Sunday, 31 January 2016

Hugs and Kisses

I haven’t seen Matthew for nearly a month and it was good having him over. Plus the dogs missed him a lot as Matthew gives them lots of attention. Here is Jade, Maxy, and Podge smothering Matthew with love, hugs and kisses.

Saturday, 30 January 2016

Fiery Monkey

In South Africa especially this year the monkey has became a taboo in terms of racism but the Chinese, the Year of the Monkey is about to start on the 8 February, not just any monkey but a fiery monkey.

In the Chinese calendar, there are 12 animals which are allocated a year, and associated with the animals are 5 elements, metal, water, wood, fire, and earth which means that Fire and Monkey combination recur every 60 years. So what does this Fiery Monkey mean to the Chinese, well to them this year will be an ambitious and adventurous, but irritable year.

The weeks leading up the Chinese New Year are celebrated in different places around Johannesburg with the first welcoming of the New Year tonight at the Old Chinatown which has the best fireworks display anywhere in South Africa and the only one I really enjoy because it is in downtown Joburg CBD, far far away from any animals and pets. Next Sunday will be the main event at the Nan Hua Temple Buddhist temple outside Bronkhorstspruit. The following Saturday 13 February will be New Chinatown’s turn of welcoming the monkey in.

No I am not a Buddhist but I enjoy going to Old Chinatown for the awesome fireworks display. This photo below is my favourite of the evening because there is something about it that intrigues me especially that person on the bottom right. It was taken handheld with my point and shoot Canon camera on the wrong settings. The overall affect is a blurred photo that has this eerie feel to it. Not a planned affect but I love it. To me it shows how distorted the world has become with a vague hazy view what is to come when we try to make sense of the future.

The following photo was taken with my Samsung cellphone of the same scene seconds apart as my favourite photo. This one shows that maybe we should change this Year of the Monkey and call it the Year of the Cellphone.

To see more photos of the celebrations, check out my Facebook album Fiery Monkey

Friday, 29 January 2016

Feel Like Dancing

Terrance, Velile, and I spent most of the morning assembling brand new communion trays for this evening’s Praise and Worship. Later Velile and I took the hundreds of new glasses to wash in the kitchen and what a mess did we make. During the wash process, both our partners phoned and both answered "hello babes, just washing some glasses". I think it was hard for them to believe that they found us in the kitchen, washing nogal.

In the end water was everywhere, Velile took his cellphone, put on the Leo Sayer's song "You make me feel like dancing", grabbed a mop and well, I'm a little embarrassed to say he started dancing. With moves like Jagger, Velile made short work of the wet floor. Let's hope his wife doesn't get to read this post, as she would now know his achilles heel and start playing 70s music to get him dancing around their house with a mop.

Thursday, 28 January 2016

Beauty in Pain

I am not sure why, but I have a persistent headache that started in the early hours of the morning and just won’t go away. So here I sit at work trying to concentrate with a dull pain in the background.

Dealing with spam referrals in our analytical data is not helping the matter much, but somehow I am getting on top of these analytical statistics. I close my eyes and behind my left eye a throbbing pain comes to the fore. Today is not my day and when I finally open my eyes these three feathers on my desk come to focus. Ah beauty in this painful moment.

Wednesday, 27 January 2016


For quite some time now we have been having water problems on one section of the office when it rains.  It has been raining quite a lot lately that it floods in the garden just outside this part of the offices and not draining away. This rise in water levels causes water to seep through the brickwork and is starting to smell miff in Rob’s office.

The maintenance crew have tried different solutions in the past but to no avail. Today Kataboy arrived to try another solution. Well all the best Mr Kataboy, and yes that is his real name.

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Breaking Bread

The table is set, and the year can begin. After last year’s free falling, which I haven’t heard any splat yet, if I ever get to hear it. This year I started with Love the Haters but after tonight I am going to forget about the splat and put my hope and trust in God to catch me and start this year as the Year of Rejuvenation instead of the Year of the Splat.

So yes the table is set as my Home Community Group break bread together for the first time this year, the Year of Rejuvenation.

