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    Re: A noon sight conundrum
    From: George Huxtable
    Date: 2003 Nov 25, 11:32 +0000

    Kieran Kelly said-
    >I may be suffering Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome from seeing the Rugby World
    >Cup leaving Australia on a plane bound for Britain.
    Perhaps Kieran's grief is getting the better of him here. The plane, and
    particularly the Cup, were bound for England, rather than Britain.
    A United Kingdom we may be for more trivial purposes, but not so when it
    comes to the important business of the Rugby World Cup. Those competitor
    nations, the Irish, Scots, and Welsh, were knocked out in earlier stages.
    He added, more on-topic-
    >I apologise for the mistake of suggesting that the sun is always
    >north at noon. This is obviously not true not even in Australia where in our
    >northern areas the noontime sun will be to the south in summer as long as
    >the observer is some way above Capricorn.
    It's interesting that he should have made such an error, which is the
    converse of the "North-centredness" that dwellers in Southern latitudes
    often complain about. They rightly complain that many texts concentrate
    their attention on the navigation of Northern waters, with all their
    examples set there. It's interesting to find an Australian equally guilty
    of "hemisphere-ism".
    It reminds me of the World Maps I have come across in Australia, shown with
    South up, which is a perfectly valid point of view. Some of them show the
    Australian continent considerably inflated compared with everywhere else,
    which is somewhat less acceptable. But the prize goes to Tasmania, that
    small and beautiful island to the South of Australia, where they tend to
    refer to the Australian mainland as "The North Island", and show maps with
    an inverted and inflated Tasmania dominating a shrunken mini-Australia
    What I have found most disconcerting in my own visits to Australia and New
    Zealand, is not so much the Sun being in the North as finding it moving
    round the sky anti-clockwise rather than clockwise. So when I chose the
    best spot to sit under a sunshade, or found a  shady spot under a tree to
    park the car, I would usually get it wrong.
    contact George Huxtable by email at george@huxtable.u-net.com, by phone at
    01865 820222 (from outside UK, +44 1865 820222), or by mail at 1 Sandy
    Lane, Southmoor, Abingdon, Oxon OX13 5HX, UK.

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