Sunday 20 January 2019

Reading, Thinking, & Domesticity #5

Sometimes it's helpful having your birthday at the end of the year. It acts like a 'pause and reflect' moment before heading into a new year. On my birthday in December, my husband gave me a card with a list of things that happened in 2018:

*  Our third child got married
*  Our second grandchild (a boy this time) was born
*  Our first grandchild turned 1 & we started looking after her one day a week
*  One of our sons completed his plumbing apprenticeship
*  Another son had a major job change
*  Moozle, our youngest, became a teenager & had her Grade 7 Cello exam which she passed with honours
*  We did some home renovations and slept on camp mattresses on a tiled floor for 10 weeks. I ended up with a compressed nerve in my neck and had to have a few weeks of physio.
*  Moozle and I did a 1,600 km (1000 mile) round road trip together

He didn't write it on the card but this happened just before Christmas:

*  After having worked as a contractor for over two years with a company they decided to put my husband 'officially in the system.' This required a police check.
Said police check came back and he was called into the HR office and told to leave immediately as the police check showed a list of serious criminal offences dating back about 7 years, including time spent in prison.
My husband asked for details, said he'd never been to court (except to serve on a jury!) let alone prison, but they refused to give him any information.
He was told he could only appeal via the third party company who conducted the police check. This company sent him emails, which he didn't get because the company he works for locked him out of their system.
Eventually he received a copy of the report and it showed he was working at his present employment while supposedly serving a prison term! Mmmm. Knee jerk reaction from HR who didn't bother reading the report properly.
Ten days later, with no pay during that time, after much to-ing and fro-ing with his employer and the third party who had conducted the police check, he received word that he didn't have a criminal  record after all. No apology or acknowledgement from the third party that he had been falsely accused.

And, yes, he was compensated - well, his company paid him for the time he had off, humbly apologised etc. Most of his fellow workers were appalled and angry and a couple of them knew of others in similar circumstances & they weren't surprised.

This was a very interesting experience in light of our current climate here with the Government's latest Encryption Laws and privacy. We were privy to the details of another man's criminal record, and my husband was automatically deemed to be guilty and had no right to offer a defence to his employer.
It also made us realise how difficult it must be for anyone trying to find work after serving time in gaol.
Francis Schaeffer wrote these words in 1976 and I think they are relevant even more today:

'I believe the majority of the silent majority, young and old will sustain the loss of liberties without raising their voices as long as their own life-styles are not threatened. And since personal peace and affluence are so often the only values that count with the majority, politicians know that to be elected they must promise these things. Politics has largely become not a matter of ideals - increasingly men and women are not stirred by the values of liberty and truth - but of supplying a constituency with a frosting of personal peace and affluence. They know that voices will not be raised as long as people have these things, or at least an illusion of them.' 

World Watch List - a list of the 50 most dangerous countries for Christians. India has recently made it into the top ten on this list.

Children & dumbed down reading:

'50 years ago, parents read things to children that children could not read themselves, that were not directed primarily at the senses, and that contained deep formal and material lessons for the children...But it has never been a good thing to indulge the senses as an end in themselves. The senses have always tried to dominate the intellect and to distract us from what matters more.'

A Culture of Reading has some excellent reading suggestions.

An newspaper article I read last month:


Nicholas Clifford, Professor Emeritus at Middlebury Liberal Arts College in Vermont, USA, is a Librivox narrator I've listened to and I've enjoyed everything he's done. Fortunately, he has 79 solo recordings, many of them classics.  

The Vanishing Man by R. Austin Freeman (1862-1943) is an interesting mystery/crime novel with a focus on Ancient Egyptian artifacts and practices.
Many of Freeman's books feature the medical/legal forensic investigator, Dr John Thorndyke.  The Vanishing Man was published in 1911 and was also published as The Eye of Osiris.

My ongoing Hexie Quilt project that's taking me forever. Making progress, though.



Cleo @ Classical Carousel said...

Absolutely great post, Carol!!! I'm so sorry about what happened to your husband. We have friends who tried to cross the border from Canada to the U.S. and the border security came rushing out with their guns drawn and took them into a detention room. After waiting for a half an hour, they returned, apologizing, saying they thought my friend's husband was another man with the same name who was wanted. There must be a better way to enforce security. People are now guilty until proven innocent in certain situations.

