By Frank Sharp, Lawrenceville, Ga. | On December 31, we caught the American Airlines Boeing 747 to Los Angeles, then had the 15-hour flight to Australia. We saved $500 per ticket by buying them on this day rather than another day, probably because of the University of Georgia being in Rose Bowl the next day.
Once at Sydney, we had three days with so much to see in Sydney before boarding the cruise ship. We took the subway to the Promenade by the coast to see the greatest example of 20th century architecture, in modern expressionism, the Sydney Opera House, designed to look like a sailing ship with bellowing sails. It took 14 years to build and the architect, Dutchman Jorn Utzon, resigned before the building was completed in 1973.
The building sits out on a peninsula near the historic steel Sydney Harbor Bridge, built during the Great Depression. The bridge was built by 1,400 workers of which 16 were killed in accidents.
The temperature was in the 70s, since they are in their summer season, opposite to us in the Northern Hemisphere. Surprisingly, unlike Atlanta they have little pollution problems, so the air was clean and my head was as clear as a bell during our 14-day stay here "Down Under" in this paradise for allergy suffers!
Australia is the driest and flattest of the continents. For instance, there is a railroad track of about 350 miles that has not one curve in it. Australia depends heavily on exports of its farms with meat and dairy products. They got a big boost by the invention of the refrigerated ships in the 1880s.
We visited the world class Taronga Zoo Sydney, which has over 2,000 animals. Australia has unique animal and plant life not found anywhere else in the world. Their coat of arms features a kangaroo and Emu on its face.
We boarded our ship, the Norwegian Jewel bound for Melbourne. We choose the Botanical Gardens land excursion option to see Captain James Cook's cottage owned by his parents where he stayed when not at sea.
Next the cruise ship
took two days to sail to New Zealand. We visited several ports there and
enjoyed seeing the country's wonderful landscapes with its many waterfalls
and fiords, like Norway.
The young lady who now is prime minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, just recently had a baby. She, wittily said in an interview, that she was multifunctional!
Afterwards, we made
a walking tour of the rebuilt city of Napier, constructed in the world-wide
fashion of Art Deco that was the raging style between the World Wars.
It was advocated by Architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Many of the houses cost
a million dollars or more each to build. We were lucky in having a guide
very knowledgeable in architecture. It was a great trip!
By Elliott Brack, editor and publisher | You've heard the phrase that something can "turn on a dime?"
It's used to refer to a maneuver that can be performed by a moving vehicle or person within a small area or short distance, like turning a boat "on a dime."
Well, matters can turn on a nickel, too.
We cite no one less than Jordan Shenefield of Lilburn. Speaking to a Rotary Club recently, the Lilburn resident remembered when he was a student at Susquehanna College at Selinsgrove, in Central Pennsylvania.
Looking for a summer job, with some adventure in it, he applied at Glacier National Park, and to be safe, also at Yellowstone Park.
Wow! Two beautiful areas. Either of the two parks would provide a great summer.
Then he learned that the job at Glacier Park paid $1.10 an hour back in those days, and the job at Yellowstone Park paid $1.15 an hour. It doesn't take much math to figure out which one he took.
"And a nickel changed my life," Jordan says.
You see another person getting a job at Yellowstone was this co-ed from the University of Alabama. That's how he met Susan McCullough, of Birmingham, Ala. Eighteen months later, they were married. They are now residents (for most of the year) in Lilburn. Both are now retired.
Guess what they have done for the last two summers? They've been working at Old Faithful Inn at Yellowstone the first year, and at Grand Canyon National Park last year. They enjoyed the work. Jordan has worked as a tour bus driver operator, taking visitors around the park, and giving them much of the lore of the park as he drives. Susan worked in the gift shop at Old Faithful Inn, and at Hopi House, where there are native arts and crafts. The Shenefields now have been married 45 years and have two daughters and five grandsons. They have lived in Gwinnett since 1986.
They enjoy working at National Parks in the summer now, and next year will be with the park service concessionaire at Denali National Park in Alaska.
That's how two lives turned on a nickel!
NEW SUBJECT: One of our favorite members of the musical community is American composer, pianist, and bandleader Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington, born April 29, 1899 in Washington, D.C. Both of Ellington's parents were pianists, and though he hoped as a child to become a baseball player, Ellington was destined to follow in their footsteps. He led his orchestra from 1923 to his death in 1974.
