Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

10 old-time remedies that actually work

<p>These remedies have been known about for hundreds of years and you might have heard about some of these incredible tips from your grandmother! </p> <p>See the ten best remedies that actually work. </p> <p><strong>1. Old-time home remedies</strong></p> <p>Researchers have produced hundreds of studies in the past five years about the effectiveness of home remedies, but not all the old-time solutions really help. That’s why this list focuses on treatments with evidence to back them up. Remember that even natural cures can interact with medications. If you take pills regularly or have a chronic health condition, check with your doctor before trying these.</p> <p><strong>2. Buttermilk for age spots</strong></p> <p>You can skip the expensive skin creams. This rich by-product of butter contains lactic acid and ascorbic acid. One study showed that this combination lightened age spots more effectively than lactic acid alone. Apply to the spots with a cotton ball, then rinse with water after 20 minutes.</p> <p><strong>3. Comfrey for back pain</strong></p> <p>This medicinal plant has been used for centuries to treat joint and muscle pain. A study of 215 patients found that applying concentrated comfrey cream to the lower and upper back reduced muscle pain. You can buy it in health food stores and online.</p> <p><strong>4. Aloe for burns</strong></p> <p>“Aloe is a very soothing remedy for burns,” says dermatologist, Dr Purvisha Patel. One study demonstrated it was more effective than other treatments for second-degree burns. Make sure you use pure aloe, not a scented version. If you own an aloe plant, simply cut open a leaf and apply the liquid directly to the affected area. For serious burns, you should still see a doctor.</p> <p><strong>5. Ground flaxseed for constipation</strong></p> <p>“It’s almost as if nature tailor-made ground flaxseed to relieve constipation,” says gastroenterologist Dr Will Bulsiewicz. “It is a great source of both insoluble and soluble fibre, which add bulk to the stool and promote the growth of good bacteria.” Ground flaxseed is an excellent source of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids, which are known to help soften stool and relieve constipation. Aim for two to three tablespoons a day as part of a fibre-rich diet.</p> <p><strong>6. Thyme tea for coughs</strong></p> <p>Thyme is a natural expectorant that relaxes the respiratory tract and loosens mucus. Studies have found that using thyme in combination with primrose or ivy relieves the frequency and duration of coughs. To make thyme tea, place two tablespoons of fresh thyme (or one tablespoon dried) in a cup of hot water. Allow it to steep, then drain out the herb. Add honey to taste.</p> <p><strong>7. Blackberry tea for diarrhoea</strong></p> <p>Blackberries are rich in tannins, substances that can tighten mucous membranes in the intestinal tract. They have long been used as a treatment for diarrhoea. Make blackberry tea by boiling one or two tablespoons of fresh or frozen blackberries or dried blackberry leaves in one and a half cups of water for 10 minutes, then strain. Drink several cups a day. You can also buy blackberry tea, but make sure that it contains blackberry leaves and not just flavouring.</p> <p><strong>8. Lavender oil for foot odour</strong></p> <p>Lavender essential oil not only smells good but also has antibacterial properties that help kill germs. Before bed, rub a few drops of oil onto your feet and massage it in. Pull on a pair of socks to protect your sheets.</p> <p>9. Globe artichoke extract for GORD and heartburn</p> <p>Compounds in artichoke leaves called caffeoylquinic acids stimulate the release of bile from the gallbladder, which helps relieve nausea, gas, bloating, and other symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GORD) and heartburn. Since the leaves are mostly inedible, look for artichoke extract capsules in health food stores or online.</p> <p><strong>10. Cherries for gout</strong></p> <p>People who ate about 20 cherries every day were less likely to experience flare-ups of gout, according to a study of 633 patients with the condition. Cherries contain compounds that help neutralise uric acid.</p> <p><em>Written by Jen McCaffery and Tina Donvito. This <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.readersdigest.com.au/culture/20-old-time-home-remedies-that-actually-work" target="_blank">article</a> first appeared in Reader’s Digest. For more of what you love from the world’s best-loved magazine, <a rel="noopener" href="http://readersdigest.innovations.co.nz/c/readersdigestemailsubscribe?utm_source=over60&amp;utm_medium=articles&amp;utm_campaign=RDSUB&amp;keycode=WRN93V" target="_blank">here’s our best subscription offer.</a></em></p> <p><img style="width: 100px !important; height: 100px !important;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7820640/1.png" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/f30947086c8e47b89cb076eb5bb9b3e2" /></p> <p>​</p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

87-year-old woman berates William and Kate in hilarious exchange

<p>The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge could not hold back their tears of laughter after an aged care resident berated the pair for their “bingo calling” skills during a visit to Cardiff.</p> <p>Prince William and Kate Middleton both visited Shire Hall Care Home in Wales three months after conducting a virtual bingo session for the staff and residents.</p> <p>Joan Drew-Smith, 87, did not forget the pair’s appearance via live stream either and claimed they both did a "b-----y s-----y job" at it.</p> <p>The spirited elderly woman was certainly open and vocal about the couple’s lack of bingo calling skills during their session in May, claiming it "wasn't as good as it should have been," to the press.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7837210/prince-william-kate-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/9a045a92f35745f7878e577352846078" /></p> <p>Upon reuniting with Drew-Smith, the Duke asked if she remembered him.</p> <p>"'Hello Joan, do you remember we did the bingo with you? You said we weren't very good!" Prince William said.</p> <p>Drew-Smith replied with a simple "yes", adding "You did a b------y s-----y job".</p> <p>Though initially taken aback by Drew-Smith's blunt feedback, however they both into a fit of laughter moments later.</p> <p>Drew-Smith continued her comedy routine, by asking Kate Middleton if she was the prince’s "assistant."</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/CDhXPtBHS03/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="margin: 8px 0 0 0; padding: 0 4px;"><a style="color: #000; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none; word-wrap: break-word;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CDhXPtBHS03/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">#special#photos#uk#london#british#royalfamily#queen#queenelizabeth#princephillip#princecharles#princessdiana#princessanne#princeandrew#princeedward#thecrown#monarchy#cambridge#princewilliam#katemiddleton#dukeofcambridge#duchessofcambridge#cute#princegeorge#princesscharlotte#princelouis#flower#flowerstagram#beautiful#art#royal#flowerstagram</a></p> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;">A post shared by <a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/uk.monarchy/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank"> uk.monarchy</a> (@uk.monarchy) on Aug 5, 2020 at 1:37pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Laughing in response, the Duchess replied: "I have been for a long time."</p> <p>The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited the quaint Welsh town to see for themselves the brand-new beach huts installed as part of the Vale of Glamorgan Council's £6 million (10.9 million AUD) regeneration project in the community.</p> <p>The pair also met with aged care residents, and thankfully enough met a much more welcoming resident.</p> <p>Margaret Stocks, 95, told the pair: "I did enjoy it,", claiming she "hadn't played," bingo before, despite being the victor of the virtual game.</p> <p>"Neither had we!" the Duchess responded, admitting that's why the pair were "so bad" at calling the numbers.</p> <p>"It was a new experience for us," William added.</p> <p>The Prince shared his admiration for Drew-Smith's candid nature, and only had praise for her when speaking to a staff member: "I love Joan, she's brilliant. If only everyone was as honest as her."</p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Over-60s make the leap to virtual “Feisty Feet” dance classes

