Autobiography    Dieter Rolf Fischer   Book 11

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   (Photos by the author, unless stated)        Book 11 / Ch. 13                              Written / Published 31.12.12 / 3.01.13

This and the next chapter tell of experiences at the end of 2012. Following this, God willing, we shall continue our European adventures.


"The glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together; for the mouth of the Lord has spoken." (Isaiah 40, 5).



13. The Happy Wanderer(s)  IVI  

It had been only ten weeks since I had returned from overseas. Plus, it was very close to Christmas. Still, for a number of weeks I had had an urge to take a trip to Sydney, the city I hold many fond memories of. In the weeks leading up to the long trek to the East of our vast continent, I had been delivering 5000, or so, Yellow Pages phone books. The trip was to reward myself for all the hard work I had done.

Had things gone to the original plan, my friend, who had helped with the phone books, would have taken the trip with me. However, his elderly mother had died in mid December. He had to arrange the funeral and all that's involved, after a parent dies. That's how I came be driving my little, green, one-litre Suzuki minivan east on Sturt Highway on the morning of Thursday, December 20th 2012.

The shortest route would have been via Lameroo, Pinnaroo and Ouyen. That morning I preferred to drive via Renmark in the Riverland and Mildura. Either way would lead across the Hay Plains to Narrandera, where I had planned to stay the night in my new, two-person tent.

If I had any doubt about taking this trip so close to Christmas, a doubt shared by my family, it was removed from the moment I woke that Thursday morning. Knowing I would be travelling to Narrandera that day, how could I not be surprised to read the digits on my clock radio? I had woken, without setting the alarm, at 5.07 AM.

In chapter 27 of Book 5 readers will find the story, around Christmas 2006, where my son Jon and I were driving near Narrandera and saw a cloud. It had a peculiar shape, which I had viewed as upside-down L (50) as well as the number 7.

(On Christmas Day 2012 I also woke real, real early - at 3.15 AM (0 0). In Germany it would have been around the time, when it was already dark at 5 PM, when shops were closing and everybody was going home, looking forward to celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve.)

A scripture comes to mind, how peculiar - it's in Isaiah, Chapter 50. In verse 4 we read: "HE awakens me morning by morning, HE awakens my ear to hear as the learned ..."

On the morning of travelling to Narranderra I knew HE awoke me, right at 5.07 AM to let me know, HE is there, HE is interested, HE will be with me. How precious numbers can be! 


But there was more, a further twist in this saga. I had packed and was almost ready to leave on my long road trip to Sydney. I felt I had to email somebody with the tale of my wake-up time. Just as I did, God's timing is amazing, on Radio ABC 891 Adelaide a young man was giving the weather forecast for that day. It was just before the 7 AM News. That was our son, Jonathan, speaking from the Kent Town weather-bureau. (He does this about every two weeks or so, when on duty during the early morning shift. It was he, who had travelled with me, when we saw the 50/7 cloud near Narrandera.)

- - - - - - - -


Narranderra - TOP PUB

No cloud in the sky over Narranderra on Dec. 20th, 2012.

An incident in Mildura, where I stopped for lunch comes to mind. On arriving in the town I was listening to the radio news. A major corruption scandal had rocked NSW customs. Up to 15 officers were allegedly involved.

Just as the newsreader spoke the word 15, within the same nanosecond, my eyes were reading the street sign: Fifteenth Street. (It happened also on the way home, only it was Anderson Road, in a rural area of Victoria, and not at the exact nanosecond, but a minute or two apart).

- - - - - - -

While on that number, a few days before writing I discovered a 1 / 5 twist in the name of our city Adelaide. Take a look:


A ...... The 1st letter in the Alphabet

D ...... 500 in Roman Numerals

E ...... The 5th letter of the Alphabet

L ....... 50 in Roman Numerals

A ...... The 1st letter in the Alphabet

I ........ 1 in Roman Numerals

D ...... 500 in Roman Numerals

E ...... The 5th letter of the Alphabet


Call this thinking inside the (Post) box  - Adelaide's PO Boxes are postcode 5001. 


