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Service has been established....There also have been significant increases in financial assistance for a wide range of cultural activities..."

I kept on going, hoping that the sound was acceptable:

        "Although we should all have equality   of opportunity, we should not all try to be the same....A unified society is made richer and stronger by the diversity of its members."

The words which Franca had suggested were next:

         "Just as the beauty of the Australian opal is in the diversity of    the colours which lie within it, so the beauty of the Australian nation lies within the diversity of its people....."

Getting close to the end, I felt a bit more relaxes:

        "A happy new year to all of you and may we get to know each other more in 1979," I read at last.

         I looked up, shouted "Viva!" as an ad lib, and turned away from the microphone.   A great weight had been lifted from my shoulders.

         There was polite applause as I walked off, which turned into a roar when Grassby was introduced next.

        He spoke in apparently fluent Italian, which he augmented with flailing arms and comical grimaces.   They loved him.

         After Grassby, we listened to various popular singers who had been flown out from Rome especially for the event.   An hour later the fireworks started and  

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