September 2021 Diary

Uta's Site

This is early morning. It is still very cold outside. I have the heater on, so the room is getting nice warm now. I have a cup of tea beside me. I already planned what I would be cooking today. I am going to take the two beef patties out of the freezer. I’ll steam the patties with lots of onions. I am going to have some sauerkraut with some of the meat as well as some other vegies. For a drink I can have pineapple juice or maybe some beer?

Very soon I am going to cook some porridge for breakfast. Today is Thursday. That means this morning I am going to prepare the bins to be taken to the kerbside. I could not help myself: I looked up the following!

FOGO Collection Service

From November 2020…

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1 American Dies of COVID every 60 Seconds or Less

I live in Australia. I think Australia should become aware of all this!

This Man's Journey

JHU COVID Data: 1,823 U.S. Deaths from COVID today, 9/15/21. Translation: 1 American dies of COVID every less than 60 seconds from a preventable disease.

America is very much at War with Death and Disease with no Peak in sight, and it’s in every community in America.

Rural, Urban, Remote, COVID Death has all reached them. No place to run or hide unless we live in Space.

We don’t want to see nor care because it’s not our Family, but this could happen to anyone of us. Just a matter of when. Photo from The Washington Post, 9/15/21

Americans are dying because no hospital will take them- Vox News, 9/14/21

The Alarm has been blaring for the past 2 months that children can die. It is happening now. Photo from The Washington Post, 9/15/21

We call 911. No available ambulance. We head to the Emergency Room, there is a long…

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Tuesday, 14th of September 2021

More and more cases appear in Wollongong as well as in Shellharbour and all over the Illawarra, also the DELTA cases all over Sydney have not stopped yet.

I had been hoping to have a few birthday guests on my beautiful deck. Yes, I had so hoped, that a few outside guests would be allowed to come! But no, having a few guests I must now forget about a bit longer.

My youngest great-granddaughter, Evie Rose, who turned two only yesterday, I have not seen for a while. And my eldest granddaughter, Natasha, who turned 30 last Saturday, I could not see either. Alexander Robert, great-grandson number five, is going to be 7 in two weeks on Monday. I already missed the birthday of Lucas, great-grandson number four, who turned 9 last July.

I would also love very much to see our friend Sylvia for her birthday on Tuesday, the 27th of September. Sylvia was born in 1957 in Germany, the same year that our Gaby was born. Their birthdays were only a few weeks apart. In 1959, we lived in Balgownie Hostel in Fairy Meadow. Gaby’s second birthday on the 28th of August was celebrated in the Hostel, and little Sylvia was one of the guests! So we have known Sylvia and Christa, her mother, for that long. Sylvia’s father used to be a workmate of Peter’s. Sadly, both he and Peter are dead now.

I have seen Christa and Sylvia a few times before the lockdown. They did sit beside me at Peter’s funeral celebrations. And they invited me to spend Christmas Day with them at their place. Both live together in Wollongong. Because of the lockdown, I cannot see them right now. And they cannot come to Dapto to see me. They have not been able yet to see my beautiful new deck. All my outside area looks so different now. All I can do is this, that I can write an email to Sylvia for her upcoming birthday.

I wonder when some of my family will finally be allowed to visit me! So far, only Monika, who does some caring work for me, was able to see my deck and the refurbished outside area. No one else of my family has been visiting yet. But I do get twice one hour weekly home help. The home help wears a mask when she enters the house to do some cleaning, and she usually does a few things outside a well. I am so lucky, that I do get a bit of home help!

Some of my neighbours could already take a glance at the deck. I think it made quite an impression on them. When I meet my neighbours outside, I wear a mask and I do insist on social distancing. Since we are in lockdown, we do not enter each others houses. But there is plenty of room to meet in the common area surrounding the ten free standing villas.

And as I said before, I just love to go for walks with my rollator in the neighbouring park. I am so lucky that I can spend so much time outside in beautiful fresh air. I cannot drive and I have no car. So lovely daughter Monika is helping me by doing some weekly shopping for me. I feel blessed, that I do not have to enter any shops right now.

Beyond the Lines: “Longing” in Schiller and Goethe

I like this post about Schiller and Goethe!
Well done, David B. Gosselin!

