. Nothing. A rain squall moved through with some gusty winds so we sheltered on the lee side of the islands. The only wildlife we saw were the crabs running around on the rocks and a spray of small fish escaping larger fish.

We returned to the car and reloaded the kayaks. We drove to the Marianas Yacht Club. We looked at the water. Whitecaps. Wind. I looked at Paul and Greshna. They looked at me. We talked about our last run paddling into the wind. We looked at the water. Nope! Not today!

We headed over to the marina that sits in the shadow of the power plant. We launched near the boatyard and paddled around looking at the boats, those afloat and those sunk. It was a nice trip. We were mostly protected from the wind by the mangroves. We enjoyed ourselves.

And we came home to a nice dinner of curry that Wakana cooked up. We sat in the living room and talked. They told us of life in Poland at the end of the communist regime. They talked of life under communism. It was very interesting. Life was hard for many. They talked of saving food throughout the winter so they could go hiking in the mountains. They told of walking down the street and finding a line of people standing waiting at a store. When you found a line like that you joined it because someone must know something, maybe a truck would appear with a load of goods. Children were issued shoes in school. There would be a lottery and the lucky winners got leather shoes. Those were your only shoes. You got no more. If you lost them you went without.

They talked of how the communist party controlled the people. they told of the archives of documents left over from the communist times, documents that could ruin many innocent people but could also punish a few of the guilty ones. What do you do with such things?

It was a very interesting day.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:58 PM

Brett-

Your old friends in Roll & Go just finished another joint concert on the Eastern Promenade in Portland. It was a lovely Sunday at the Fort Allen Gazebo, not a cloud in the sky, lots of boats running up and down the harbor. There were three groups performing, including Roll & Go, and we all got well paid. But once again the group producing the event failed to generate any visible publicity and there were never more than a couple of dozen folks listening at any one time. When will they ever learn?

Well, it was a fine rehearsal for us and we had a lot of fun leading some new songs, and lots of other ones that you would be familiar with.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 06:33 PM

Glad to hear that some things never change. It seems to be a common error that everyone makes. You plan an event, you work hard preparing for it and someone fails to advertise it. Happens here all the time. Doesn't help that the local paper doesn't announce things (small things) until the day they occur.

But I am truly glad that Roll & Go had such a nice place to rehearse... uh, perform. I hope you enjoyed yourselves. Hello to the gang. Good luck with the rest of the summer.

Have you ever considered employing an agent? This thought just occurred to me. After 10 years of singing with you guys and a few years out here I finally realized that you could probably do something with a professional setting things up for you. I don't think we ever talked of it while I was in the group.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 29 Jun 07 - 06:32 PM

A couple of weeks ago I dropped off a resume at Notre Dame High School in Talafofo. When I did they told me that there was an opening for an English teacher. So I filled out an application and handed it in.

Monday I have an interview.

I'm already nervous.

I haven't gone into much detail on working at Liberal Academy but the shine has faded on that job. I still love working with the students but my co-workers are another story. The boss never has any money to support the school but has no problem loaning money to friends and taking trips to New York and Japan. The vice-president is a former Olympic swimmer. His primary interest is swimming. He teaches and coaches and organizes races, etc. He does almost nothing for the school.

I am supposedly the manager for the "English department" but that means nothing. It is a title for the business cards. I make requests to the boss for things like ink or paper for the copier and printer and she tells me she will get them. Two days later I still cannot copy or print worksheets for my students. The computer is falling apart and the Internet connection is sporadic at best. She said we could get a new one after her latest trip. Yesterday it kept dying, shutting down all on its own. She seemed surprised that we need another one.

And then there are the rubber paychecks. Wakana and I have started cashing our checks at her bank. That way we can deposit real money into our accounts... assuming there is money in her account to cover the checks. Wakana couldn't cash her April check until the end of May and she only cashed her May check last week... after someone loaned the boss enough money to give to Wakana. The boss had to make those arrangements from where she was in Japan, a hot springs spa in the mountains.

One of my co-workers commented that she thought the school really exists to launder money for the Yakusa, the Japanese Mafia. I wouldn't be surprised.The boss has plenty of money but none for the school. We don't have enough students to pay the expenses. She doesn't spend much time on the business. I can't think of another reason for it.

The explanation given to us is that her husband's company is providing money for the school. We have to wait for another payment from him before we can spend any money. And her trip to New York was a visit to her boyfriend! Hmm. What does the future bring? I think I want to watch from a distance.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 29 Jun 07 - 06:55 PM

distance is a Good Idea in certain situations, like this one!

good luck on Monday

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 03:10 AM

The interview went well. I was in there for an hour and a quarter. She had a list of questions, they had called my references, and she wanted to know about my position on a number of issues. We chatted, I did most of the talking, and she ushered me out of the door with a comment about my having a good shot at the job. She believes in people being 'called' into a profession by God. I didn't go to the school because I knew of the job. I just dropped off my resume. In fact, I didn't even know what the job was until I asked her at the beginning of the interview.

She says there are three jobs available. They need a Spanish teacher (No hablo Espanol.) , an accounting teacher (I can't even balance my checkbook), and an English teacher. The course is English II, Introduction to Literature. I get goosebumps just thinking about that subject. What a chance! I love to read and I know most kids don't. What a challenge. I don't want to get my hopes up too far.

It is Independence Day here. Soon the dawn will break on the celebration in the USA. I hope all my United Statesian friends have a good holiday.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 05:22 AM

yah!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 10:28 AM

English Literature! Well I remember the joys of taking such classes at college. I never considered them work, and would gobble up all the books in a couple of weeks while my classmates were complaining about keeping up with the initial reading assignments. Back in those days I had plenty of "memory" for storing details such as names and plot switches. Now, of course, I can hardly remember the name of a major character (unless his name is Jack Aubrey).

Roll & Go had another great party with the China Sea Marine Trading Co. folks. Check out the thread if you can find it.

Best of luck!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 10:52 AM

Good for you, Brett. Keep your thoughts positive and *see* the outcome you desire. SOunds as if distance and change from the other school are in order.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Jul 07 - 08:28 AM

I quit my job today. I gave them notice that July 31 would be my last day.

On Tuesday the boss paid me using two checks drawn on different banks. She gave them to me too late for me to cash them then. Of course the next day was the holiday. I went to the banks during my lunch time today to cash them. There was insufficient money in the one account at First Hawaiian. I was able to cash the other one.

I drove back to the office and told Shinko that the relationship between an employer and an employee must include some level of respect. By not paying us (Wakana and me) she was not showing us the respect she owed us. I told her that I was done.

Of course, she didn't understand what I said but Wakana was standing there and explained it after I left the room. She immediately went out and found the money to finish paying me.

It's too late. I will not continue there. I've started telling my students that I would be finished at the end of the month. I was surprised at the reactions. One guy, one of my oldest students was shocked. My newer student in the same class, a young restaurant manager asked if I would be willing to work with him after I left. My newest student, a young housewife, looked ready to cry. And I couldn't bear telling my youngest student. She's 14 and is exhausted from her final exams at the Japanese School. I don't think she'll take my departure very well if the others can't.

I love working with my students but I can't bear the thought of waiting for another paycheck. I have asked for some measure of support from the boss and she has ignored my (our) needs while she plays at running a business. She just returned from a trip to visit her boyfriend in New York with a stop in Japan to visit her husband and their children. She bought a new car and loaned a couple of thousand to a friend. In the office our one computer, a very old and tired machine has finally crapped out. We cannot print lesson plans and I cannot maintain the schedule of classes. The copier is old and slow and provides very poor quality copies.

No more!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 05 Jul 07 - 09:17 AM

Singing Take this job and shove it/I ain't workin' here no more!

Good for you, Brett!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 05 Jul 07 - 09:31 AM

good onya.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 05 Jul 07 - 12:48 PM

Sounds like you've made a good decision. But it's stressful to quit in any circumstances and I wish there was some way we could take you and Wakana out to dinner and a few drinks. A virtual hug may not quite do it (but it's cheaper and available)!

We just lost one of our new friends who worked at the Maine Maritime Museum, mortally injured in a stupid accident in the Bath Heritage Parade. I could use a drink and a hug myself. The details are unimportant but clearly the Parade volunteers responsible for checking out the safety of floats did not adequately do their job. The float that took out our new friend was towed by a lawn tractor, and went out of control coming down a steep hill, its brakes and gearbox being inadequate to control momentum. It's a miracle, I suppose, that no one else was seriously injured.

Less than cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 05 Jul 07 - 08:21 PM

hugs to you, Charley

love from sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 06 Jul 07 - 10:17 AM

Oh Charley! What an awful thing to happen. Bath Heritage Days are so much fun. I hold such lovely memories. My condolences to you, his (?) friends, and his family.

Today Wakana and I celebrated the end of our association with Liberal Academy. We went to the Mermaid and had dinner and I finally got a micro-brewed beer. Very nice.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 08 Jul 07 - 08:04 AM

Kayaking again today. I know, I know, It's a dirty job but somebody has to do it. Today we ran down the coast from Agat to Nimitz Beach. Technically that is still in Agat. It was only about three miles and we had the wind at our backs for a change. Very nice run. Our group was Paul, Ryoko, and myself.

Ryoko is one of my students. She got bad advice from Shinko, the boss, on where to stay while in Guam. Pia Resort is expensive and there is no bus service to the rest of the tourist areas. Consequently her "vacation" consists of sitting at the hotel. Not the best. Wakana and I have taken her under our wing and are giving her more than her money's worth. We like her.

The run down the coast was lovely. We ran out to the little islands off Inn on the Bay to see if the dolphins were home. No luck. So we headed south. We HAD to make the run because that's where the cars were. The wind was at our backs for a change so we had a chance to raft up and drift while we talked and enjoyed the scenery.

It was a beautiful day. There were wispy clouds high overhead and the occasional big low cloud that blundered by. The water was clear. We could see the coral under our boats as we paddled by, bright colors seemingly just below the paddles but actually much deeper.

We stopped on a small island and ate some fresh mangoes Wakana had packed for us, peeling them with our fingers and slurping up the juice, biting the sweet fruit off the big stone. We walked the island and found the remains of an old car or truck. All that was left of it was the engine block (a big V-8), parts of the frame, and the rear axle. We picked up some shells and watched the sun on the water for a while. Then we headed out on the last run down to, and through, the marina. While in the marina a rain squall caught us. Ryoko and I sheltered in the lee of a big sailboat while Paul paddled around in the rain and wind like a madman.

Now I am home and tired. there is a tropical depression working down on us so we will have rain for the next few days. Nothing to worry about... yet.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 08 Jul 07 - 06:04 PM

It's a windy rainy day here on Guam. I can hear the canopy frame knocking against the house. I'll have to secure it before I go to work. This will be the last of the mangoes. the wind will strip the trees. Wakana was out there earlier picking up what she can. I like this weather as long as it doesn't get out of hand. The surf will be high and the snorkeling will be lousy for a few days until the water clears but the sky and the sea are dramatic. There is energy here. Lots of it.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 13 Jul 07 - 07:39 PM

Last Thursday my fourteen year old student brought in her shamisen. I had asked to hear it but stopped asking when I learned the instrument had cost her parents $10,000. Yes, my friends, there is no mistake in the number of zeros. Most of us wouldn't consider paying a quarter of that much for a guitar but there shelled out ten grand for a banjo-like instrument with three strings and oversized tuning pegs.

Here is a picture of a shamisen. And here is a video of a man playing a shamisen.

Hers is a Tsugaru shamisen, a little larger than the southern instruments. For those of you who are animal lovers I probably should warn you not to read this next sentence. The skin covering on the traditional instruments are leathers made from dog and cat skins; dog for the larger instruments and cat for the smaller ones.

My student is very, very good. Apparently she placed first in her age group in a competition in Japan. I was impressed and pleased. It was great fun.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 13 Jul 07 - 10:41 PM

Brett-

Have you played her your favorite Bluegrass CD? I wonder what she'd do with Orange Blossom Special or Fox on the Run.

Remind me to send you a wicked parody of Fox on the Run someday.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 14 Jul 07 - 10:55 AM

I did lend her a Roll & Go CD. She said she liked it but she may have just been polite. She is Japanese, after all, and the Japanese take polite to new heights.

So, Charley, how about that parody of Fox on the Run?

Thursday morning before I headed out to the school we got a strange call from the mayor's office. It seems Gordon had ordered a load of crushed coral to fill in the area under my canopy so I would have a dry place to work during the rainy season. They wanted to deliver it that morning. Soooo, Wakana and I ran out to take down half the canopy and clear all the stuff out of the way so a dump truck could back in and drop its load. Now I have a pile of crushed coral sitting out there waiting for me and my shovel. Fun, Fun.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 16 Jul 07 - 07:50 PM

Still shoveling.

We aren't working hard. An hour or so and then we quit. We are creating a level space. The beauty of the crushed coral is that it hardens after it gets wet. Of course the difficulty in shoveling is that the coral has hardened.

For those of you who cannot picture what I am talking about imagine regular gravel. Regular gravel is a mix of dirt and small rocks. (Small being a relative term. Some gravel has some rather large items in it.) Now picture that gravel as being stark white, hospital white, glaring white under the hot sun. THAT is crushed coral. It is difficult to shovel because of the larger lumps of coral and the 'dirt' you track into the house is white. Still, it makes for a nice floor for the workshop.

I am still waiting to hear from Notre Dame on that job. I called last week and was told they'd been busy with their 'Foundation Banquet'. Gordon confirmed that. Apparently they have an annual banquet. The teachers are strongly urged to attend. Tickets are $50 each! I hope to hear from them soon. If they refuse me then I can tell my current students that I will continue to work with them only on my own, not affiliated with the school. If they accept me then I will still keep a couple of my students just because I like them and they seem to really need me. We all want to be needed don't we?

Ryoko, my morning student, went back to Japan last Saturday so my mornings are free. Today I don't have to go into the school until 1:00! Ah, such bliss... except for that damned shovel...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: curmudgeon
Date: 16 Jul 07 - 08:37 PM

Brett -- I have to agree with SINSULL on another thead. You are a native born Yankee and as such are obliged to suffer the winds, snow, and bitter cold of Winter in addition to mud season, black flies, and tourists. Bring yourself and your Bride back and accept your lot - Tom


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 17 Jul 07 - 06:20 AM

I was explaining the accents of Maine to one of my students today. I had to explain the term 'Downeast' and the way people speak. That got me into the tough nature of the rural people in New England and how they have to prepare for winter. I explained about 'cords' of firewood and wood stoves. I have some pictures of woodstoves that I printed earlier in the year for another student. I explained about my 79 year old father and how happy he is with his annual Father's Day present of 5 cords of firewood. We (his children) have it delivered in June and he slowly stores it all in the woodshed by the beginning of July. I mentioned banking the houses and putting up storm windows. And I mentioned the competition between the blackflies and mosquitoes to see which species can consume more human flesh and blood in a summer.

Come to think of it, I'm pretty happy here in the tropics. When do you guys plan to arrive here?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 21 Jul 07 - 06:10 PM

I've been feeling a little low lately. I let myself really want the job in Talafofo but it has been three weeks since the interview with no word. I have started putting together a plan for my own business, English-to-Go. I would take English classes to the students, meeting them wherever they want to take classes, in their homes, at coffee shops, hotel lobbies, etc. I can work one-on-one or take on groups of students. I already have a core group of students who want to work with me. It might work.

Yesterday was the 63rd celebration of the liberation of Guam from the Japanese. As usual there was a big parade and fireworks. We did not attend. Wakana rode a float in the 2003 parade. She worked very hard with the other Japanese students at the English Language Institute to decorate the float. In the parade they wore kimonos and carried baskets of fruit which they presented to the governor when the float reached the reviewing stand. It was a memorable experience but they were exhausted by the end. Plus they heard some anti-Japanese shouts and saw the finger raised in their direction. Some people cannot let go of the past.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 21 Jul 07 - 09:00 PM

This one looks like another keeper. I'm in the process of trying out some tunes and changing a few words which I'll post to a separate thread. Jenness always has a fresh take on the sea experience.

Poem by Burt Franklin Jenness
From OCEAN HAUNTS, edited by Burt Franklin Jenness,
Empire Publishing Co., New York, US, © 1934, pp. 45-47.

SEA DREAMS

If you've ever stood a midwatch in the cavern of the night,
With the sea wolves racing past you in a pack;
With the steely star a-playing 'round the mastheads for a light,
And the bucking trades possessed to drive you back;
If you've ever seen a sunset on a copper colored sea,
When the sky was like a polished compass bowl;
And the night winds caught the spindrift from the waves and tossed it free
Till to leeward you could see a silvery shoal.

If you've ever read your compass by a fulling tropic moon,
As it slowly rose above its jungle bed;
Dripping silver in the waters of a coral-fringed lagoon,
Till it hung there like a shining capstan head;
If you've heard the whining Forties day and night about your ears,
And have cursed your packet's ceaseless, sickening roll –
With the backstays all complaining and the creaking of the gears,
Then you'll understand the fretting in my soul.

For the wind has shifted east'r'd, and the long green rollers call,
And a brown-skinned lass is beckoning to me;
The starb'r'd watch is yarning, and I'm longing for it all –
So it's any wind'll take me back to sea.