Ellington considered his band as a musical laboratory, experimenting with many different styles, everything from swing to bop. He said, "Playing 'bop' is like playing Scrabble with all the vowels missing." He went on to compose jazz standards like "Mood Indigo" (1930). In his later career, he composed longer works such as Black, Brown and Beige (1943), a musical portrayal of African-American history.
In 1965, when he was 66 years old, he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for music, but he was passed over. When reporters asked him if he was disappointed, he said, "Fate's been kind to me. Fate doesn't want me to be famous too young."
He liked to tell
his band, "Let's not pout, gentlemen. It makes bad notes."
By Johnny Lawler
RESOLUTION AFFIRMING A COMMITMENT TO REASONABLENESS IN THE CONDUCT OF CITY* BUSINESS
public spiritedness of our sponsors allows us to bring GwinnettForum.com
to you at no cost to readers. Today's featured sponsor is MTI Baths
Inc. of Sugar Hill. MTI Baths is a manufacturer of high-quality acrylic
and engineered solid surface bath products, including whirlpools, air
and soaking baths; lavatories; shower bases; and kitchen sinks. MTI's
patented Fill-Flush® and Simple Touch® whirlpool cleaning systems
are the best on the market. MTI now offers engineered solid surface-counter
tops and sinks. Every product is custom-made to order and shipped within
seven business days. We are now operating in an additional manufacturing
plant of 38,000 square feet. CEO of the firm is Kathy Adams, while Russell
Adams is president.
Editor, the Forum:
Waters noted rightly that President Trump, through Attorney General Sessions,
rescinded DACA. However, as I listened to Sessions' speech, I did not
hear him say "last year." Additionally, Trump was not president
at any time in 2016, so he could not have ended it "last year,"
as Waters indicated in his quote.
The City of Lawrenceville
together with the Lawrenceville Housing Authority announces plans for
a new development project to replace existing housing with new multi-family
units. This public-private partnership, being designed and built by Richport
Properties, will yield a capital investment of around $4 million and includes
a complete redesign and build out of existing units on new property located
at Scenic Highway and Constitution Boulevard.
County offers 2 self-service kiosks to renew auto tags
Richard Steele announces the addition of two new self-service kiosks for
citizens to renew their tags on nights and on weekends. The kiosks are
located at the Lawrenceville tag office, 750 South Perry Street, and the
North Gwinnett tag office, 2735 Mall of Georgia Boulevard, in Buford.
Customers will be
able to renew their vehicle registrations and immediately receive current
decals for their license plates. Credit and debit cards accepted are Visa,
MasterCard, Discover and American Express. Processing fees apply and are
added to the total due.
Gwinnett Technical College has partnered once again with the AARP Foundation to offer free tax assistance and preparation for community members, faculty, staff and students. The service will be available starting February 1. For timing, call 770 962 7580.
Taxpayers wanting to take advantage of this service should bring all tax forms, W2s, Form1095, last year's return, government issued photo ID, Social Security cards for everyone on the return, and checkbook (necessary if you want automatic deposit or withdrawal.)
Clients will be seen on a first come, first served basis, within the set times provided. There is no charge for this assistance and users do not have to be an AARP member. No appointments are necessary.
Returns will be filed electronically. Volunteers go through a four-day training program and must pass IRS certification exams each year. In addition, each state and federal return is double-checked by a second certified tax counselor before it is filed electronically.
GGC students conduct project on gerontology at Beltline
Students in Georgia Gwinnett College's Human Development and Aging Services are conducting a project to assist aging and disability professionals of the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE). The purpose of the project is to experience the Atlanta Beltline from the perspective of individuals with a disability or age-related impairment.
Participants will wear goggles, use earplugs and travel the Beltline using crutches and wheelchairs to simulate an array of physical limitations as they maneuver throughout the Beltline. The project will result in a "photo voice" product presented to the AGHE that tells the story of those experiences using photography.
AGHE's design charrette committee will use that information to develop best practice implementation scenarios to help improve the Atlanta Beltline experience for older adults and individuals with disabilities.