Rising Tide Foundation

By David Gosselin

Friedrich Schiller and Johan Wolfgang Goethe stand out as two of the greatest poets in history. Both are celebrated as the fathers of German classicism, which they helped usher in with their scholarly collaborators, including the philosopher Johann Gottfried von Herder and the classical philologist Wilhelm von Humboldt. Schiller and Goethe also had many of their poetic works set to music by some of the greatest musical composers, including Schubert, Brahms, and Beethoven.

Goethe’s “Der Erlkönig,” “Gretchen am Spinnrade” and “Nähe des Geliebten” inspired some of Schubert’s most celebrated and impassioned songs. Schiller’s “Ode to Joy” supplied the lyrics for Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony—one of the greatest musical works ever composed. In fact, the Ninth Symphony—inspired by Schiller’s poem—has on several occasions served as a universal anthem of freedom, including during the iconic 1989 fall of the Berlin Wall.

In the…

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Diary, Saturday, September, 11th 2021

Today Monika’s daughter Natasha, my eldest granddaughter, turns 30.

On Monday, September 13th 2021, my youngest great-granddaughter Evie Rose, turns two!

Evie Rose is the daughter of Monika’s daughter Roxanne. Roxy is going to turn 29 on January 1st in 2022.

Natasha wanted to celebrate this birthday with a lot of people.

Unfortunately, because of the lockdown in Shellharbour, NSW, all celebrations are off right now.

Inside New Zealand’s Glowworm Caves | Waitomo Ruakuri Cave Tour | 2 of 2

Jan 10, 2021

Daneger and Stacey153K subscribersSUBSCRIBEWe might be from New Zealand, but as adults we’ve not seen the glowworms in Waitomo! So we’re taking a Waitomo Glowworm Caves Tour in Ruakuri Cave… The first 1000 people to use this link will get a free trial of Skillshare Premium Membership: Welcome back to Waitomo New Zealand, the home of the glowworm! Today we’re taking the Ruakuri cave tour. Waitomo is known as the go to place to travel in New Zealand to take a cave tour and see the glowworms. There’s a labyrinth of caves under the town (and beyond) that house these natural attractions along with some seriously wild looking black water rafting as well! If you like a bit of adventure, it looked pretty cool to raft through the rapids in the dark… we’re taking note for next time. Ruakuri was the glow worm tour we picked and we were stoked with it. Of course we can’t compare it to the more common and popular tour known simply as the Waitomo Glowworm Tour, but we highly recommend checking out Ruakuri. There is actually an option to do both from memory, you can book them at a reduced rate because you’re doing 2, so that could be a good solution to see everything in one day. Either way, while we plan Season 2 of our Reveal NZ Series we’re just happy to be out and exploring more of our own little paradise! Hope you enjoyed spending the past few days in Waitomo with us. Note — This wasn’t a collab or sponsored by the Waitomo glowworm tour (obviously it is sponsored/made possible by Skillshare as we mentioned though), we paid to see what it was all about ourselves. One of the shots I used was stock footage though to give you an idea of what we experienced, we didn’t shoot that one ourselves out of respect of the g-worms. We send out a monthly email with our travel updates and valuable recommendations for your travels — Chapters: 00:00 Intro 01:18 Duck Traffic Jam 02:25 Waitomo Caves 03:30 Video Sponsor 04:42 What’s In The Cave 06:10 Glowworms 06:50 Our Tour Review 07:52 Otorohanga Exploring 09:01 Float Tank Thoughts 10:38 Best Food In Waitomo? 12:03 S’mores On The Fire ▬▬▬ G E A R ↠ Vlog Camera — ↠ All Our Gear — ↠ How We Edit Photos — ▬▬▬ S U P P O R T ☺ For the cost of a coffee you can support us via Patreon — ☺ Buying anything off Amazon? Go via any of our links first — ☺ Like the lo

How do we know graphene oxide isn’t used in COVID-19 mRNA vaccines?

byHealth Desk|Published onAugust 4, 2021–Updated onAugust 4, 2021|Explainer

What our experts say

The Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 mRNA vaccines do not contain any graphene oxide. The ingredient list for both vaccines have been published and tested by outside parties. They were not found to contain any graphene oxide in their formulas, including their lipid nanoparticles.