If you think that's WOW - so did I. On the same evening of this discovery, on Sat 29/12/12, I was riding my bicycle in Port Adelaide. I carried my camera and took this WOW picture. (More about this bike ride in the next chapter).


<<<  I didn't know Adelaide had a WOW radio station, call signal frequency FM 100.5.


Below: During writing this chapter I happened to pick up a Readers Digest Magazine. The title page matched New Year 2013 perfectly:

<<< The Nov Edition with a big 13 in the title page matches this chapter also - Book 11, Ch. 13!

Who was really smart here? Not I. I'm not intellent enough - didn't even go to Unersity!



(More from this magazine at the end). 

- - - - - - -


At Narranderra, after erecting my tent and cooking some dinner, there was sufficient time to take a brief ride around this country town. Crowds of people did their Christmas shopping, or were just enjoying the long summer evening, the longest of the year (almost). The voice of a female country music singer echoed up and down the main street. She sang an interesting (not) Christmas carol; the lyrics rather different: "I'll be there before the next teardrop falls..." I was unsure, where the voice originated from. It sounded professional. It possibly was a recording.

Just off the main street, outside the CRC (Christian Revival Centre) church, life was happening. A Christmas sing-a--long would have been just the thing I would have loved to end the day with. I was too late. There was no Carol singing, rather I had just missed a screening of a movie. A young man informed me they had just shown the movie The Crippled Lamb. As I left I could read the writing on his T-shirt: 'Memphis Tennessee'.

The next day my little green machine took me to Sydney. With the exchange engine installed about 12 months earlier (as reported in Book 10, Ch.11) I knew she'd make it OK. We arrived around 4 pm Friday 21.12.12, the day an ancient tribe had predicted the end of it all. (Read on, how for some Adelaide folk it felt like happening!).

One of the reasons for taking this trip in my Suzuki (registration plate WEW 228) was the football match between Adelaide United and the new A-League Club, Western Sydney Wanderers. I was a little amused when I put WEW next to WSW. (I saw ES).


 - Parramatta Stadium, 21.12.12 -


As the goal scoring continued in the same direction, the 9000 odd Wanders fans danced, chanted, clapped in an ever increasing volume. You could sense their passion. It felt like a crowd of 29 000. 

One explanation for the enthusiasm - it is the team's first season. Who is not passionate on their honeymoon? (Read on for a nostalgic return to the place of our honeymoon.)


Before kick-off I was able to briefly shake hands with the Adelaide Coach. (His name is John.) Did I speak too soon, when I praised his efforts this season? "You must be doing something right". His team had had two big wins at Hindmarsh Stadium!

The story was different at Parramatta Stadium. Our team was 3:0 down in the first half. The onslaught of the Wanderers did not stop there. Soon after half-time kick-off the blitzkrieg ( continued - 4:0, 5:0. (They should have called it Bridge-Krieg - Mark Bridge scored a hat trick). 

Being 5:0 down, supporters of Adelaide United really thought the world would end, as predicted, on 21.12.2012. To top it off - spooked numbers? It was Round 12 of the season! 

There was a glimmer of hope for Adelaide in the 68th minute. No. 10 Vidosic managed a consolation goal. Had it stayed that way I could have at least linked the 1 - 5 / Adelaide twist, written earlier in this chapter, into it!  

But the Wanderer fans were hungry on that warm, humid night, just before Christmas 2012. They had acquired the taste for goals. The young team had so far only managed 7 goals during the previous 11 rounds. Their appetite made them shout louder and louder: "WE WANT SIX, WE WANT SIX". In the *90th minute they got it!

But not by their star striker ONO, who had scored in the 52nd minute. Even though, I suspect that his name had something to do with it? After every Sydney goal the Adelaide supporters kept saying: "Oh, No!" (I knew then, numbers must have had something to do with it.)