<p><span><a href="https://nzdc.org.nz/education/feisty-feet">Feisty Feet</a></span> is an over 60s seniors dance class created and facilitated by The New Zealand Dance Company (NZDC), which brings together the wisdom keepers of our communities to express and enjoy themselves through dance.</p> <p>Feisty Feet classes, certified by the <a href="https://www.livestronger.org.nz/">Live Stronger for Longer</a> intiative, are held weekly at two Auckland locations in Takapuna and Point Chevalier, but can now also be accessed from anywhere across New Zealand through a weekly Virtual Class.</p> <p>NZDC tutor <a href="https://nzdc.org.nz/our-team/kerry-ann-stanton">Kerry-Ann Stanton</a>, who manages the class in  Pt. Chevalier, has been teaching and developing Feisty Feet from its inception in 2016. Kerry-Ann says, “I enjoy bringing the joys of movement to people in their older age. Dance has been shown to have a positive influence on people, such as a reduced risk of dementia, reduced stress and depression, providing increased energy and serotonin. These classes are fun, inclusive of all cultures and are a great way to make new friends.”</p> <p>Like most activities in 2020, Feisty Feet was affected by COVID-19, but in a positive way. The disappointment regular class-goers expressed about missing their weekly class during lockdown inspired NZDC to move Feisty Feet online. The Company wanted to stay connected with its seniors dance community from the safety of their homes as a means of combatting loneliness during the isolation period and supporting physical and mental wellbeing.</p> <p><span><a href="https://nzdc.org.nz/our-team/carlene-newall-de-jesus">Carlene Newall de Jesus</a></span>, a community dance advocate, specialist, and lecturer at the University of Auckland is also a core facilitator for Feisty Feet, developing and teaching NZDC’s Takapuna class. She reflects,“The transition to virtual classes was surprisingly smooth. After initially worrying that being together across our screens would be too removed and distanced, it became clear that even in this digital space, physical exploration and connection was still possible. As the virtual classes developed I began to appreciate homes spaces as dancing places and found ways to allow individual contribution even in the digital space.”</p> <p>Survey feedback from class participants also showcased that the benefits of a Feisty Feet class were not lost when moving to an online class.</p> <p>One participant shares, “Although I've never attended a dance class before, learning flowing movements and practising coordination, balance and memory and enjoying the friendly faces of other participants and the encouragement of the tutors got me moving and made me feel content in myself.”</p> <p>Another participant enjoyed the “extra physical movement, using whole body and the associated wellbeing and inspiration and pleasure of communication and meeting new dancers as well as learning new IT skills.”</p> <p>An additional participant reflected how it was “easy to access, no embarassment as on [your] own and no time lost in transportation”</p> <p>Carlene encapsulates the intention of Feisty Feet classes and the desire at NZDC to continue to offer the online class alongside in-person classes: “I believe dance offers a unique combination of exercise, creativity, cognition and socialisation that can be beneficial for older bodies, brains and general wellbeing. The digital platform allows older adults who may not have access to appropriate dance classes in their region, or who are unable to travel to classes, a chance to dance, move and express. Aotearoa is made up of more than just large cities and I am excited to see what sense of community can develop across older New Zealanders from diverse towns and regions.”</p> <p>More Information: <span><a href="https://nzdc.org.nz/education/feisty-feet">nzdc.org.nz/education/feisty-feet</a></span></p> <p><strong>VIRTUAL</strong></p> <p><strong>WHERE</strong>: Online through Zoom</p> <p><strong>WHEN</strong>: Every Friday 9-10am</p> <p><strong>TUTOR</strong>: Carlene Newall de Jesus</p> <p><strong>COST</strong>: $10 per session. Register ahead of class here: <span><a href="https://bit.ly/virtualfeistyfeet">https://bit.ly/virtualfeistyfeet</a></span></p> <p><strong>TAKAPUNA</strong></p> <p><strong>WHERE:</strong> St Peters Anglican Church, 11 Killarney Street, Takapuna</p> <p><strong>WHEN:</strong> Every Wednesday 10-11am until 16 December 2020</p> <p><strong>TUTOR:</strong> Carlene Newall de Jesus</p> <p><strong>COST:</strong> $10 per session or $90 for 10 sessions. Pay in person before class with cash.</p> <p><strong>POINT CHEVALIER</strong></p> <p><strong>WHERE</strong>: Subud Hall, 19 Formby Rd, Pt Chevalier</p> <p><strong>WHEN</strong>: Every Wednesday 11am-noon until 16 December 2020</p> <p><strong>TUTOR</strong>: Kerry-Anny Stanton</p> <p><strong>COST</strong>: $10 per session or $90 for 10 sessions. Pay in person before class with cash.</p> <p>Photos by Caroline Bindon and Ashley David.</p> <p> </p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Alzheimer’s breakthrough discovery

<p>Australian researchers are optimistic as they believe they have discovered a treatment that could revise the impacts of memory loss in people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.</p> <p>The Macquarie University Dementia Research Centre study builds on previous research that found an enzyme in the brain could modify a protein so it prevents the development of Alzheimer’s symptoms.</p> <p>The latest research went further by finding the gene responsible for the enzyme that could help restore or improve memory in mice suffering from advanced Alzheimer’s disease.</p> <p>The study also suggests the gene therapy, which involves genetic material being introduced to cells to help replace abnormal genes, may also be helpful for those who are in their 40s and 50s and suffer from dementia.</p> <p>Researchers have discovered gene therapy is safe when given in high doses and for a long period of time.</p> <p>Dr Arne Ittner, one of the leaders of the study, says a better understanding is required of what happens to the molecules in the brain during dementia.</p> <p>"Our work delivers a very powerful piece in this puzzle," he said in a statement.</p> <p>His brother and co-research leader, Professor Lars Ittner, said he was ecstatic to see a decade worth of research transition into clinical development that could benefit those living with dementia.</p> <p>"This provides hope as there is a lot of therapy out there focused on prevention but not much for those already affected by the disease," he said.</p> <p>The two researchers said the possible success of this new therapy could be within reach in five to 10 years.</p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Queen Elizabeth II honours Captain Sir Thomas Moore with Knighthood

<div class="post_body_wrapper"> <div class="post_body"> <div class="body_text "> <p>Queen Elizabeth II has knighted Captain Sir Thomas Moore in an effort to recognise his valiant fundraising efforts and boosting the spirits of Britain during the coronavirus pandemic.</p> <p>Moore, 100, raised 33 million pounds ($59.2 million) for the National Health Service (NHS) in April by pledging to walk 100 laps of his backyard in celebration of his 100th birthday.</p> <p>He captured the hearts of the world with his hard work and caught the attention of the Queen, who knighted him in one of her first official outings since the coronavirus pandemic began.</p> <p>Moore stood in front of the Queen, holding onto a wheeled walking frame.</p> <p>"I have been overwhelmed by the many honours I have received over the past weeks, but there is simply nothing that can compare to this,'' he tweeted after the ceremony.</p> <p>"I am overwhelmed with pride and joy."</p> <p>Moore was so excited about the Knighthood that he broke protocol by revealing the private conversation he had with the Queen herself.</p> <p>"She did mention I'm 100, and I said to her, 'Well, you've a long way to go yet,' so she's alright," he said.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/CCv5Iehnbu1/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CCv5Iehnbu1/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by The Royal Family (@theroyalfamily)</a> on Jul 17, 2020 at 8:31am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Queen Elizabeth II has been sheltering at Windsor Castle since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic in March.</p> <p>Sir Tom's knighthood was one of the first official duties that the Queen has carried out since the pandemic began.</p> </div> </div> </div>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Queen to knight Tom Moore in her first in-person engagement since lockdown