This project is being coordinated by Dr. William Sweatman, part-time sociology faculty, as part of a course in GGC's newly launched bachelor of science degree program in human development and aging services.
ARC recognizes Suwanee by again citing it as a "Green Community"
The Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) has recognized the City of Suwanee for its efforts to lead the way to a greener Atlanta region by once again citing the city as a Green Community. The community was recertified at the bronze level through ARC's Green Communities program for their commitment to environmental stewardship and their leadership in sustainability practices.
City Planner Kylie
Adams is flanked by ARC Chairman Kerry Armstrong and Executive Director
Doug Hooker at the right. The city offers residents both enjoyment and
increased access to pedestrian and bicycle activity via Brushy Creek Greenway
Trail, which connects Stonecypher Road and Suwanee Dam Road.
by Karen J. Harris, Stone Mountain | Stories about sexual awakenings
with an underpinning of spirituality are somewhat rare and oftentimes
elusive in the message that is being conveyed. April Ayers Lawson's title,
The Virgin and other stories is no exception. In each of the five short
stories the protagonists are at a crossroads in understanding intimacy.
They are also either seeking peace from past traumas, establishing their
identity or are possessed with a curious daring. While several of the
stories are unsettling, the beauty of the writing, including the attention
to detail, description and the lyricism will keep the reader reading.
(Continued from previous edition)
For the next two years Brig. Gen. W.T. Wofford served with the Army of Northern Virginia. He led the Georgia brigade at Chancellorsville, Va., and Gettysburg, Penn., where his men fought in the assault through the Peach Orchard battlefield and defeated Union troops on the Wheatfield battlefield. They were forced to stop just before the newly formed Union line near Little Round Top. Wofford also saw action in 1864 during the Overland campaign in Virginia at the Battle of the Wilderness and in Spotsylvania. During the Battle of the Wilderness, Wofford helped plan and implement Lieutenant General James Longstreet's flank attack of the Union left. Wofford was injured in both of these engagements, hit once in the ribs and then in the breast; he returned home to Georgia to recuperate in July 1864. Although not fully recovered, he soon rejoined his regiment, but in October he fell from a horse and was again granted a leave of absence.
Wofford spent his leave in Murray County, at the home of his in-laws. Union troops occupied Cassville, where many homes, including his own, were burned. Slaves had fled, and deserters were looting the area. After Wofford recovered from his wounds at the end of 1864, he requested that the Eighteenth Georgia Brigade return to its home state. When Confederate general Robert E. Lee declined to grant his request, Georgia governor Joseph E. Brown asked that Wofford not return to his brigade but instead assume command of the Department of North Georgia. Charged with defending Georgians from rogue forces and guerrilla attacks, Wofford rounded up stragglers, deserters, and any available men in north Georgia to strengthen his forces. He held this position from January until his formal surrender to Union general James Steedman at Kingston, in Bartow County, on May 12, 1865. He was later paroled at Resaca, in Gordon County, and eventually pardoned in July 1865. Four thousand men came into Kingston to surrender. Wofford's Confederate soldiers were the last significant troops east of the Mississippi River to surrender to the Union.
In 1865 Wofford was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. Republicans dominated Congress, however, and kept Wofford, along with other Georgia Democratic congressmen, from assuming his seat. Wofford focused his energy on the law, Democratic politics, and the expansion of railroads. He also sat on several education boards and donated a parcel of land in Bartow County as the site of a public school, called Wofford Academy, which functioned as a church school on weekends. In 1877 he served as a member of the state constitutional convention, where he took a stand against convict leasing and argued for Confederate veterans' benefits and African Americans' rights.
Soon after his wife
died in 1878, Wofford married Margaret Langdon. Following a long illness,
Wofford died on May 22, 1884, in Bartow County. He is buried in Cassville's
Confederate Cemetery alongside 300 unknown soldiers of the Civil War.
Note how well built this house is, solid with brickwork. There're even people in period costumes at this location. Try to figure out where it might be. Send your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to include your hometown. Difficult? We think yes.