*Hey, did I not report in Chapter 6 about another football match? The team was Hannover ...96? There you have it - goal In the 90th minute goal No.6 !


The 6:1 result was among the worst I had witnessed as a United supporter. Two previous blitzkrieg defeats came to mind. A 5:0 thrashing in a semi-final by Perth Glory, after a 38-hour, 2700 km road trip by bus to the West Australian capital. The other big defeat was in Melbourne's Etihad Stadium - 6:0 in the grand final. 

(In future, when attending away matches,  I shall carry a spare shirt of a dark colour. (The further away the match, the darker the shirt). If we should fall behind 4:0 or more, I shall visit the men's room, change shirts and sit somewhere else, pretending to be ... ?)

Looking at my odometer reading on the dash of my Suzuki, I felt like texting the coach:

"Dear John, this was really a bad time for this defeat, one of biblical proportions. I travelled 3 thousand kilometers and we lost 1:6."


Welcome to Wanderland - and more amazing ONO's

Just before kick-off I noticed this sign at Parramatta Stadium: Welcome to Wanderland. I took a photo. Afterwards I marvelled at the numbers of the two players, who had their backs to the camera: 22 & 8.*

After scanning the photo for this writing - how amazing, more magic numbers on the shorts of the players - 3 / 10 / 6. (I highlighted them, as they can only be seen on the larger version - Please note, on the far left is not player No.3, it's 23, but his 2 is not visible in the larger picture.)

Friends, if I had tried to fabricate a picture where these numbers feature, it would be an impossible task. Yet, letting God take charge, nothing is too hard for our Almighty Heavenly Father! (I know what you're thinking: "Why then did they not win 6:1?) 

Another observation just came: If we played our letter elimination game with WEW and WSW - it leave us with WES. Look beside player 10 above! 

*Stop Press: Now I remember what took place at Hindmarsh Stadium about 15 hours before this writing: Sydney FC (the other Sydney team) played against us at Hindmarsh Stadium. After 13 minutes Sydney FC player No. 22 came off and No. 8 came on (or vice verse). It seemed a little odd, but it was so. I was there. Our team won 3:0. 

Sydney FC really deserved a goal, one only. Not because of their football skills, but the date: 3:1 on Dec 31. 

- - - - - - -


Being enthusiastically passionate about sport is one thing, letting you spoil your day, when your team loses, is another. I had made up my mind that this sporting result was not going to dampen my mood during my Sydney adventure. 

Driving all this way for one football match would've been a waste, even with a win. I had booked into the small YHA Hostel in Glebe for two nights. Besides the hot room, no air-conditioning, fans only, I had a comfortable stay. I wanted to make the most of that Saturday (22.12), and enjoy the beautiful city on the harbour. I had landed there from Germany in July 1969, 19 years old, never been kissed.

Sydney is where I met my future wife. We were married, after an 20 months courtship, in a little church in Neutral Bay. The views from across the road of the church, which has now become a cultural centre, are stunning.


City & Harbour Bridge >>>



One of the great cities in the world, Sydney held special memories for me; my first time away from home, meeting my future ... mother-in-law, getting married to her > daughter.


The rest is her story... !



Artwork at The Rocks   >>> 

Not sure, if the wreck with the rock has a message to go with it. Not even a sign: 'Watch - falling rocks' would help little here!?)

A ride across famous Sydney Harbour Bridge, shown in the background, was an absolute must. Adventurers with cash to spent can climb to the highest point on the arch.

It took me a while to figure what the NYE Festival was all about - New Years Eve!

Neutral Bay Wharf     >>>

It was a most relaxing half-hour, sitting on Sydney Harbour, writing my diary. On radio 2CH, which I had reported on before ...

Hey, as is today, it was also New Years Day - 1.1.07

 ...I was listening to the song 'God is watching us from a distance'.

Within days I would again come across this song ... (Next Chapter). 


