Daily Update: Saturday, November 28th, 2015

11-28 - Magellan Enters the Pacific

No Saints today, although today is the last day of the current Church year, so we will turn our attention to this date in 1520, when after navigating through the South American strait, three ships under the command of Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan reached the Pacific Ocean, becoming the first Europeans to sail from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific.

Today is the last day of the current Church year, as tomorrow will be the First Sunday of Advent, which starts the new Church Year. Turning to Magellan’s voyage, having left Spain on August 10th, 1519, with five ships, on March 30th, 1520 Magellan’s crew established a settlement far down along the Atlantic coast that they called Puerto San Julian, in present day Argentina. After quelling a mutiny involving two of his five ship captains, the Santiago was sent down the coast on a scouting expedition and was wrecked in a sudden storm. All of its crew survived and made it safely to shore. Two of them returned overland to inform Magellan of what had happened, and to bring rescue to their comrades. After this experience, Magellan decided to wait for a few weeks more before again resuming the voyage. At 52°S latitude on October 21st the fleet reached Cape Virgenes and concluded they had found the passage, because the waters were brine and deep inland. Four ships began an arduous trip through the 373-mile long passage that Magellan called the Estrecho de Todos los Santos (“All Saints’ Channel”), because the fleet traveled through it on November 1st, or All Saints’ Day. The strait is now named the Strait of Magellan. Magellan first assigned Concepcion and San Antonio to explore the strait, but the latter, commanded by Esteban Gómez, deserted on November 20th and headed back for Spain. On November 28th the three remaining ships entered the South Pacific. Magellan named the waters the Mar Pacifico (Pacific Ocean) because of its apparent stillness (compared to the stormy Atlantic Ocean). Magellan was the first European to reach Tierra del Fuego just east of the Pacific side of the strait. Of the 237 men who set out on five ships to circumnavigate the earth in 1519, only 18 completed the circumnavigation of the globe and managed to return to Spain in 1522; Magellan was not one of them. (Gómez had returned to Spain in May 1521 and was promptly jailed for deserting Magellan’s expedition; when the sole remaining ship returned to Spain, and the surviving crew related their terrible experience, he was freed.)

I had several Emails when I woke up to get ready for work from the person who is organizing our 40-year school reunion next fall, asking me to  confirm my Email address and to fill out an initial questionnaire. I did my Bathroom Devotional Reading, and on our way to work I did my Internet Devotional Reading and sent off the filled questionnaire, advising that I probably will not attend the reunion, as it is tentatively scheduled for October 2016, and October is usually when Richard and I go on our vacation. (I did not say that I have never been to any of my high school reunions, and have no real desire to go to one now.) Today was the third day of the three-day Heavy Business Volume Days for the Thanksgiving weekend. After the Pre-Shift Meeting (during which I found out that my doppleganger, with my same first name and last name, has changed her last name – again – as she is now divorced, so she is no longer my doppleganger), Richard was on Mississippi Stud, then on Flop Poker, then on Four Card Poker, then helped change Blackjack cards until he became the Relief Dealer for Macau Mini Baccarat and Pai Gow. I was on the Macau Mini Baccarat, and at 9:00 am all of our Macau players left, at which time we turned the table into a regular Mini Baccarat game. On my breaks I did my Daily Update for yesterday, Friday, November 27th, 2015 via WordPress for Android.

On our way home I started reading the October 2015 issue of National Geographic magazine. Once home I set up my medications for next week (I have two prescriptions to renew on Monday), then read the morning paper. I then went to the Adoration Chapel for my Weekly Hour of Eucharistic Adoration, during which I read the November 9th, 2015 issue of my Jesuit America magazine via a downloaded PDF file. When I got home at 2:00 pm, Richard and I took a nap until 5:30 pm, when we got up, and when I started doing today’s Daily Update. Our LSU Women’s Basketball team beat Marist in an away game by the score of 72 to 42. Our New Orleans Pelicans will play an away game with the Utah Jazz tonight, our LSU Football team will play their last regular season game of the year in a home game with Texas A&M, and at some point our LSU Women’s Basketball team will play an away game with Maine either tonight or sometime tomorrow; I will post the scores of these games in tomorrow’s Daily Update.

Tomorrow is the First Sunday of Advent (and the start of the new Catholic Church Year), and tomorrow is the Remembrance of Servant of God Dorothy Day (died 1980). Tomorrow is the last day of the two-week pay period at the casino. On my breaks I will get back to addressing Christmas cards. Our New Orleans Saints will be playing an away game with the Houston Texans in the 12:00 pm game, and in the afternoon after I eat my lunch and read the Sunday papers I will put up the Advent Candles, put up the crèche, and put up the Christmas decorations. Then I will make my lunch salads for Monday and Tuesday before doing my Daily Update and going to bed.

Our Parting Quote on this Saturday afternoon comes to us from Zig Ziglar, American author, salesman, and motivational speaker. Born as Hilary Ziglar in 1926 in Coffee County, Alabama, he was the tenth of twelve children. In 1931, when Ziglar was five years old, his father took a management position at a Mississippi farm, and his family moved to Yazoo City, where he spent most of his early childhood. The next year, his father died of a stroke, and his younger sister died two days later. Ziglar served in the United States Navy during World War II. He was in the Navy V-12 Navy College Training Program and attended the University of South Carolina in Columbia, South Carolina. During this time, in 1946, he married and worked as a salesman in a succession of companies. In 1968 he became a vice president and training director for the Automotive Performance company, moving to Dallas, Texas. In 1975 he wrote his first book, See You at the Top, published by Pelican after having been rejected by some thirty other publishers. This book began his career as a motivational speaker and author, who wove his active Christianity into his motivational work. He wrote his autobiography in 2004. In 2007 he suffered a fall down a flight of stairs that left him with short-term memory problems, but through 2010 he was still traveling about the country taking part in motivational seminars (died 2012): “If you go looking for a friend, you’re going to find they’re very scarce. If you go out to be a friend, you’ll find them everywhere.”

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