<div class="post_body_wrapper"> <div class="post_body"> <div class="body_text "> <p>Tom Moore made headlines around the world with his valiant efforts to walk 100 laps of his back garden in order to raise money for the UK National Health System (NHS).</p> <p>He chose the number 100 in order to celebrate his 100th birthday and captured hearts around the world with his sweet goal.</p> <p>He raised more than $50 million for the NHS and is about to receive a knighthood for his charity work.</p> <p>Much to the surprise of Moore, the Queen herself is making it her first in-person engagement since the lockdown.</p> <p>In a statement from Buckingham Palace, it was revealed that the Queen would confer the Honour of Knighthood on Captain Sir Thomas Moore at an Investiture at Windsor Castle on the 17th of July. </p> <p>The statement added: "During the ceremony, The Queen will use the sword that belonged to her father, George VI and will award Captain Sir Thomas Moore with the insignia of Knight Bachelor."</p> <p>Strict social distancing measures will be in place for the event, with the entire ceremony taking place inside the confines of Windsor Castle.</p> <p>"Members of the public are asked not to attend Windsor town centre or gather in the hope of seeing any of the ceremony, which will not be visible from any external viewpoint," the Palace explained.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">A message from Tom 'I could never have imagined this would happen to me. It is such a huge honour and I am very much looking forward to meeting Her Majesty The Queen. It is going to be the most special of days for me'<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/FridayWillBeAGoodDay?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#FridayWillBeAGoodDay</a> <a href="https://t.co/zha2bCIMzi">pic.twitter.com/zha2bCIMzi</a></p> — Captain Tom Moore (@captaintommoore) <a href="https://twitter.com/captaintommoore/status/1283363304249991168?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">July 15, 2020</a></blockquote> <p>When Moore's knighthood was announced, he said he was "overwhelmed with the gesture".</p> <p>"Never for one moment could I have imagined I would be awarded with such a great honour," he said.</p> <p>"This started as something small and I've been overwhelmed by the gratitude and love from the British public and beyond. We must take this opportunity to recognise our frontline heroes of the National Health Service who put their lives at risk every day to keep us safe."</p> </div> </div> </div>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

The death of the open-plan office? Not exactly but a revolution is in the air

<p>“What will it take to encourage much more widespread reliance on working at home for at least part of each week?” asked Frank Schiff, the chief economist of the US Committee for Economic Development, in <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/opinions/1979/09/02/working-at-home-can-save-gasoline/ffa475c7-d1a8-476e-8411-8cb53f1f3470/">The Washington Post</a> in 1979.</p> <p>Four decades on, we have the answer.</p> <p>But COVID-19 doesn’t spell the end of the centralised office predicted by futurists since at least the 1970s.</p> <p>The organisational benefits of the “propinquity effect” – the tendency to develop deeper relationships with those we see most regularly – are well-established.</p> <p>The open-plan office will have to evolve, though, finding its true purpose as a collaborative work space augmented by remote work.</p> <p>If we’re smart about it, necessity might turn out to be the mother of reinvention, giving us the best of both centralised and decentralised, collaborative and private working worlds.</p> <p><strong>Cultural resistance</strong></p> <p>Organisational culture, not technology, has long been the key force keeping us in central offices.</p> <p>“That was the case in 1974 and is still the case today,” observed the “father of telecommuting” Jack Nilles <a href="https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2015/12/what-telecommuting-looked-like-in-1973/418473/?sf43013774=1">in 2015</a>, three decades after he and his University of Southern California colleagues published their landmark report <a href="https://dl.acm.org/doi/book/10.5555/540203">Telecommunications-Transportation Tradeoff: Options for Tomorrow</a>. “The adoption of telework is still well behind its potential.”</p> <p>Until now.</p> <p>But it has taken a pandemic to change the status quo – evidence enough of culture resistance.</p> <p>In his 1979 article, Schiff outlined three key objections to working from home:</p> <ul> <li>how to tell how well workers are doing, or if they are working at all</li> <li>employees’ need for contact with coworkers and others</li> <li>too many distractions.</li> </ul> <p>To the first objection, Schiff responded that experts agreed performance is best judged by output and the organisation’s objectives. To the third, he noted: “In many cases, the opposite is likely to be true.”</p> <p>The COVID-19 experiment so far supports him. Most <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com.au/54-percent-adults-want-mainly-work-remote-after-pandemic-study-2020-5">workers</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/working-from-home-remains-a-select-privilege-its-time-to-fix-our-national-employment-standards-139472">managers</a> are happy with remote working, believe they are performing just as well, and want to continue with it.</p> <p><strong>Personal contact</strong></p> <p>But the second argument – the need for personal contact to foster close teamwork – is harder to dismiss.</p> <p>There is evidence remote workers crave more feedback.</p> <p>As researchers Ethan Bernstein and Ben Waber note in their Harvard Business Review article <a href="https://hbr.org/2019/11/the-truth-about-open-offices">The Truth About Open Offices</a>, published in November 2019, “one of the most robust findings in sociology – proposed long before we had the technology to prove it through data – is that propinquity, or proximity, predicts social interaction”.</p> <p>Waber’s research at the MIT Media Lab demonstrated the probability that any two workers will interact – either in person or electronically – is directly proportional to the distance between their desks. In his 2013 book <a href="https://www.humanyze.com/people-analytics-book/">People Analytics</a> he includes the following results from a bank and information technology company.</p> <p><strong>Experiments in collaboration</strong></p> <p>Interest in fostering collaboration has sometimes led to disastrous workplace experiments. One was the building Frank Gehry designed for the Chiat/Day advertising agency in the late 1980s.</p> <p>Agency boss Jay Chiat envisioned his headquarters as a futuristic step into “flexible work” – but <a href="https://www.wired.com/1999/02/chiat-3/">workers hated</a> the lack of personal spaces.</p> <p>Less dystopian was the Pixar Animation Studios headquarters opened in 2000. Steve Jobs, majority shareholder and chief executive, oversaw the project. He took a keen interest in things like the <a href="https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/healthy-living/new-work-order-from-google-and-pixar-to-innocent-the-future-of-the-office-starts-here-8687379.html">placement of bathrooms</a>, accessed through the building’s central atrium. “We wanted to find a way to force people to come together,” he said, “to create a lot of arbitrary collisions of people”.</p> <p>Yet Bernstein and Waber’s research shows propinquity is also strong in “campus” buildings designed to promote “serendipitous interaction”. For increased interactions, they say, workers should be “ideally on the same floor”.</p> <p><strong>Being apart</strong></p> <p>How to balance the organisational forces pulling us together with the health forces pushing social distancing?</p> <p>We know COVID-19 spreads most easily between people in enclosed spaces for extended periods. In Britain, research by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine shows workplaces are the most common transmission path for adults aged <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/mar/17/scientists-age-groups-covid-19-workplaces-shops-restaurants">20 to 50</a>.</p> <p>We may have to get used to wearing masks along with plenty of <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1438463918305911?via%3Dihub">hand sanitising</a> and disinfecting of high-traffic areas and shared facilities, from keyboards to kitchens. Every door knob and lift button is an issue.</p> <p>But space is the final frontier.</p> <p>It’s going to take more than vacating every second desk or imposing barriers like cubicle walls, which largely defeat the point of open-plan offices.</p> <p>An alternative vision comes from real-estate services company Cushman &amp; Wakefield. Its “6 feet office” concept includes more space between desks and lots of visual cues to remind coworkers to maintain physical distances.</p> <p>Of course, to do anything like this in most offices will require a proportion of staff working at home on any given day. It will also mean then end of the individual desk for most.</p> <p>This part may the hardest to handle. We like our personal spaces.</p> <p>We’ll need to balance the sacrifice of sharing spaces against the advantages of working away from the office while still getting to see colleagues in person. We’ll need new arrangements for storing personal items beyond the old locker, and “handover” protocols for equipment and furniture.</p> <p>Offices will also need to need more private spaces for greater use of video conferencing and the like. These sorts of collaborative tools don’t work well if you can’t insulate yourself from distractions.</p> <p>But there’s a huge potential upside with the new open office. A well-managed rotation of office days and seating arrangements could help us get to know more of those colleagues who, because they used to sit a few too many desks away, we rarely talked to.</p> <p>It might just mean the open-plan office finally finds its mojo.</p> <p><em>Written by Andrew Wallace. Republished with permission of <a href="https://theconversation.com/the-death-of-the-open-plan-office-not-quite-but-a-revolution-is-in-the-air-140724">The Conversation.</a> </em></p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