The cycle path over Sydney Harbour Bridge is on the eastern side. Pedestrians must use the Western side. There was hardly any bicycle traffic on the bridge, so I set up my camera for a photograph of myself. (Earlier, at the Rocks, a lady had offered to take my photograph. She took one, then promptly took another. I smiled to myself.)

As I was busy with my camera I noticed a train was approaching. Since the tracks are right beside the cycling path, I paused, knowing the vibrations would spoil the picture. As I did, I watched the train go by. Nothing special, except the carriage numbers. Actually, it was not the numbers, I could not read them, it was the letters that went with them. There were only two, D and N, a few of each. It meant nothing at first, until about an hour later. 

At the Kirribilli side of the big bridge a market was held. Locals and tourists mingled, shopping for that special gift for their relative or friend. I spotted a stand, where a young man sold just one item - a book called THE MAN PLAN. The name intrigued me. I enquired some more and was assured that the contents, which looked very well illustrated was all good. It supposedly covered many subjects any young man should know about. (I admit, I liked the title too, and the statement on the cover that it sorted out a wild guy like Wil Anderson!)

My three sons might read it, I figured, since it was not a religious publication. However, on the first page I discovered bad language. Not merely the word s.h.i.t. - worse. Why write: "...they were ultimately f *** lonely, when you can express the same meaning by "they were ultimately very lonely'? (I feel I ought to ask for my 20 Dollars back). Authors should be the last to be propagating bad language!

Perusing the stalls at the market, after eating my bread roll and apple for lunch, I had an idea. I wanted to take a picture of the nearby Hotel, where my wife and I spent our first night after our wedding on 24/7/71. It took only a short ride beside the bridge approaches to find the place. Next - one thing led to another - letters and numbers! 


I checked my 1971 diary. I wasn't a numbers man then; no room number, sorry.  Walker La? Prophetic? After I had my bike stolen just before arriving in LA, I indeed had to walk a lot.

The author (then 21) and wife Isobel (today 65*) and the Harbourview Hotel, North Sydney, where we spent our wedding night, watching the view out the hotel window. (*I write it as it is and as it was ....!)

Above photo was taken in the back of our wedding limousine. (None of the ones here.)

Riding back to cross the bridge again I passed a show-room for Classic Cars. The door was open, so I asked, if it was OK to go in and take a look. Dream-cars everywhere! (A PEEL was on TV days later! Amazing).

I had not planned to photograph any vehicle, but this ivory-coloured Merc with maroon upholstery, did it for me. It increased my blood pressure to a level I had not felt since ... our wedding night! 

When I saw the registration plate NND 111 and the odometer reading - 1505 I had to document my find.

I meant to ask the sales person, if they take mountain bikes as trade-in? But then ... I'd miss my Mission ...!

My Standish Mission, the Sydney harbour and bridge in the background. Sydneysiders catch ferries, just as normal transport. A very pleasant way to travel.

- - - - - - -

The next stop on my walk down memory lane in Sydney was an address I had stayed in Cammeray. I parked opposite No.301 Miller Street, not thinking at the time, how my Suzuki 228 matched.

The landlord back in 1970 had been a Czechoslovakian couple named Siska. I have fond memories of my time living there. It was walking distance to church and a short *bus ride to my Issy.

 *(I had lost my driver's licence for 3 months -  for creative driving! At the time I wasn't a numbers man - and those digits on the dashboard, with a needle moving all over the place, must have spooked me - at the wrong time!)


<<< En route to the beach I took two photos near another address I used to live at - 1/147 Spit Road Mosman. Taking the picture across the road I discovered that I had lived right across the road from Mitchell Rd.

At the time it meant nothing, except we had friends by that name, and they had a son Ben. (Later that name came to live in my first book).


<<< Right at the corner Mitchell / Spit Roads is a Service Station and a 7 / 11 Store. I loved their slogans



<<< Good call - en route to 5 11... my next stop! 