Monday, 25 January 2016

Monday Sleep In

It has been raining gently through the night and who wants to wake up on a Monday morning. Well defiantly not me and the same goes to these two Klipspringers on the lawn in from of my office.

No ways this soft grass is just way too comfortable.

Sunday, 24 January 2016

Tawkin Suthern

Tawkin suthern dudn come easy but the redneck church cat’s fingers and toes just iden right. Aah can count all my fingers and toes but somethang dudn add up here. Aah reckon this pore creature must have been in a fight with a dawg or somethang. With the high walls and security consciousness of Bryanston it could even be an electric fence.

The church cat disappeared for a while towards the end of last year then returned to lots of stiches in its feet. Whatever happened to this pore thang, the wounds are healing up nicely.

Y’all now should count your fingers, count your toes and thank the Lord for His blessings.

Saturday, 23 January 2016

Green Water Tank

With still lots of South Africa still gripped in a drought, water continues to fall over Gauteng. Many people have even been filling up five litre bottles and taking them to collection points so that they can be transported to areas where there is a water shortage so that they can be given out freely. With the motto Never bought, Never sold, Never sponsored, South Africans have been rallying together to help others.

With darkness hanging over our beautiful country, there is a light, as we step into the gap. Minky our cat sure appreciates our bore hole water as she looks outside from the safety of her perch towards our large green water storage tank.

Friday, 22 January 2016

Branches Out of the Way

For the last three weeks our DSTV Catch Up has not being working. Last weekend I cut down a branch that has being growing in front of the dish but it did not improved the reception. After more tests over the week it turns out that I need a bigger dish but I also noticed that some branches even higher were also in the way.

It just bad timing as after the Christmas break who has any money and with our landlord thinking about moving making matters worse.

So after work today I set up the ladder, armed with a saw, I climbed to the top most rung to the branch that I cut the week before, then I had to set up rigging and safety gear, start climbing a couple of more metres higher.

Only when I was safely down, did my Italian Greyhounds and one Jack Russell/Pug cross came out to explore what all the fuss was all about. With the branches cut away, the reception improved greatly. Now to wait and see if the catch up is working again.

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Pap and Chuck

How can this be, when I am on a fast, Velile decides to bring some pap and chuck to work for lunch.

Pap is maize porridge, the staple food of many South Africans that is eaten in the place of rice. The word pap is a shorten word from the Afrikaans word mieliepap. Elsewhere in Africa it is called ugali, sadza, isitshwala, nsima, phaletshe, and banku but I can only talk about pap as it is the only word I know for it. Not sure about elsewhere in Africa, but here in South Africa, pap comes in three forms; slap pap or soft maize porridge, stywe pap or firm maize porridge, and krummelpap or phuthu or crumbly maize porridge.

Chuck steak which Velile is complaining about, is a way smaller portion than he usually gets. Chuck is a cut of soft beef steak from the shoulder blades, sometimes it has no bone but mostly it has a 7 shape bone.

On top of the pap and chuck is normally a tomato, onion and chilli sauce just to round off this traditional South African meal.

Oh well let me get back to my water before I start salivating.

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Rain on a Tin Roof

As I lay in bed tonight listening to the rain on the tin roof above my head kind of appeases my senses.

In the early morning and later in the late this afternoon it rained, no it poured and I found myself at work with my Vespa. No I am not afraid of getting wet, it is the other drivers and the lightning which I can’t control, that bother me.

I send a prayer up towards the heavens and the rain stops. Stops just for a while so that I could make it safely home while lunatic drivers race on wet roads.

And now as the rain continues falling on the corrugated iron roof of my cottage, I find myself safe in my warm bed the thoughts of the day quickly fade.

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Google Teddy

Oh no, lying in bed with a rather painful knee and I just realised that I have forgotten to take a photo for the day.

What to do, what photo must I take, uhmm this is a dilemma that I experience when I get caught up in the day to day work and forget about me time. I had to hobble around my cottage, in a fog of pain killers and sleep, looking for something to take a photo of before the clock strikes midnight in about 3 hours’ time.

Oh here we go, my rugby teddy bear key holder in the passage. Oh but didn’t I already take a photo of teddy already. Oh I forget when but this time he has a Google lanyard hanging from him.

