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Archive for November, 2008

Great Place to Stay in Kyoto – Casa de Natu Nov 28

Just over two years ago we came across a great place to stay in Kyoto.  Di found it by accident as the name of the place does not ring Japanese.

Its a small guest house in North Kyoto called Casa de Natu.  It was originally the owners parents house and she has been lovingly restoring it over the years.  It a very traditional old house, and has two main bedrooms downstairs.  There are two rooms upstairs, but she tends not to let them out as they don’t have direct access to the bathroom (except via the other two bedrooms). 

The price is very reasonable 4500yen per person per night and includes a simple breakfast.  The location is north of the city centre, but is located well to subway and bus.  The neighbourhood is very nice and quiet with a good select of restuarants and coffee shops.  If you are looking for a place thats away from the crowds of Kyoto (and lets face it when is Kyoto not filled with tourists) this is an ideal location.  We have found on the occasions we have stayed there thats its very easy to get to the locations you want to and with some careful use of the subways and buses you can avoid alot of the crowds (or surf ahead of the crowds as we call it).  

The owner is wonderful and speaks English well. She has a basic website (link above) and will accept bookings via email.  The directions are a little tricky the first time getting there, but she will send you a map.  Its a really great way to stay in Kyoto in a traditional old house.  The accomodation is simple and comfortable and even now its getting cold there you have a snug nights sleep!

The words that hurt Nov 27

An odd title I agree, but there is a reason.  One I like to find titles that grab, but also have meaning to what I want to write.  Why this title.  Well drop below the fold and I will explain.

Bail out bonuses Nov 13

There is alot going around the media at the moment that the banks who received the bailout money are using it to pay bonuses. Well that really hit home to me today listening to it.

I cant’ abviously say which where I work, but yes it is one the top banks that was called into and basically told to take the money to loosen up credit.

What the media is not saying is that well before the bailout funds were available we were advised that the bonuses had be accrued over the last year and were stable dependant on the final quarter results.

So yes hopefully we will get good bonues in early next year, but we also know it not likely to be the same after that. 

But hey wait, before you say rich bankers, hold on.  None of us have hugh salaries. Nothing like the players of the market.

We are made up of everday people who go into work and come home, feed the family, pay mortages etc. Nearly everyone thinks you work in a bank then you are loaded.  Well no we are not.  95% of us are just everyday ‘joe the bank worker’. 

Sure there are some who a making a killing out of this crisis. To them I  just say, karma.

The Giant Pool of Money Nov 11

At lunch yesterday someone told us about this radio program on This American Life.  Its called the Giant Pool of Money and is by far one of the best explanations for the housing crisis we had ever heard.

Its is an hour in length, but trust me you will be so hooked on the story telling it will just pass by.  Its explained in the most everyday terms, and involves sound bites from real people through out the chain.

Anyway, go have a listen yourself.  I really do recommend it.

MS Access Reports and Dynamic Report Headers via VBA Part 2 Nov 07

A few entries ago I wrote about how to do dynamic report names in MS Access, and really thought I had the solution.  Well I sorta did.  It appears I was halfway to the solution. I ran into problems and at the time I was working at home on 2003 and it all seemed to work.

When I tried the same technique in 2007 at work it all stopped working and I was stumped.  I did work it out and the code I used is below in the fold.

The trick seems to be open the report in design mode.  Make the updates to the fields you want, including the query.  The close the report with the save option.  When you then next invoke the report the new parameters take affect and you are off.

I am not entirely sure if this is the ‘best’ way to do this but it certainly seems to work. What I’m so surprised about is that the entry I wrote before is referred to as its seems a burnign question.  I hope the code below helps people.

(oh after thinking more on this code, I know some will say it won’t work well in a heavy user environment.  My answer, in a heavy user environment why are you using Ms-access?

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Rememberance Day Nov 06

Out of the chaos and tragedy of the Gallipoli campaign emerged the
legend of the Anzacs: a story of steadfast courage under impossible
odds and the forging of the spirit of mateship that somehow saw triumph
in disastrous defeat.

Turkish tribute

In 1934, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, who led the fighting Turks at
Gallipoli and became founder of the Turkish Republic in 1923, paid
tribute to the Anzacs:

    Those heroes that shed their blood And lost their lives…

    You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country.

    Therefore, rest in peace.

    There is no difference between the Johnnies

    And the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side,

    Here in this country of ours.

    You, the mothers, who sent their sons from far away countries…

    Wipe away your tears.

    Your sons are now lying in our bosom

    And are in peace.

    After having lost their lives on this land, they have

    Become our sons as well.

Anzac Day

Today, the "great defeat" at Gallipoli is commemorated in Australia
and New Zealand on Anzac Day, April 25 each year, anniversary of the
landing on that Turkish shore, as the Anzacs are remembered.

As the poet Laurence Binyon says:

    They shall grow not old,

    As we that are left grow old.

    Age shall not weary them,

    Nor the years condemn.

    At the going down of the sun,

    And in the morning,

    We will remember them.
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