Welcome to the latest edition of Ramble, a compilation of what I have been pondering, learning and enjoying for the past couple of weeks.
Now, grab a beverage and let’s begin.
The Patagonia Logo depicts the Cerro Fitz Roy ridge as part of the Fitz Roy massif.
The range rises above the town of El Chalten in Argentine Patagonia. I can see it from the coffee shop that I am writing this in...
What I am Reading:
- She and Her Cat (Makoto Shinkai and Naruki Nagakawa)
A lovely short little book recounting the stories of a series of cats and their owners. Very Japanese.
"However, these days, you have to go to the office before 8 AM and stay there till 4 PM. If you don’t go, you’re considered absent, and [the wage for] that day is cut from your salary. We’re now used to that, but it was especially difficult in the first two or three months."
"Then, we had only a motorcycle, amukhabira, [a type of Walkie-Talkie] and a mosque or madrasa. Now, when someone’s nominated for a government job, he first asks whether that position has a car or not. We used to live among the people. Many of us have now caged ourselves in our offices and palaces, abandoning that simple life."
"In our ministry, there’s little work for me to do. Therefore, I spend most of my time on Twitter. We’re connected to speedy Wi-Fi and internet. Many mujahedin, including me, are addicted to the internet, especially Twitter."
If Western armies cannot beat them, perhaps the Western way of life can...
"The saga of Armie Hammer poses a question: How can those who have mistreated other people re-enter society as productive citizens, if they are permitted to re-enter at all? We have such a system, a woefully imperfect one, for criminals. What we don’t have is a system, let alone agreed-upon rules and expectations, for someone like Armie Hammer, who has not been charged with any crime—but is, by his own admission, guilty of being an “asshole.”"
A hell of a read...
"More people die from eating too much than from eating too little. Most of us have too much baggage, too many commitments, and too many priorities."
- Salve Lucrum: The Existential Threat of Greed in US Health Care - Donald M. Berwick, MD, MPP - JAMA Network
"US health care costs nearly twice as much as care in any other developed nation, whereas US health status, equity, and longevity lag far behind. Unchecked greed is not the only driver of that failure, but it is a major one. Few, if any, other developed nations tolerate the levels of avarice, manipulation, and profiteering in health care that the US does. Salve lucrum is the wrong answer."
Fair warning for Australians regarding the undermining of General Practice...among other issues.
What I am Watching:
- Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre
Guy Ritchie, Jason Statham, Hugh Grant. Obviously was going to see it.
- The Menu
Anything with Ralph Fiennes. Weird. Comedy horror. But kind of really liked it. Anya Taylor-Joy is excellent.
- See How They Run
I love a good whodunnit. And the Agatha Christie references are fantastic.
Keep up to date with:
- Denouement Diaries for Weekly Updates - Week 1 Here
- Denouement Dashboard for Country Summaries - Check New Zealand Here
- Social stuff over Here, Here and Here.
- And the growing document of 'How to Quit Your Job and Escape for a Year (and Why You Should…)'
App I am Using:
Argentina's currency is ridiculous and inflation is at around 8% per month - so the locals tell us.
Because of this, cash is king, and there are different exchange rates depending on if you change USD to ARS in the street; versus if you take AUD out in ARS from an ATM with a no-transaction-or-exchange-fee debit card (ING for the win); versus if you just google the current exchange rate.
Anyway, to try and help sort this, I started using the 'Currency' app:
And then just made it display as a little widget on my phone home screen with AUD, USD and ARS like this:
It's great. You can just click whichever currency you want, type in the value of whatever you are considering and it will pump out the conversions to whichever other currencies you have set as favourites. Very useful. The official exchange rates update at least daily (more frequently if you pay to upgrade) and it is slick.
Anyway, the currency tricks in Argentina deserve their own little section another time.
Thank you once again for reading along with me.
If you found something you liked, let me know.
If you think I can do something a little smoother, please let me know.