Monday, 18 January 2016

AC in the Sky

Last year my air con gave up the ghost and a few weeks ago the air con next door decided to join mine in the sky with diamonds.

Last Friday the AC Technicians came, fixed mine but discovered that the air con next door was a little more serious as a control panel was not working and had to be replaced. So today they returned with a new panel in hand but struggled to get the cool air blowing again as it seems something else was kaput. Thank goodness these last few days have been moderate.

Sunday, 17 January 2016

Sunday Nap

Sunday afternoons are the best for lazy afternoon naps and cats, well cats know just how to exploit the best spot for these naps. Minky, our rescue cat that was found as a kitten in a truck deport under a truck has turned out to be a wonderful affectionate cat. She greets me nearly every time I come home from work and talks to us in strange tweets and chirps. Minky loves Sunday afternoon naps with her daddy.

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Americano-Continental Breakfast

With rain threatening I climbed onto my Vespa and headed to BBC for a morning of training. The training for volunteer helpers kicked off with a breakfast, a corporate brown paper bag lunch, which I have renamed an Americano-Continental Breakfast. There were apples and soda pop (small bottles of Sprite and Fanta) on a side table as well. And not to forget coffee and tea.

Continental for the ham cheese croissant, apples, and water while the crisps, chocolate bar, and soda pop for the Americano. So here I was struggling to imagine bacon and eggs as I tucked into my Americano-Continental breakfast.

Friday, 15 January 2016

Legend Rockers Chess

Chubby Checker not quite but in our reception there is a chess board with legend rockers as the chess pieces.

This Battle of the Rockers chess set is very beautiful even if I can’t tell which pieces is which, the knight, bishop, king or queen although on the one side Freddie Mercury would defiantly be the queen and Elvis Presley the king.

Can you identify all the rock heroes on this chess board?

More information about The Ultimate Legends of Rock and Metal Music Chess Set which was designed and sculptured by Darren Aiken. 

Okay on the black team starts off with the greatest instrumentalist in the world Jimi Hendrix as the Castle, the legendary Jim Morrison from the Doors as the Knight, Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin with their Stairway to Heaven as the Bishop, Janis Joplin the ultimate flower child as the Queen, Elvis Presley the undisputed King of Rock 'n Roll as King, Ritchie Blackmore from Deep Purple as the Smoke on the Water Bishop, not my favourite the Beatles represented by John Lennon as the Knight, and riftest James Hetfield from Metallica as the Castle. 

And now for the white team, my favourite of my youth David Gilmour from Pink Floyd as the Castle, the reclusive Eddie Vedder from Pearl Jam as the Knight, Eric Clapton and his Layla as the Bishop, big mouth Mick Jagger from the Rolling Stones rocking around the world as King, Freddie Mercury the undisputed Queen of the World, the fuel for life Angus Young from ACDC as the Bishop, the californication Anthony Kiedis from the Red Hot Chili Peppers as the Knight, and finally Kurt Cobain who is in Nirvana now as the Castle.

Thursday, 14 January 2016


This year has hardly got started and the heat was on literary, hot tempers turned to accusations but hopefully common sense will prevail just as the rain has fallen on the raised up hands.

And now for your moment of Zen. This is the first time I’ve seen the Zimbabwean word Madzibaba or religious leader here in South Africa. According to the press, the track record of Madzibabas in Zimbabwe have not been good, so are these entrepreneurial workers in this pick-up, calling on their spiritual Madzibaba for more fire, more passion?

Madzibaba - Work Boys - More Fire!

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Good Morning Y’all

It is midweek and there is lots of rain about, which means that we get some spectacular sunrises and sunsets. So here I sit in my bed drinking coffee, and catching up of last night’s interwebs, while a beautiful sunrise shines through my bedroom window.

A good morning to y’all.

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Storm over Bosasa

Every weekday morning I consult the weather, looking out for predictions of rain during the time I travel to work and back because I need to know if I should use the Vespa or the pick-up.

