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Showing posts from May, 2009

mind the gap

I'm suffering from an excess of velleity.

Velleity is volition at its weakest. It's a mere wish or inclination, without any accompanying effort.

My velleity is fed by an overactive imagination... I can see in my mind's eye exactly what my dream garden looks like, for example. So when I am outside, I'm imagining a tree there, a shrub here, a winding path and a bank of flowers. so the lack of all those things and the lack of effort on my part to make them happen don't worry me so much. It certainly makes things easier when you are living with a very large garden during our excessively hot and dry summers.

I'd write more... but what can I say? Velleity strikes again.

feeling very friday

It's one of those days where the idea of concentrating on any one thing seems like way too much effort. The up-side is that if I keep doing little bits of things, they'll eventually get finished!

I have six stories, an annual report and a brochure to write, two proposals to finish, and some other stuff too. So I started the day by baking a loaf of bread and I've just finished mixing a double quantity of buttermilk rusks. I know why those boere tannies have strong arms. I need a Kenwood Chef.

So, in another desperate effort to delay work, I decided to suggest some blogs for you (my few but very valued visitors).

So these are some of my favourites that I haven't mentioned before:
Born Animal... we used to eat neanderthal babies???

My Marrakesh I find the constant use of the third person a bit trying, but her pictures are stupendous and I want to live in her house

Journey Mama and her husband who write about their lives in India

That's enough... concentration limit reached.

biofuels and the food chain

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One of my all time favourite books is The Day of The Triffids by John Wyndham.
It is a book which has had a major influence on my life, ever since I was about eight years old and first heard it being read on the radio.In brief, most of the world's population are blinded by some strange lights in the sky, and as a result the Triffids - strange, ambulant, people eating plants (not purple people eaters... that was something else that caused childhood nightmares) are easily able to kill their prey. Society as we know it breaks down and the hero is forced to make some tough choices about survival.


look, there is a movie! I had no idea.


What would you do if you were one of the few people with sight in the world? Work hard to help the others? Recognise the futility of trying to save and feed everyone else and save yourself?

One of the reasons that I am thinking again of the Day of The Triffids is that I went to the launch of the LEAF project recently.

The Leaf Project is bringing together re…

tunnel vision

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It's been a strange week. Periods of intense busyness, a couple of moments of sheer indulgence and unconnected people suddenly telling me how they see me.

It got me wondering about the chasm between the way we see ourselves (or is it just me?) and the way other people see us.



This picture of Simon's seems to sum it up perfectly. We are looking down a tunnel. Uneven, rusty and filled with the debris of what we think is important into the eyes of the people who intersect our lives.

It all started with this post where I said that I am a black lace and candlelight kind of person. Larissa, who is my son's girlfriend (and whose amazing blog is here) disagreed with me quite emphatically. Where I see myself as dark and moody, she sees me as "bouncy, happy and colourful. and you're almost always smiling. you're like a naughty little girl trapped in a woman's body.. a creative wild child who doesn't want to conform but has to".

How do we get to see ourselves th…

lives well lived

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This morning we were up bright and early, making a real South African breakfast for two of our friends who made our home their first stop on their big adventure.
Les took early retirement (very early) and he and Sharon set out today on a journey with no fixed destination or time scales which will take them around a large part of Southern Africa. They are completely free to go where their whim (or God) leads them.

As Les said this morning, "I could have worked longer and got a better pension, but why? You don't need a lot of money to be happy".



I stole this picture off their blog here. (Sorry Les. Sure you'll tell me if you mind)It gives you an idea of what their home will be for the next six months or more.

I really admire people who are prepared to live life to the full.

I really despair when I think of the people I know who are not prepared to stray an inch off the path of the conventional. I want to cry when I think of all those who reach retirement age and then sit ar…

do you want to feel good?

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I'm still getting lots of exercise kicking myself after yesterday's debacle, so I popped on over to one of my favourite bloggers.
Color Me Katie is a lesson in exuberance. How could you not feel cheerful after reading about the shadow project?

She is so filled with life and joy and colour that it's impossible not to smile, and think "wow, what a cool idea", and "I wish I'd seen that".

But I have a confession.

Unlike some of my blog friends and aquaintances, I'm not sure I'd actually like to meet her. I'd feel intimidated and stressed by all the bounce. I'd feel that I just wasn't colourful, or inventive or sparky enough.

I'm more of a black lace and candle light and long silences kind of person.

But I am really glad that people like Katie are out there. Keep up the bounce, Katie!



I'd even contemplate living in a nice, quiet cave like this one.
If it had good carpets.
And ADSL

bouquets for a dingbat

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Making me feel better: my 81-year-old mother and my husband, heading off 35km to the next closest town to buy a milkshake a couple of weeks ago



Yesterday I made a huge, totally unprofessional mistake. Thankfully it's been a long time since I proved so conclusively that the fact that a head is connected to a neck does not mean that any coherent messages are getting through.

It was the end of a horrible day, filled with frustrations and clients who don't pay on time. The only thing I can say for the mistake, was that I also proved that my commitment to always doing a job as well as possible extends into all my endeavours. I didn't send an email with premature information to a couple of close friends. I sent it to close to 100 highly influential journalists. How's that for a screw up of note?

One of the things that I learned through the debacle was that my family is totally, completely loyal to me. I had no idea, and the realisation is humbling, scary and certainly makes me…

what happened to April?

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Somehow, April just vanished in a haze of work. After not knowing how much I'd earn month by month - which is exciting and a little daunting - all of a sudden I have four clients who are paying me a monthly retainer. It's really cool to have the certainty of income. I don't think the lack of blogging it is connected to the new arrangements because I had been working for many of them anyway, but somehow, in the midst of it all, April just vanished.

I subscribe to many of my favourite blogs through bloglines, and as of today I have 36 posts to read on Meri's Musings, 19 of Julie's to read and 98 of Seth's. 98!!

I could go on, but my bloglines notifier keeps popping up on my screen to tell me I have 2761 new items to read, and I feel like I may start screaming.

One of the new retainers is to work for the Spier 2010 Contemporary Art Exhibition for five days a month. I almost feel guilty about being paid for it. The office where I am working is in the visitor centre f…