How to maintain a slower pace of life after lockdown

<p>Before lockdown, our lives were defined by speed. Rushing around, living life at rocket pace was the norm. Keeping up with work responsibilities, social obligations and the latest tech or fashion trends was a neverending feat. Only a privileged few <a href="https://hbr.org/2018/12/the-growing-business-of-helping-customers-slow-down">could afford to slow down</a>.</p> <p>But in lockdown, the pace of life slowed <a href="https://theconversation.com/coronavirus-how-the-pandemic-has-changed-our-perception-of-time-139240">dramatically overnight for everyone</a>. People literally stopped running to work. The office, gyms, pubs, clubs and restaurants closed. Global travel shut down. Staying at home became the new normal. People began playing board games and puzzles, gardening, baking and other analogue pursuits with their new found time.</p> <p>Now that we are gradually emerging from lockdown, one tentative step at a time, is it possible to hold on to the benefits of being slowed down, and not go back to our old rushed way of living? <a href="https://academic.oup.com/jcr/article-abstract/45/6/1142/4999270">Our research</a> shows that in order to experience the benefits of slowing down, people must decelerate in three ways.</p> <p><strong>1. Slowing down your body</strong></p> <p>We call this embodied deceleration – when the body itself slows down. For example, when people walk or cycle as their primary forms of transportation, rather than taking the tube, train or bus.</p> <p>During lockdown, we have all had to stay close to our homes, and public transport has been for essential workers only. As we come out of lockdown, the city of London, for example, is expecting more people to continue walking and cycling rather than taking faster forms of transport, and is altering the built environment of the city to facilitate this.</p> <p>If possible, try to continue these slower forms of moving, as <a href="https://www.wiley.com/en-us/Resonance%3A+A+Sociology+of+Our+Relationship+to+the+World-p-9781509519927">they do not only provide</a> physical benefits. Moving at a slower pace allows for feeling a stronger connection between body and mind, which can gradually open up mental space for deep reflection. It is about getting into a mindset in which you have time to think, not just react.</p> <p><strong>2. Controlling your technology use</strong></p> <p>You don’t need to give up technology entirely. This is about having control over technology, and also communicating more face-to-face.</p> <p>During lockdown, we have all relied on technology to a great extent – to do our work remotely as well as keep in touch with our loved ones. Yet technology has been used to rekindle vibrant and meaningful connections to those who are important to us. From Zoom happy hours with long lost friends to watching movies with a partner, technology has been used to reinforce close connections.</p> <p>Try to continue these practices as you emerge from lockdown. For example, keep up your involvement with the WhatsApp neighbourhood group, which checks in on vulnerable community members. This keeps you grounded in the local, and continues your use of technology to facilitate close, meaningful and long lasting, rather than superficial and short, relations with others.</p> <p><strong>3. Limiting your activities</strong></p> <p>This is engaging in only a few activities per day and – crucially – reducing the amount of choices you make about buying things. During lockdown, when we were all confined to our homes, the only activities to be engaged in and choices to be made were where to set up our home office, what to eat for each meal, and where and when to take a walk. Now, as we begin to see others outside of our household, as restaurants and bars begin to open for takeaway and shops start to reopen, the amount of activities and things we can consume starts to rise.</p> <p>Try to remember the feeling of making your own food, and sharing it with your household, rather than running back to eating many meals out and on the go. As you emerge from lockdown, try to maintain practices like stopping work to eat your lunch in the middle of the day, and take tea breaks, preferably with others and outdoors when you can. There is much value to be gained from having the rhythm of your daily life be one which you can savour.</p> <p>In general, all three dimensions of slowing down speak to simplicity, authenticity and less materialism. Although many people desired these in their life pre-lockdown, it was hard to achieve them, as we felt there was no getting off the sped-up rollercoaster.</p> <p>Now, when we have all experienced the benefits of living a life which emphasises these values – the amount of things purchased during lockdown was quite small, and many people decluttered their homes – there is an incentive to hold on to this rather than rush back to our old, accelerated life.</p> <p>We are seeing societal changes which facilitate maintaining this new, slowed down rhythm. New Zealand is talking about <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/may/20/jacinda-ardern-flags-four-day-working-week-as-way-to-rebuild-new-zealand-after-covid-19">moving to a four-day work week</a>, for example, and Twitter <a href="https://blog.twitter.com/en_us/topics/company/2020/keeping-our-employees-and-partners-safe-during-coronavirus.html">says employees</a> can continue to work from home indefinitely.</p> <p>The current moment offers a unique opportunity to push back against the cult of speed and to continue life in this slower, more meaningful form.</p> <p><em>Written by Giana Eckhardt and Katharina C. Husemann. Republished with permission of <a href="https://theconversation.com/how-to-maintain-a-slower-pace-of-life-after-lockdown-140088">The Conversation.</a> </em></p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

The story behind the Queen’s jewellery for Philip’s 99th birthday

<p>The royal family has released a new photograph of Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth II in celebration of the duke’s 99th birthday on June 10.</p> <p>The image, taken at Windsor Castle on June 1, shows the Prince donning a Household Division tie and the Queen wearing a dress by Angela Kelly and a historic brooch.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/CBOsiR6HsKl/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="margin: 8px 0 0 0; padding: 0 4px;"><a style="color: #000; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none; word-wrap: break-word;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CBOsiR6HsKl/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">📸 This new photograph of The Duke of Edinburgh and The Queen was taken last week in the quadrangle at Windsor Castle to mark His Royal Highness’s 99th birthday tomorrow. . Copyright: Press Association</a></p> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;">A post shared by <a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/theroyalfamily/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank"> The Royal Family</a> (@theroyalfamily) on Jun 9, 2020 at 2:35pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Dating back to <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.rct.uk/sites/default/files/null/diamonds_fact_sheet_1.pdf" target="_blank">1911</a>, the Cullinan V brooch features an 18-8-carat heart-shaped diamond at its centre with pave-set border of smaller diamonds.</p> <p>The centre stone is one of those cut from the famous 3,106-carat Cullinan, the largest diamond ever discovered. Other stones from the 621g diamond – found near Pretoria in South Africa in 1905 – were set on other royal jewellery pieces, including the Imperial State Crown and the Sovereign’s Sceptre.</p> <p>The Cullinan V was first owned by the Queen’s grandmother Queen Mary, who wore the brooch as part of the suite of jewelleries made for the Delhi Durbar in 1911.</p> <p>Elizabeth later inherited the piece in 1953 and has since featured it as part of her outfit on many occasions. She was last seen wearing the brooch during the wedding of Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank’s wedding at St George’s Chapel in October 2018.</p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