If you've heard the screws a-grumbling when the craft was cruising light
Or the scuppers gurgle back the weather seas;
If you've tailed behind a typhoon in a hellish running fight,
And have felt your oil-skins freeze about your knees;
If you've heard the crack of head seas, and have felt the settling hull
Or the stern go heaving skyward till she raced;
If you've seen her take the green ones till she quivered like a gull,
And a river ran athwart-ships at her waist.

If you've cleared the reefs of Suva, and have sighted Sydney head;
If you've lifted Sugar Loaf just after dawn;
If you've made Corrigador, and have swung the sounding lead
In the channels of the world where you have gone;
If you've cruised with lousy shipmates, and have heard them curse and brawl;
If you know the seas from Rio to Hong Kong;
If you've loafed about the waterfronts of every port of call –
Then you'll understand the burden of my song.

Oh, the wind has shifted east'r'd, and the long green rollers call,
And a brown-skinned lass is beckoning to me;
The starb'r'd watch is yarning – and I'm longing for it all,
So it's any wind'll take me back to sea.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 25 Jul 07 - 07:46 PM

I still haven't heard from Notre Dame and nobody is answering the telephone. I called a friend who teaches there and she told me that there should be somebody there. She also told me that the school year starts next week. There is a week of preparation and orientation and the kids report to school in the second week of August. Sigh. I guess I'll have to find something else to do.

I visited the office of Guahan magazine and landed a job writing a freelance article about the canoe club and their latest project. I guess now I'll be able to focus my energies on that. And I will soon have to register for the next semester at UOG to pursue my Master's degree. I guess I have a lot to keep me busy for the time being.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Jul 07 - 02:09 AM

I sent the principal of Notre Dome an email. I said I assumed I did not get the job since I had not heard from her in three weeks and that I understood that school starts next week. I asked for a debriefing so I could learn what I needed to do in order to improve myself. Here is the answer I got:

"I am currently off island. I will be arriving next week and will email you when I return."

What does that mean? I guess it means she wants to set up an appointment to explain why they didn't want me. I don't know.

Today was my last Friday working at Liberal Academy and my last lesson with Yukie. She will go to Japan tomorrow so I will not meet with her again until her return when I am teaching on my own. She gave me a bag of pastries from the Leopalace Resort bakery, one of the best on Guam. Tomorrow morning Wakana and I will go yum, yum.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Ebbie
Date: 27 Jul 07 - 02:34 AM

Every wish from here for developments to proceed just as you wish them to be!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Jul 07 - 02:51 AM

I'm sorry Ebbie, but for developments to proceed just as I wish them to be I would have to start working at Notre Dame next week. Anything else is just pulling second best.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Jul 07 - 02:52 AM

But thanks for the good wishes.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 27 Jul 07 - 03:34 AM

"I am currently off island. I will be arriving next week and will email you when I return."

Brett, that sounds to me like it could be one of those out-of-office automated replies, so it may not mean anything.

Still keeping my fingers crossed that you may find you have the job after all.

Jenny


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 06:31 PM

Today, July 29, is my 55th birthday. Wakana gave me a very nice coffee mug with a Van Gogh painting of sunflowers on it and the latest Harry Potter book. The presents were wrapped in cloth, not paper, and the wrappers turned out to be bandannas she had sewn up for me. All in all a very nice birthday.

Also in celebration of that my first story submission to a magazine was rejected. Sigh. Not all things are bright and beautiful.

Gotta go read.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: sneeble
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 07:05 PM

Happy Birthday, sad to hear about your rejection. Keep at it, there are many different editors out there with different tastes. "I have seen talented illustrators and writers rejected on the basis of the editor having a bad day. Only to be picked up and highly valued by others.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 07:32 PM

Ditto that about submissions. Ya never know what might hit en editor's fancy.

Happy Birthday, even though today is really the 28th over here and my brother's 70th!! I am not sure how he does it, but he doesn't look a day over 55 or 60 and acts like a teen!**bg**

Keep yer chin up and may you be blessed with all you need and desire in the coming year and THANKS for being here and sharing so much with us!

luvyakat


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 08:23 PM

Well done on attaining the preliminary threshold condition of Olde Age, man. Don't take it personally!



A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 29 Jul 07 - 12:57 AM

I'm not sure if this is the threshold for 'Olde Age' or if it is the earlier news I had from my mother. She told me last year that I was eligible for AARP!

Anyway, thanks for the birthday wishes. I have been buried in my birthday book all day. Currently I am halfway through it. It has been many years since I gave up a day to just read. Feels good but I suppose I should get busy.... Nahhh!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 29 Jul 07 - 06:33 AM

Finished it. Great read! Joy ride from start to finish.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 29 Jul 07 - 08:22 AM

beleted birfday greetings from someone who will not get around to reading the latest Harry Potter for ages.

When I started the 6th one I become more & more confused over characters & events, so I decided I'd be better off if I re-read the previous volume. I ended up reading the whole series so my feeble memory wouldn't have problems with continuity.

Gotta do it all again cos I've been unsuccessfully trying to recall who did what in no. 6.

So why then have I read 5 Diskworld books & whole heap of other novels in the last month instead of re-reading HP 1-6??

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 29 Jul 07 - 11:18 AM

Brett-

Geeze, you're hardly geezer status. Some of us are rumoured to be at least ten years older.

When are you planning your next visit to the States, or is it the UK again?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 29 Jul 07 - 11:21 AM

Kelli will have her baby in December. At some point after that I will have to go see the little Grundoon in England.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 29 Jul 07 - 12:23 PM

Hope you had a great birthday Brett, and may all your wishes come true!

Jenny


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 30 Jul 07 - 05:56 AM

JennieO, you were right. It was an automated reply. This morning the principal called and offered me the job at Notre Dame. I will be teaching a full time schedule with Introduction to Literature and English Composition. Six munths ago I cudn't spel teechur. Now I are wun.

Gotta get to work.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 30 Jul 07 - 07:29 AM

yah, Teech!!

then all you have to do is save lotsa' money so you start travelling again, visiting grandkid & friends around the world!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Jul 07 - 09:59 AM

Congratulations, Brett!!


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Subject: LYR ADD: Forty-Two Kids(Teacher's Lament) Robinson
From: Charley Noble
Date: 30 Jul 07 - 10:05 AM

Brett-

Who was that jerk who invented work?

Congratulations!

Here's a little ditty to hum as you commute back and forth to your school:

Forty-Two Kids (The Teacher's Lament)

(Submitted to Sing Out way back in the '60s by Earl Robinson, attributed to an anonymous teacher in Arkansas)

Some people say a teacher is made out of steel,
But a teacher's made of stuff that can think and feel,
A mind and a body and a tortured soul --
The ability to teach the shy and the bold.

I teach forty-two kids and what do I get
Another day older and deeper in debt
St. Peter don't you call me to that Golden Gate,
I owe my soul to the youth of the state.

I was born one morning; it was cloudy and cool,
I picked up my register and walked to the school;
I entered forty-two names on my class roll,
And the Superintendant said "Well bless my soul!"

I teach forty-two kids and what do I get,
Another day older and deeper in debt,
St. Peter don't you call me to the Heavenly Shore
I've got forty-two students and they're sending me more.

There's a child on every seat from wall to wall,
If they send any more they'll have to stand in the hall;
They're breathing down my neck, treading on my toes,
They're telling me their joys and I'm sharing all their woes.

I teach forty-two kids and what do I get
Another day older and deeper in debt
St. Peter don't you call me to that Golden Gate,
I owe my soul to the youth of the state.

Well the bell rings at four but my bed's not made;
I still have all of these papers to grade;
The faculty meets at seven they say,
And tomorrow there's a meeting of the PTA!

I teach forty-two kids and what do I get,
Younger in heart and nothing to regret,
St. Peter don't you call me 'cos I can't leave here
I'll have forty-two kids again next year!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 30 Jul 07 - 11:55 AM

Woo hoo!! Ya got it!! Toldja, didn' I. I'm so glad when I'm right :-)

Good stuff! Now it's onward and upward. Go get 'em Brett!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: ClaireBear
Date: 30 Jul 07 - 01:22 PM

Delighted that you got the position -- though I must add that I was sure you would, despite appearances to the contrary. That was rather leaving it to the last minute, though, wasn't it? When did you find out? I can't work out the math...

Anyway, I hope the first day wasn't too overwhelming for you. You are clearly a natural teacher (and writer -- don't let one rejection faze you in the least). Good onya!

Cheers,
Claire


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: curmudgeon
Date: 30 Jul 07 - 05:38 PM

Happy Belated, youngster.

Seems to me that you got two swell presents -- a book and a job!

And I did have a drink for you on your b-day.

Too bad you can't be here for   this though.

Maybe next year - Tom


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Jeri
Date: 30 Jul 07 - 06:15 PM

I get mail from AARP all the time. It started when I turned... well, it was a particular age which was less than your current one. I missed your birthday too, so have a happy Tuesday. Congrats on the job - sounds like an adventure!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 30 Jul 07 - 09:38 PM

Thanks for the good wishes. I had my first meeting with the principal today. She gave me the textbooks and the Standards they work to as well as some sample curricula that previous teachers have used. I have some time. Classes don't start until August 20.

Between Wakana's new job, mine, and my retirement pay our income has tripled. I fully intend to save some money, buy parts for my old car, and travel. We want to hop around the islands, I have to go to England next summer to meet my first grandbaby, and, of course, get out to visit friends in Oz and NZ.

Tom, thanks for that link. I ran right over there and got a kick out of looking at the pictures of my old friends. You're right, it would be nice to be there in September but I'm afraid that will be out of the question for some time to come.

Claire, the rejection doesn't bother me too much. After all it is my first story submission. I'll tinker with it and send it to another publication.

I still have to write the article for Guahan Magazine. Interviews start on Thursday. Then I need to get right to it. I'm trying to decide what the focus of the article should be. I think I just need to highlight the group, its history and goals. I don't think I can talk yet about trying to build the proa in the Anson Drawing. But I can show what the group has done and what they need from the community in the way of support and interest.

Well, I need to get busy. Lots to do.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 31 Jul 07 - 12:13 AM

get out to visit friends in Oz and NZ

Yes please - we'd love to see you again Brett, and we'd love to meet Wakana. I'm sure there'll be a warm welcome from the Sydney folk community - so start saving!

The BBQ's all ready to be fired up - Charlie and Judy will be here in October - and we'll fire it up again for you when you come - just say the word!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 31 Jul 07 - 05:02 AM

Just make sure it includes a 4th Saturday so you can wow 'em at The Dog again!

Looking forward to seeing you both sometime next year? January = Illawarra Folk festival, Easter = National FF, April = St Albans FF, September = Kangaroo Valley FF,
Festivals in NSW

Festivals across Oz


sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Ebbie
Date: 31 Jul 07 - 09:00 PM

When Brett and Wakana make it to Australia again, make sure that you get Wakana to sing Grandfathers Clock. In Japanese. A real treat.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 01 Aug 07 - 04:04 AM

I've had some wonderful times singing Grandfather's Clock at a few festivals when they program "Songs of Grandmother & Grandfather" - in fact it was such a great session that I programmed it myself at my club once.

So I'm definitely looking forward (listening forward?) to hearing the Japanese version.

ANd even singing along (quietly!)

tick tock tick tock

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: The Barden of England
Date: 01 Aug 07 - 06:14 AM

Belated congratulations from me too. You sounded really down at one time but it's all come right in the end. I really enjoy your writing and look forward to reading more.
John Barden in the UK


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Aug 07 - 01:53 PM

It's 3:40 AM and we are awake. Poor Wakana is in a state of near panic because she learned today that students will be reporting to classes on August 6 and that tomorrow she has to conduct student orientation for her classes. She has been slaving over the syllabi for her three high school classes since she got home. I fell asleep on the bed while she worked and woke up around 3:00 AM with her in bed, sound asleep with a book clutched in her fingers.

She woke when I gently pulled the book away. We adjourned to the kitchen for a little meal and now she is back at her computer. She'll be OK. She's just worried. Tomorrow will be tough because she'll be tired but it will get her off and running.

As for my preparations, well, I have never been a full time teacher. I have to build a syllabus, a curriculum, and lesson plans. The text seems to be pretty good but I have a lot of reading and thinking to do. Fortunately I have a little time. The students report for classes on August 20. Wakana is jealous.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 01 Aug 07 - 08:47 PM

who sez teachers hardly do any work & have lotsa' holidays?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 01 Aug 07 - 11:05 PM

That was always a myth put about by the ignorant. I'm beaming some positive energy right now to Wakana. She'll do fine.

Jenny, who's been there, done that, and knows how it REALLY is.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 02 Aug 07 - 06:37 PM

She did all right. She came home happy and smiling, tired but full of stories. They had orientation for the sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Today they hold the orientation for the freshmen.

I don't know if I mentioned this but Father Duenas (on the island they call it FD) is a boy's school. No girls. People have told Wakana that it will be a challenge. She was getting nervous (and still is) about teaching Japanese to a bunch of boys. But in the mini-classes they held yesterday she talked with them about what they remembered from previous years and what she planned to do with them. She is definitely better than their former teachers.

One of the problems for Wakana at FD is that she is replacing TWO teachers. They have her working six classes a day five days a week! The schedule looks inhuman! Plus her Japanese II classes have 30 students each.

On top of that she agreed to teach one class a day at the university. She'll end each day exhausted and in tears, I'm sure of it. I feel so bad for her.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 02 Aug 07 - 08:24 PM

to much - 35 classes a week, 3 level of students,

can't/won't the school afford another teacher?

hugs to you both

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 03 Aug 07 - 02:48 AM

Today Gordon and I worked on the next chapter of The Rock Saw. Way, way, back in 2005 when I went home my father gave me a rock saw. I think I wrote about it here in the Mudcat. It is a large piece of machinery with a 34 inch bed and a 16 inch circular saw blade. The blade is set in place and a large vice carries the rock past it. The system uses a gravity feed to keep the rock moving.

Well, back in 2005 I took the thing all apart and mailed the pieces in three boxes to Gordon. The case was all rusty and full of holes so I just junked it thinking he and I would build a case later. Well, now is later. We started construction today. It was pretty easy. We are using 3/4 inch marine plywood. I just had to be careful to make exact cuts with the circular saw and router. It's been a while since I had to do that kind of work, too long really. But we got the base cut and that is the hard part. Tomorrow or Sunday I will cut the sides.

A couple of days ago I head a loud crash out under the canopy. I thought someone was searching through the closet so I ran out. There was nobody there except for a few chickens. I looked around but couldn't see what had fallen. Today, while cleaning up a work space I saw what had happened. There are shelves in the closet and one of them was over loaded. It had partially collapsed. I tried to lift it to get one of the tools I needed out from under it. My grip was poor and my arm was twisted so that when I reared back to lift the shelf I heard a crackling sound from my elbow and felt a lot of pain. I may have hurt myself... again. Now I can't straighten out my arm without pain. I hope it's temporary.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 03 Aug 07 - 03:23 AM

I just got a call from my daughter, the one in England. They just had a scan and the baby will be a girl! Still due on December 17. I hope to go to see the little grundoon in May or June.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST,Greg
Date: 05 Aug 07 - 02:44 AM

Brett, congratulations to yourself and Wakana. I started reading this thread when you first went to Guam. I attended Father Duenas around 1975-76 (I can't believe it's been 30 years). Please keep your stories coming. I noticed you told everyone Father D's was an all male school, is Notre Dame still an all girls school? Best of luck, enjoy Guam while you can, once you leave I guarntee you will miss it.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Aug 07 - 03:31 AM

Greg, Notre Dame is now co-ed. I think they went co-ed in 1994.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Aug 07 - 04:13 AM

Good Morning Brett, Our buses (Navy)used to drop us off at Notre Dame
then the school bus would take us up the hill to FD. Our "Dances" and such were with our Sisters down the hill at ND.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Aug 07 - 05:08 PM

I heard from my mother that the baby will be named Sabra. Apparently this is an old family name. One of my great-great-grandmothers was named Sabra. I didn't know that but Kelli has done a lot of research into the family. She started researching the family back when she was in high school.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 05 Aug 07 - 05:48 PM

Love that name, Brett...it's beautiful.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 06 Aug 07 - 07:10 AM

Today was my first day at Notre Dame. It was orientation day for new teachers. There are six of us.

But, of course, nothing happens easily. Today started yesterday. I was driving home when my fan belt broke. Of course the car started to overheat and I had to pull over. It was too late to buy a new fan belt and I had to be at Notre Dame by 9:00 for the meeting.

So, this morning I borrowed Gordon's little pickup. Now, I don't know if I have ever mentioned this pickup but he bought it several years ago. I rarely see it without a heavy load either going to his place or from it. It is one of the hardest working pickups outside the construction industry.

And it is tiny. It is a Toyota Hi-Lux. I barely fit into it. There is almost no room for my feet to fit on to the pedals. Compared to the Mercedes it has a huge amount of power. It's peppy.

Well, I drove over to the school, endured the prayers and the life of Mother Theresa (not the nun from India but the nun from Germany who started the School Sisters of Notre Dame), got a tour of the school, saw the office, the cafeteria, the gym, the textbook room, and finally wandered off on my own to see my room. I had to ask directions twice. All I knew was that it was next to the library.

I found it. At first I thought it was an over sized storage closet. Then I realized that it was a classroom. On the wall is a small chalkboard. There are three rows of student desks. At the far end is an itsy-bitsy desk that is supposed to be mine. When I saw it I thought it was a toy. Though I am teaching literature there are no bookcases in the room and no books. It was last used as a health class and the health posters are still on the walls. The computer is not hooked up. There are mysterious packages in one corner.