Lipid nanoparticles, basically tiny balls of fat, are used in mRNA vaccines to protect delicate RNA molecules so the vaccine can enter the human body without being destroyed. Lipid nanoparticles have been recognized as potential drug delivery systems (ways to get medications into human cells, especially injectable drugs) since the 1960s. Lipids are fatty, oily, or waxy and include fats and oils (triglycerides), waxes, and steroids, among other things.

Sometimes a compound called polyethylene glycol (PEG) can be used to help keep lipid nanoparticles stable, as they are used in the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines. However, there is no graphene oxide in the PEG-lipid nanoparticles

No WHO authorized vaccines produced by Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, CanSino, Sinovac, Sputnik V, or Janssen contain graphene oxide. The Novavax COVID-19 vaccine has not yet published a list of its ingredients in a peer-reviewed or open access publication.

Graphene oxide is a compound that contains carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen. It is used in many applications, from sensors to textiles to the potential application of medicine. This material is cheap, readily available, and can disperse in water. It is water soluble, so it may be a great solution for helping medications be absorbed. It can be produced as a powder or a solution for various uses.

Graphene oxide may be a useful tool in vaccine delivery in the future, because scientists and chemical engineers believe it can be engineered to be a safe delivery vehicle for vaccines, and help increase their effectiveness. Like lipid nanoparticles, graphene oxide is also a nanoparticle and has recently been used in an intranasal influenza vaccine platform with promising results.

Additionally, these nanoparticles have been shown to increase macrophages and T cells, which can boost our immune systems and generate potentially stronger immune responses. Recent studies have shown that graphene and graphene-related materials may have antiviral and antimicrobial properties, so evaluating them for use in medication and vaccine design is warranted.

While certain amounts of graphene oxide could be toxic to humans, current research on the use of this compound in other vaccines indicate that the amount that would be in potential vaccines would be so small that it would not be toxic to human cells. A 2016 study showed that graphene-base materials (like graphene oxide) might cause dose-dependent toxicity, decreased cell viability, formations of lung granuloma, and cell apoptosis. Notably, these studies were performed on mice, but graphene oxide specifically showed no obvious toxicity at low doses or middle doses from .1 to .25 mg. It was chronically toxic at higher doses of .4 mg, where it was found to deposit in the lungs, liver, spleen, and kidneys. It is important to note that this .4 mg of graphene oxide is proportionally much greater in mice than it would be in humans, considering their size and biological differences. Further, this study was completed 10 years ago and the graphene oxide was not chemically engineered in a manner that may make it safer or more tolerable for living organisms.

Many more studies and trials are needed to determine whether or not graphene oxide is an effective, completely safe, and useful material for biomedical applications including drug delivery, imaging, and biosensors. Current research on the compound has produced mixed results but optimism have been increased due to the success of recent research projects as of late.

Context and background

Viral videos, posts, and articles have been falsely written about the role of graphene oxide in COVID-19 vaccines, despite any actual evidence to support these findings. The ingredients of COVID-19 vaccines have been published and evaluated by independent groups, outside of Novavax, and found no graphene oxide in any part of their formulas.

Graphene oxide is currently being investigated to determine whether or not it can be a safe and effective tool for use in vaccines among other biomedical properties.


