North West Country

Vol. 250:4  January 24, 2022

Ph Stewart 021 525 360

Everybody's Talking

Underground garden: People living in London, England, during World War II were well aware of the city's need for underground bunkers where people could escape air raids. Today, one of these bunkers has found a new purpose. It has become a subterranean farm known as Growing Underground. Located 33 metres under Clapham High Street in the southwest part of London, the concept was the brainchild of co-founder Richard Ballard. The underground garden has no natural light, of course, so LED lights provide nourishment for the hydroponically grown plants, which include radishes, pea shoots, fennel, coriander, and more.

Hiding place: A car thief from the province of Alberta, Canada, didn't cover up his tracks very well, and that led to his capture. Police received word that a Jeep had been stolen from the town of Olds, about 89 kilometres north of Calgary. Someone also reported a vehicle in a ditch on a nearby rural road, which turned out to be the Jeep. Upon taking a closer look, police found a pretty clear clue about where the thief had gone footprints in the snow. The officers followed by foot, and soon discovered, under a pile of hay in a barn, a young man whom they charged with the offense.

The black violin: Violinists all over the world appreciate the sound of a Stradivarius violin, made by Antonio Stradivari in the 17th and 18th centuries. A replica of one of these instruments, made in 1992 and named Blackbird (after the common bird), was created by Swedish sculptor Lars Widenfalk. The artist made the creation out of a piece of diabase, a dark-colored, igneous rock. While using his chiseling tools, he had noticed the lovely sound the stone made, and decided to try making an instrument. Widenfalk used black ebony for a few pieces, such as the fingerboard and chin rest. Many musicians have played Blackbird over the years.

Keeping time: Budapest, Hungary, is home to a unique installment called the Timewheel, which was unveiled in 2004 to honor the country's entrance into the European Union. The Timewheel is an enormous hourglass in which small pieces of glass, rather than sand, trickle from the top v-shaped reservoir to the bottom one. A computerized system assists with the release of the glass, which takes an entire year to drop from top to bottom. Every year on December 31, the Timewheel must be manually rotated 180 degrees, with the help of a four-person team using steel cables. Then the glass begins keeping time for the next year.

Quotable Quotes

To teach is to learn twice. ~ Joseph Joubert We should all be concerned about the future because we will have to spend the rest of our lives there. ~ Charles Franklin Kettering


1. In the human body, what gland controls body temperature?

2. What is myopia?

3. Who wrote The Comedy of Errors and The Tempest?

4. Edam cheese has its origins in what country?

5. The average eagle's nest is 1.2m-1.5m in diameter and how many metres deep?

Your Weekly Horoscope

ariesAries (March 21 - April 20)
Perhaps you have been in a period of doubt and uncertainty, rooted in past negative experiences. This week may provide positive energy to move on. Lucky numbers: 1, 5, 12, 14, 21, 30.
libraLibra (Sept 24 - Oct 23)
Your feelings and emotions may provide the drive you need now to achieve your heart's desire. Just don't let the residue of an old wound get in the way. Lucky numbers: 5, 7, 17, 21, 35, 37.
taurusTaurus (April 21- May 21)
You may gain insight about your life lessons and how to address them. This may change your beliefs or actions regarding nurturing and/or parenthood. Lucky numbers: 6, 9, 16, 33, 38, 39.
scorpioScorpio (Oct 24- Nov 22)
At this time, there is an opportunity for a balance between your mind and your emotions. This could allow a positive change in your physical and mental health. Lucky numbers: 4, 12, 15, 24, 25, 28.
geminiGemini (May 22- June 21)
This week you may likely feel grounded, stable, and optimistic. There is the potential in building a solid foundation for future progress toward your life goals. Lucky numbers: 3, 6, 12, 18, 27, 37.
sagittariusSagittarius (Nov23-Dec21)
You may have recently experienced greater energy and unusual vitality. Honour the quiet of Winter, and Spring can bring a return to greater vitality. Lucky numbers: 9, 11, 21, 27, 32, 36.
cancerCancer (June 22 - July 23)
You may be experiencing a transformation that shakes up your beliefs about what is important. You can find clues about your next steps to see what you value passionately. Lucky numbers: 5, 13, 14, 21, 30, 35.
capricornCapricorn (Dec 22- Jan 20)
One or more relationships may be at a stalemate. If so, the near future can bring a breakthrough for any female partner, but communication difficulties may continue longer. Lucky numbers: 2, 13, 28, 31, 33, 40.
leoLeo (July 24 - Aug 23)
At the start of the week, you may experience communication difficulties that tempt you to engage aggressively with others. Wait a week before you act. Lucky numbers: 6, 8, 13, 18, 29, 37.
aquariusAquarius (Jan 21- Feb 19)
You are likely entering a period of sudden and unexpected change. While disconcerting, this change could provide an opportunity for you to find out who you really are. Lucky numbers: 5, 6, 11, 14, 21, 38.
virgoVirgo (Aug 24 - Sept 23)
There is potential to achieve much toward your goals now. You are likely feeling confident and energetic, but just be careful not to push yourself past your limits. Lucky numbers: 2, 5, 10, 15, 31, 37.
piscesPisces (Feb 20 - March 20)
At the beginning of the week, your thoughts and emotions are likely to be out of balance. It is important to make an adjustment in your view of a stressful situation. Lucky numbers: 7, 9, 26, 31, 34, 38.
Lucky numbers for the week: Lucky numbers this week: This week's odds favour Gemini winners with the luckiest number being 3.

Did you know

Smelly fish: Visitors to Sweden can buy a can of surstrmming, which is sea herring caught in the Baltic Sea. While Swedes say it tastes better than it smells, its odour is so pungent that people often eat it outside.

Visitor from afar: On August 6, 2012, the planet Mars received a visitor from Earth a robotic vehicle called Curiosity. Sent to gather information about Mars, Curiosity was launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida (U.S.), on November 26, 2011.

Film buffs: The official name of the Cannes Film Festival is Festival de Cannes. It originated in 1946 as an alternative to the Venice Film Festival, which had promoted fascism and the Nazi agenda.

Rock on: Canadian rock and folk musician Neil Young grew up in the western Canadian city of Winnipeg. In his early years, he played with the bands Buffalo Springfield and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.

Women's issues: Godey's Lady's Book was an American magazine published between 1830 and 1898. Started by Louis A. Godey, the successful magazine benefitted and educated women, under longtime editor Sarah Josepha Hale.

On the lighter side

Flora: How did you manage to graduate from Clown College? Dora: The professors always laughed at my exam answers.

Knock! Knock! Who's there? Thumping. Thumping who? Thumping green and thlimy is crawling up your leg.

What did the alien put on his toast? Mars-malade.

What's black and white with splashes of red? Two skunks having a tomato fight.

Last night I saw a movie with a happy ending. Everybody was glad it was over!


1. Hypothalamus 2. Nearsightedness 3. William Shakespeare 4. The Netherlands 5. 0.5m - 1.2m.