They made the room by annexing part of the library space. You can see that the wall they put up is temporary, sheets of thin plywood screwed to the studs. Not even sheetrock. And they didn't try to hide the seams or the screw heads. The room is long and narrow. At the far end, behind the tiny desk, the wall is all window but not something you can look out of. The windows are protected by a decorative steel grid. Peering out between the slats you can see that you would have a lovely view if you could see it. But it is my classroom and I will work there until I make it better.

After that I tore back across the island to find Gordon so we could go fix my car. We ran down to the local NAPA dealer to find they didn't have the part but that the next NAPA north of us did. We ran up there and finally bought the belts.

On the way back to my car it started to rain.

I suggested that we stop for lunch. I wanted to buy Gordon lunch in gratitude for the loan of his truck. We went to the Seaman's Club figuring that the rain would stop by the time we finished eating.

As we sat at the table I noticed that it was no longer raining. We enjoyed a leisurely lunch and left. As we reached the door we heard a suspicious roaring sound. We looked out at sheets of water falling from the sky.

We drove to the car and arrived as a break in the clouds was forming. We decided to drive it as far as it would go before overheating. We actually managed to get it all the way home and I parked it under the canopy. At that point the clouds broke and the sun came out. And heated the area under the canopy! So we got wet anyway only it was sweat not rainwater.

Now the car is fixed and all is well.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 06 Aug 07 - 03:05 PM

LIfe certainly has a wicked curveball, doesn't it Brett? LOL!! Well done at at least connecting with that sucker!!


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 06 Aug 07 - 04:04 PM

In any case you may take comfort that in other worlds your dimensions go far beyond the average constrint. For example here.

A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 06 Aug 07 - 04:05 PM

Where they have reached 200!

A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 06 Aug 07 - 04:40 PM

I forgot to mention that I got a call after all that was done. It was my neighbor down the hill, the one who works on Mercedes turning them into vegetable oil burners. He had been driving out earlier and saw my car sitting by the road. He called to ask if I was all right and did I want him to tow it home.

I explained that we'd fixed the car and all was well but I thanked him for thinking of me. Nice guy.

He has taken an old Mercedes and turned it into a tow truck. He cut away most of the body and welded in a roll cage. He built a lift apparatus for the back. It will only hold two people. It looks like a cross between a dune buggy and a Mercedes. It looks ugly but I guess it works pretty good.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 06 Aug 07 - 04:42 PM

Amos-

May you roast long in hell for stealing the 200th!

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 07 Aug 07 - 12:39 AM

Today we had our general staff meeting. After the long prayer session (the printed version of the prayer takes up a page and a half) we got down to business. Most of it was a talk on the history of the founding organization but we heard about changes in staff and the good and bad things that happened since the end of the last school year. All the faculty and staff stood and introduced themselves. Then we broke to schedule meetings with our department heads.

As we were standing around talking one of the office women wandered around handing out little envelopes. The principal had mentioned that the school had something for the teachers to use in their rooms. It was a $50 bill! No receipts are necessary, no required purpose. It was a very nice touch but just think of the expense. There were 51 teachers and each got $50. $2550! I think I like this place.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 07 Aug 07 - 02:05 AM

wow!! - what will you get $50 worth of posters? of books?

the place sounds all right.

have fun

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 07 Aug 07 - 02:19 AM

Ah, Charley,I have several much longer sentences to serve before that sin even gets called for a hearing.


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 07 Aug 07 - 04:31 AM

Yeah, well, wait till you hear the rest of the story. I do not believe in divine anything but sometimes...

Before I went to work this morning I got in the computer to check my email. Then, as I sometimes do, I checked the Government Liquidation website to look at the local auction items. I knew there was an auction closing soon. Well, the auction was not closed yet and there were two lots that included desks and office furniture. On impulse I threw a minimum bid at them.

When I got home this afternoon I checked my email again and had a notice from the website that I had won the bid. I will soon be the proud possessor of a large wooden desk, a small bookcase, a computer hutch, and a bulletin board.

My bid? $50.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 18 Aug 07 - 11:09 AM

Brett and Wakana must be working too hard to tend this thread.

You know, I warned you about this thing called "work." You should have listened!

I finally got my Boston Whaler in the water the other day with the help of my niece and her family. It still floats and the engine started right up. Now if I can just get the mooring lines so they don't twist up...

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 18 Aug 07 - 10:24 PM

Damn the jerk who invented work!

Last week was orientation week at Notre Dame. I was only there for 1/2 a day each day but... On Tuesday I had actual live kids in the class room. We had a nice time talking. I laid out my plans for the classes and explained about the puzzle wall. Next week we start the real classes.

Wakana has been teaching for two weeks now. She got off to a rather shaky start but now has her feet under her and has the boys running scared. It seems that it is shameful in a Japanese school to have to send someone to the office. Last Tuesday she came home on the verge of tears. The boys were really giving her a hard tome. We spent the evening talking about it. I explained the role of the office in American schools and that she shouldn't let the kids get away with anything.

Next day she came home full of smiles. Early in the day she'd talked with the assistant principal and he visited her class. He took the four guiltiest boys out for a discussion of correct behavior. In the meantime she came down hard on the rest of them. She has a way of sweetly asking the offender to come to the front of the class. Then she turns him against the wall and leaves him there. Another tactic is to bring the offender to the front of the class and sit him at her desk. Then she walks back and forth behind him while continuing to teach.

The other day she caught one of the kids with a text from another class. She gently asked him to get out of his seat and bring his books with him. Then she kicked him out. She told the rest of the class they were there to study Japanese. If they wanted to study something else they could do it on the bench outside the classroom... in the sun... and the heat... and where the principal could see them from his office. She's pretty vicious... and proud of it.

As for me, I have started assembling my puzzle wall. I have a Viking battle ax and spear crossed with a horned helmet and war horn. There is a picture of Mystic Seaport and one of the battle of Gettysburg. I have also hung a Maine state flag up there. I have some more stuff to go up there. the idea is for the kids to make the association between the stuff on the wall and literature. I will not list my associations here because it is possible that some of the kids will come snooping around my little bLog. If so I don't want to give them any answers or even hints.

The diesel guy from down the hill came by yesterday to give me a chance to buy a 1983 Mercedes 240D. The car is just like mine only a year newer and with lots of body work done on it. It looks pretty good but I can't afford it. I'd love to have another.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 19 Aug 07 - 10:13 AM

Brett-

Glad to hear that work is settling down to work.

Evidently there is no cure for Benz fever. One would think that after being infected once, you would be innoculated from further infection. Curious!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 19 Aug 07 - 11:09 AM

The one and only Benz my family had was old in the late 60's, at least to me. I was about 13, I guess, when I came home one day and found it lying on its top, over a four foot embankment in the lower front field. No one was home, my brother usually was the one who drove it, so my child's mind immediately thought he'd been killed and everyone was at hospital. Mom and he showed up a bit later and I was one relieved little sister. It seems it had jumped out of gear and rolled back and over. They knew nothing of it until they got home. It was done for by then.

Thanks for catching us up, Brett. Right on, Wakana!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 20 Aug 07 - 12:05 PM

Well as we say down here - that's the way the Mercedes Bendz!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 20 Aug 07 - 08:01 PM

Hmmm. Yesterday was my first day in front of the kids. It was a good day. They are attentive (mostly) and fun to work with. In the evening I had my first class in this semester for my Masters program. We will be studying the Modern Japanese Novel. That class will be a bear. Combining it with my full time job will be difficult.

Underlining the combination my car broke down on the way home last night... in the rain... about 9:30... 15 miles from home. By the time I got to bed I was very, very tired.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 20 Aug 07 - 08:06 PM

Chin up, mate!! All bad weather passes on sooner or later. Didja get your car fixed up?


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 04:36 AM

No time! Working a full time job really eats up the day.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 05:02 AM

ya either have time, or money, as an unemployed mate of mine said years ago, it's great to have the time to do things, but living below the poverty line is not on.

Personally I prefer retirement - with time, & enough money to do extravagant things like buying a new stove & freezer. Now all I have to do get get an electrician who actually returns my calls. I want my new stove, I'm tired of being able to pick my hard 'boiled' eggs out of the 'boiling' water with my bare fingers!

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 10:02 AM

Wow! Either you have tough fingers or... Good luck with finding that electrician. Australia must have a different system. In the USA we just plug in our new appliances. Usually the delivery guys install them.

At Notre Dame we work on a block schedule. There are seven blocks. On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday we have the first four blocks. These are each seventy five minutes long. On Tuesdays and Thursdays we have three blocks of one hundred minutes each. Yesterday being Tuesday I taught two one hundred minute classes.

I am realizing that I am not as young as I hoped I was. Two days of teaching and I was exhausted when I got home. I had reading surveys to compile and preparations to make for the next day. I think I fell asleep in the car on the way home. I started working on my stuff right away. Then I remembered an incident from the day I wanted to tell Wakana about. I went into the bedroom and lay on the bed to talk to her. She was at her computer. I fell asleep. That was about 7:30. Now it's midnight and I have rallied. I feel better.

She also fell asleep at the time. When I awoke I found the lights on and the doors unlocked. I guess neither of us is as young as I'd hoped we were.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 10:15 AM

By the way, the incident I wanted to talk about involved a young man who made one of those stupid chauvinist statements. We were talking about the development of women's rights and feminism (in an aside from the regular discourse). He asked why there were no famous women scientists like Albert Einstein. I tried to explain to him that there were but they were not in HIS body of knowledge. He didn't get it and persevered. I named Madame Curie which was new to him but he was insistent. I asked the women in the class to offer him some names but they drew a blank. Finally, since the bell was about to ring, I assigned him to bring in the names of male scientists, one for each woman in the class. I asked each of the women to bring in the name of a female scientist. As they were preparing to leave I saw the young man counting the women. Thursday will tell the tale.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 11:39 AM

Good for you, Brett! Please let us know how they all do with naming the scientists.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 12:30 PM

Biographies of Notable Women in Science, just so you have some ammo in advance. Ask your macho boy where his desktop would be without the work of Ms. Augusta Byron, Countess of Lovelace, for example.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 04:08 PM

I'm one step ahead of you there, Amos. It found that page and few others. In about 1/2 an hour I produced a list of names that filled 18 pages. They include Ms Lovelace, Dan Fossey, Marie Curie, Rachel Carson, and Jane Goodall. I included a list of winners of the Nobel Prize in various disciplines.

I think he will insist that his point was there were no FAMOUS women scientists like Albert Einstein. Technically he is wrong on two counts. Einstein was a scientific theorist. As far as I know he did no experimentation. Does that make him a scientist?

Anyway, wouldn't people agree that Dan Fossey, Marie Curie, Rachel Carson, and Jane Goodall are all pretty famous scientists?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 05:23 PM

You mean Dian (Diane?) Fossey, authoress of "Gorillas in the Mist", I think. If so, absolutely agreed.


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 08:36 PM

What was the name of the woman who did the math necessary for creating the first successful atomic bomb? She didn't get as much credit as the men but they wouldn't have been around to steal the credit if she hadn't come up with the equations.

It had something to do with the first successful chain reaction.

Cheerily,
Charley noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: ClaireBear
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 09:56 PM

And while you're listing undercredited women, don't forget Hedy Lamarr, screen temptress and communications technology innovator.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 22 Aug 07 - 03:58 AM

Rosalind Franklin & the discovery of the DNA Double Helix


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST,CrazyEddie
Date: 22 Aug 07 - 04:13 AM

"Hedy Lamarr"

"that's HEDLEY!"


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 22 Aug 07 - 04:27 AM

Today in one of my classes the kids were supposed to figure out the definition of words using context clues. They did pretty good until they got to OH-PAH-KYEW (their pronunciation).












Of course you and I say "opaque".


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 22 Aug 07 - 10:07 AM

Well, at least they are sounded out well. It looks like Oh-Pah-Kwey!

Just in case he thinks all women scientists are older or passed on, HERE'S ONE who is famous in our family...that's my niece!:-) (Old picture, she's moved on to other jobs, but it is still a good one, imo!)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 22 Aug 07 - 06:09 PM

Congratulations Kat on having such an intelligent and talented niece. I am looking forward to confronting the kid today. I have bookmarked that page so I can sit him down in front of it. I want him to read the first paragraph out loud.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 23 Aug 07 - 05:23 AM

It was a little anticlimactic. Once we got the attendance and prayer out of the way I asked him if he'd done the homework I'd assigned. Of course, he'd "forgotten" to bring it to class. I asked the women and none of them had done the work either. I explained that it had only taken me 1/2 an hour on the computer to put together a long list. I named the highlights, Augusta Byron, Dian Fossey, Rosalind Franklin, Marie Curie, Rachel Carson, and Jane Goodall. He was stumbling and trying to justify his statement so I asked him to name another male scientist, someone other than Einstein. Of course, he couldn't. I suggested Watson and Crick. He'd heard of them in his science class. That was when I explained they would have been stuck without Rosalind Franklin's work. I think he got the message. I know the women were quite happy with the outcome.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 23 Aug 07 - 09:39 AM

years ago I read a 1920's joke with the punch line - "collapse of stout party"

I soon forgot the rest of the joke, but I often use the punch line, especially in situations like this!!

Maybe you might be able to educate this boy, good luck.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST,Guest
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 09:45 AM

Brett. Take it easy on those Guam kids. Imagine if they ask you about famous men and women from Guam's history? So expecting them to be as knowledgeable as you are of people of American history is so unfair. Don't be a condecending American. After all, you are teaching kids on Guam (tiny Island in the middle of the Pacific) not kids from Maine, Texas, California, etc. Peace!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 11:08 AM

Guest - not every woman Brett mentioned is American - they include Britons Ada Lovelace/Augusta Byron, Jane Goodall & Rosalind Franklin, a Pole Marie Curie, as well as Americans Rachel Carson and Diane Fossey

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 01:16 PM

If a whole class fails a test it's not the fault of the students, the problem lies with the test or the teacher.

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 05:11 PM

Actually, Guest, these ARE kids from America. You are not the only person I've dealt with who doesn't realize that Guam is an American territory and that the people of Guam have enthusiastically embraced the American way of life. Plus, as Sandra pointed out, the scientists are WORLD scientists, not just American.

At 1:15 PM on Friday, August 24, the bell rang at Notre Dame signaling the end of my first full week as a teacher and the beginning of the weekend for me. The kids wandered off to their next class and silence fell in my classroom. I sat there in my chair for a long time savoring the quiet and the feeling that I could come down and rest for a while. I was very tired.

Every afternoon this week I have gone home and taken a nap. Then, because of the late nap I wind up working late in the evening on preparations for the next day's classes. But the kids are great and I'm having a good time. I saw a couple of epiphany moments this week. Plus the reports from the outlying districts are that I am a popular teacher. I hope I can keep it up.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Ebbie
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 05:25 PM

As long as you stay interested in the kids, Brett, you will continue to be a popular teacher.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 10:01 PM

Brett-

My voice was feeling a little horse after my first week of teaching school. It gave me a greater appreciation for the stress that teachers had to contend with. Do you know all of their names? That's a key. You know, "Hey, you!" only carries you so far.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble, lazing about on the coast of Maine


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 25 Aug 07 - 11:52 PM

Some time ago we were adopted by a cat. She's a gray tiger, on the small side, with a very loud voice. A few weeks ago we noticed that she was probably pregnant. After a while she lost her belly. Still she was hanging around here. She still greeted Wakana when she came home or when she went outside.

Today Gordon and I were working under the canopy and I went looking for something in the closet. I heard a noise. I looked down and there in the corner were two little kittens cautiously hiding from the giant. They are so cute. Wakana is not yet charmed but she is fascinated and worried about them. I think the cat might wind up as an indoor cat.

Gordon's daughter recently rescued a puppy from the Vet's Office where she works. He has it at home now. It is a good match for the rabbit they have in their living room.

Anyone want a boonie dog?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 05:45 AM

aw, how cute, little baby kittens only a few days old & already they have slaves!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 06:23 AM

Be careful what you wish for, you may get it.

I have been teaching for two weeks now. I'm exhausted. My throat is tired. I've developed a rheumy cough. The sound of children's voices makes me shudder and a bell sends me through the roof...

Well, I might be exaggerating. I really am tired though. This weekend is the Labor Day weekend and I intend to use Saturday catching up on my sleep.

I foolishly offered to write an article on the canoe club for Guahan Magazine before I knew I would get the job at Notre Dame. Now the deadline is past and I need to get the thing done.

I also need to read the Japanese novels we are studying in my Masters Class at UOG.

I told the kids they would have a test. I managed to write the Lit test but not the comp test yet.

Sigh. Did I mention that I am tired?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 10:31 AM

Maybe retiring WAS a good idea, old boy. It certainly seemed like a good idea at the time! :D

ANyway, I am sorry you are wearing down so early in your new career; but if it is any compensation I am certain the children's lives are better for your being there.


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 31 Aug 07 - 02:16 AM

I gave all my students tests today. I carefully crafted a detailed examination of the two short stories we've studied so far for my literature class.

For my composition class I gave them a paragraph from Anne of Green Gables and told them to identify each part of speech (i.e., nouns, pronouns, adjectives, etc.) I am not hopeful. I don't know where these kids have been for the last ten years but school would not be my first guess.

