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Archive for November, 2012

outdoor sketching,Beaune

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A Gathering of Gulls

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Now for the Story:

THE AMAZING PIPI-LIPPI-PI ©
Name of the author: Benny Thomas

Long long ago there was an old farmer. One day he called his only son and said, ”Our farm is gone. I can no longer take care of you.”
Otto, his son was sad. His father hated to see tears in his son’s eyes. So he brought a bird from inside and said, “Go, take this bird along with you. Try your luck elsewhere!”
Young Otto asked his father if he could have some cash instead. He shook his head and said,” No son, I haven’t a cent to spare.”
So Otto went off with a bird. A bird with a strange name. Pipi-Lippi-Pi.
He walked a good length with his bird and wondered if he could make some money by selling him. Otto found no bird ever surpassed Pipi in appearance. His plumage was more colorful than that of a rainbow. His tail was as long as the tail of a comet. His comb was far magnificent than that of a rooster. Neither was his long neck any less grand. It was as graceful as that of a swan but speckled. He pecked at grains with his golden beak. His eyes were rubies of rare quality. In short in splendor no bird was a match for him.
Pipi-Lippi-Pi was almost perfect. “ But can you make my fortune?” Otto wondered loud,” It is money that I need now!” He began to feel hungry and he went around asking folks if he could find a buyer for his bird. “ No, you can’t!” one said,” If it could fly I might have bought it myself.” A little later another said,” Your bird is of no use. It can’t speak.” Otto was very sad that Pipi-Lippi-Pi was not perfect enough to feed him.
The boy led the bird along through villages and towns. Much as he tried to sell him he had no luck. At the market place of one town one fellow who was of his age said, ”You will never sell him the way you are going about it.”He added,”I shall teach you free.” Otto thought he found a true friend at last. Next day his friend whose name was Light Fingers said how to make some easy money. “Without money in your pocket you cannot sell a bird such as Pipi- Lippi-Pi.”
That night Otto went with the bird to a park bench. Before he slept the bird startled him by speaking. “ Be careful of Light Fingers.” Otto was stunned.
“But Light Fingers is my friend!” Otto protested, ”He himself said so.” The bird was sure no true friend would ever want his friend to get into trouble. The bird said nothing more.
Otto thought over the warning. Thinking it over and over he thought the bird was right. So he gave slip that very night to Light Fingers. On the way they came by a lion tamer that went along with a lion. King Zappo offered to teach the bird all the tricks. “Without tricks, no crowd. No crowd, no money!” Zappo cajoled the boy to let the bird keep company with his Leo. He assured the awkward bird would improve from example. Otto thought it was a good offer. The bird warned him,” Did you see how Leo is reduced to eat straw?”
”Isn’t that a trick?”
“If that is a trick worth teaching a lion I am an elephant!” Otto thought the bird was right.
The bird on reaching the Big City told him thus, “I feel sorry for you. So trusting, especially those whom you ought to be careful about.” Otto did not mind some plain speaking. ‘That is what friends for.’ he knew.
A few days later Pipi-Lippi-Pi explained why he felt friendly towards him. “Since the time we began this trip, you took care of me first before you attended to your own needs.” Pipi-Lippi-Pi was certain that Otto was his friend.
Pippi told him how to make a tidy sum. He urged him to meet the mayor of the city. He went directly to the Town Hall. He asked the worshipful mayor for a large area for putting up a show. The mayor naturally raised objections but Pipi had rehearsed with him how he should deal with the mayor, and he did accordingly. Otto spoke well and the worshipful mayor in the end gave him a stadium for his use.
The mayor gave such a publicity that everyone in the city wanted to see the show.
As a result Otto collected a great sum in advance.
On the appointed day the whole city had turned up. Those sponsors who had paid millions saw the bird strut like a barnyard fowl and became angry. “What publicity is this? We want our money back!”
Otto coaxed them, ”Wait till the end.” Then he went back stage and whispered to the bird, ”My reputation is now in your hands. What will you do?”
The bird laughed again.
When his turn came to perform the bird ran a few paces and to the amazement of all, took to air and spread his wings. He flapped his wings till feathers fell like leaves of trees in a storm. These wrote as if by magic, the names of the products of sponsors.
Such a sky writing none had ever seen! The mayor gasped in wonder; so did the sponsors who knew their products got wide publicity. Otto became rich beyond his dreams. He asked the bird, ”I never knew you could fly!”
“Yes, that is what I also thought!”
Otto and Pipi went back to the farm. His father could not believe. But when he got his farm back he realized he owed all to Pipi-Lippi-Pi who remained by the side of Otto for life. A true friend.
THE END

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Pope Pius IX

Saints in heaven see the face of God. However saints on the earth are made with the sign of a cross by a pope, who however may be sitting on the throne uneasily as in the case of Pope Leo X, on account of his fistula.(His anal fistula aggravated by a chronic stomach ulcer made a stink that could be felt miles away. Nevertheless he belonged to the Medici family and it made a lot of difference*) The second sort of saints I cannot say for certain if they would ever see the Lord God but they have seen villainy in the Holy see as in the case of Pope Pius IX. Pius IX, who reigned from 1844 to 1878, and what a wretched drama was played out by his machinations!
In Bologna, after nightfall on June 23, 1858, the papal police arrived unannounced at the Mortara home and removed from this Jewish family one of their sons, Edgardo, six years old, because he had been secretly baptized by a Christian maid when he was dangerously sick as an infant. Despite the anguished pleas of Edgardo’s parents and international indignation, the boy was never returned to his family. He became a personal ward of Pius IX and eventually was ordained a priest. For saints in heaven the blessedness is in seeing ever the face of their lord. They have been unknown and unmerited by worldly pomp or circumstances and they are resigned to it; and after a lifetime of struggle and vicissitudes same as lowest of the low of the earth they have no complaint God should compensate them. They make their way to the abode of bliss, since their Maker has seen something in their lives of his Son who had no place to call his own. They learned the way of humility since it was how they came to this world, children of the dispossessed. Never did they ask if there were some injustice done in the manner they are bound to indigence while the rogues in purple and prelates, seasoned by unctuous tomfoolery can mouth homilies for all seasons. Lazarus of the dives was well compensated in hereafter while these saints may not even know who the blazes is Lazarus! After all saints ordained by God are God- elect while saints churned out of the assembly-line are the ilk of Pius IX.
Born Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti, was the longest-reigning elected Pope in the history of the Catholic Church, serving from 16 June 1846 until his death, a period of nearly 32 years. During his pontificate, he convened the First Vatican Council in 1869, which decreed papal infallibility. The Pope defined the dogma of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, meaning that Mary was conceived without original sin. Pius IX also granted the Marian title of Our Mother of Perpetual Help, a famous Byzantine icon from Crete entrusted to the Redemptorist priests. In addition to this, Pius IX was also the last Pope to rule as the Sovereign of the Papal States, which fell completely to Italian nationalist armies by 1870 and were incorporated into the Kingdom of Italy. He was beatified on Sep.3 in 2000 (ack:JOHN W. O’MALLEY | AUGUST 26, 2000/the Beatification of Pope Pius IX;wikipedia)
(*Freida Leonie-Catherine di’ Medici-p.19)
benny

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