“True national treasure”: Moore to be knighted by the Queen

<div class="post_body_wrapper"> <div class="post_body"> <div class="body_text "> <p>Captain Tom Moore captured hearts around the world as he walked laps around his garden to raise money for NHS charities. He has since raised more than £33m ($NZD 65m) and is set to receive a knighthood for his heroic fundraising efforts, which is news he is “delighted” by.</p> <p>Downing Street confirmed the news on Tuesday, with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson saying that Moore is a “beacon of light through the fog of coronavirus”.</p> <p>"Colonel Tom’s fantastic fundraising broke records, inspired the whole country and provided us all with a beacon of light through the fog of coronavirus," Johnson said in a statement.</p> <p>"On behalf of everyone who has been moved by his incredible story, I want to say a huge thank you. He's a true national treasure."</p> <p>Queen Elizabeth approved the knighthood and it will formally be announced later today.</p> <p>She also acknowledged his efforts with a personalised birthday card. It is tradition that the Queen sends letters to all British centenarians, but Moore’s card contained a message specific to his fundraising efforts.</p> <p>"I am so pleased to know that you are celebrating your one hundredth birthday on 30th April, 2020," it read.</p> <p>"I was also most interested to hear of your recent fundraising efforts for NHS Charities Together at this difficult time. I send my congratulations and best wishes to you on such a special occasion."</p> <p>Prince William has also written to Moore to congratulate him on his amazing achievement.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">We sent <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CaptainTomMoore?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#CaptainTomMoore</a> a special message from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. 🥰 Watch his reaction below...⤵️<a href="https://twitter.com/KensingtonRoyal?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@KensingtonRoyal</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/captaintommoore?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@captaintommoore</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/WalkWithTom?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#WalkWithTom</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BBCBreakfast?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#BBCBreakfast</a><br />More here: <a href="https://t.co/wy1ixmuA2E">https://t.co/wy1ixmuA2E</a> <a href="https://t.co/U2oPdwbZA7">pic.twitter.com/U2oPdwbZA7</a></p> — BBC Breakfast (@BBCBreakfast) <a href="https://twitter.com/BBCBreakfast/status/1251029611942739968?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">April 17, 2020</a></blockquote> <p>"It's wonderful that everyone has been inspired by his story and his determination. I think he's a one man fundraising machine," Prince William said in an interview with the BBC. "Good on him and I hope he keeps going."</p> </div> </div> </div>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Whopper and wine: Is this how you’d ring in your 105th birthday?

<p>A great-great-grandmother has celebrated her 105th birthday with a burger and a bottle of wine.</p> <p>Beatrice Turner marked her milestone birthday on May 3 with a Hungry Jack’s Whopper and red wine at her Perth aged care home, surrounded by family and friends.</p> <p>Turner is the eldest of a growing group of centennials at the SwanCare Waminda aged care facility.</p> <p>“My legs are a bit wobbly, but my mind is still sharp,” she said.</p> <p>Turner was born in 1915 in Northam, nearly 100 kilometres east of Perth. She moved to the Western Australian capital with her family after her husband returned from World War II.</p> <p>Having gone through two world wars and the Great Depression, Turner now has three children, 10 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren and 16 great-great-grandchildren.</p> <p>When asked about her secrets to a long life, Turner said she had never smoked a cigarette and didn’t drink alcohol until her 50s.</p> <p>“She's an inspiration and we feel honoured to have Bea here at Waminda,” said the facility’s manager Pauline Bremner.</p> <p>Premier Mark McGowan also sent Turner his congratulations on behalf of Victoria Park MP Ben Wyatt during a COVID-19 press conference.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fswancare%2Fposts%2F3005152672838396&amp;show_text=true&amp;width=552&amp;height=424&amp;appId" width="552" height="424" style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowtransparency="true" allow="encrypted-media"></iframe></p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

113-year-old woman becomes oldest person in the world to beat coronavirus

<p>A 113-year-old woman, the oldest person living in Spain, has now become the oldest reported survivor of the coronavirus.</p> <p>Maria Branyas, a mother-of-three, survived COVID-19 whilst residing in the Santa Maria del Tura care home in the city of Olot, eastern Spain.</p> <p>Originally born in San Fransisco on March 4, 1907, Branyas lived through the Spanish flu pandemic that affected the world in 1918 and 1919, killing an estimated 50 million people.</p> <p>Maria is considered the oldest person in Spain by the Gerontology Research Group, a global group of researchers in various fields which verifies and tracks supercentenarians – people who have reached the age of 110.</p> <p>While other people over the age of 100 have survived the coronavirus, Branyas is likely the only supercentenarian to have done so.</p> <p>17 people at the nursing home have died from virus, and while measures were put in place to make sure Branyas doesn’t contract it, she was diagnosed positive in April.</p> <p>She was kept in her room in total isolation as she fought the disease before finally testing negative.</p> <p>Anyone over the age of 70 is considered to be at high risk from contracting coronavirus making Branyas’ recovery even more remarkable.</p> <p>According to her daughter Rosa Moret, Branyas said the pandemic is very sad, but she is not aware where it comes from or how it reached Spain.</p> <p>Ms Moret told reporters that her mother is a strong and optimistic person who dealt with a urine infection whilst infected, but the virus itself was symptomless.</p> <p>It was revealed in April that nearly half of the deaths in Europe resulting from the coronavirus were in care homes.</p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Can’t go outside? Even seeing nature on a screen can improve your mood