On the bright side, my pocket in full of money and the bills are being paid. What more could I ask for... besides a nap?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 31 Aug 07 - 08:49 AM

kids in# Oz schools would have the same problem in identifying parts of speech.

# also lotsa' folks who have been out of school for years - for some years now, Universities have been offering (ordering?) remedial classes for students who have successfully completed secondary education.

have a lovely restful weekend.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 31 Aug 07 - 09:15 AM

Brett-

Parts of speech? I don't need no f***in' parts of speech! You see this fist? You can call it anything you want but if you do you're gonna be missing some teeth.

Cheerily,
Charley "Gerund" Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 31 Aug 07 - 03:45 PM


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 31 Aug 07 - 04:16 PM

Don't listen to him, Brett. Make them diagram the sentences AND identify the parts of speech until they can do it cold.   It is a critical skill in defending against vapourous mercantile rhetoric.


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Sep 07 - 01:50 AM

"vapourous mercantile rhetoric."

I've been talking to the kids about the value of a large vocabulary. Our text claims that the average American uses about 10,000 words and has some familiarity with another 30,000. I called one kid a misanthrope this week and turned around and walked away. When I looked back he was still puzzled. I asked the class if I had complimented him or insulted him. They made some wild guesses.

I need to use your phrase, "vapourous mercantile rhetoric.", also. And I need to put the words from Dad's favorite bumper sticker up on the board, "Eschew Obfuscation".


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Sep 07 - 01:52 AM

By the way, I also got them with:

MR Ducks
MR Not Ducks
OSAR
CDEDBD Wings
Guess MR Ducks

That one had them stymied for a while and then laughing at the translation.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST,CrazyEddie
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 05:14 AM

Try them with:
11 was a racehorse
22 was 12
1111 race
22112


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 03:06 PM

2 much 4 my poor brain!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 03:55 PM

ABC the puppies
MNO puppies
SAR
CMPN


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 04:07 PM

Me2, Charley!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: curmudgeon
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 04:15 PM

ABCD goldfish!

LMNO goldfish.

OSAR; CM!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Ebbie
Date: 03 Sep 07 - 04:35 PM

KT was the first person I heard sing the Racehorse song.

11 was a racehorse
22 was 12
1111 race
22112

(One One was a racehorse
Two Two was one too
One One won one race
Two Two won one too)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 09:27 AM

Hmm, things are getting out of control here.

Today we started working on a lovely memoir by Jamaica Kincaid called A Walk to the Jetty. I tried to explain what a Jetty was by telling them to consider the Glass Breakwater that encloses Apra Harbor. None of them knew anything about the Glass Breakwater and most did not recognize the name of Apra Harbor.

That got me started.

I began naming things on Guam. They knew all the shopping spots but none of the rest of the island. They've lived here all their lives and some have never been to the far ends of the island!

I finally commented that I was a haolie who had moved here only four years ago but it seemed that I knew far more than they did about their own homes.

I am amazed at what they do NOT know. I hope that my kids, at fifteen years old, knew a lot more than these kids.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 01:13 PM

Brett-

I bet they can text message faster than you can!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: JennyO
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 11:18 PM

Like this one:

YYUR
YYUB
ICUR
YY4ME


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 04 Sep 07 - 11:50 PM

IC
I02
ERD CDB!

Brett, I had New Englanders tell me I'd seen more of their area than they ever had! The kids and I used to pile in the car on the weekends and just go. We were used to WY distances, so a few miles to the next state, etc. was nothing to us.:-)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Sep 07 - 08:26 AM

Remember, Kat, we are talking about a piece of ground thirty miles long by ten miles wide. It is surrounded by water. If you want to go anywhere you have to board a boat or a plane.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 14 Sep 07 - 02:27 AM

It's been a while since I had the energy to update this thread. My routine is to come home, exhausted and hurting, throw myself on to the bed and sleep for two hours. Then I get up and work on schoolwork for the rest of the evening. Not exactly a dynamic lifestyle.

But there are some fun things happening. Most of it has to do with the kids. They say and do some of the damnedest things. For instance, I am setting them up with a major project that will be due at the end of the semester. Every class I explain they have to pick out a book to write up that no one else has. Each time I emphasize that they must give me the book title on a sheet of paper with their name as well as the date and time on it. The assignments will be on a first come, first served deal.

Sooo, yesterday when I handed a paper back to one of the students saying he needed to add the date and time at least three students were surprised by that announcement. And today I got a neatly printed list with no name on it!

But today is Friday! And it's payday! I just cashed my check and deposited all of it into my account. I like being rich... well, at least not too poor any more.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: curmudgeon
Date: 01 Oct 07 - 06:40 PM

Is all well over there? It has been a while since you posted , Brett.

Missed you at the Maritime Festival -- Tom


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: maeve
Date: 01 Oct 07 - 06:53 PM

I've been wondering the same thing. Are you both ok? Are you needing sleep, encouragement, food from home, music...?

maeve


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 01 Oct 07 - 07:32 PM

ME2:-)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 04 Oct 07 - 06:18 AM

Sorry about that. We are very busy. This working every day is for the birds!

Besides, there's very little to report. I am working with the kids trying to instill some level of awareness of literature and to give them some concept of how to write. I feel like I am bailing the ocean with a sieve.

Still there are really good moments too. Two weeks ago one of my composition students asked me for some help on her literature project. They were studying The Masque of the Red Death. She had drawn a poster showing the death's head, a clock and a fire. She needed help matching her drawing to the story. I thought she was going about it backwards and told her so but I gave her what help I could.

This week WE are studying Masque. Today my 6th block kids performed a literary analysis on the story, detailing the elements of fiction (plot, setting, pinpointing the conflict, looking at the characterizations, etc. I believe that's a cut above drawing posters...

Every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon when the kids leave for the day I find some version of '7th block rocks" on the chalkboard. I gues that means something.

They're good kids.

Wakana is doing better with her kids. The school hired another Japanese teacher so she got to reduce the size of her classes. That helped. Plus she has implemented an interesting system that uses the competitive spirit of the boys. She issues credit slips, each one good for additional points on their final grade. When someone does something well, or extra or just when she feels like it she gives the kid a credit slip. When they screw up she takes some away. The kids are keeping careful track of their slips and comparing notes. Some of the kids have special folders in which they hoard their slips. She reports that the system is working well.

Today I fueled my Mercedes. I didn't stop at a gas station. A friend told me where I can buy biodiesel. I went there. For $2.50 a gallon I got my tank filled and went on my merry way. I like it. No more Middle East oil. It feels good!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: maeve
Date: 04 Oct 07 - 08:54 AM

Thanks for the update, Brett. Teaching is indeed very hard work, and you must each be doing a good job to be so knackered. Do keep track of your successes, both large and small, and do try to write them down for your encouragement and our illumination!

Isn't it a rare and wonderful balancing act? One must start where one's students are while simultaneously challenging them to reach far beyond the familiar world. Oy! I'm glad you're finding treasure along the way.

maeve


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 Oct 07 - 12:57 PM

Brett-

Thanks for checking in. We were about to send out a flying squad to investigate.

At the Maritime Festival in Portsmouth (NH) last weekend there were still people asking about "that big feller."

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Oct 07 - 03:05 AM

"We were about to send out a flying squad to investigate."

Rats! You mean if I'd kept quiet a little longer I might have had some visitors? My timing sucks! *grin*

People remembered me from last year? That's nice. I may have to come home every once in a while. My next trip will be sometime in late June or early July. I will have to go to England to see my new granddaughter and then home to Maine to visit for a while. I need to keep some of my summer for island hopping. Wakana and I want to go to Pohnpei.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 06 Oct 07 - 07:46 AM

I guess it was TWO years ago that I was there. Time flies like the wind, fruit flies like bananas.

Busy day today. We took Wakana's car in to the shop for tires and alignment. Ended up doing a full brake job too. Wakana is upset about it.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 11 Oct 07 - 02:56 AM

Last Tuesday was one of those days when you are glad to get into work. After all that work on Wakana's car mine had a flat. Then the sewage started bubbling up out of the ground...

Good week at work. Only four days. I gave a vocabulary quiz. I guess I made it too easy. Too many passing grades. I mentioned that in class and the students enthusiastically claimed the quiz was difficult. Yeah, right!

Today the drama class put on a play about stereotypes and violence in school. It was pretty good. I took both my classes to see it. Tomorrow I'll take another two classes to see it. My third black class will have to suffer. No play to go to though I'm pretty sure they will all have seen it by then.

We talked about stereotypes and violence in high school in my seventh block class. The kids have pretty much agreed that the play had some very good point but that things are not bad in our school and that they feel pretty safe and secure.

During the class I talked about depth of character and how everyone has something interesting about themselves. I mentioned a couple of the students in front of me and the mistakes people would make if they only looked at the surface. One of my students is a pretty good poet. She even let me read one of her poems. I handed back the paper and commented on how the first stanza reminded me of a singing group back home. After class I was packing up to go home when I found the poems on my desk with a note. She said she hoped I would enjoy reading the poems. These are some pretty good kids.

I noticed that the drama teacher took on a different tone when talking to the students in the audience. She seemed to talk down to them as if they were children. Too bad. These are teens. They don't want to be treated like children. They want to be young adults. I've seen other teachers take a belligerent attitude also. I try to treat them respectfully and maturely. I insist on what I call "my time", that time between the bells. Their time is during the breaks and lunch. My time is that 75 minutes or 100 minutes between the breaks. I am selfish and jealously guard my time. I get cranky when they don't let me use my time the way I want to.

This is a pretty good job!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 11 Oct 07 - 03:23 AM

sounds like you are a pretty good teacher!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 12 Oct 07 - 10:07 AM

This evening I finally pulled out my guitar-banjo. I haven't touched it in two years. I decided to change the strings. As I worked on the thing the kittens were watching me from the seat of a chair across the room. The minute I started tuning their heads came up, they leaped off the chair, and made a beeline for safety under the couch! There was no budging them after that. They were huddled under there for the longest time. Everyone's a critic.

The other day I decided to rename them. I told Wakana I thought they could be Grendel and Smaug. She didn't get it at first and neither did my kids at school. Do you? Hint: They are monsters... the kittens, that is.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 12 Oct 07 - 08:22 PM

The kittens have discovered the perfect sleeping spot... for them, that is. They get under my chest of drawers and climb up in the space between the back of the drawers and the back of the chest. Then they get into one of the drawers and go to sleep on the clothes. Wakana can't find them and they don't come when called yet. I told her this morning to just feed them a lot of food and get them nice and fat. Then they won't be able to fit into such small spaces.

It's Saturday morning and I am tired. I slept in until 8:00 and now feel the need for a nap. Wakana just left to do her laundry. I'll do mine tomorrow, I guess.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 13 Oct 07 - 01:20 AM

clever little moggies, but no doubt very cute while doing monsterous deeds (unlike the originals!)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 13 Oct 07 - 07:55 PM

This morning, while sitting at breakfast and talking with Wakana, I suddenly was seized by incredible pain as Grendel, uh, Chibi-chan, leaped onto my bare leg and climbed up to investigate something on the underside of the table. Wakana removed the kitten while I mopped up the blood. A few minutes later I saw the little monster once more contemplating the underside of the table and preparing to spring for the same route. I managed to stop her that time.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 14 Oct 07 - 08:17 AM

maybe not so cute after all


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 19 Oct 07 - 07:56 AM

Today, October 19, is the end of my first quarter as a teacher. I have survived. I need to correct another bushel of papers and get the grades into the office by next Wednesday and I'll be done with the quarter. In celebration of this fact we had half a day today and no school on Monday!

I'm exhausted. I feel like I've just run a race. I was up till 3:00 AM again working on papers because I thought the deadline was today. I didn't succeed and figured I was in trouble. When I got home this afternoon I lay down to rest and slept from 5:00 to 9:00. I got up to eat and when I finish typing this I'll be headed back to bed.... now.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 19 Oct 07 - 09:14 AM

With all this dough you are bringing in, Brett, I don't see why you couldn't come to the Getaway!!


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 19 Oct 07 - 09:55 AM

Or join us next weekend at the Loaded Dog and BBQ in Australia!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 19 Oct 07 - 10:36 AM

I think with all that dough, ya oughta buy a few days off so we can read some more of your creative descriptions of what's going on and of the land, etc. Not that you aren't creative any more...it's just there's not as much and I miss it!:-)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 20 Oct 07 - 02:43 AM

Who's says that teachers keep bankers hours. All that money? If you put it on an actuall hourly basis that you're working Brett, sorry let's not go there.

Well maybe you can keep this thread as a journal & publish it, will the school finiance the costs? Sorry, I guess my jokes aren't funny tonight, OK, I'll go to bed without supper Mr. Brett.

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 21 Oct 07 - 10:08 AM

I'm sorry Kat but once you've been in one place for long enough you start to take things for granted. That doesn't mean I drive blindly but the impact on me doesn't last long enough for me to get to the keyboard to report the scenes.

I was actually thinking about my lack of descriptive reports the other day. I wanted to make some changes to my reporting but that doesn't sem to have lasted very long.

In the morning, those rare mornings when there is no rain (this being the wet season), I head east on Cross Island Road from Santa Rita to Talofofo. Driving over to the western end of Cross Island I am treated to a couple of lovely views of the Philippine Sea and the bay where the dolphins play. Then I have to drive uphill to get onto the pass over the hills that run down the center of the island.

The drive across the island is very pretty. The road is two lanes of occasional jungle and occasional grasslands. There is a long stretch where you look south into the valley that holds Fena Reservoir. All of that land belongs to the Navy so there are no houses or roads. Beyond the land rises into a line of hills that form a wall separating the driver from the rest of the southern half of the island. The hills are very rough but covered with grass and trees. Their sides are deeply cut with ravines but everything is covered in thick growth.

This time of year is fall back in the northern part of the world. Back there the trees are turning color. Here we have a few indications of fall weather too. Here the tall grass has gone to seed. The grass stalks are between eight and ten feet tall. At the top they have feathery white horse tails. On the hillsides you can see large white patches waving in the breeze. If you really stretch your imagination you can believe it is actually snow.

Before too long I can see the Pacific Ocean but I have to turn south before I get too close. The road to Talofofo runs past a golf course and then into town. Talofofo is a very small village. There are three Mom&Pop stores and no gas stations. The nearest ATM is down in Ipan near Jeff's Pirates Cove.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Oct 07 - 06:19 PM

Last night I got a chance to perform at the Mermaid again. It wasn't much, just a few minutes while the Pago Bay Reefers took a break. The purpose was to advertise the canoe club. Sandy was there to talk about the club and what we are trying to do. Then she introduced me and I sang a few songs. It was well received and a lot of people came up to me to tell me how much they enjoyed it. In my first set I did Sugar In The Hold, Rolling Down To Old Maui, and ended with Old Dun Cow (Mermaid had a fire last year). In my second set I did Zombie Jamboree (Halloween song), Rio Grand, Long Time Ago, and Whaler's Tale.

It was great fun. The waitresses who usually are in regular street clothes were dressed up in some very sexy old style barmaid's outfits with high waists, very short skirts, lots of ruffles, and plenty of décolletage. The costumes looked like a cross between the dirndl and a clog dancer's outfit.

I also learned, last night, that I have forgotten a lot about performing. The first rule that I violated was DO NOT EAT BEFORE A PERFORMANCE! I seemed to have no control over my voice. The next rule was ON STAGE THE RIGHT KEY MIGHT BE TOO HIGH. Everything I did I felt like I was doing in the same key I'd rehearsed but it seemed too high. I did a few other things wrong too but people liked it so it couldn't have been all bad.

On the ride home we enjoyed a lovely full moon lighting up the sea. It wasn't low enough to throw diamonds but it did light up the water and give it an eerie ghostly look. Far out to the east was a cloud bank that was dim and half lit. Very nice.

Oh, by the way, the food and beer were great! Wakana and I had the shrimp Ceasar's Salad, the steak dinner and finished it off with a brownie al a mode for desert. No wonder my voice was uncertain.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Oct 07 - 07:00 PM

I don't have much time to roam the threads but I took the time today. I noticed that Sinsull's birthday just slid by. Happy Birthday to you, dear Mary. I hope you are well and happy.

I also noticed that Charley is in OZ right now. Wish I could be there. Full time employment is a bitch.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 28 Oct 07 - 10:10 AM

pics of Charley Noble's visit to Oz to whet your appetite for getting a few more jobs & saving lots of money so you can visit far-flung family & friends!!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 29 Oct 07 - 06:44 AM

Well, things look a little grim here at the homestead. This morning Wakana let the kittens outside and left for the day. Neither were in evidence when I left. I came back and found Neko-chan but Chibi-chan is not to be seen anywhere. Wakana is already acting as though she is gone for good. I tried to explain that she is probably out there, not too far away and that she'll find her way home soon.

We are not worried about the road. We sit well back and it is not busy at all. I figure she explored a little too far and will find her way back, dirty, wet, hungry, and tired by tomorrow afternoon. In the meantime we are a little concerned.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 31 Oct 07 - 07:41 AM

Still no kitten. I guess she's gone for good. Wakana is taking it OK for now.

