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Aug 31 12 5:07 PM

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Dear Sisters, cousins and G-town friends,

Up here in the mountains it was the best summer of the past four years. Not too rainy, very sunny and good for the tourist visitors. I hear that Philly had a ton of rain. Hope your fall is a gorgeous one and that the winter is kind to you Hard working Philly folks. You deserve a break. Me? I hope for a ton of snow to justify our season ski pass. (grin). Love to all of you, Jimmy Breen, East Seymour Street, G-town. Now retired in the Poconos.

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#1 [url]

Sep 2 12 10:05 AM

I'm always sad to see summer go.  The days get shorter and there is a different smell in the air.  This morning on my way to Mass I looked up to see a flock of geese flying  in formation to a southern destination.   This confirmed what the flowers and vegetable garden have been hinting at for the last few weeks, that these long, lazy summer days would soon be replaced by the smell of burning leaves and wood in the fireplaces.   As kids growing up in Germantown I think we were all ready for school to begin and to see the friends we left behing in June.  Who would be our teacher this year, would we get alot of homework?   When the cooler days came, the aunts would not sit out on the front steps at night, opting for the comfort of their cozy living rooms.   No more playing baseball in the street or hide and seek at  night for us kids.  Time to be tucked away to bed early so we would be bright eyed and bushy tailed in the morning for school.   Another summer passed,  another school year will begin, and to us, this cycle would repeat itself forever,  though we were not aware of how fleeting this time really was.

HELEN LEONE D'ANGELO

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#2 [url]

Sep 2 12 4:50 PM

Very nicely put Helen. Since you were so kind to share your thoughts with us, I thought I would pass along a tidbit to you that I recently learned from a friend. Since I don't take everything on face value, I also verified this on the internet. You mentioned the flock of geese you saw flying in the sky. I don't know if you noticed, but one side of that formation was probably longer than the other, and there is a reason for this. According to all sources, it is because there are more geese in the longer side. I thought I should share. :) Enjoy the fall colors.

John Payne

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#3 [url]

Sep 2 12 6:03 PM

HELEN LEONE D'ANGELO,

Sounds like you might become a candidate to be a full time Floridian, as we basically have, depending on where in the state you live, summertime all year round. Sure it gets hot down here, but you don't have to shovel humidity.

Speaking of geese flying in the V formation. Why do geese fly in a V? Because it would be too hard to fly in an S! Just kidding. Scientists have determined that the V-shaped formation that geese use when migrating serves two important purposes:
First, it conserves their energy. Each bird flies slightly above the bird in front of him, resulting in a reduction of wind resistance. The birds take turns being in the front, falling back when they get tired. In this way, the geese can fly for a long time before they must stop for rest. The authors of a 2001 Nature article stated that pelicans that fly alone beat their wings more frequently and have higher heart rates than those that fly in formation. It follows that birds that fly in formation glide more often and reduce energy expenditure (Weimerskirch, 2001).
The second benefit to the V formation is that it is easy to keep track of every bird in the group. Flying in formation may assist with the communication and coordination within the group. Fighter pilots often use this formation for the same reason. Class dismissed.

John Fleming Florida's favorite uncle Uncle Johnny

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#5 [url]

Sep 3 12 2:04 AM

Here in Oz, it's been adios to winter. Planted some grevilleas in the new backyard on the first day of spring (Sep 1st here) and fed the vegies. It goes right from winter to summer here; will be 28 degrees C. (that's 82.4 degrees F.) tomorrow.

Catherine Manning Muir

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