<p>Are you feeling anxious or irritated during the coronavirus lockdown? Do you constantly want to get up and move? Maybe you need a moment to engage with nature.</p> <p>Getting into the great outdoors is difficult at right now. But our research soon to be published in <em>Australian Forestry</em> shows you can improve your mood by experiencing nature indoors. This could mean placing few pot plants in the corner of your home office, or even just looking at photos of plants.</p> <p>Our work adds to <a href="https://theconversation.com/biodiversity-and-our-brains-how-ecology-and-mental-health-go-together-in-our-cities-126760">a compelling body of research</a> that shows being around nature directly benefits our mental health.</p> <p><strong>Biophilia</strong></p> <p>Public gardens and parks, street verges with trees and bushes, and even rooftop gardens bring us a <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10630732.2019.1637694">broad range of benefits</a> – boosting <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/S0749-3797(00)00317-2">physical health</a>, reducing <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2013.12.011">air pollution</a>, and even <a href="https://doi.org/10.3390/bs4040394">lowering crime rates</a>.</p> <p>But inside, in your hastily constructed home office or home school room, you may be unable to take full advantage of <a href="https://theconversation.com/green-for-wellbeing-science-tells-us-how-to-design-urban-spaces-that-heal-us-82437">urban nature</a>.</p> <p>Embracing the notion of “biophilia” – the innate human affinity with nature – while locked down inside may improve your productivity and even your health.</p> <p>The <a href="https://theconversation.com/building-a-second-nature-into-our-cities-wildness-art-and-biophilic-design-88642">biophilia hypothesis</a> argues modern day humans evolved from hundreds of generations of ancestors whose survival required them to study, understand and rely on nature. So a disconnection from nature today can cause <a href="https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/A:1010043827986">significant issues for humans</a>, such as a decline in psychological health.</p> <p>In practice at home, connecting with nature might mean having large windows overlooking the garden. You can also <a href="https://makeitwood.org/documents/doc-1624-pollinate-health-report---february-2018.pdf">improve working conditions</a> by having natural materials in your office or school room, such as wooden furniture, natural stones and pot plants.</p> <p><strong>Indoor plants</strong></p> <p>Our research has demonstrated that even a small number of plants hanging in pockets on along a busy corridor provide enough nature to influence our physiological and psychological perceptions.</p> <p>These plants even caused behavioural differences, where people would <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1618866717306763">change their route</a> through a building to come into contact with the indoor plants.</p> <p>We surveyed 104 people, and 40% of the respondents reported their mood and emotions improved in the presence of indoor plants.</p> <p>They felt “relaxed and grounded” and “more interested”. The presence of indoor greenery provides a place to “relax from routine” and it made the space “significantly more pleasant to work in”.</p> <p>As one person reported:</p> <p><em>When I first saw the plants up on the wall brought a smile to my face.</em></p> <p><em>Whenever I walk down the stairs or walk past I mostly always feel compelled to look at the plants on the wall. Not with any anxiety or negative thoughts, rather, at how pleasant and what a great idea it is.</em></p> <p><strong>Looking at wildlife photography</strong></p> <p>Our research also explored whether viewing images, posters or paintings of nature would make a difference.</p> <p>We photographed the plants from viewpoints similar to those the corridor users experienced. Survey responses from those who only viewed these digital images were almost the same as those who experienced them in real life.</p> <p>While we can’t say for sure, we can hypothesise that given the importance of vision in modern humans, an image that “looks” like nature might be enough to trigger a biophilic response.</p> <p>However, physically being in the presence of plants did have some stronger behavioural effects. For example corridor users wanted to linger longer looking at the plants than those who viewed the photographs, and were more likely to want to visit the plants again. Maybe the other senses - touch, smell, even sound - created a stronger biophilic response than just sight alone.</p> <p>So the good news is if you can’t get to a nursery – or if you have a serious inability to keep plants alive – you can still benefit from looking at photographs of them.</p> <p>If you haven’t been taking your own photos, search the plethora of images from wildlife photographers such as <a href="http://gimesy.com/">Doug Gimesy</a>, <a href="http://lanting.com/">Frans Lanting</a> and <a href="https://www.tanyastollznow.com/">Tanya Stollznow</a>.</p> <p>Or check out live camera feeds of a wide range of environments, and travel to far-flung places without leaving the safety of home.</p> <p>While we haven’t tested the mood-boosting effects of live videos, we hypothesise their physiological and psychological effects will be no different than digital photographs.</p> <p>Here are seven places to help you get started.</p> <ul> <li>The <a href="https://bushblitz.org.au/">Bush Blitz</a> citizen science app launched a new online tool today. The species recovery program encourages children to explore their backyard to identify different species.</li> <li>“From the bottom of the sea direct to your screen”: watch this <a href="https://www.natureaustralia.org.au/what-we-do/our-priorities/oceans/ocean-stories/reef-cam-underwater/">underwater live stream</a> of Victoria’s rocky reef off Port Phillip Bay</li> <li>The Coastal Watch website offers <a href="https://www.coastalwatch.com/surf-cams-surf-reports">live camera feeds on beaches</a> around Australia.</li> <li>Watch the running water, trees and occasional fauna in California’s <a href="https://explore.org/livecams/zen-den/live-redwood-cam-1">Redwood Forest River</a>.</li> <li>In pastoral Australia, go on a <a href="https://youtu.be/qqYFgqN_q-w">four-hour drive through the country side</a> along tree-lined roads.</li> <li><a href="https://www.zoo.org.au/animal-house/">Zoos Victoria</a> has set up live cameras that show its animals in natural (and nature-like) environments from Melbourne Zoo and Werribee Open Range Zoo.</li> <li>Yellowstone National Park may be closed right now, but <a href="https://www.nps.gov/yell/learn/photosmultimedia/webcams.htm?sf174893829=1">webcams are stationed</a> in various locations throughout the park.</li> </ul> <p><em>Written by Cris Brack and Aini Jasmin Ghazalli. Republished with permission of <a href="https://theconversation.com/cant-go-outside-even-seeing-nature-on-a-screen-can-improve-your-mood-135320">The Conversation.</a></em></p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Captain Tom Moore's 100th birthday sealed with special postmark from Royal Mail

<p>A special postmark has been made in order to celebrate the 100th birthday of NHS fundraiser Captain Tom Moore.</p> <p>He’s set to celebrate his birthday on the 30th of April, and the special postmark will be used on all mail sent from Monday until May 1.</p> <p>The postmark reads: "Happy 100th Birthday Captain Thomas Moore NHS fundraising hero 30th April 2020.”</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">Today we launch a very special postmark to celebrate Captain Thomas Moore's 100th Birthday!<br /><br />The postmark will pay tribute to the work of the inspiring NHS fundraiser who has captured the hearts and minds of the nation in the midst of the ongoing crisis.<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CaptainTomMoore?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#CaptainTomMoore</a> 👏 <a href="https://t.co/EGC9f8nfTw">pic.twitter.com/EGC9f8nfTw</a></p> — Royal Mail (@RoyalMail) <a href="https://twitter.com/RoyalMail/status/1254665226341023744?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">April 27, 2020</a></blockquote> <p>The World War II veteran has touched the hearts of people worldwide, as thousands of cards continue to be sent in to celebrate his birthday.</p> <p>Captain Tom set out to complete 100 laps of his yard before his 100th birthday in order to raise much needed funds for the NHS and completed his final laps on the 17th of April surrounded by a military guard in honour of his achievements.</p> <p>His initial aim was to raise £1,000 ($NZD 2,047) but his goal was completed in around 24 hours and he extended his challenge to 200 laps after completing the challenge two weeks ahead of schedule.</p> <p>More than 1.3 million people around the world have donated an incredible £29,353,122 ($NZD 60,100,810).</p> <p>There are calls for Tom to be knighted and he was even part of a chart-topping hit and became the oldest person in the UK to reach number 1.</p> <p>“What wonderful news to receive today, a number one single and a record breaker too – my grandchildren can’t believe I am a chart-topper,” he said.</p> <p>“I have to thank Michael Ball, the NHS Voices of Care Choir and everyone behind the scenes, who shared their talents and expertise in order to raise money for the NHS, to whom we owe so much.”</p> <p>Many around the world have also sent Captain Tom cards ahead of his birthday, with more than 100,000 cards being processed and many more being expected as his birthday draws closer.</p> <p>Royal mail has adapted its sorting machines in the South Midlands Mail Centre to re-route all of his post to a dedicated collection box.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">Happy birthday, <a href="https://twitter.com/captaintommoore?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@captaintommoore</a>!🎉<br /><br />The WWII veteran has received over 120,000 cards for his 100th birthday after raising over £29 million for Britain’s NHS. <a href="https://t.co/a6tXpq1iew">https://t.co/a6tXpq1iew</a> <a href="https://t.co/s0ICZiF23Y">pic.twitter.com/s0ICZiF23Y</a></p> — Cheddar🧀 (@cheddar) <a href="https://twitter.com/cheddar/status/1254857682340610048?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">April 27, 2020</a></blockquote> <p>David Gold, director of public affairs and policy at Royal Mail says that Captain Tom’s achievements are “truly phenomenal”.</p> <p>“What Captain Thomas Moore has achieved is truly phenomenal, and this is reflected in the affection shown for him across the world.</p> <p>"As Royal Mail works to keep the country connected during these challenging times, we are honoured to issue a special postmark in celebration of his 100th birthday.</p> <p>"We continued to deliver the many tens of thousands of birthday cards from well-wishers across the UK and abroad as people look to show their gratitude for all he has achieved on a more personal level."</p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Why does the Queen celebrate her birthday twice?

