Tossa Enrico Razzo and his famous custard marble

Mrs Razzo had a problem. Her husband Tossa never stopped talking. He drove her totally bananas. “It must be a defective gene” she often said. Then one day she realised the only time he ever shut up was when he was knitting. It was as though if his hands were kept busy he didn’t talk […]

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Let’s Paint the Dogs of War

I once knew a bloke who to everyone’s surprise joined the army. He said he wanted to learn a trade. “And did you?” we asked. “Yes” he said. “Well what is it?” we enquired. “I’m a machine gunner.” he said proudly. A while later he was pleased to tell us he was learning a new […]

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Emergency Arrangements for Difficult Times

In these challenging times, certainty and security go out of the window. We cannot predict what will happen; however, the worst-case scenario might lead to a breakdown of services and possibly a breakdown of law and order. It is a good idea to consider the services we rely on: electricity, water, gas, internet connection and […]

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Lemmings and Dead Cats

The earth is big, really really big, it is humungously big, in fact it is the biggest thing we can actually touch. While we may be rather ambivalent towards planet earth, for electrons it is home. As we already know the electron was named after the Greek electron which, of course, means amber. Amber? Yes, […]

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Air Conditioner Update

It has been very hot recently, far hotter than most of we long term Bali residents can remember. Air conditioners are working harder than ever. Many of us are finding our air conditioners are breaking down more than they used to, why is this?   As far as we can tell there are two reasons. […]

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How big is your Peka

Here is a wonderful titbit of information that will make you the hit at the annual dinner of the Denpasar Toastmakers Club. Did you know there is no such thing as “cold.” Cold is in fact a worldwide con created by exuberant salesmen who want to sell fridges to Eskimos. You see “cold” doesn’t exist, […]

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It’s the water that gets you

I recently met a couple visiting Bali. The man was not happy, “I’ve got Bali belly” he said. “It was that warung we went to last night”. “It’s usually the water that gets you” I replied. Years ago, I had learned the hard way. When I first came to Indonesia in the 70’s I was […]

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The Serfs Are Revolting

Frederich Ebenezer Pump was a clever man. The chairman of the Upper Wallop Serf Club, he invented a device consisting of a pipe with a piston and operated by a handle which enabled the serfs to draw water from wells. Used all over the world the village pump has been the centre of community life […]

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A Touch of Bad Evolution

I have a sneaky suspicion there is a touch of “bad evolution” going on with building design in Bali. I constantly see buildings where design is so preoccupied with appearance that it has forgotten some basic factors of engineering particularly regarding the risk of earthquakes.This design “evolution” is the result of architects who want to […]

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