While in Sydney I wanted to visit at least one relative, which I did. Until then it had not occurred to me that one of my nephews lived at 5 / 11 R.... Street. How all seemed to fit into place! We had a wonderful afternoon together, taking a drive up to the Northern Beaches. On those beaches I had learned to respect the ocean, the power of the waves, and not to play soccer on the sand without proper sun protection! I never mastered the art of surfing. Those beaches are famous for the sport. 

My nephew took a picture of his wife and I.

The golf course, on the hill in the background, must be one of the most scenic in the world. 


My nephew and his wife had invited me to stay the evening for dinner. But I had to apologize, since I wanted to take-in a little Sydney Christmas that evening. Carols on the Domain was happening that night. On the 6 PM radio news it was announced that the fenced off area, where the event was held, had already filled to capacity (50 000). Undeterred, I still cycled into Sydney later that evening on my (Standish) Mission bike. (I felt this was part of my mission). 

As did thousands of others, I watched the event from a distance, on the big screen. One big name, the drawcard for the evening, had flown in as a guest star - Rod Steword - (spelling???). He sang a song from his new album Merry Christmas Baby. The crowds loved Rod Stewart, and of course, Natalie Barr, the co-host the evening.

She was obviously was chosen for her charm, talent and popularity on breakfast TV. Maybe her name had also something to do with it - Natale, translated Christmas in Italian. (With the surname Barr she would also be well qualified to host an Easter presentation, singing rousing Easter hymns to celebrate ...?)

On a more serious note - we shall come back to the cross bar in a moment - some time ago I saw the name Stewart differently. I applied the a / o code to create Ste-wort. (Wort in German = word).

Next, Ste, in my creative, speeding braiin, turned into t es:

 >>> the cross is it >>> the word of the cross is IT.

(Nice one, Rod).

- - - - - - -

Casually flicking through the WOW 13 Readers Digest shown above, my eyes fell on a word, and a picture almost at the same time. What came next blew me over, thinking that it was written after I had published Chapter 11 of this book you are reading. But since this only happened in Dec. 2012, and the RD Magazine was dated November 12, this was impossible. 

 My creative brain composed a story with real meaning from the data in the magazine. Take a look:


Readers Digest Magazine November 2012 - Article

A Light on the Coast

Text: Struga Lighthouse, which sits on a 90-metre cliff* above the Adriatic, has been in Jure Kvinta's family for generations.

What did I see? The number 9, yes. But also something as significant. In chapter 11 you read how thankful I was to be able to find a place to stay - on a hill among the vineyards in a place called Stuttgart. Insert three t into Struga, shake the letters a little and you're in Stuttgart.

 t t t

But there was more. Readers with a good memory will recall the number (71) and how I had photographed numbers on the bike path.  The numbers were 100 and 7. 

How surprised was I, as I turned the page in the magazine? There was a picture of a cross, in the same article of the Readers Digest Magazine. Not only that - I found it on Page 107:


Readers Digest Magazine November 2012, Page 107. 

Church in the medieval village of Lastovo, on the small island with the same name, on the Dalmatian Coast of Croatia.


Why the * next to cliff (below the lighthouse)?

In recent days, as 2012 came to a close, there was much talk of the US being on a fiscal cliff. President Obama interrupted his vacation in Hawaii and flew to Washington to fix the problem. The news reported that the matter had been solved, for two months, anyway. 

On the morning of writing, Jan 2nd, 13 I woke with a thought: Using my surname Fisc her and the word fisc al my mind saw two possibilities:

 h real               or              (minus r code)    heal.

Friends, the world needs both - real truth, real love, real life. It also needs healing. 

Tax cuts or cutting Government expenditure are not the answer to the human soul's need for a real saviour, who heals. Christ is the one.  

HIS birth at Christmas started the healing process. HIS death on the cross completed it. 

Now it's up to each one of US to accept God's gift and follow HIS ways.


Chapter 14