<p>Queen Elizabeth is set to continue her reign as the longest-serving British monarch as she turned 94 yesterday.</p> <p>While most people mark their birthdays just once a year, the Queen celebrates on two different days.</p> <p>But why does the monarch celebrate the occasion twice?</p> <p>Here’s why.</p> <p>The Queen’s birthday is on April 21, but she also celebrates on the second Saturday in June. This year, it will fall on June 13.</p> <p>Why does she celebrate her birthday twice? It’s all because of British weather.</p> <p>In 1748, George II brought about the tradition to celebrate the King or Queen’s birthday twice. The King, who was born in November, felt the weather was too cold and wet during that time of the year for his annual birthday parade.</p> <p>Which is why he combined his birthday event with the annual military parade, Trooping the Colour.</p> <p>Ever since then, British monarchs have celebrated their “official” birthdays in the summer months.</p> <p>Although in the same month, the Queen’s birthday doesn’t have a set date, only that it is celebrated on the second Saturday of June. This changed from Thursday in 1959 for convenience purposes.</p> <p>Her birthday won’t be celebrated as usual this year due to coronavirus, but usually, it is marked by gun salutes and Trooping the Colour, a tradition in which the Queen inspects her troops in a military pageantry parade.</p> <p>She usually appears on the balcony of Buckingham Palace with other members of the royal family, making for an iconic annual photo.</p> <p>But because of the pandemic, the Queen will hold an intimate celebration with the Duke of Edinburgh at Windsor Castle.</p> <p>There will be no alternative celebrations to mark the day in a special way, although it’s expected she will privately receive video calls from family.</p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Virgin Australia gets a lifeline but will it be enough?

<p>With commercial airline fleets grounded due to lack of demand, the Australian government will pay the nation’s two biggest airlines, Qantas and Virgin Australia, $A165 million to ensure they keep flying critical metropolitan and regional routes over the next two months.</p> <p>This measure comes on top of a <a href="https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/mccormack/media-release/additional-new-support-critical-regional-aviation-services-through-covid-19">A$198 million assistance package</a> for regional airlines and the waiver of A$715 million in fees and charges for domestic airlines.</p> <p>It’s particularly important for the cash-strapped Virgin Australia. The company this week asked the Australian Stock Exchange to <a href="https://www.businessnewsaus.com.au/articles/virgin-suspended-from-asx.html">suspend trading of its shares</a> after the federal government rebuffed its request for a $A1.4 billion loan.</p> <p>Without a significant cash injection, <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-17/coronavirus-airline-support-package-qantas-rex/12064316">industry experts</a> say, the airline will collapse within six months. Prior to the government’s latest announcement there were reports it <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/apr/14/virgin-australia-considers-going-into-administration-as-labor-calls-for-government-rescue">could go into administration</a> within weeks.</p> <p>Virgin Australia is 90% owned by five international companies – Etihad Airways, Singapore Airlines, China’s Nanshan Group and HNA, and Richard Branson’s Virgin Group. Facing their own difficulties, they have signalled they will not inject further capital.</p> <p>This funding package gives the airline more time to find <a href="https://www.afr.com/politics/federal/private-equity-investors-circle-over-virgin-20200415-p54jwd">other investors</a>. But its longer-term future remains up in the air.</p> <p><strong>Desperately seeking $1.4 billion</strong></p> <p>While the US government has agreed to provide <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/14/business/coronavirus-airlines-bailout-treasury-department.html">US$50 billion</a> in loans and grants to its ten biggest domestic airlines, with the option to take equity stakes, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said this week the Australian government was “not in the business of owning an airline”.</p> <p>Having two major airlines had served Australia well, <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-04-16/virgin-australia-disspears-from-skies-which-airline-coronavirus/12151072">he said</a>, but “our approach has been sector-wide support”.</p> <p>Complicating that type of support has been disagreement between Virgin Australia and Qantas.</p> <p>Qantas chief Alan Joyce has argued for “<a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-24/qantas-boss-comments-unhelpful-says-accc-boss/12085672">survival of the fittest</a>” and against assistance to “badly managed” businesses. His airline did not need government support, Joyce said this week. But if the government loaned Virgin Australia A$1.4 billion, <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-04-16/virgin-australia-disspears-from-skies-which-airline-coronavirus/12151072">he wanted A$4.2 billion</a>.</p> <p><strong>To bail or not to bail</strong></p> <p>The federal government’s dilemma is whether it is better to bail out Virgin Australia or allow commercial forces to rule, as it has done in the past.</p> <p>Its interest in sector-wide support reflects the fact the entire domestic aviation industry is hurting.</p> <p>Freight and logistics, aircraft maintenance and repair, flight training and simulation, component manufacturing and research and design operations are all bundled together into a tightly bound sector.</p> <p>All up, the industry’s five subsectors – domestic commercial aviation, international commercial aviation, general aviation, freight transport and aviation support infrastructure – have provided employment for about <a href="http://www.australianindustrystandards.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Aviation-Key-Findings-Paper2018V4Web.pdf">90,000 Australians across 1,900 businesses</a>. So it’s not just the 10,000 people employed by Virgin Australia the government needs to think about.</p> <p><strong>Systems shocks are nothing new</strong></p> <p>History is also a factor. The global aviation industry is no stranger to “system shocks”. These have included the Global Financial Crisis of 2008, the SARS outbreak in 2003, the World Trade Centre attacks in 2001, the Asian Financial Crisis in 1997 and the oil shocks of the 1970s.</p> <p>Typically the sector has “bounced back” within a year.</p> <p>The last big shakeup of the Australian airline industry was in 2001. Just days after the September 11 terrorist attacks, Ansett Airlines – flying since 1935 – went into administration.</p> <p>After Ansett’s collapse, Virgin Blue (established in 2000) saw explosive growth and former Ansett employees helped create regional operator Rex in 2002.</p> <p>So from the rubble of failure new enterprises and forms of aviation business can grow, just as Virgin Australia has taken Ansett’s place as the nation’s second major domestic carrier.</p> <p>Of course, the extent of the crisis is somewhat different this time.</p> <p>With domestic travel restrictions likely in place for at least six months, and international flight restrictions set to continue even longer, the sector will be changed forever.</p> <p>But history shows Australia can support two major airlines. We have extensive domestic aviation routes that will enable an early recovery compared with airlines in other parts of the world that rely on international routes.</p> <p><em>Written by Stephen Fankhauser and Mat Ebbatson. Republished with permission of <a href="https://theconversation.com/virgin-australia-gets-a-lifeline-but-will-it-be-enough-136399">The Conversation.</a></em></p> <p> </p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