Today is Halloween. In my classroom I put up spider webs and played Toccata & Fugue in D minor. I also played a bit of a CD I picked up in England. It includes stories told by one of the yeoman warders at the Tower of London. I told ghost stories of my grandmother's house and sang With Her Head Tucked Underneath Her Arm to them. I also told one of the old fashioned ghost stories where you carefully build suspense and then yell loudly. I thought they were going to jump out of their skins.

My second block class did not get to participate in any of this. I started out but they thought their own conversations were more important so we ended the fun and went into a class. When it turned out they did not bother to bring their books (I hadn't told them about my Halloween plans) I made them sit up straight, look at the front of the class, and we sat in silence for about 20 minutes.

Tomorrow is Parent-Teacher conferences. I wonder what I face?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Nov 07 - 11:16 AM

This morning Wakana told me that she had been outside with Mama Kitty and Neko-chan. The boonie dogs that sometimes wander into our yard made an immediate attack on the two cats. She stopped them but she realized that might have been what happened to Chibi-chan. We've pretty much given up hope on the poor little thing. The boonie dogs are vicious and always hungry.

Today at ND we had our first quarter parent teacher conferences. I was a little nervous about it. By the time it was over I'd had 31 interviews with parents whose moods ranged from happy and curious to angry and peevish. I imagine life is a little difficult for some of my students right now. Fortunately none of them wanted to attack me.

Later, as I was leaving, I saw one of the science teachers. He and I have become friendly. He told me that some of the parents asked him why he couldn't be more like Mr. Burnham! Hmm, I wonder what that means?

It was an interesting day but I was exhausted by the time it was over. I came home and napped for a few hours. Wakana and I have Friday off so we have a three day weekend. Friday is All Souls Day. The families have been busy cleaning and decorating the graves of family members. Tomorrow they will spend the day in either church or at the cemeteries.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 01 Nov 07 - 07:18 PM

poor little kitten. what are boonie dogs - a local breed, or just ferals/strays?

it looks like you are becoming a legend in the School! In years to come all teachers will try to attain your natural style!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Nov 07 - 10:28 PM

Boonie dogs are just stray dogs, wild and mangy, skinny and unloved. Most have some kind of injury. Runners usually carry a stick or something as a form of defense as the dogs will attack if they think they can get away with it. Most island dogs are built with regular size bodies and short legs. It's a strange looking dog. They seem to have huge heads. There was an article in Smithsonian a few years ago about the dogs on another island but it seems to be the same no matter what island you are on. Maybe it is to keep them from being swept away by the typhoons...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 08 Nov 07 - 07:35 AM

We had a bit of a cat scare today. Wakana let the mama and the baby out together this morning and they immediately disappeared. They weren't around when she had to leave nor were they around when I left. Once she got home she called and called and finally found them. She was weeping, partly in relief, when I called from the store to ask if we needed anything.

This week at school we've had a team from the National Guard giving a presentation on drugs. Last Tuesday one of my students collapsed during the presentation. Today she asked to sit next to me. When we got to the same point in the talk where she'd collapsed before I turned to her and asked if I needed to catch her. She's a good kid and it was worth the laugh. One of the other teachers was teasing her (gently) about it too.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 08 Nov 07 - 10:32 AM

THANKS for continuations, Brett! Sorry to hear about the kitten. Glad the others are okay.Not surprised at all that your students love you. SOunds as though Halloween was a blast!

luvyakat


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 09 Nov 07 - 06:32 AM

I had to substitute for another teacher today. When I took attendance the kids laughed at my mispronunciation of their names. So I wrote a few names from Maine on the board and invited them to pronounce them. They had a little trouble with Wytopitlock, and Mattawamkeag. Piscataquis stopped them dead.

These were freshmen, the kids I will see next year. They are a little unsure of things. One girl kept apologizing for things. I asked her if I sounded angry. She relaxed and said that I didn't. Then I put on my growliest voice and shouted "HOW ABOUT NOW!?!" She screamed and turned away. I couldn't tell if she was laughing or crying.

Then I told my story about the golden arm. By the time I was done with them they were only too happy to sit quietly at their desks and work on the papers their teacher had left for them. I plugged into my mp3 player and read while they worked. They were amused to see an old guy with earphones and an mp3 player.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 09 Nov 07 - 10:28 PM

Brett-

Good to hear things are moving along fairly smoothly.

Judy and I are having fun with our friends in Sydney, and with our new friends in other parts of Oz. I've actually been earning money here in Oz, under the radar, with my set at the Loaded Dog and the workshop and sea music concert at the Maldon Festival, almost enough to feed us for a week! People I don't know are even buying CD's!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 10 Nov 07 - 01:55 AM

Good for you, Charlie! Give me plenty of advance warning for your next trip and I'll convince Wakana she needs to give Australia another go. I'd love to get back there again.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 15 Nov 07 - 06:25 AM

It's been a few hectic days. I was out sick on Tuesday. We didn't have school on Monday. I had planned a test for the kids this week but left it at home when I finally got to work on Wednesday. They were not disappointed.

Wakana has a great way to get her students' attention. Quite some time ago she made up credit slips, bits of construction paper with a stamp. Each one is worth one point on the final grade. You give them out for good academic behavior and take them away for poor classroom behavior. I started doing this yesterday. The kids fall all over themselves to answer questions. Before I might ask a question and get a few dispirited hand and a cacophony of voices shouting out wrong answers. Yesterday and today there were hands enthusiastically waved and nobody giving away an answer that might earn them a point. Quite a difference.

Big news on the island. Home Depot just opened their latest store out by the airport. People keep saying it's the largest in the world though I have trouble believing that. They say the same thing about our KMart but it isn't any bigger than any other I've been in.

Next week (11/20)is Wakana's birthday. I've been trying to figure out what to give her. Every time I try to probe for an idea she refuses to be helpful. When I make a suggestion she just turns the conversation away. Sigh, she can be so difficult.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 15 Nov 07 - 10:42 PM

Probably not enough time to get one of Rita Ferrara's beautiful pendants or one of her boxes: click here. They are really beautiful!

Hope you are feeling better.

Love Wakana's incentive for the students. I have two water bottles, empty, with a small slot cut in each one. One has a happy face on it, the other a sad face. When I was watching my grandson more, he earned money for listening well, doing chores, paying attention, etc. If he didn't he lost money and had to pay it from the happy faced one to the other which then became MY money. We stopped doing it when he started school. The other day he was over and was all excited about how much he had earned and that I hardly had any. He took it all home with him for his birthday.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 22 Nov 07 - 05:40 PM

Hey, Brett, we're back in the States. What's new with you?

Charley Noble and JudyB


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 23 Nov 07 - 05:50 PM

Well, where to begin? Wakana and I are exhausted. Teaching is like being a performer in a play and having to learn new lines every night. We're always 'on' which is very tiring. It doesn't help that the kitten thinks anything in the house is her toy. I was awakened early this morning by teeth and claws in my feet because she thought they were ferocious beasts under the sheets.

I am behind in my work. I must have three inches of papers to correct. I wish I could figure out how to do English without lots of papers from the kids.

Tuesday was Wakana's birthday. We had a nice time. I took her to dinner at the Mermaid, the best steak dinner on the island.

Wednesday at Notre Dame was Trash-a-thon. We bussed the kids out to various locations to pick up trash along the roads. My sophomores had to walk a mile and a half from the golf club back to the school. As you might guess with teens 9o% of the conversations were variations on the theme of being uncomfortable. "I'm hot." "I'm sweating." "I don't like walking." "I have to go to the bathroom and the bushes is not an option." etc. I don't know what they thought I was going to do about it. I am forty years older than they are, more than 200 pounds heavier, I have arthritis and I was out there walking too.

Thursday, of course, was Thanksgiving and we did NOTHING about it! It was heavenly. We did go shopping at K Mart and had lunch at Denny's but no fancy feed anywhere.

Yesterday we went to Kenko Spa for a sauna, jacuzzi and massage. We were allowed all the time we wanted on the deck with the jacuzzi and sauna. They had a steam sauna, a cold jacuzzi and a hot jacuzzi. It was lovely going from the sauna to the cold water and then on to the hot water and then back to the sauna. More water on the stones and then repeat the process. Then it was time for our aromatherapy oil massage. One hour of bliss.

Now it's Saturday and I've done nothing about the homework, the broken canopy, the dishes, or anything else. Gotta get busy...

Last week Guahan Magazine published their latest issue with an article I wrote on the canoe club. It turned out pretty well for a first published piece. I'll send you a copy, Charley, to show around to the gang there in Portland. It has some pretty good pictures of the canoes.

Today is a rainy day. The rain varies between hard and sprinkling. I guess I get to work indoors today. I'll make some progress on that pile of correcting... but then, I originally came in here to do that and I am typing this instead. Sigh, prioritize, Brett!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 23 Nov 07 - 09:30 PM

Brett-

I'll look forward to receiving a copy of your canoe club article.

And in return I'll send you an advance copy of my new CD OLD SAILOR-POETS: Sea Songs.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 24 Nov 07 - 01:36 AM

Still not prioritizing...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 24 Nov 07 - 04:35 PM

300!

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 24 Nov 07 - 04:44 PM

Remember when you a kid in school dreading that grade? Did you ever guess that your teacher had better things on his mind? Except for the nuns - they had nothing else and so they obsessed about grades.LOL


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Nov 07 - 06:33 AM

I was reading through the literary analysis that I assigned the students back in October. They had to read a book (a real book! Horrors!) and provide an analysis picking out the various elements of fiction used by the author. The reports were due on November 5.

Of course, the due date came as a big shock to the kids. When I reminded them at the end of October that the report would be due the following week they were surprised. A few of them explained that they couldn't find copies of the book they wanted to do. Others complained that they hadn't had the time to work on it. I was adamant about the due date.

I finally got the papers from about half of them. Over the next few days more trickled in. There are still a substantial number of students who haven't bothered to do the work.

And what they did do was substandard at best. Many did not follow my directions. None seemed to remember we'd done this same thing on class and that they could do it on their own. I had to rethink my approach.

The first thing I did was go through all the papers and use a red pen to highlight all the spelling and grammar errors. There were a lot of them. Interestingly, a paper from one of the poorer students had no errors at all. It used language in such a way that it was obvious that he did not write it. A few minutes on a Google search turned up the exact sentences he had used. He'd bought the book report from a web site. Instant 'F'!

Now we are into the week of the progress report. I have to get all my grading up to date and get my grades into the office by Friday. In only three weeks we have our mid term exams (finals for Composition II) and then we are on vacation until January! I can't wait!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 27 Nov 07 - 08:02 AM

I remember when I was in college there was this arrogant fraternity type in a mythology class. He took the course thinking it would be an easy "A", skipped most of the classes and bought his "A" term paper from a fraternityy brother who had bought it from a Columbia student. It was his final semester and he needed the credits to graduate.
Unfortunately for him, Ursula Schoenheim took her mythology class very seriously. And she took her term papers even more seriously. She also took attendance and you lost points for missing class.
this was pre-computer and Google but Ursula had her own library and a photographic memory. She soon discovered that the entire paper was plagiarized. She failed it - 50% of the grade. He failed the course. Ironically he was headed to Law School. Her comment? "Just what we need, another crooked lawyer."
He spent his summer taking another course to earn enough credits to graduate.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Nov 07 - 02:58 PM

I remember a story I heard on All Things Considered a long time ago. It seems that someone conducted a survey of MBA students at Princeton University. The gist of the survey was breaking the law and cheating The summary of the questions was, as I remember it, would you cheat or break the law if you could get away with it? A huge majority of those polled answered that they would.

By now those people must be in the business hierarchy. I think of that story every time I hear someone talking about their investments. I don't think I would want to put my potential future in the hands of that group.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Nov 07 - 03:06 PM

By the way, I recently bought myself an I-Pod. I've been loading my CDs on it. I also discovered the world of podcasting. The kids love their I-Pods. Now I will make them use those machines for something really educational. There are podcasts that cover literature and grammar and vocabulary. Starting in January they will have to tune in and write summaries of what they've been listening to. Muwahaha!

I commented to the kids in my 7th block yesterday that teachers are really good at taking something fun and making it boring. And I was going to do that with their I-Pods.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 27 Nov 07 - 10:09 PM

Brett-

So true!

Except for me of course!

Dick Dufresne is back in Maine until Christmas. He's complaining that it's not as hot here as where he lives in Florida.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST,Kelli
Date: 28 Nov 07 - 03:38 AM

Hi Dad,

There is a podcast that I listen to on occasion when I remember- Garrison Keillor does the Writer's Almanac every week. You could make your kids listen to that. ;)

Hope all is well.

Love

Kelli


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 28 Nov 07 - 04:12 AM

Hi Kell - I have that on my list and on my I-Pod. My plan at this point, and I'm sure I will be modifying it later, is to give them a list of podcasts to choose from and have them write up journal entries on each one. If you have any other suggestions I'd be happy to hear them.

Oh! I learned a new word from a podcast the other day. The discussion was about the name of a finger and one of the commentators said it was also called the auricular finger. Do you (any of you) know what that finger could be? (Note: My spell checker had no problem with the word 'auricular.')

Charley, tell Dick that soon his Florida house will be underwater and he'll move back to Maine to enjoy the hot winter weather. Also, please tell him I hope he and his family are well and happy. I miss him and all the rest of you guys too. I hope to see you all next summer.

By the way, yesterday I used the phrase 'Bah Humbug' in replying to something one of the kids said. I confused the poor child. She'd never heard it before! A couple other kids agreed they didn't know it either! It must be time to resurrect Mr. Scrooge.

If you want the rest of the story on the kid who purchased his paper here it is. I was returning papers to the class and used the incident to talk about cheating and dishonesty. I named no names and even avoided any gender specific terms. I mentioned web sites where people can buy reports and term papers and he spoke up and gave the name of one of the sites and commented that you could buy a book report for $5.00. The kids all around him looked at him and said "You're the one!" He hung his head then looked at me and I said, "That's why you got the F."


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Nov 07 - 10:24 AM

auricular - something to do with a finger in the ear? But, darned if I know which one!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: ClaireBear
Date: 28 Nov 07 - 10:45 AM

According to various online dictionaries, "the little finger; so called because it can be readily introduced into the ear passage."

Eeeeew!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 29 Nov 07 - 07:18 AM

That's right, Claire, it is the finger you use to clean out your ear. It is also know as your pinkie.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Dec 07 - 08:09 PM

It's been a hard week for Wakana at work. She has been using the credit slips to encourage participation in the classroom. Then, I heard from one of my students that some of her students were stealing the credit slips. She took it personally. It hit her hard. On top of that she had to get student volunteers for help on the Japanese Festival at Ypao Park on Saturday. She had 20 volunteers and only 5 showed up. She took that personally too.

I also learned that some students were stealing credit slips in my room. That, added to the book report cheater, means I have lots to talk about. I just don't take it personally.

Lots to do and no time to do it. I remember an old National Geographic article about rising waters flooding a portion of South American jungle. The name of the article has always stuck with me, Time is Short and the Water Rises. That's how I feel now.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 03 Dec 07 - 03:23 AM

The kids are getting a little wild. We have a three day week. On Thursday all the students are going on retreat to different Catholic churches in the area. We have to go along to ride herd on the crowd. Then we are off on Friday because it is some religious holiday.

Recently I woke up to the fact that these kids can talk but they don't have a clue as to how the language works. I told them today that kids coming out of Japanese high schools have a better working knowledge of English than they do but that they don't have the opportunity to practice. These kids get the practice but don't know how to use it.

Some examples:

In one of the book report one student was trying to explain how deeply one character loved another. She said their love was skin deep. In composition class I gave a test on the narrative and descriptive paragraphs. I asked the students to list five adjectives and five action verbs. The mish-mash of words I got was not to be believed. I have seen them write that they would "predict on" a future action, they have "alot" of stuff, they fall "inlove", and are frequently "bord". I have invited them to use email to submit their homework but using the keyboard seems to be beyond them.

Wakana says I shouldn't hold out much hope for them but that goes against my nature. It bothers me to see the degree of disinterest they have.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 03 Dec 07 - 01:44 PM

Brett-

Maybe you should try to get them to do storytelling, if they'd be interested in that. And then play catch-up with the grammar and the spelling. If they're interested in a topic, they may show more interest in learning how to write more correctly, or maybe not!

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 04 Dec 07 - 04:31 AM

The funny thing about these kids is that they have no concept of telling a story. And tall tales are way beyond them. I've tried to explain the concept of the Downeast story to them. I was not trying to make them see the humor. I was just trying to get them to realize that telling the truth does not have to apply to entertainment. They only see it as lying. In fact many of them are so concrete that they cannot get their imagination to see the strange things that I tell them. The idea that "you can't get there from here" is just too weird an idea. They all tell me that you can get anywhere from anywhere.

But I do like your idea. I can see that the right approach can get some of these kids moving.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 Dec 07 - 09:44 AM

Brett-

Sounds like an old story-telling tradition has been surpressed. I bet their grandparents still tell stories. Maybe you can encourage the students to write down some of their stories.

I wish I had done that more with my Ethiopian students back in the early 1960's. They were a very studious bunch, and needed a lot of encouragement before they were willing to write down some of the tales of Waq, his battles on behalf of the Gurage people, and why he had left them to their fate. Not enough honey wine was my conclusion.

