President Peter welcomed everyone to the meeting, with a special welcome to Bruce Farthing, back from China and to tell us of his travels tonight.
"I need to advise that Geoffrey Amos, who has contributed so much on Taveuni Island, has died.  A number of you will have known Geoffrey, and his passing is a very significant loss.
During the last three weeks I have completed two tramping trips in the South Island, and both of these adventures had moments of truth.  The first significant challenge occurred on Kirwans Circuit in Victoria Forest Park.   I did the first 15 kilometres as a night tramp, which is no big deal, except that I hadn’t quite counted on the fog/mist/cloud which my headlamp could not penetrate.   It was also cold and pitch dark.   I completed the first 7 kilometres in well under two hours but the rest of the climb was more like another 3-4 hours. 
There’s an idea that most trampers who die while out tramping do so within half a kilometre of a hut.  Hence, I took my dilapidated physical and mental state in the latter stages of this expedition as a good omen and, sure enough, with a final thrust I was able to reach the comfort and safety of Kirwan’s Hut.
The second adventure of note occurred when I was doing the Cass-Lagoon Saddle Track in Craigieburn Forest Park.   On the second day I came out of the bush to confront two valleys, the Harper and the Long Creek Tributary.   The requirement was to walk half a kilometre up one of these river valleys and then take up the track again.   For the life of me I could not find the track entrance up either of the river valleys until, by a process of deduction, I got underway again.
Tramping by yourself is possibly a little like ocean yachting, scuba diving, and driving on country roads at night.  It is dangerous stuff.   Still, perhaps we shouldn’t count our lives by the breaths that we take but rather by the moments that take our breath away.
As I stated earlier in April, our new membership night is very important.  It is not an exaggeration to say that our club is at a cross roads and the New Members Night probably represents one of a diminishing number of opportunities for club revitalisation.    We need to distribute pamphlets and, most importantly, shoulder tap potential members and have them attend on 13 May.     Also, on the evening itself we need to extend traditional Rotary warmth and courtesy to our visitors.   Effective sales, whether of products or services, is about relationships and it is about action.   This is something that Ian Cochran with his career in sales will undoubtedly confirm.    (Please contact President Peter if you need additional pamphlets to advertise this event.)
Staying on membership, I am sorry to advise that Yvonne Burmester has resigned.    Best wishes to Yvonne going forward.    John Buck is ill in hospital, and our best wishes go to him.  We are thinking of you and Margaret at this time."
THE SAGE - Bevan Rakoia
As we express our gratitude, we must never
forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter
words, but to live by them.
Poppy Day Appeal - Brian Hodge reported that the money collected in our area was $1145, which compared to $1087 last year.
Beatgirls - Brian is also still writing thank you notes to donors and sponsors.   He is still awaiting some names.   Please get them to Brian ASAP.
Taveuni Project - And still with Brian, he reported that over the school holidays, painting of the building had been completed, they had put up some walls, and laid floor tiles.   They are nearly ready to install the benches and stoves.
Petanque - Rae James circulated a clip board for petanque, noting it was also Mothers' Day.   If you have not put your name down yet, please contact Rae.
Rotary Foundation - Rae reported that the club normally donates $100 per head to the Foundation.   There is enough money to do this again this year, and monies will be deposited shortly.
Charitable Trust - Rae advised that there are currently five trustees, who rotate on three yearly terms.  Rae had been a trustee since 2008, and was standing down.   He sought a volunteer from the floor for the vacancy, whose name would be put to the board for consideration.   Clyde Stewart put his name forward.
Youth Matters - Carmen reported that the week before Easter she had spent five nights and six days at RYLA, with 33 amazing young people.    Our club candidate, Matt Courtney, a manager at Brookfield New World attended, and it was good to see us putting back to a company that supported us.    Each year the District has one sponsorship for Outward Bound.   The nominee this year is again from our club, and this is the seventh year in a row that a candidate from Otumoetai College has been successful.   Well done to the College.   On 25 March, we had the students who had attended the Summer Science School with us, and one of those had been accepted to go to London.   Carmen announced that another of these students, Alice Cerdeira, had now been accepted to go the Asian schools in China.   That is two of the four students who spoke to us had now been accepted for international schools.   Again, well done to the college.
