2005-04/Apr 1, 2005
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ONLY 6 MONTHS TO CAPE COD
It's time to register and get all your planning done as time is flying.
WEBSITE PROBLEMS SOLVED
During February the website was down for a bit but these problems have now been solved. We apologise if your fix of Nevil Shute information was interrupted.
HANSEL MEMOIR IN THE WORKS
I have just read part one of a draft compilation of the memoirs of Sydney Hansel who worked with Shute at Airspeed and later on special weapons during the war.
ENGINEERS AND LITERATURE
of The UK teaches engineering and wrote me a long email in which he noted that:
Authors like NSN were of that rare breed who could manipulate both metal and words to the benefit of mankind and clearly did much to explain our professional skills to the public.
Editor's Further Comment: Mike also remarked that the novel Les Liaisons Dangereuses (Dangerous Liaisons) was written, during his off-duty hours, by an engineer in Napoleon's army. Are there additional successful engineer-authors out there?
Lawrence Polmateer of Bothell, Washington, U.S.A. writes:
I have been reading Nevil Shute for about 30 years and have all but two of his books most in hardback with dust covers.
1956 ALICE NOW ON DVD
Gail Field email@example.com who recently moved from The UK to Brisbane, Australia has written that the DVD of the 1956 movie of A Town Like Alice with Virginia McKenna and Peter Finch has been released in Australia.
CAPE COD 2005 - UK RATE EXPLAINED
Steph Gallagher writes:
A question has been raised as to why the UK rate for Cape Cod 2005 has been set above the current exchange rate. There are a couple of reasons for this and it is not the intention to make a profit. The rate was set at the start of 2005 to take into account $/£ exchange rate fluctuations that may occur during the year and currency conversion fees. Banks can charge up to £30.00 for either sending a telegraphic transfer or generating a cheque in a foreign currency, depending on which bank/source you use. The option of sending a cheque directly to a UK Board Member was also offered as a service to busy UK Shutists, to ease registration and minimise the amount of time and hassle they spend dealing with banks and post offices. In that, all they have to do is send a standard cheque as opposed to taking the time and energy to sort out a foreign money cheque or transfer with a bank (bit of a pain if you are working full time). The plan is to send $350 per person to Art, then if anything is left after exchange rate fluctuations and currency conversion fees, the surplus would be offered that back to individuals. For UK2003, the small surplus was offered back to individuals at the end of the conference (about £10 per person), but everyone asked suggested the small amount be donated to foundation funds and actually went towards setting up a UK Shute Lending Library. I hope this helps you to understand the difference in rates. However, at the end of the day, Art and Joan would embrace a cheque from you, either directly to them in $$$ or via the UK in £££. Full details of the conference and payment methods can be found on the foundation website at: http://www.nevilshute.org/Gatherings/CapeCod2005.php
Editor's Comment: Wherever you travel from, if you decide to pay Art directly, remember that you can only send him a US Dollar check drawn on a US bank. You can easily get one of these from your local bank for a fee.
BICYCLES, CIGARETTES AND SHUTE
C. John Hill of Devon in The UK writes:
Here in the UK, Sue Townsend is a respected author and is also probably well-known down under.
CHARTER TRAVEL OPTION TO CAPE COD
John Anderson has passed on a letter he has received from a Mr Cobham:
Mike Meehan then wrote:
I'm just a bit worried that the bloody Air Ministry will make us take out 2 seats and put radio in, as we'll certainly be more than 20 minute's flight from our take off point. As long as they don't reduce the scone ration I think we'll survive.
Editor's Comment: As a safety measure, and to avoid losing 2 seats to a radio set, a series of floating platforms could be anchored at 19 minute flying time intervals across the Atlantic. These should be planted with grass and stocked with sheep that can be herded off before each landing. As well as emergency fuel, scones and tea, each platform should have buckets, mops and a hose for cleaning the interior of the plane after each flight.
Suggestion from your WebMeister: You don't need no stinkin' radio! Just take along a flock of carrier pigeons for your enroute communications. If you keep them agitated enough they will be in continuous flight inside the aircraft and thereby add nothing to your weight/balance equation.
SHUTE-ISH AUTHOR HAS AN AVA CONNECTION
Chris Phillips writes:
In the quest for other reading matter that might appeal to Shutists I would suggest some of the works of John Masters.
ON THE BEACH APPRECIATED FOR THE PRODUCTION STILLS
Keith Delarue wrote during the month alerting me to a sale of production photos from the 1959 filming of
On The Beach.
ON THE BEACH APPRECIATED FOR THE SAD BITS
Tammy Dickson of Florida, The USA writes:
I am a college student working on my bachelor's degree in history at the University of Central Florida. For a Cold War class I am taking we were required to read Nevil Shute's On the Beach. Once I started in on it I couldn't put it down. I was brought to tears in the last chapter. What a marvelous writer he was! I hope to purchase more of his books while I'm on break from school.
Editor's Comment: I directed Tammy to our Lending Library and Resources pages on our website.
ON THE BEACH APPRECIATED FOR THE NAUGHTY BITS
Laura Schneider writes:
I am currently rereading On the Beach, which I haven't read in ages. I'm still in the early part of the book but I've discovered some very funny and sly lines in the book. One that surprised me was towards the end of Chapter 2.
THE HELPFUL MARCUS CLARK? / MARCUS WHO?
Gail Field wrote again to let us know that there is an autographed copy of The Legacy for sale on Ebay.com.au . It has a personal inscription to Marcus Clarke "With gratitude for help in getting out this book" from Nevil Shute.
Editor's Comment: The first prominent Marcus Clarke was a famous early Australian novelist who wrote
For the Term of his Natural Life, which has been described as a ripping yarn set in colonial times. This early Marcus Clarke was born in 1846 and died in 1881 so he clearly never met Shute. However, a different Marcus Clarke is mentioned in the Flight Log, which is a record of Shute and Riddell's flight from the UK to Australia and back. This more modern Marcus Clarke was a 35-year-old doctor based, I think, in Cairns. In 1948 Shute volunteered to fly Dr Marcus Clarke on his rounds of the outback stations in the Gulf Country.
An article last month referred to a prediction of the end of the world on the 21st of September 1994 that was mentioned in No Highway. At the time I was unable to find the reference quickly but have now discovered it in chapter 4. The article last month referred to members of a supposed cult in the aerospace industry who all stayed home on the predicted doomsday. I wonder what it was like for them waking up the next day and just going off to work again? Had they spent up big on their credit cards in anticipation of the end of the world?
Autumn is here in Sydney with warm sunny blue-sky days with low humidity and cool nights that are perfect for sleeping.
That completes this month's newsletter.
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