And beautiful photo at the end of the post! Love it!!

Now I'm going to put that Schaeffer quote into Goodreads! :-)

Lark said...

sorry about what happened to your husband! I'm glad it got straightened out...eventually. What a dumb world we live in. Oh, and I love your hexie quilt! I was never brave enough to give that pattern a try. It looks amazing. :)

Brian Joseph said...

Happy belated birthday.

So sorry to hear what happened to your husband. I am glad that things worked out in the end.

The list of things that happened over the year is a good idea. It is a good thing to pause and to take stock once in a while.

Carol said...

Wow, Cleo! That was a bit radical! How awful for them. I’m really appalled by the vulture-like behaviour of the media on the news when a person is a suspect or a case comes to court. Like the Gatwick drone business where an innocent couple had their names all over the place just because they possessed a drone. ☹️

Carol said...

Lark, I started one with quite small hexagons & never finished it. It was taking far too long. Next time I’ll use the sewing machine & not make so much work for myself.

Carol said...

Thanks, Brian 🙂

Ruth @ with freedom and books said...

Wow, that was both scary and burdensome, what your husband (and you) had to endure. I think technology actually complicates our government systems rather than makes them more accurate or error free.

Sharon Wilfong said...

Wow, Carol. What a year you've had, mostly good and joyful, at least. I cannot believe what happened to your husband.

Excellent quote by Francis Schaeffer. It reminds me of what is happening in a bible study I belong to (not with my church; it's an interdenominational one). The commonality is that one of our leaders has admitted to practicing necromancy and I'm the only who thinks that disqualifies her according to Biblical criteria to be in leadership. I guess the commonality is, no one wants to rock the boat and we are short on leaders. And people wonder why churches go apostate.

What a great sounding trip. I would love to travel around the country for a month. In fact, I'd love to travel around your country for a month!

I've sometimes wondered if I would like to narrate stories for Libravox. My husband listens to their books.

Have a great week.

Carol said...

Hi Ruth, all that sort of information sitting in a data base just waiting to be hacked/misused/accidentally mixed up...

Carol said...

Sharon, that's a bit mind boggling!
The quality of Librivox narrators varies a great deal by they are volunteers & I admire that.

You could always try doing one of the collaborative works - a chapter here and there to see how you like it.

Aflyonmyhomeschoolwall said...

That was a full year! What a treat for your sweetheart to have given you that list--his tribute to you as his companion through it all. The mistaken identity/history part of your year must have felt like a nightmare. I'm sorry for that! But what joy to have grandbabies and weddings! I find myself looking forward to that phase, even if it is still some years away for my family. :) Thank you for the book recommendations. I'm always so grateful for leads to more reading!!!

Ruthiella said...

What a nightmare with your husband and his job. I would hope his company re-thinks their contract with this third party company!

Happy belated birthday and I hope you are enjoying your one day a week with the grand-baby!

Carol said...

Anne, that phase will come sooner than you think :)
Good to know the book reviews are helpful.

Carol said...

Ruthiella, that's what he told the HR people at work!
Thanks for the birthday wishes & the day a week with the granddaughter is very entertaining :)

Jeannette said...

I am so glad for you and your husband for all the lovely things that happened for you last year...and what a prince to have not ruined the sweet card he wrote to you with his trial which neither of you were likely to forget!

Happy New Year to you!

Carol said...

🙂 Happy New Year to you too, Jeannette.

Erin said...

Wow Carol, 2018 was indeed majorly epic for you!!!
I think you need a quiet 2019 but...sure the older our kids get the less likely for that to happen.

As for your husband's work situation, absolutely gobsmacked and appalled. Can only imagine a fraction of the emotions that ran rampant in your home during that time and I daresay still do. Much love xxx

Carol said...

Mmmm...I already know it’s not going to be a quiet year, Erin 🙂
Hope you & your family are well & coping ok in the heat. X

Carole said...

What a terrible thing to go through. Hope they sacked the contractor! Take care. Cheers from Carole's Chatter