K Valley Planting - John Butt reminded all members of the planting day this weekend.   Rotarians are requested to be there at 9 a.m. to put the trees out into places.    Bring a spade and gumboots, as the area is wet, and the holes have not been pre-dug.   They are looking for at least 100 people, because 6000 plants need to get out into the ground in the two hours.   That is 60 plants each at a rate of 30 per hour - it can be done, but a good turn out is needed.   The planting is also open to the public.   Fine weather is promised.
President Peter awarded Keith his Sapphire Pin with the following comments - "Keith McLeod is a stalwart of the Rotary Club of Otumoetai and his contributions to what we do are numerous.    I intend to mention just four of Keith’s more recent assistances.    Firstly, there is his Treasurer’s role with the Trust.  Keith is meticulous in what he does and in his stewardship in this role.  So well done, Keith. 
Secondly, there is his commitment to Rotary Dictionaries.    What enlightment and joy is spread by this means, and the books themselves are an iconic Rotary item.   The third matter has been Keith’s oversight of the Merivale Reading programme.   Along with the dictionaries, this is a substantial commitment to the literacy of young people.   The fourth matter is Keith’s leadership and administration of the parking at the Tauranga Club Book Fair.   This is much more that a successful money earner as it contributes to fellowship and cross-club relations."
THE ORATOR - Ian Cochran
Ian talked about the Entertainment Books, which he has been championing for a number of years.   He says this is the best fund raising system we have - Rotary benefits, we personally benefit, and the buyers benefit.   It is not only meals that you get a discount on, although they are a major part - there is also hotels, accommodation, entertainment, and travel.   The discounts are unlimited, and in the 25 years the books have been operating $80 million has been collected.
The books are easy to sell.   The majority of people go out at least three times in a year.   That is enough to recover the cost of the book.
There is the books, but there is also an app available, which you can put on your phone.   When you are out, you can find a local place that will give you the discount.   It's very convenient.
Ian has the books available now - please see him.
GUEST SPEAKER - Bruce Farthing reviews a trip to China
Bruce was introduced by Keith McLeod, who said Bruce was a well travelled guy to whom the following might apply ....
Sherlock Holmes and Dr John Watson went on a camping trip.   After a good meal and a bottle of wine, they laid down for the night, and went to sleep.   Some hours later, Holmes awoke and nudged his faithful friend.  "Watson, look up at the sky and tell me what you see."   Watson replied, "I see millions and millions of stars."  "What does that tell you?"   Watson pondered for a minute.    "Astronomically, it tells me that there are millions of galaxies, and potentially billions of planets.   Astrologically, I observe that Saturn is in Leo.   Horologically,I deduce that the time is approximately a quarter past three.   Theologically, I can see that God is all powerful and that we are small and insignificant.   Meteorologically, I suspect that we will have a beautiful day tomorrow.  What does it tell you?"   Holmes was silent for a minute, then spoke.   "It tells me that someone has stolen our tent."
Bruce's introduction to China was in 1974 in his first year of teaching.   His Head of Department was appointed to a position in Singapore, and Bruce had to fill and give an address.   The first group of educators from China were in New Zealand, and Bruce spoke about China, because he was bored with other topics.   A return trip to China was arranged, and Bruce was asked if he wanted to go.   He was one of five selected and went there for six weeks through August-September in 1975.    He was terrified to tell his father about the trip, as he saw reds under the beds, but his father told him to go off and learn something.   Bruce was only 24 and did not fully realise the opportunity that was being offered to him.   He then gave a wide ranging talk on his recent trip.
Arriving at 3 a.m. Bruce found delays travelling internally due to flying delays caused by a closed air space by the Air Force.   He learned that it would be far better to travel by the train.   He took a trip to Olympic Park which was spectacular.   He used the subway, which works on a grid, and very easy to get familiar with.    The next day he visited the Summer Palace and Tianneman Square.  The cultural revolutions have been great.   People will now say, 'The best thing Mao did for China, is die!'   Bruce had some printouts about the Square, and was quickly told to put them away.    