In the early hours of the morning there was heavy downpours but by the time I was to leave for work it was clearing. The weather forecast predicted that storms are to make a 50% chance of comeback by 3pm. And just after 4pm these ominous thunderclouds started building up over Bosasa. Flood warnings started coming in via social so I was extremely relieved that I took the pickup into work instead of the Vespa.

There was a lot of noise then a few drops of rain then nothing. The storm with lots of potential havoc became a fizzle.

Monday, 11 January 2016

Brave Girl

As I mentioned in previous posts, there was severe thunderstorms over the weekend which left destruction in its path in Gauteng. Okay I think the storms barely reached Category 2 storm but the high wind, lightning and hail left destruction in its wake.

My biggest concern when I arrived at work and saw all the damage, was the nesting Blue Cranes that were in the open elements. Fearing the worst, I rushed over I saw mother crane still proudly sitting on her nest amongst the fallen branches from the tree next to her which would have killed her. Poor girl, she sat on her nest while hail the size of golf balls fell around her and most likely slamming into her.

Who can blame her for taking over four years to work up the courage to go the family way? She is one brave bird.

Sunday, 10 January 2016

Torn Flag

Driving home after taking Matthew and Jaen back to Benoni this afternoon I saw a battered and torn South African flag flapping in the stormy wind on a rocky outcrop next to the N1 highway by Lyttelton, Pretoria.

It was a disgraceful sight and as I photographed the torn flag from my car, I wondered if this is how many South Africans feel after a stormy week of racial accusations, finger pointing, and just pain ugliness that is paying out in South Africa. What has happened to love and the Rainbow Nation?

Saturday, 9 January 2016


What good can ever come from Bethlehem? Not the Palestinian village up north but a little town called Bethlehem in the eastern Free State. Yes along with Bethlehem we have our own Aberdeen, Belfast, Berlin, Boston, Margate, and even a Utrecht.

Lynda’s dad moved down to Cape Town from Durban recently and one of the vehicles broke down in Bethlehem. So Lynda and I had to go down to Bethlehem today with my pick-up towing a trailer to rescue Lynda’s dad’s stuff. Can I use two apostrophes with two nouns like this?

More rain was expected in the afternoon over Johannesburg so it was a race against the elements but as luck would have it Lynda’s dad’s stuff was in three different places. What a mess? And the cherry on top was the last group of stuff was inside a shanty town to the north of Bohlokong, the township just outside Bethlehem.

So I ask again what good can ever come from Bethlehem?

A ferocious storm hit Johannesburg this afternoon and we drove into the tail end of it. It was severe even for us towing a trailer but thankfully we arrived home in one piece but with no electricity. News started coming in of hail blanketing the West Rand like snow, a shopping mall in Krugersdorp roof collapse in under the weight of the hail, and lightning hit the Hartesbeespoort cable buildings at top of the mountain which caused the pup and restaurant to burn down. It looks like we came home to a war-zone.

Friday, 8 January 2016

Johnny Meets Jaen

My nephew, Jaen-Jurie, is up from Nelspruit on holiday and it looks like he has brought the slowveldt heat up with him.

Johnny our friendly Crowned Crane met him at my work and like a good Bosasa employee with security in mind, Johnny escorted Jaen around Mogale Business Park showing Jaen all the animals in the eco-park.

This afternoon relief came from this unrelenting heat by the way of torrential downpours as if someone in heaven decided that the ice bucket challenge over Johannesburg would be a good answer to all those prayers for rain.

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Velile’s Lunch

Velile and I come from the same era but from different sides of the track. In the South African sense we grew up on opposite sides of the Great Divide called Apartheid. The Great Divide that forced segregation, hardship, pain, and suffering on majority of the population by the few that ran the country.

Now with all that ugliness behind us Velile and I quite often have long discussions getting to know each other’s culture, about politics, religion, and even food. Because of our segregated upbringing we see the world around us through different lenses and it is those differences that we need to understand, break down if it gets in the way and support if it strengthens us.

Now take Velile’s lunch today, it looks yummy except I don’t enjoy the Shisa Nyama style of cooking meat, which is very, extremely very well done meat but look there is fruit and water. Velie's lunch is much more interesting and healthy compared to mine which was soet cookies (South Africa sweet cinnamon biscuit), sliced wors (South African sausage) on sandwiches, a nectarine, baked cheese cake smothered with vanilla favoured custard, and not to forget ice water.