Most of the State of Maine got over 12 inches of snow yesterday. Gee, it sure looks lovely!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: maeve
Date: 04 Dec 07 - 10:33 AM

Brett- What about the area storyboards? There must be some around, along with elders who would be willing and able to interpret them. Some of the legends may not be considered appropriate for school, but I think there are enough around to make it possible. I know Palau still has something of a tradition there, with many local ghost stories as well.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 04 Dec 07 - 10:58 AM

I wouldn't get too discouraged with their grammar. The examples you gave don't seem any worse than what I saw when I was grading essays and such done by American students in their high school English classes.

Likewise in some of the submissions I read for my editing job.

Do they like to draw, paint, etc.? Maybe use art to get their stories out or to convey a story, then get them to write it? My daughter who is very concrete is also very artistic, it seemed to help her.

Don't forget to take a deep breath now and then, you and Wakana, both!:-)

kat


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 17 Dec 07 - 04:24 PM

Gee, it's been over a week since we've heard from our hero. You don't suppose he's been snowed in?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble, under a foot of snow and ice


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 17 Dec 07 - 05:25 PM

I'd set them to bringing in a story from or about an ancestor -- parents on back.

A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: maeve
Date: 17 Dec 07 - 06:05 PM

This tends to be a very busy and often overwhelming time for teachers. I expect they're bogged down in grading and such; maybe even sleeping occasionally!

maeve


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 18 Dec 07 - 03:41 PM

You will be pleased to know, Brett, that Rudy Giuliani is running for President with a hard line on Immigration. All new immigrants, in his world, must read, write and comprehend English plus have an understanding of American Civics.
So how many of your class (or NYC citizens) will qualify? Is the next step to require literacy of native born Americans? Serve him right if the immigrants comprehend our politics and vote him and his fellow idiots out of office.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 18 Dec 07 - 03:52 PM

Nothing idiotic about wanting higher standards of literacy; but coupling it to immigration policy is not smart at all IMHO.


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 18 Dec 07 - 08:26 PM

I dunno. Maybe we could use this concept to deport the President?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 18 Dec 07 - 08:30 PM

Dick-

But it would be wrong!

Does he have a native country?

Would any country accept him, other than Iran or North Korea?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: maeve
Date: 18 Dec 07 - 09:44 PM

Sounds mysteriously like thread creep to me. Brett, you'd best come quick and rescue your thread!

maeve


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 04:27 PM

No doubt Brett and Wakana are mired in the usual holiday whatever.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 04:48 PM

I'm here! I didn't go anywhere. But I have been busy both at my job and at falling apart.

Two years ago I had my left knee worked on. I spent my trip to the UK and home hobbling around on a cane. Now, with another big trip in the planning stages my right knee is giving me trouble. Sigh...

Maeve was right. I've been creating semester exams, attending parties, finishing off my grading from the semester and now I have to grade all those damn exams. Add to it the need to create a syllabus for my Composition III class for next semester, plus lesson plans for composition and literature classes and you have a full schedule.

Then there are the Christmas parties. Wakana wanted me to go to the staff party for FD and we also had a party for ND. I felt like a spy in dangerous lands at the FD party but it was fun. There is a young teacher at FD from Pittsfield, Maine. We had a nice time talking about the weather... back home. She is headed home soon and has quit her job. She says it is "family troubles." All I can think of is disease, probably cancer. I feel bad for her.

The ND party was fun. There was great food, lots of prizes, party games, and the secret Santa gift exchange. At the FD party the secret Santa was fun to watch but it was pretty straight forward. The "Santa" would walk up to the table, pick up their gift, hand it to the recipient and sit down. The recipient would do the same.

At our party the "Santa" would pick up the gift and go off in search of the recipient. Often s/he would stop to greet other people while the rest of us wondered who the recipient would be. It lent an air of mystery to the proceedings. Since the two weeks leading up to the party had been spent in trying to guess the identity of the "Santa" it made things very interesting. In one instance the recipient had told a co-worker that she knew who the "Santa" was. The "Santa" volunteered to start off the process and went to the table where she picked up a lovely large flowering plant. She paraded around with it and finally stopped at another table. Everyone applauded. The two women then walked over to the person who thought she knew her "Santa" and presented the flower to her. It seems she really didn't know.

The two weeks leading up to the party were weeks of mystery and suspense. Everyday a small gift would appear in your mailbox from the unknown "Santa." My mailbox always had some form of chocolate in it. I kept "complaining" about it to a teacher who sat at the table every morning. She would commiserate with me all the while laughing inside. SHE was the guilty party. (Now that I think about it I'm not sure what she was thinking. She is a lovely young Philippina, thin as a rail and married to the physical education teacher who once competed in the Olympics in track and field. Both of them ore in fine physical condition. I don't know why someone like that would give candy to an old fat guy.)

So, now we are on vacation. Christmas is coming and I am making no effort to conform to the season. I still have lots of paper to grade, plans to make, and, if possible, fun to enjoy. I have too many jobs to do around the house.

Wakana is very sad. The immigration service failed to provide her with her updated green card. Now she cannot travel. Consequently she will miss the New Year holiday again. I think this is the fourth year running. It is a very important holiday for the Japanese. I feel bad for her.

So, here we are, in Guam, at the beginning of the dry season. We are busy but trying to enjoy our time off. We have no real problems if you don't consider Wakana's disappointment, the cars falling apart, the house needing to be cleaned, the leaking air conditioner, etc, etc.

Oh, and no granddaughter yet... Still waiting. Sabra was due to arrive on December 18.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 10:51 PM

Brett-

Thanks for tuning in and bringing us up to date. Lord knows what might have happened to this thread if you hadn't posted.

Still a foot of snow on the ground and the temperature this evening has dropped to 6 degrees F.

Yah. you really should get your air coditioner fixed. Why not mail it to Amos?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 25 Dec 07 - 04:53 PM

Merry Christmas to all.

For those of you on this side of the International Date Line I apologize about being a day late. Sandra, we got your card. It is so pretty. Wakana, especially, was touched. If anything changes her mind about coming to Australia it will be those cards.

Our Christmas was very quiet. We never decorated, we sent no cards, we barely did any shopping. I violated a long standing personal rule and went out shopping on Christmas Eve. I got Wakana a nice watch and a basket of what the Burnham family calls 'toilet treats' or toiletries. It had lotion, perfume, and some other smelly softening things in it.

We spent the day watching movies. I cooked a pot roast for our Christmas dinner.

I hope you all have (or had) a very nice Christmas.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 25 Dec 07 - 09:29 PM

I'll keep sending cards! We would love to have you & Wakana visit sometime

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 25 Dec 07 - 11:00 PM

The weather was great in Maine for a change. Brisk but sunny and it's been like that all week. There's still some snow on the ground but the temperature has warmed up to the freezing level. Hardly even need to wear a coat!

We had our personal gift swapping Christmas Eve. This morning we loaded up the van with plunder and took off to the family farm down on the island. My brother's family was up from Brooklyn, and mother was in residence. We swapped more presents, had a traditional turkey dinner, and then sped up the coast to where Judy's brother lives. There was another six or so folks gathered at their farmhouse, and we chatted, watched them down quanities of ham and turkey, exchanged more presents, shared some dessert, and sped on our way back home through the hills. Gee, it's great to be back home with just the two of us, and the two cats.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Dec 07 - 04:25 AM

Today Wakana and I went to get massages at her usual place. Instead of the type we got at Kenko we got an oiled shiatsu massage. It was much different. The masseuse pushed deeper into the muscles. At times it was painful but I sure feel good now.

You need to imagine this. The masseuse was a small Chinese woman. If she weighed more than 100 pounds I'll eat my hat. I stand at 6'3" and weigh in now at about 360 pounds. I must have been a daunting prospect for her but she was game. At one point she walked on my back. She used more than her hands. She knelt on my legs, jammed her elbow into pressure points on my shoulders and used her forearms on my arms and calves. She pushed and pummeled and worked her way through the hour. It was great. Now I am somewhat slippery but I feel fine.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Dec 07 - 01:50 PM

It's almost 5:00 AM. My younger daughter, Amy, called a couple of hours ago to tell me her sister is in labor in a hospital near her home in England. Soon I will be a grandfather! For some reason I can't sleep.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 27 Dec 07 - 07:04 PM

it's amazing how many of my contemporaries are grandparents! Very young grandparents, of course!

best wishes to mother & baby & all the family

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 27 Dec 07 - 07:51 PM

Hey Gramps. All those toxins she worked out of your muscles will keep you awake for weeks. Of course it could be anticipation...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Dec 07 - 09:23 PM

Birthing must be imminent. Congrats, Gramps!

Shiatsu sounds lovely!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 27 Dec 07 - 09:30 PM

Congrats to your daughter Gramps, sorry, no congrats to you, you had nothing to do with it but I'm glad you had a great massage & feel wonderful. Congrats to Wakana, she's now married to a grandfather, what a woman, she deserves congratulations, it's not often that a woman can say her husband's a grand dad & he's still getting walked on by little women.
Stay awake, the moment will pass to soon.

All my best

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 28 Dec 07 - 05:37 PM

Sabra was born at 11:30 PM GMT on December 27, 2007. She weighed 6 pounds 15 ounces and had a full head of hair. I am still dazed.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 28 Dec 07 - 05:58 PM

Brett-

Congratulations!

What kind of music does she like?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Dec 07 - 06:31 PM

What a beautiful name! Nice size, too. Congrats, Gramps! How do you say grandma and grandpa in Japanese?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: maeve
Date: 28 Dec 07 - 06:54 PM

May you and young Sabra be blessings to one another, Brett. She and Wakana will love each other! Congratulations from Maine!

maeve


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 28 Dec 07 - 07:29 PM

more congratulations to all from Sydney

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: The Barden of England
Date: 29 Dec 07 - 09:53 AM

And more congratulations from Maidstone, Kent, UK
John Barden


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 31 Dec 07 - 08:25 PM

I now have heard the story and seen some pictures. She's beautiful, of course, tiny with a full head of dark hair. I got one picture of her being held by her father. He looks exhausted and she is asleep on his shoulder. His hand is on her back and looks to be as large as she is.

My daughter, her mother, is doing well. She is tired, and sore, and swears there will be no brother or sister until she forgets the negative side of having a baby.

Now I have to count the months until I can go to England to meet Sabra and play with her.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 06 Jan 08 - 01:58 AM

My vacation is over! Noooooooooooo!

Tomorrow I have to go back to work. Oh most cruel hardship, why must I suffer so? My life of ease has come to an end.

Well, to tell the truth, my life of ease ended several days ago. I've been preparing my lessons for quite a while. Still, tomorrow I have to get up in front of those rotten kids and try to teach them something.

A week ago last Saturday I heard the following poem recited at a gathering celebrating the life of one of my oldest friends on Guam, Dr. Larry Cunningham. It was organized by some of his former students which included an actress working in New York, a prominent Guam lawyer, and a businesswoman from San Diego. They flew his brother in to join the festivities.

The lawyer recited the following verse by a teacher and poet in New York, Taylor Mali. It inspired both Wakana and myself. I hope it inspires you.

I got it from Mr. Mali's website. The website gives permission for it to be passed around and used however people see fit. (Side note: If you feel inspired to pay me for including it here please send some of the money to Mr. Mali.)

What Teachers Make, or
Objection Overruled, or
If things don't work out, you can always go to law school
By Taylor Mali

He says the problem with teachers is, "What's a kid going to learn from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?"
He reminds the other dinner guests that it's true what they say about teachers:
Those who can, do; those who can't, teach.

I decide to bite my tongue instead of his and resist the temptation to remind the other dinner guests that it's also true what they say about lawyers.

Because we're eating, after all, and this is polite company.

"I mean, you¹re a teacher, Taylor," he says.
"Be honest. What do you make?"

And I wish he hadn't done that (asked me to be honest) because, you see, I have a policy about honesty and ass-kicking: if you ask for it, I have to let you have it.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.
I can make a C+ feel like a Congressional medal of honor and an A- feel like a slap in the face.
How dare you waste my time with anything less than your very best.

I make kids sit through 40 minutes of study hall in absolute silence. No, you may not work in groups.
No, you may not ask a question.
Why won't I let you get a drink of water?
Because you're not thirsty, you're bored, that's why.

I make parents tremble in fear when I call home:
I hope I haven't called at a bad time, I just wanted to talk to you about something Billy said today.
Billy said, "Leave the kid alone. I still cry sometimes, don't you?"
And it was the noblest act of courage I have ever seen.

I make parents see their children for who they are and what they can be.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids wonder,
I make them question.
I make them criticize.
I make them apologize and mean it.
I make them write, write, write.
And then I make them read.
I make them spell definitely beautiful, definitely beautiful, definitely beautiful over and over and over again until they will never misspell either one of those words again.
I make them show all their work in math.
And hide it on their final drafts in English.
I make them understand that if you got this (brains) then you follow this (heart) and if someone ever tries to judge you by what you make, you give them this (the finger).

Let me break it down for you, so you know what I say is true:
I make a goddamn difference! What about you?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 06 Jan 08 - 02:11 AM

Google search on Taylor Mali

an amazing poem & man

I'm sending it to a couple of teachers I know.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Dahlin
Date: 06 Jan 08 - 05:50 PM

Brett
    Great poem. Now your beginning to know why I spent 38 years in education. Congrats. on joining the ranks of us Grand-
Dads and Happy New Year.

Dick


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 06 Jan 08 - 06:51 PM

Thanks for posting that, Brett. My sisters will like it!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: SINSULL
Date: 06 Jan 08 - 07:18 PM

Welcome Sabra. I can't wait to see the pictures of baby and Grandpa and Grandma.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 07 Jan 08 - 08:50 AM

Micca's thread is catching you up Brett. Post more!

RtS


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 08 Jan 08 - 05:32 AM

OK, I will write about a weird cat. Our "kitten", Neko-chan, has decided she likes to play fetch. She will jump up on the bed with one of her toys, put it down and cry loudly until one of us throws it for her to chase. She leaps off the bed in a mad dash for the things, fights madly with it and then proudly carries it back to be thrown again.

For a while her favorite activity was to jump into the bathtub immediately after one of us finished a shower. She liked to watch the last of the water sluice down the floor of the tub. Now she has given up on that. Instead she has discovered the toilet bowl. She sits on the seat and dips her paw in the water. When she's done the seat is wet and muddy from the dirt on her paws (At least I HOPE it's dirt.) It's worse than living with a teenage boy.

God help us if she decides she's alone. She sits in the empty room and cries loudly until we either go in to her or call her from the other room.

Then there are the gekkoes. The two cats, Neko and Mama, are death for any gekko foolish enough to move down the walls within reach of the claws and teeth. What really frustrates the cats is the gekkoes on the outside of the windows. The lizards are only trying to catch moths attracted to the house lights. The cats watch and leap and scratch and race back and forth in their attempt to catch the little buggers. This is amusing when we are watching TV and the cats are across the room. It is somewhat less amusing when we are asleep and the cats use our heads to launch their attacks. And when they don't use our heads then they sit on the windowsill watching and lashing their tails back and forth smacking us with something that feels like an angry furry snake.

These cats have very long tails. Their tails are very active, much more so than any other cat I have known. Neko is a very strange cat. I've never known one like her before.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 08 Jan 08 - 06:30 AM

cats are funny people, aren't they.

I was hearing about a friend's pair today. One has fallen in love with the bloke next door & cos the bloke is also greeting the other one is now very jealous!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 17 Jan 08 - 03:43 AM

I have survived... so far.

On Monday I went to see Dr. Bollinger about the pain in my left knee. He gave me a shot of steroids in the joint. Yes, it WAS painful. And the knee hurt all evening.

On Tuesday morning I woke to a painless knee. I felt pretty chipper! I went off to work happy as a lark. Then, as the morning progressed, I felt worse and worse. By lunch time I had no interest in food and could barely keep my focus. Luckily the classes on Tuesday were finishing up watching the movies we'd started. I went straight home after work, even ignoring the fact that it was payday and I needed to pick up my check.

When Wakana came home she took me to the urgent care center and they decided that I had a prostrate infection. They gave me drugs and sent me home. I've been home ever since. I still feel crumby but I sure feel a lot better than Tuesday!

The knee still feels pretty good too.

Three day weekend coming up. We are looking forward to it. With the knee "fixed" I hope to get some good stuff done.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 18 Jan 08 - 07:41 PM

Feeling better but still low energy. Went to work yesterday. Funny thing. When I am between classes I feel crummy and have problems focusing. When I am in front of the students I forget everything else and just work with them. Occasionally I have realized that I need to pee just before a class starts. It's usually when it's too late to go. Then the kids arrive in the room and I forget about it until they leave and the feeling comes back! I've never done that before. Amazing!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 Jan 08 - 07:59 PM

Be careful doing that, Brett. We can push things to the back of our minds, but the old body will make us pay attention, eventually, and then we have to take care of it."-)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 20 Jan 08 - 07:55 AM

I haven't mentioned the iPod lately. I've been downloading podcasts like mad. According to the program I have about 2,563 podcasts downloaded by now with more coming in whenever I am not using the Internet connection for other things. I have a number of audio books, grammar and vocabulary programs, science programs, history programs, etc.

Today I bought a gadget that will let me listen to the podcasts over the stereo in my car as I drive. That solves a problem I've had since the radio began working again. There are no radio programs I want to listen to on the island.

As an example of some of the things I have been listening to here is a short list:

The Amazing Randi Show - James Randi is a professional magician who is also a founding member of the skeptic's society. In his podcast Randi talks about his association with such illustrious members of the skeptical society as Isaac Asimov and Richard Feynman. Randi was instrumental in getting Penn and Teller together. He has made an offer of $1,000,000 to any psychic who can demonstrate their ability under laboratory conditions. He loves to show the world how psychics really do their thing.