Big Brother was everywhere, with camera and security everywhere.   The people didn't mind it with the attitude that if you were doing nothing wrong, what was there to worry about.   Similarly bus drivers cell phones were monitored, so that there location and activities were known.   
No one opposed the single party state, and they were very critical of democracy.
Cities were first and second tier cities, but they were clean and green, with no pollution, and there was road, rail and air transportation.    Bruce had the opportunity to talk with and industrial manager that supplies New Zealand about production, and the out sourcing now to other countries where labour rates were cheaper. 
It had been 44  years since Bruce had been there, and he described Beijing as an extremely modern city.  
Foundation fundraising took a different turn tonight.   Firstly the bears were awarded, and then it became a "Good Story" night.   Local Ted went to Rae James for the sterling job he has done as a trustee of the Charitable Trust.   Foundation Ted went to Bruce Farthing in recognition of the seven successful nominees for Outward Bound from the college.
It was then Nola Ardern's turn to tell a good story..... 
"Kiwi man wins medal design competition for 2020 Youth Olympic Games"
Zakea Page, a 20-year old artist from Wellington has had his medal-design selected as the official design for the Lausanne, Switzerland, 2020 Youth Olympic Games.   It is understood Page is the first person in New Zealand to design an Olympic medal.   His design beat nearly 300 other entries from 60 countries.
Zakea had his drawings of the medal turned into 3D rendering by first year University student Ryan Ardern.  Page has been invited to attend the opening ceremony of the games, and Ryan will be attending with him.    His Grandmother, Nola, is very proud of him.   "I didn’t know that Zakea had won until I saw it on Prime News." Pictures below show Zakea’s drawing and the completed 3D rendering turned out by Ryan Ardern.
Paul Noonan was embarrassed because he dobbed Nola in, and then had to put forward his story to atone.   He has thought for many years that it is strange that the country pays people 65 years and over to travel on the ferry to Waiheke free, and has wondered what he would do when he was sixty-five - and the time has come.    He recently found himself on the ferry without his kids, whom he had always told he would pay for them instead.   So what to do with no kids present?   He found a woman and offered to pay for her, and she initially declined, but did eventually accept the offer.   She lived on the island, and had to take her child to a hospital appointment.   So this was money well spent.   On the return trip, another woman refused his offer, leading Paul to conclude that an act of kindness can be very difficult.
Rae James then offered a story on behalf of Margaret.   Her grand daughter is 12 years old, and is in to synchronised swimming.   She has been training for the New Zealand team.   One day she spent seven hours in the pool.   It has paid off - she has been selected to go to Singapore to represent New Zealand in her age group.
All present donated to the Foundation - good stories for a good cause.
                  13 May - Membership meeting
                             27 May - Business meeting
                             10 June - 50th Anniversary dinner
                             24 June - Change Over
  THE SAGE - Bevan Rakoia - A second thought..
We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors,
we borrow it from our children.
President               Peter Stanley           570 1952       Mobile 021 0247 5576
President-elect     Bevan Rakoia           578 9511           Mobile 027 461 2127
Secretary               Nola Ardern             576 2410  Mobile 021 752 335
Treasurer              John Knowles          548 2324          Mobile 027 499 9456
Apologies &
Attendance            Ian Cochran             579 3836          Mobile 021 449 599
Bulletin Editor       Peter Smith              548 1680                Mobile 027 655 0397
Meetings each second and fourth Monday of the month – 5.45 p.m. for 6.30 p.m. at Tauranga Yacht and Power Boat Club, Sulphur Point, Tauranga.  There will be no meeting on public holidays, and these dates will have been rescheduled in the same month.   Please contact a club officer to confirm such dates.
ATTENDANCE – Members please email apologies to Ian Cochran,  The close off time for apologies is 12 Noon Friday, with late apologies by 12 Noon Monday.
Guests wishing to attend the club meeting please call 579 3836 or email Ian with your interest.