So today our deep conversations started with angels and ended with the differences of each others lunch.

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

The Heat is On

Oh well with temperatures just reaching 40 degrees Celsius and the air-con on the blink the heat is on. My colleagues next door don’t want to share their air-con and compromise. They are enjoying my suffering so much so that I came up with a plan to help karma along but then the Holy Spirit reminded me of one of my ideals that I set for this year, “Love the Haters” because hating the haters won’t solve anything, it will just appease you for a little while before you realise that you have gone no-where but backwards. So just smile as I sip another mouthful of water and give them something to worry about.

Last year my ideal was “Judge Not, Compassion and Understanding Changes” which still is for this year but I added the Love one with it. I must say it wasn’t easy to “Judge Not” when I was going through a tough year and it looks like 2016 might be just as tough.

Tomorrow the heat is even hotter with it predicted to go over 40 degrees Celsius, so God help us all as I smile and take another sip of water.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Quiet before the Storm

It seems that South Africa is becoming even crazier with the polarisation of the Rainbow Nation. We seem to be in an economic tail spin as we head closer to elections later this year.

To me it is back to work with a shaking head, as I cry for the beloved country. At work it is all quiet, peaceful with all the peacock cries of last year that have subsided and we are left with just mother hens nesting and fathers protecting. Soon the young ones will start to arrive and that is something better to watch out for than the wretched humans throwing sticks and stones. Quiet before the storm.

"I am young, I am twenty years old; yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear, and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow. I see how peoples are set against one another, and in silence, unknowingly, foolishly, obediently, innocently slay one another." - All Quiet on the Western Front.

Monday, 4 January 2016

Hello 2016

With 2016 work year finally started, it is time to see what has happened at Bosasa while I was away on summer break. First things first, while down in the slow veldt, my mom gave me a hand reared year old tortoise which she wanted to release into the wild. I offered to release Shelly, a name my mom affectingly called this baby Leopard Tortoise, into the Eco Park at Mogale Business Park which already has 5 adult and 3 juvenile tortoises, one which is a fully grown Leopard Tortoise, the others I am not sure what sub species they belong to.

So the first thing I did this morning was to introduce baby Shelly to another tortoise. Hello there little one. At first the adult was nervous with me being so close but Shelly soon had him or is it her out of their shell.

Later I found out that a baby Springbok was born last week in the park and that a Blue Crane couple has laid two eggs at the edge of the park this past weekend. That will be 21 days gestation and hopefully we will see our first baby blue cranes. I was informed by the excited grounds man that the last babies born here was four years ago. I couldn’t get too close as the male Blue Crane is very protective.

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Rose amongst the Thorns

The last day of our holiday means the last big meal before the dieting starts and I found myself the rose amongst four thorns, Shekinah, Robynne, Rebekah, and Lynda. Dish up ladies as this might be your last big meal of the month before the shock begins.

Saturday, 2 January 2016

Drive Home

It was a long uneventful drive back home. Saying goodbye to the slow veldt was not easy, knowing that we were heading back to the rat race of Johannesburg.

We arrived home just after a fearsome thunderstorm had struck. Water was everywhere, the leaves of trees were stripped but thankfully the air was cool and fresh. A big change to the hot humid air of the bushveldt.

Friday, 1 January 2016

The Day After

It may be the first day of Day of our Lord 2016, it was surely the day after the party on auld lang syne.

We had a late start to the morning, sleeping in after our wonderful drive around the southern parts of Kruger National Park. We arrived at our family in Steiltes, Nespruit just before mid day, for a family lunch since we missed the Christmas day one. And this is what we found; everyone must have partied hard the night before.

Looking back 2015 has been a hard year and we are all glad to see the tail end of it, don’t let the door hit you on the way out. Anyway 2016 is going to be a blessed year even if I don’t know what God has in store for me, all I pray is for God to give me wisdom so that I can make the correct choices. Here's to 2016!

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