GLT's Uncommon Knowledge - A two minute program about various stories and subjects in science. For example, peeing on a jellyfish sting does NOT help it. In fact it may even make it worse.

Agatha Christie's Radio Mysteries – Old time radio mysteries by the grand dame. So far I've only been listening to Poirot.

Speaking of Sex – A podcast by the Washington Planned Parenthood discussing the ins and outs (not sorry about the pun) of sex in the modern age.

The Biography Podcast – Thumbnail depictions of the lives of famous people.

CBC Radio's Quirks and Quarks – New and reviews of science.

Dan Carlin's Hardcore History – History themes as covered by a very good storyteller. I still haven't decided whether this guy is worth listening to or not but he tells a good story and seems to have a bit of a reputation with historians. He is up front in stating he is not a trained historian.

Classic Books Alive – They just finished up Tom Sawyer. I don't know what will be next.

Classic Poetry Aloud – Poetry by Keats, Shelley, Byron, Shakespeare, Browning, etc., all read aloud in a pretentious English upper class accent.

Dictionary.com Word Exploration, Podictionary, Goodword from Alphadictionary, Just Vocabulary, Hot for Words, and Wordsmart Wordcast – All are podcasts giving the definitions, usage, and etymology of words. Hot for Words is a video podcast featuring the sexiest philologist you'll ever see.

A Way With Words and Word Nerds – Two programs that discuss the origins and use of various words and phrases. A Way With Words is a call in radio program.

This is just a taste of some of the things I have been listening to lately. There is a huge world out there.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Jan 08 - 02:22 AM

when you run out of podcasts, why not try some Australian programs

As you say, there is a huge world out there.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 21 Jan 08 - 06:15 AM

I'd love to! Clicky is loading as I type.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Jan 08 - 07:37 AM

sounds like you are addicted to collecting podcasts.

now all you have to do is LISTEN to them all.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 22 Jan 08 - 06:48 AM

And now, as the old Monte Python characters used to say, here's something completely different.

Long, long term readers may remember the burglary and fire and identity theft we went through back in the fall and winter of 2004. I'm not going to reiterate what happened. Let's just say it was a VERY bad time.

Today I went to a meeting with a postal investigator, a Secret Service Special Agent, and a U.S. Attorney. They have identified the criminal and are building their case. Mine is only the first episode of a dozen that they have evidence for. They got him... and it is who I thought it was way back in 2004.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 22 Jan 08 - 08:48 AM

wheels of justice grind slowly & surely, especially if a series of events keep piling on evidence.

or something like that.

I look forward to what comes into the public domain (without prejudicing legal procedures)

do you ever feel you are living in Interesting Times? Cats & kids settled down?

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 22 Jan 08 - 03:20 PM

Brett-

I wonder what the proper justice might entail. Do they still do drawing and quartering on the island?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 23 Jan 08 - 05:45 AM

Wakana has revealed a very interesting side of her personality. Once the trial is over we COULD sue him for monetary damages as well and pain and suffering. However, he has nothing and once he is in jail he will continue to own nothing for a long, long time. Such a law suit would be pointless. However, Wakana wants blood and she wants to sue him ASAP.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 23 Jan 08 - 05:52 PM

only winners will be lawyers.

But revenge thoughts are fun - when I was working on the Telephone Enquiry Service it was a wonderful sense of power to put my finger over the hang-up button if the caller was a pain in the bum. I'd move my finger up & down over the button thinking 'I can hang up on you!!' I can only remember hanging up on 2 people in all those years, and they were nasty, but I had the power, little me, ohh what fun.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Jan 08 - 12:37 AM

On Friday morning Gordon stopped by. He told me that he needs to have his house back by May 1st. We have to move.

Today, Sunday, Wakana and I took a drive. We were looking for houses for sale. You cannot trust the newspaper or the Internet listings here in Guam. the only way to be sure is to hit the road. We found two good ones and one great one. I'm sure the great one is way too expensive for us. As I told Wakana house hunting is fun and exciting until you find the perfect house and it turns out to be too expensive.

But one of the good ones has a large yard and a second building with a covered patio that would make a perfect workshop. Sigh, I'm in love...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Jan 08 - 01:10 AM

Good luck with that, Brett!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 27 Jan 08 - 11:14 AM

Brett and Wakana-

Beware the long winding driveway. They're a real challenge to keep plowed in the winter.

An be sure that the roof is steeply pitched so you don't have to climb up there to shovel the snow off.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble, thinking of you while wintering in Maine


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 01:55 AM

Actually there are not too many pitched roofs here. But sometimes, as my car is climbing a very steep slope the thought crosses my mind that the road would be a bear in winter... completely forgetting that it is January.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 03 Feb 08 - 03:35 AM

Today Wakana and I found the house we hope to buy. It lies near the end of a narrow lane with two other houses. Beyond it is a farmer's field full of eggplant. The other two houses belong to a member of the current government and a fire fighter. Other people in the area include the principal of one of the local high schools and a cop. The wives of two of the men we spoke to there are also teachers.

It's a very quiet area. In the distance I could hear roosters crowing. I think the farmer has fighting cocks. The owner's brother was there mowing the lawn. He let us into the house. It is wonderful. It's been recently renovated. There are three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a nice large living room/kitchen/dining area. It has a carport. There is a large lawn in the back with a stand of betelnut trees and an old shed. They want $158,000 for it.

This is one of the lowest prices we've seen so far. The market is definitely a seller's market because everyone is getting ready for the military to expand when they send the Marines here from Japan in 2012.

After we looked at that we ran down to Jeff's Pirates Cove for lunch. We sat in the open restaurant/bar looking out at the Pacific. The surf is pretty rough today which made for a spectacular view. there were two kite skiers racing back and forth across the lagoon. We talked about the house and the fact that we were sitting in shorts and t-shirts on a warm February morning while our families in Maine and Tochigi were freezing their butts off and stumbling through the snow. I kept thinking that it would take quite a strenuous argument to get me to move off this tropical island.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 03 Feb 08 - 03:50 AM

Sounds lovely!!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 03 Feb 08 - 12:50 PM

It does sound like a good deal, and the mortgage interest rates should be quite good now for a fixed-term mortgage. Go for it!

Maybe it's time that you retired this thread and started a new one "Re-Thinking about Staying in Guam."

Hey, Maine ain't so bad. Next week the temperature is expected to rise to 50 F. and it's just the beginning of February. T-shirt weather!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 03 Feb 08 - 05:33 PM

Yes, Charley, but that is just the regular thaw for this time of year. It is Old Man Winter's trick. He gets you thinking about spring and then hits you with another two and a half months of cold and snow and ice. Yesterday we sat in a warm breeze sipping iced tea and watch the Pacific swells break on the reef. There was a slatting sound from the coconut palms. We were warm and comfortable and happy. The sun was bright and hot but we were in the shade. Not too shabby.

Once we get settled you and Judy should come for a visit. We can sit under the carport and share music and enjoy swatting what these people call mosquitoes. The local mosquitoes are no real threat. A near miss makes them faint.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 03 Feb 08 - 11:58 PM

my post disappeared! I also suggested a new thread, but I also asked what prices were before the seller's market.

I think the only folks in Oz who would pay under $200,000 for a home would not live in any large city!

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 04 Feb 08 - 04:20 AM

We got real lucky on this house. It is about as far from the Navy and Air Force bases as you can get. Access to the area is tricky and not contemplated by anyone who will not make a life on the island. Not only do you have to find the village of Talofofo but then you have to drive down a narrow lane through the bush to find the house.

This house is one of the cheapest on the list of houses our realtor gave us. However it is very good condition. It was recently renovated, has tile floors throughout, nice kitchen cabinets, Ceiling fans in every room (including the bathrooms), lots of closets, and a lovely large back yard full of betelnut trees.

There are down sides to it, however. The bedrooms tend to be small, there are trees in the way if I want to get a vehicle into the back yard, and there is limited parking. These are not great difficulties.

Sandra From Sydney suggested I send pictures of my new grandchild to Joe to have them put up on the site. How do I do that?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 Feb 08 - 08:09 AM

Brett-

Send me a sketch of the current floor plan via e-mail. I've never seen a wall that couldn't be removed. Of course, some of them are load-bearing but what the heck, you'll get a great view of the sky.

Charley Noble, the mad renovator


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 04 Feb 08 - 03:09 PM

Send it to joe (at) mudcat (dot) org, Brett and he can put it up on the Mudcat pages at myopera.com.

Can't wait to see her!!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 07 Feb 08 - 01:52 AM

Trouble in Paradise!

We got home today to find the Mama Kitty missing. Wakana is in tears and I'm damn close to tears. The kitten, Neko, wanders around the house calling and calling. Each poignant cry is like an arrow in the heart. I hope she comes home again.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 07 Feb 08 - 04:16 AM

Oh, no! Come home, Mama Kitty, come home! (Was she pregnant? Maybe wandered off to have a litter?)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 07 Feb 08 - 09:03 AM

Here's some more hope!

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 08 Feb 08 - 07:05 AM

She came home. Poor Wakana was up and down several times thinking she heard a cry at the door. Finally her luck came through and Mama was there. Wakana's tears of relief were much more intense than her anxiety over the lost cat.

The reason she was so concerned was that she had noticed that Mama Kitty was not feeling well and had decided to take her to the vet when she came home from work. She has some kind of wound on her side. So when the cat did not show up it was the next logical step to think she had crawled off to die somewhere.

All is well at the Burnham home tonight except that I have a sore throat. I'm off to take some Nyquil and try to get some sleep.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: maeve
Date: 08 Feb 08 - 07:19 AM

Home again; Huzzah!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 08 Feb 08 - 07:20 AM

good to know Mama Kitty's back safe & relatively sound

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 09 Feb 08 - 10:11 PM

We got one of THOSE early morning phone calls today. Apparently my uncle killed himself. His adult children found him in his home. He'd been dead about four days.

I was never close to him, not many in the family were, but it still comes as a shock. He was a great story teller but quite a misanthrope. We don't know what drove him to it.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 09 Feb 08 - 10:44 PM

OH, I was just reading about Mama Kitty coming home, then on to your other news. Sorry to hear that about your uncle, Brett. I had an uncle who did the same...we think it was the physical and mental pain from WWII which drove him to it. He was a very talented man well-loved. Hard to understand any of that.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 10 Feb 08 - 08:59 AM

Our relationship with Uncle Gary was complicated. He was one of those relatives you hoped would not show up for a family function but then you missed him if he didn't. He told great stories and was a towering intellect but had very few social skills. He was just as likely to lash out at you verbally as treat you with tolerance. He had little tolerance for me and I had little for him. Still, it seems to be the end of an era.

Gary is the first of Mom and Dad's generation to go (in our family). I'm sure this has to put a greater sense of mortality into my mother and my other uncle. I need to call Mom tomorrow before I go to work to see how she's doing.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 16 Feb 08 - 05:49 AM

Today we officially made an offer on the house. The owner wants $158,000 and we offered $150,000. We also asked for a number of stipulations such as cleaning out the bottles, packages, and cans with unknown fluids and materials in them, pumping the septic tank, replacing the front door that is delaminating, and getting the electrical system up to code. We have to wait until the 25th to hear about their response. They are off-island and our realtor is headed off-island for a vacation.

Wakana and I went to Hoa Mai for dinner. It is a little place we enjoy down in Agat. They know us very well. When we walked in the waitress walked out with menus and then guessed, "Fresh lumpia, chicken penang, and honey walnut shrimp." It was a good guess. The only thing she left out was the iced tea. Wakana loves the penang but only if the waitress' mother makes it. (It's a family run business with the mother and her three daughters working there all the time. They also have two guys doing the cooking and cleaning.) We always check to make sure she is there before she orders it. Tonight they brought her a little bowl of eggplant penang to try. She liked that too.

We are worried that we will not have a good little restaurant to go to once we move to Talofofo. While this island is not very big it is still a ten mile run (one way) to get back to Hoa Mai. Sigh.

Last Tuesday I had to endure an observation by the principal at work. During my sixth block the principal came in quietly and seated herself in the back row near the door. The classroom had been a little noisy before she arrived but suddenly you could have heard a pin drop.

We were just starting the unit on poetry. I had asked the kids to bring in poems to share with the class. All went well until one of the students in the corner read a poem about a poor abused girl who killed herself by the end of the poem. A little while later her neighbor recited a poem about a girl who defied her parents and went out to a party. She winds up in a car accident and dies in the emergency room. The other two people in that corner also read poems that were dark though not that bad. It was like there was a cloud over those students.

And, of course, the boss was sitting there observing my reactions and comments. I hope I did OK. I asked the first girl if she knew anyone who was being abused. She acknowledged that she did. Then I suggested she see the school counselor to get information to give to the abused person.

On Friday I introduced the kids to the idea of setting old poems to music. I played Loreena Mckinnett's 'Stolen Child' (Yeats) and John Roberts and Tony Barrand doing 'Danny Deever' (Kipling). These two songs are in the text book so I could have them turn to the pages and follow along. I also had them Listen to Loreena Mckinnett singing 'The Highwayman' (Noyes) and our own Charley Noble doing 'Shanghai Brown' (Smith). They liked 'The Highwayman' but didn't get the other one.

I could see some of the kids singing along when they had the words in front of them. That was a cool sight.

It's funny but sophomores are all emotion. The poems they write (almost the only writing they are willing to do) are all raw emotion. I had forgotten what it is like to be that young. And they are so easily bored. So far the assignments have included Emily Dickinson's 'Success is Counted Sweetest' and 'I Dwell in Possibility', and Robert Frost's 'Mowing' and 'Apple-Picking'. None of these are long poems but they claim to hate the assignments. Still, they are doing the homework which is unusual.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 16 Feb 08 - 10:15 AM

Brett-

Please to hear the offer has been made with practical stipulations.

"Shanghai Brown" is not an easy song to figure out for the current younger generation. Maybe you need to serve up a very special batch of grog to the students before singing it, and then ship them out on some three-skys'l yarder bound for the Horn. Of course, your principal would probably choose that moment to drop in as well. She could be shipped out as well!

Oh, and check out the latest C. Fox Smith ballad I've worked up, the "News in Daly's Bar;" it's on my website: Click here and search for MP3 Sample!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 19 Feb 08 - 08:26 PM

Shipping out some of these students would be a great idea. I don't want to lose this principal though. She's too good a boss, the best I've ever worked for.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 23 Feb 08 - 05:35 AM

Wear a hard hat when you go out, Brett & Wakana: it's raining stealth bombers!

RtS


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST,Kelli
Date: 23 Feb 08 - 06:19 PM

Luke wants to know if you can get him a piece of the wreckage.

;)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 26 Feb 08 - 06:20 AM

Sorry Luke, but the crash happened in an area I cannot get to. Not that it matters. I suppose I could bring you any piece of twisted burned metal and you'd have to believe me that it came from the plane. In the Houlton Museum they have a piece of the Hindenburg that some town citizen picked up in New Jersey. Who knows if it is or not?

The owners of the house made a counter offer which was very acceptable to us and we accepted. We're buying a house! If you can use Google Earth you will see it at the coordinates below.

13°21'55.68"N
144°45'25.70"E


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 26 Feb 08 - 09:23 AM

Brett-

Great news!

I was able to dive in on your new neighborhood but I'm not sure which house is to be yours. You may need to send me a sketch map via regular e-mail.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 26 Feb 08 - 10:15 AM

Does it have a road address? If so, Google Maps might be abkle to give yout he sketch.

One tenth of a second in latitude resolves to about 2.6 meters, I believe. So if you went there and yelled, Charley, Brett should be able to pop out and steer you in by hand.


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 26 Feb 08 - 11:24 AM

Congratulations!!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 05:10 AM

There are three roofs in the area. Ours is the gray one which means it needed water blasting when the picture was taken. Probably still does. We'll water blast it and paint it with a good sealant. I think the address is 63 Bejamin Taimanglo street. I'll bet it doesn't show up on any on-line map!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 08:05 AM

Congrats Brett
Now for a title change to this thread.
"I think I'm staying in Guam".

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 06:19 AM

Yeah, this weekend I'll start another continuation thread.

Today we (the teachers and staff) had to take a test. None of us had a clue what the test was all about. We assembled in the cafeteria after classes and they passed out pencils and a bubble answer sheet. Next came a very professional test booklet. The test was an effort to evaluate our knowledge of the Catholic Church and religious teachings. Not being Catholic, or even religious, I spent a lot of time guessing at the answers. Naturally I was finished quite quickly.

Before we started the principal and the assistant principal had a message. They said all we had to do was stomp our foot and they would give us the answers. If we stamped five times they would answer number 5 with a gesture that would tell us which letter was the correct answer. They had it all worked out like a skit and were very funny. Of course, I couldn't help myself. About fifteen minutes into the test I stomped my foot five times. That got everyone to laugh including the Principal who nearly rolled off her chair.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 02:36 PM

Ever see the horse at the circus that could count up to 10. The horse wasn't christan either.