99-year-old war veteran raises millions for healthcare workers

<p>A 99-year-old war veteran has raised nearly more than 4 million pounds ($NZD 8.4 million) for British healthcare workers by attempting to walk the length of his garden one hundred times before his 100th birthday later this month.</p> <p>Captain Tom Moore has used a walking frame to move around since breaking his hip and said that he was incredibly grateful to the National Health Service (NHS) for the treatment he received.</p> <p>He wanted to do something in return to say thank you, and the aim is to do 10 laps a day before the end of the month.</p> <div class="embed-responsive embed-responsive-16by9"><iframe class="embed-responsive-item" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/zVFCwjZqzoo"></iframe></div> <p>Britain’s state-funded NHS is under intense strain as it treats large numbers of people suffering from COVID-19.</p> <p>Moore turns 100 on April 30 and had hoped to raise 500,000 pounds. He has since quadrupled that figure and more already thanks to the generosity of 205,326 supporters.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">99 year old Captain Tom Moore <a href="https://twitter.com/captaintommoore?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@captaintommoore</a> is celebrating his birthday by walking 100 lengths of his garden for <a href="https://twitter.com/NHSCharities?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NHSCharities</a> <br /><br />So far he has raised £3,676,361.91 ⬆️735% !<br /><br />You can support him here: <a href="https://t.co/mmZMpHJpsl">https://t.co/mmZMpHJpsl</a> <a href="https://t.co/hsE3ZvTMNT">pic.twitter.com/hsE3ZvTMNT</a></p> — Bev Matthews RN ↔️ 🧍🏼‍♂️↔️🧍🏼↔️🧍🏽‍♀️↔️🧍🏿 (@BevMatthewsRN) <a href="https://twitter.com/BevMatthewsRN/status/1250168744074149898?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">April 14, 2020</a></blockquote> <p>NHS Charities Together, who will benefit from the funds, said that it was “truly inspired and humbled”.</p> <p>Ellie Orton, chief executive of the charity, had nothing but praise for Tom Moore.</p> <p>"I think I absolutely join the rest of the country in being truly inspired and profoundly humbled by Captain Tom and what he has achieved.</p> <p>"Thank you for being an inspiration and a role model."</p> <p>Moore couldn’t believe his eyes as funds went over the 4 million pound mark and said that it was “almost unbelievable”.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">WOW - 4 million pound for our NHS!<br /><br />We cannot wait to tell the news to Tom in the morning, he will not believe his ears! <br /><br />Thanks each and every one of you - we are in awe of you, but especially our frontline staff who need this now more than ever. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/TomorrowWillBeAGoodDay?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#TomorrowWillBeAGoodDay</a></p> — Captain Tom Moore (@captaintommoore) <a href="https://twitter.com/captaintommoore/status/1250186487095873536?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">April 14, 2020</a></blockquote> <p>"When you think of who it is all for - all those brave and super doctors and nurses we have got - I think they deserve every penny, and I hope we get some more for them too,” he said to the<span> </span><em><a rel="noopener noreferrer" href="https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-52278746" target="_blank">BBC</a></em>.</p> <p>The veteran who served in Asia during World War II had a message of hope.</p> <p>"That's the way I think I've always looked at things: tomorrow will be a good day," he said.</p> <p><em>Photo credits:<span> </span><a rel="noopener noreferrer" href="https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/tomswalkforthenhs" target="_blank">Just Giving</a><span> </span> </em></p>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Scary red or icky green? We can’t say what colour coronavirus is and dressing it up might feed fears

<p>Images of the latest coronavirus have become instantly recognisable, often vibrantly coloured and floating in an opaque background. In most representations, the shape of the virus is the same – a spherical particle with spikes, resembling an alien invader.</p> <p>But there’s little consensus about the colour: images of the virus come in red, orange, blue, yellow, steely or soft green, white with red spikes, red with blue spikes and many colours in between.</p> <p>In their depictions of the virus, designers, illustrators and communicators are making some highly creative and evocative decisions.</p> <p><strong>Colour, light and fear</strong></p> <p>For some, the lack of consensus about the appearance of viruses confirms fears and <a href="https://www.cjc-online.ca/index.php/journal/article/view/2738/2481">increases anxiety</a>. On March 8 2020, the director-general of the World Health Organisation <a href="https://www.who.int/dg/speeches/detail/director-general-s-remarks-at-the-media-briefing-on-2019-novel-coronavirus---8-february-2020">warned</a> of the “infodemic” of misinformation about the coronavirus, urging communicators to use “facts not fear” to battle the flood of rumours and myths.</p> <p>The confusion about the colour of coronavirus starts with the failure to understand the nature of colour in the sub-microscopic world.</p> <p>Our <a href="https://www.pantone.com/color-intelligence/articles/technical/how-do-we-see-color">perception of colour</a> is dependent on the presence of light. White light from the sun is a combination of all the wavelengths of visible light – from violet at one end of the spectrum to red at the other.</p> <p>When white light hits an object, we see its colour thanks to the light that is reflected by that object towards our eyes. Raspberries and rubies appear red because they absorb most light but reflect the red wavelength.</p> <p>But as objects become smaller, light is no longer an effective tool for seeing. Viruses are so small that, until the 1930s, one of their scientifically recognised properties was their <a href="https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10739-018-9530-2">invisibility</a>. Looking for them with a microscope using light is like trying to find an ant in a football stadium at night using a large searchlight: the scale difference between object and tool is too great.</p> <p>It wasn’t until the development of the electron microscope in the 1930s that researchers could “see” a virus. By using electrons, which are vastly smaller than light particles, it became possible to identify the shapes, structures and textures of viruses. But as no light is involved in this form of seeing, there is no colour. Images of viruses reveal a monochrome world of grey. Like electrons, atoms and quarks, viruses exist in a realm where colour has no meaning.</p> <p><strong>Vivid imagery</strong></p> <p>Grey images of unfamiliar blobs don’t make for persuasive or emotive media content.</p> <p>Research into the representation of the Ebola virus outbreak in 1995 <a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0392192107087919">revealed</a> the image of choice was not the worm-like virus but teams of Western medical experts working in African villages in hermetically sealed suits. The early visual representation of the AIDS virus focused on the emaciated bodies of those with the resulting disease, often younger men.</p> <p>With symptoms similar to the common cold and initial death rates highest amongst the elderly, the coronavirus pandemic provides no such dramatic visual material. To fill this void, the vivid range of colourful images of the coronavirus have strong appeal.</p> <p>Many images come from stock photo suppliers, typically photorealistic artists’ impressions rather than images from electron microscopes.</p> <p>The Public Health Library of the US government’s Centre for Disease Control (CDC) provides one such illustration, created to reveal the morphology of the coronavirus. It’s an off-white sphere with yellow protein particles attached and red spikes emerging from the surface, creating the distinctive “corona” or crown. All of these colour choices are creative decisions.</p> <p>Biologist David Goodsell takes artistic interpretation a step further, using watercolour <a href="https://pdb101.rcsb.org/sci-art/goodsell-gallery/coronavirus">painting</a> to depict viruses at the cellular level.</p> <p>One of the complicating challenges for virus visualisation is the emergence of so-called “colour” images from electron microscopes. Using a methodology that was originally described as “<a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2451945616303579">painting</a>,” scientists are able to add colour to structures in the grey-scale world of imaging to help distinguish the details of cellular micro-architecture. Yet even here, the choice of colour is arbitrary, as shown in a number of coloured images of the coronavirus made available on Flickr by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). In these, the virus has been variously coloured yellow, orange, magenta and blue.</p> <p><strong>Embracing grey</strong></p> <p>Whilst these images look aesthetically striking, the arbitrary nature of their colouring does little to solve WHO’s concerns about the insecurity that comes with unclear facts about viruses and disease.</p> <p>One solution would be to embrace the colourless sub-microscopic world that viruses inhabit and accept their greyness.</p> <p>This has some distinct advantages: firstly, it fits the science that colour can’t be attributed where light doesn’t reach. Secondly, it renders images of the virus less threatening: without their red spikes or green bodies they seem less like hostile invaders from a science fiction fantasy. And the idea of greyness also fits the scientific notion that viruses are suspended somewhere between the <a href="https://theconversation.com/are-viruses-alive-giant-discovery-suggests-theyre-more-like-zombies-75661">dead and the living</a>.</p> <p>Stripping the coronavirus of the distracting vibrancy of vivid colour – and seeing it consistently as an inert grey particle – could help reduce community fear and better allow us to continue the enormous collective task of managing its biological and social impact.</p> <p><em>Written by Simon Weaving. Republished with permission of <a href="https://theconversation.com/scary-red-or-icky-green-we-cant-say-what-colour-coronavirus-is-and-dressing-it-up-might-feed-fears-134380">The Conversation. </a></em></p> <p><em> </em></p>

Retirement Life