  1. Fact sheet for recipients and caregivers: Emergency use authorization (EUA) of the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine to Prevent Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in individuals 18 years of age and older (United States Food and Drug Administration)
  2. Fact sheet for recipients and caregivers: Emergency use authorization (EUA) of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine to Prevent Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in individuals 12 years of age and older (United States Food and Drug Administration)
  3. DEADLY SHOTS! Former Pfizer Employee Confirms Poison in COVID ‘Vaccine’ (Rumble)
  4. Nano coronavirus recombinant vaccine taking graphene oxide as carrier (Google Patents)
  5. Fact Check-COVID-19 vaccines do not contain graphene oxide (Reuters)
  6. COVID-19 vaccine tracker and landscape (World Health Organization)
  7. Nanomedicine: A Diagnostic and Therapeutic Approach to COVID-19 (Frontiers in Medicine)
  8. Are COVID-19 Vaccines Mostly Graphene Oxide? Here’s What Experts Have to Say (The Science Times)
  9. Toxicity of graphene-family nanoparticles: a general review of the origins and mechanisms (Particle and Fibre Toxicity)
  10. Biocompatibility of Graphene Oxide (Nanoscale Research Letters)
  11. Antiviral performance of graphene-based materials with emphasis on COVID-19: A review (Medicine in Drug Discovery)
  12. Graphene Oxide In Pfizer Covid-19 Vaccines? Here Are The Latest Unsupported Claims (Forbes)
  13. Comprehensive Review on Graphene Oxide for Use in Drug Delivery System (Current Medicinal Chemistry)
  14. Solid Lipid Nanoparticles for Drug Delivery: Pharmacological and Biopharmaceutical Aspects (Frontiers in Molecular Biosciences)
  15. Without these lipid shells, there would be no mRNA vaccines for COVID-19 (Chemical & Engineering News)
  16. Understanding the nanotechnology in COVID-19 vaccines (CAS: American Chemical Society)
  17. Biochemistry, Lipids (StatPearls)
  18. PEG shedding-rate-dependent blood clearance of PEGylated lipid nanoparticles in mice: Faster PEG shedding attenuates anti-PEG IgM production (International Journal of Pharmaceutics)
  19. COVID-19 Vaccines for People with Allergies (United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  20. Drug and Gene Delivery Technologies (Biomaterials Nanoarchitectonics)
  21. Biomimetics: Research explores the potential of graphene oxide (Binghampton University)
  22. What is graphene oxide? (Biolin Scientific)
  23. Graphene Oxide (Jiaxing Huang Group)
  24. Graphene Oxide (GO) Market 2021: Application Coverage by Different Demand Market by Region, Main Consumer Profile, Market Size & Forecast 2024 (MarketWatch)
  25. Recent progress of graphene oxide as a potential vaccine carrier and adjuvant (Acta Biomateriala)
  26. Functionalized graphene oxide serves as a novel vaccine nano-adjuvant for robust stimulation of cellular immunity† (Nanoscale)
  27. Potential of graphene-based materials to combat COVID-19: properties, perspectives, and prospects (Materials Today Chemistry)
  28. Graphene and the Immune System: A Romance of Many Dimensions (Frontiers in Immunology)
  29. Intranasal vaccination with influenza HA/GO-PEI nanoparticles provides immune protection against homo- and heterologous strains (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America)
  30. Dispersibility-Dependent Biodegradation of Graphene Oxide by Myeloperoxidase (Nano Micro Small)
  31. In vivo biodistribution and toxicology of functionalized nano-graphene oxide in mice after oral and intraperitoneal administration (Biomaterials)
  32. Graphene Hydrogel Could Help mRNA Vaccine Target Cancer More Effectively (Clinicalomics)
  33. Ultrasmall Graphene Oxide Supported Gold Nanoparticles as Adjuvants Improve Humoral and Cellular Immunity in Mice (Advanced Functional Materials)
  34. Exploration of graphene oxide as an intelligent platform for cancer vaccines† (Nanoscale)

Despite 95% vaccination rate, Cornell today has five times more COVID cases than it did this time last year

Obviously, the goal is not to prevent infection!

The Most Revolutionary Act

Joseph Silverstein

The College Fix

ANALYSIS: If the goal is to prevent infection, the 95 percent vaccination rate on Cornell’s campus has not accomplished that.

Cornell University has aggressively pushed its students to get vaccinated, announcing a vaccine mandate for the 2021-22 academic year in April and frequently denying religious and medical exemptions.As a result, 95 percent of the campus population, both students and faculty, is vaccinated.

Despite this, Cornell University has more than five times the amount of confirmed positive cases during its first week of this academic year than it did during its first week of the 2020-21 academic year, according to the Cornell COVID dashboard.

By the numbers, during the first week of school that ran from Aug. 27 to Sept. 2 of this academic year, Cornell reported 322 positive COVID-19 cases.

In comparison, during the first week of school last year, which ran from Sept. 3…

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From escaping the Taliban to Kiwi academic excellence

Abbas Nazari’s memoir couldn’t have come at a more poignant time as he watches his country fall to the same forces his family escaped from 20 years ago.