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: skarpi
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 02:38 PM

400


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 03:09 PM

ALthough Google Maps is useless for Guam, Google Earth has a fine aerial uiimage of your roof, just down from a large field and about 1.19 miles from the water's edge east of the house.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 03:35 PM

That large field is now planted with eggplant. And though we are 1.19 miles from the ocean as the Marianas Crow flies it is a much longer run by car.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 04:11 PM

YEah, well, who would trust an old crow, anyway?


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 07:23 PM

Brett-

Why not make a large "X" on your roof just so we could be sure which house will be yours?

Oh, I forgot that the imagery for Goggle Earth is necessarily up to date in real time. Someday!

The imagery for our old farm on Georgetown Island is at least three years out of date. I haven't quite pinned it down by construction projects that I'm aware of.

Tomrrow night we're going to have subzero temperatures again. Light a candle for us while you are sipping your Singapore Slings.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 01:09 AM

I use Google Maps a lot & thought it was just me when I couldn't get any images of Guam apart from a dot in the ocean. I assume it's cos the military have a presence?

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST,NY
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 10:18 AM

Hi-
I jumped in since this thread was hit on my goole.

I need some information about Guam's Liberal Academy where my mother is going to attend in March.
My father sent me email if the school really exists as he faced financial fraud case with the Japanese agency.

I skimmed a bit, but didn't go through all the history as it's very long.
If anyone could provide ANY information about this school, please post it. I'd highly appreciate your attention.

Thanks,
A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 Mar 08 - 05:42 PM

My wife and I worked for Liberal Academy. It is a real school but not very good (since we left). They only teach Japanese and English as a Second Language. If your mother is looking for a decent education in English she should look at the English Language Institute at the University of Guam. That is where my wife learned most of her English.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 07:16 AM

I have been hit with a virus. My hard drive tells me it's full though it was only half full the other day. I cannot access it to see what is on it. I don't know if the computer can hold out.

Wish me luck.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 08:15 AM

fingers crossed.

have you got help in battling this nasty virus?

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 14 Mar 08 - 10:41 PM

Hopefully our hero's computer has recovered from its virus by now. Compared to what's been happening in the rest of the world, it would be refreshing to get an update on Guam.

Hey, little plants are beginning to poke up through the glacier here in Maine.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 24 Mar 08 - 12:23 AM

I'm back. The computer is still not 100% and the hard drive may collapse any minute now but I can use the Internet again.

We've been on our Easter break. We go back to school tomorrow. Ugh! It's our last quarter but in literature we will be studying drama and that should be fun. The book has Antigone and Julius Caesar in it. I'd like to show them some other plays as well but I don't know what the time frame will allow.

I heard something interesting on This American Life today. I was listening to it as a podcast. They had a show titled Testosterone. Part of the show was an interview with a man who had started out as a woman. He described his old self as a bull dyke feminist. Then he started the testosterone treatments and he suddenly realized why all men are jerks. He described all sorts of changes in his behavior and attitudes. It was a very educational show. Check it out.

We aren't any closer to getting into our new house. The VA needed my old case files because they couldn't confirm my qualifications. Of course a lot of my paperwork was burned in the fire but I managed to find my purchase documents for the house in Bath (Maine). The bank forwarded them to the VA and now we wait... and pack. The bank suggested we get a thirty day extension on our agreement with the sellers.

While driving home today I had a new experience. Just before I reached the ACE hardware store my driver's side rear tire blew out with a loud BANG! That was exciting. I pulled into the parking lot and changed the tire but the old one is shredded. I've had plenty of flats but never a blowout.

I'm hungry. It's 2:22 PM here and I haven't eaten since breakfast. Enjoy!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 24 Mar 08 - 08:08 AM

Brett-

Glad to have you back on the forum.

The sap is running here in Maine, and I'm not referring to political candidates.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 24 Mar 08 - 01:49 PM

Great to hear from you, Brett! You've been missed.

Good luck on the house thing...the wheels may move slowly, but they do move, believe me. We went through the VA thingie, too.

All the best,

kat


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: GUEST,Brett
Date: 24 Mar 08 - 06:23 PM

My announcement wass premature. Now my computer is totally dead and the computer in my classroom has followed suit. Sigh. Wish me luck.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 24 Mar 08 - 09:50 PM

Oh dear! And we were hoping for an update on the chicken flock and the cat pack. We may have to fantasize.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 25 Mar 08 - 05:31 AM

bummer. dead computers cost money (& time!)

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Apr 08 - 02:56 AM

I'm definitely back! It cost $255 and took forever but I have computer back and it is fine. It's better than fine. I had the memory increased and added a second hard drive.

Cats are fine. Wakana is too. We are packing and preparing to move once we close on the house. The next two weeks will be pretty hectic. There is a lot to do.

You should see this place. We are not all that neat anyway but now every room has been reduced to footpaths and there are only two narrow places left on the couch in the living room. We are piling boxes there. The books shelves are emptying and the pile of boxes is growing. Neko, the younger cat, has a great time exploring the changed configuration in the house. Mama, of course, spends her days outdoors and only comes in to eat and sleep in the evening.

At school we are studying drama now. I will be showing them plays on video as well as having them read the required curriculum. They are pretty bored with the whole thing. They can't see how it affects their lives and they want nothing to do with the subject. I think I need a better idea.

One course of action is to explain that there are plenty of boring activities that seem to have no purpose in their futures. That will get me exactly nowhere. At fifteen kids don't care about their future. I need them to look at what they see everyday with a more critical eye.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 05 Apr 08 - 04:22 AM

welcome back!

cats loooove boxes - could be fun if you lose a cat & pile other boxes on top & ...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 05 Apr 08 - 04:37 PM

Welcome back!! Happy moving and thanks for checking in!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 05 Apr 08 - 09:19 PM

Brett-

There's hope for Maine. The winter glaciers are melting, and little flowers are sticking their heads up through the mud and ice.

Great to have you back on line.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 07 Apr 08 - 04:16 AM

I spent the weekend putting things into boxes. I filled seven boxes with books to donate to the Notre Dame library. The arrival overwhelmed the librarian. I warned her that there were more on the way.

And... (I hope you are sitting down) I threw away a bunch of books too!

Today I ordered a dumpster for the house. They'll deliver it tomorrow. I have three bags of trash in my office. And you should not make the mistake to think they are trash bags.

You see, the local hardware store made a mistake. They either ordered, or had sent to them by mistake, a bunch of big paper bags to use for leaf disposal. Well, in Guam we do not have to worry about leaf disposal so they were selling them at $1.00 per bundle, 3 bags in a bundle. I bought 3 bundles. These things are huge, they stand on their own, and they are easy to move.

At school we were studying the legend of King Arthur. To cap it off we watched the latest movie about him so I have now seen that movie four times in the last two weeks. I think I've had enough of it.

I set a challenge for the kids. I told them to assume the movies was a 100% accurate picture of where Arthur came from. With that as the starting place I wanted them to imagine how that story became the legend we know today. Well, I thought it was a great assignment. But they didn't. They whined about not knowing the legend, about not being able to understand the assignment, about anything and everything without doing the assignment. Sigh. This generation is doomed.

Well, I guess I better fill some more boxes.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 07 Apr 08 - 09:01 AM

Brett-

After mulling over your post:

I'm wondering if there's any truth to the rumor that Merlin's cave was actually a self-storage unit for King Arthur and Queen Guinevere?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 07 Apr 08 - 03:25 PM

Good one, Charley!

Brett, you should hop over onto the Accountability - Heave Ho thread. You've got us all beat, I think, in clearing out clutter! I actually threw two books away this past week. First time I think I've ever done that. Felt awful for a few minutes. I also ripped out some colour plates and illustrations from a couple of old ones nobody wanted. I am going to frame them for my grandson's bedroom.

Would the kids be interested in putting on their own production? What about West Side Story? Would they be able to relate to that one better do you think? What tales do they know of in their culture that might be like King Arthur, in myth etc, I mean, that they could track down through the generations? just some thoughts...you've probably already had the same ones.:-)

kat


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 07 Apr 08 - 05:02 PM

When we talked of myth and legend and the differences between them I had them think about the stories they grew up with in Guam. There are a number of stories that I call the Chief Stories, tales of great feats by various of the old chiefs of Guam. There is the tale of the first mermaid, Serena. There is the tale of the two lovers who leaped to their deaths rather than be separated.

We discussed these and a few others and tried to categorize them into either myth or legend. It was a fun class.

As for performance, well, let's just say I am going to have my hands full getting the kids to read the plays let alone memorize anything.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 07 Apr 08 - 06:12 PM

W-e-l-l...maybe active reading, i.e. they act it out while reading the script?**bg** You are a GREAT teacher, Brett!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 08 Apr 08 - 01:59 AM

We got into a great discussion today. One of the kids quoted the time worn comment, "Why should we study this, I'll never use it."

Brett: What are you going to be doing in 10 years?

Kid: I want to be a radiologist.

That doesn't answer my question. What are you going to be doing in 10 years?

Kid: I don't know.

Brett: Then how do you know which subject you learn here will help you then?

Kid: Oh.

Brett: I use geometry and algebra all the time in my carpentry work.

Kid: I'm not going to be a carpenter.

Brett: How do you know that? You just told me that you don't know what you'll be doing in ten years. Suppose a carpentry job is all that's available?

At that point the kid conceded that maybe she might need some of this stuff after all.

Another conversation from today.

Kid: College is expensive.

Brett: There are ways to reduce the expense.

Kid: How?

Brett: You start with good grades.

Kid: Ugh!

Sigh, these kids have no interest. They are smart kids but they cannot be prodded into doing the work.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 08 Apr 08 - 08:43 PM

Brett-

You will be encouraging some to move beyond the current expectations. And some of them may even thank you afterwards but that is even more rare.

A few will just be cruelly frustrated, and you'll remember them too.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 17 Apr 08 - 04:52 AM

We've been jerked around a lot in the last few weeks. It turns out the hold up was by the appraiser who took two weeks to look at the house and then never uploaded the appraisal to the VA so they could give the bank the thumbs up. Now we are running out of time and hope to close on the house tomorrow or Saturday. We are getting antsy. I'd like to get things moving if you'll pardon the pun.

Today I started showing my kids the stage play Sweeney Todd. They all agitated for the movie starring Johnny Dep but I squashed that. The purpose for watching the play is to get some experience with a big performance on a live stage. They don't need to see another movie.

Of course the play is a little rough. Keep in mind they cut an hour out of it, reduced the sexual side of it to a washed out depiction of a rape and tossed out all the bad language. The poor beggar woman in the movie just hangs around and has little to contribute. In the play she is always wandering on stage and quite often solicits the men in quite vulgar fashion. ("How'd ya like to split me muff, dear?") Consequently I required the kids to provide a permission slip from their parents. Those who didn't bring it in had to spend the class in the library. There was a frantic rush at the beginning of class with kids phoning parents to ask to have the slip or a note faxed in to the school.

They weren't all that hot to actually watch the play. After all, no Johnny Dep. However, the end of class caught them by surprise and they groaned about having to turn it off. They were getting into it. We had fun.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 17 Apr 08 - 10:02 AM

hate something before you see/hear/eat/meet it & actually like it when you are forced to see/hear/eat/meet it!

what are you going to do next to stretch their comfortable little world?

sandra


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 17 Apr 08 - 03:57 PM

I'm working on it. My latest trick has been to ask them what they'll be doing in ten years. Most of them have no answer to that. When they admit they don't know I ask them how can they know now what they need and don't need from their high school education.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 18 Apr 08 - 12:42 PM

keep up the good work!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 18 Apr 08 - 05:20 PM

We bought a house!

Yesterday I got a call around lunchtime asking me if I could be at the bank later in the afternoon. At 4:00 we closed the deal and now we own an empty house with a nice big yard and lots of fruit trees.

Now comes the hard part. Moving all these boxes in there and opening them up.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 18 Apr 08 - 08:41 PM

Hooray, have you packed the cats?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 Apr 08 - 10:33 PM

Congratulations!!! Whoo-hoo, it's gonna be so much fun!!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 20 Apr 08 - 12:42 AM

It's Sunday afternoon and I am exhausted. God, I hope this doesn't go on much longer...


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 20 Apr 08 - 03:38 AM

Now you're definitely gonna have to change the thread title: Homeowner on Guam; Comfortably settled in Guam; Beating the Sub-Prime Market on Guam...


RtS
(I'll get me sunhat...)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 20 Apr 08 - 07:56 AM

Brett-

Maybe you should consider leaving behind that big crate of rocks that I packed for your shipping crate when you were departing from Maine.

Gee, I almost wish I could help you move but it's probably out of the question.

It will get better!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble, safe in Maine


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Barry Finn
Date: 20 Apr 08 - 09:42 AM

The title change is overdue.

We'll all be over for the party,,,,,,,,,after you're done moving in

Good Luck in the new home.

Barry


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Amos
Date: 20 Apr 08 - 06:53 PM

WoahHOO!! Party at Brett's Retreat!! No classes Monday and the cops are boughten. Git down, brotha's -- a different kind of music piping out of these new digs...


A


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Naemanson
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 06:23 PM

You are all welcome whenever you think you can make it. Just $2,000 and thirty hours on a jet and all this can be yours!

My dad says he'll come visit when he can go by train. The idea of being packed into a plane for all those hours seems to bother him.

My mother won't even entertain the idea. She doesn't mind the plane. She hates the heat, bugs, and snakes. It doesn't matter that we rarely see a snake, the cockroaches don't come into play because the geckoes (sp?) eat them when they are young, and we do have air conditioning. Sigh. She has always gone to visit my siblings when THEY bought new houses... Grumble. grumble, gripe, gripe.

Today they are supposed to deliver the refrigerator and stove.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam.
From: Charley Noble
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 10:17 PM

It does get better!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble, safe in Maine where nothing moves!


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam. Nah, bought a hou
From: open mike
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 11:57 PM

Congrats. Happy house warming.
Glad you have an air conditioner.
My daughter is engaged to a Chimoro
and may come to the island some day.
His family is from Guam, and visits
occasionally. Know any of the Funes
clan over there?


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam. Nah, bought a house!
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 12:50 AM

My mother won't even entertain the idea. She doesn't mind the plane. She hates the heat, bugs, and snakes. It doesn't matter that we rarely see a snake, the cockroaches don't come into play because the geckoes (sp?) eat them when they are young, and we do have air conditioning. Sigh. She has always gone to visit my siblings when THEY bought new houses... Grumble. grumble, gripe, gripe.

My Mom felt the same way about Texas! What did I do to get her to finally come visit?

Had a baby. And then another. ;-D

SRS (slinks out of the room after catching up on the Guam news!)


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam. Nah, bought a house!
From: SINSULL
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 02:27 PM

Congratulatiions, Wakana and Brett! You're home now.
Love,
Mary


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam. Nah, bought a house!
From: Naemanson
Date: 01 May 08 - 09:51 PM

Still no internet at home. I'm in the teacher's room at lunchtime. A group is talking at the table behind me.

We have finished the move at last... more or less. There are still some items outside. Got to get them moved out this weekend.

There's the bell. Gotta get to class.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam. Nah, bought a hou
From: Charley Noble
Date: 02 May 08 - 09:27 PM

Hey, Brett, school should be over in a few weeks.

Have you and Wakana given any thought to relaxing?

Not a bad concept after a major move, and major job shifts.

We do need some advance warning if you're planning to revisit Maine. The cottage is availabe in any month except August.

Kat Logan is celebrating her 50th birthday this weekend with a song party, and commemorating her engagement to a very mellow guitar/banjo player.

Cheerily.
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam. Nah, bought a hou
From: Naemanson
Date: 11 May 08 - 02:56 AM

I'm back on line! The computer's fixed, we've finished moving into the new house, and we finally got the cable connected. We are in business again.

We really like this house. It's comfortable. The yard is large and that is rare in Guam. We are near the end of a dead end road, just beyond the end of the pavement. There is only one farmer who lives farther down from us. So it is quiet here.

There was a little trouble with the neighbor's dogs barking at us and annoying the cats but my slingshot soon ended that. Now the cats come and go as they please. The dogs spend their time on the other side of the houses. Neko finds endless pleasure in bringing lizards, geckos, and grasshoppers into the house so she can slowly murder them in air conditioned comfort. Wakana refuses to close the door firmly so the cats have found they only need to push on it and it opens for them. Sigh.

Neko is a very strange cat. She talks as she walks. She isn't asking for anything. She doesn't want to be held. There is no shortage of food in her life. She just meows continually... all night long... as she walks on us... when we're trying to sleep. I have thought of inviting the dogs back over for a game of tag with her. Neko doesn't want to sit with us on the couch, won't let us hold her for any length of time, and doesn't do any of the other things a cat likes to do with people. She loves to play with me but she plays too rough for me to risk my flesh and blood. I use a stick.

The Mama on the other hand follows Wakana around like a puppy. She goes out and comes in several times in the morning as we prepare for work but when we leave she insists on being outside for the day. She disappears into the brush and only comes out after the sun has set.

Neko runs in a panic to the door when she sees us getting ready to lock it. Being stuck outside for the day rates very low on her list of priorities.

I told Wakana that the cats treat her like a god. I don't rate with them. The best I can hope for is for them to see me as some kind of emergency backup god. I provide food when she isn't home and I open the doors for them. Other than that I am just in the way.


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Subject: RE: Thinking about leaving Guam. Nah, bought a hou
From: Naemanson
Date: 11 May 08 - 03:22 AM

At the request of many I have started a new thread, Settling in Guam. Please go there for more boring stories.


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