Bob Foreman of Grayson was Johnny on the spot in recognizing the most recent Mystery Photo. He writes: "The mystery photo is the Grice Inn, built in 1906 and located in Wrightsville, Ga. This" building is on the National Register of Historic Places. Wrightsville has some great Georgia architecture. However, this particular house or inn resembles the architecture of the Gulf coast of Florida, Apalachicola, perhaps New Orleans." The photo came from Brian Brown of Fitzgerald in his Vanishing South Georgia series.
Also recognizing the house was Susan McBrayer of Sugar Hill and George Graf of Palmyra, Va., Graf writes: "The Grice Inn is the home of the Johnson County Historical Society since its organization in 1977. It is one of Wrightsville's most historic structures. The two-story brick and wood frame structure located was built in the spring of 1906 by John Robert Grice. Mr. Grice, born in 1857 was a carpenter, brick mason, furniture maker, and architect. The house was built for a residence but the Grices, who already had a reputation for good food, turned it into a boarding house in 1907 for students of the Nannie Lou Warthen Institute, which was going strong at the time. In 1907 Grice tiled the sidewalk in front of the house, probably the first such sidewalk in the city. The house is on the National Register and shares this distinction only with the county court house."
GwinnettForum is provided to you at no charge every Tuesday and Friday. If you would like to serve as an underwriter, click here to learn more.
Send your thoughts, 55-word short stories, pet peeves or comments on any issue to Gwinnett Forum for future publication.
We hope you'll keep receiving the great news and information from GwinnettForum, but if you need to unsubscribe, send us an email with "unsubscribe" in the subject line.
We encourage you to check out our sister publications:
Issue 16.81 | Jan. 30, 2018
FOCUS: Here's a Glimpse at Highlights of Trip to Australia and New Zealand
EEB PERSPECTIVE: Oh! What A Difference a Nickel Can Make in a Lifetime
ANOTHER VIEW: Blank Resolution Which Many Governments Might Adopt
MTI Baths Inc.
So Much Information about When Something Was Said; When Was It?
WORLD: Super Bowl Thought
UPCOMING: Lawrenceville Housing Tells of $4 Million Re-development Project
Gwinnett Tech, AARP Team Up Again For Free Tax Form Assistance
The Virgin and Other Stories by April Ayers Lawson
GEORGIA TIDBIT: Brig. Gen. W.T. Wofford Continues To Serve Georgia with Distinciton
QUOTE: How Smooth Is the Language of the Diplomat?
PHOTO: Period Cottage Is This Edition's Mystery Photo
Four Films Are Scheduled at Library During Black History Month
"A diplomat can tell you to go to hell in such a way that you look forward to the trip."
In celebration of Black History Month, join Gwinnett County Public Library for a film screening and discussion surrounding the plight of the Civil Rights Movement. A different film will be shown each Saturday in February at 2 p.m. at the Five Forks Branch, 2780 Five Forks Trickum Road, Lawrenceville. All viewings, discussions, and popcorn are free and open to the public. The film schedule is below:
Also on the Calendar:
Developmental Disabilities Resource Fair: On January 30, learn about services for those with developmental disabilities in advance of summer. Meet vendors who provide specialized services such as camps, music therapy, equine therapy, and adaptive aquatics. The All About Developmental Disabilities Family Support staff will be present to discuss various options available to help support families in accessing the supports and services they need. Join Gwinnett County Public Library, in partnership with AADD, for this event on Tuesday, January 30 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Lilburn Branch, 4817 Church Street, Lilburn. This resource fair is free and open to the public. For more information, please visit www.gwinnettpl.org or call 770-978-5154.
Bogan Kids' Club
will mark National Polar Bear Day with an evening of swimming, games,
crafts and fun on Friday, February 2 from 6 to 9:30 p.m.
Bring swimsuit, towel and change of clothes. Dinner and snack will be
provided. Children ages 6 to 12 is $7 per person for Gwinnett residents,
$14 per person for non-Gwinnett residents. Bogan Aquatic Center is located
at 2723 North Bogan Road. Register at www.gwinnettparks.com
using activity code BOP15900 or call 678-277-0853.
Gwinnett Forum publisher Elliott Brack suggests that Gwinnett County needs a long-range list of continuing objectives for improving the county. Read more.
GwinnettForum.com is a twice-weekly online community commentary for exploring pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.
© 2001-2018, Gwinnett Forum.com is Gwinnett County's online community forum for commentary that explores pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.