In After the Tampa: From Afghanistan to New Zealand, Nazari recounts a harrowing journey to leave Afghanistan at the age of 7 and being rescued by the MV Tampa, which resulted in an international diplomatic rift.

Graduating from the University of Canterbury, pictured with his mother and father.

Ali (left), his father (middle) and Abbas helping a Sungjoy family with their apricot harvest in 2017.

First day of school in Pakistan.

Talking to NZ with Mike McRoberts one week after 15th March.

The Nazari clan one year into their lives in Christchurch.

Ali and Abbas learnt about birthdays at school and convinced their mum to throw a joint party.

Listen to the full interview with Abbas Nazari here duration27′ :01″Add to playlistDownload

Listen to the full interview with Abbas Nazari here

Nazari’s story echoes the agonising decisions some in Afghanistan are having to make at every turn.

“The war is coming in and it’s getting more dangerous by the day and so [my parents] had a choice, do we stay and face persecution or potential killing by the Taliban? Or do we pack up our things and seek security elsewhere? And for my parents back then, that was across the border in Pakistan,” Nazari tells Jim Mora.

“There’s so many points along the way where they had to make a decision, to stay or to go into the unknown.”

With the persecution of the Hazaras ethnic minority in Afghanistan, his family became fearful. Having Central Asian genes, speaking a different language, and with most belonging to the Shia’a sect of Islam, they were a visible target, Nazari says.

“Over centuries, that has meant we are an ‘other’, a minority group that is unwanted in the land of the majority.

“In the book, I detail countless instances of massacres, of genocidal acts, culminating with the Taliban takeover and the many massacres and atrocities they committed against the Hazaras Afghans. That is a genuine fear, that now with the Taliban back in power, that they’ll continue what they started in the ’90s.

“Right now when viewers and readers are tuning in to the harrowing images of what’s happening in Afghanistan … we see statistics and crowds of people, but each person there is an individual story, where they’ve either had to say goodbye to their families, where they’ve had their families killed, or whether they’ve had absolute fear of staying because they might be an ethnic minority, a translator, or a woman.

“All that is lost when we talk about what’s happening in Afghanistan.”

The Taliban have claimed that their rule will be different to last time, while Nazari hopes that will be true, he says “their actions speak louder than words”.

“Keep in mind, they’re incredibly tech-savvy now. They have biometric data from all the technology they’ve seized, so they know exactly who has worked with the foreign troops, they know exactly who the journalists are, who the critical thinkers are, and they know exactly where people live.”

Now there’s a sea of people surrounding Kabul Airport, and Nazari says even though they probably have tickets to get out, militants are controlling the checkpoints and have been firing bullets over the crowds to make them withdraw.

His own journey to cross the border was troublesome, he says, when “every second feels like an eternity.”

Barely getting through there to Pakistan and finally Indonesia, they get on a rickety fishing boat with more than 400 asylum seekers, heading to Australia.

“That chapter describes the rollercoaster of emotions we went through. We were in the belly in the hull of the ship that was being torn apart by the wave, I remember the decking falling apart, holes in the sides, the beams are splitting and people are sliding across those decks … and it was the most horrendous experience I’ve ever been through … that particular night is installed in high definition in my memory.

“I remember one of the parents next to me, gripping on to his child, and his prayer he uttered was something along the lines of ‘oh God, if we were to die tonight then let our bodies wash ashore so we can be buried on land’. What more do you need to show how desperate and fearful people were about their circumstances.”

They were rescued by cargo ship Tampa, which was refused entry by Australia and spent 35 days at sea before New Zealand struck a deal to take in 150 people, among them Nazari’s family.

“That was one of the happiest times of my life … I learned my ABCs at Mangere, I remember eating all the mounds of food we were given.

“And how starkly different my life was to the 300-odd men and single dads and elder sons who had ventured alone, who were sent to Nauru, some who would spend three years there before they were given resettlement elsewhere.”

While the story of escaping the violence can be quite grim and dark, Nazari also hopes to show through his book that Afghanistan has known peace before and believes it can be accomplished again.

Nazari is now a Fulbright scholar, and recently came back to Aotearoa from his studies in the United States at Georgetown University. He was due to appear alongside former prime minister Helen Clark at a WORD event – which has now been cancelled due to the Covid-19 outbreak.