Showing posts from 2017

Not running

On Saturday I spent the morning at the Fair Cape Dairies farm, enjoying the quiet of the wheatfields, perched on a cement structure of uncertain purpose and taking pictures of the more than 500 people who turned out for a trail run.

Even at my fittest, running has never been my thing. At a time when I could quite happily warm up with a 2km swim, I was still trailing far behind anything that required running. So I was happy to hide behind my camera lens as a detached observer on Saturday watching the pople of all sizes, shapes and fitness levels pass me by.

Painting the walls

On January 1, 2012, I scandalised the worthy residents of Moorreesburg by lying around on my front veranda. It was, perhaps, evidence of serious over indulgence on New Year's Eve? Actually, what I was doing was painting  little people on the walls.

I was happy recently when we paid a visit to the tenants to see that they were still there.

This weekend I decided to continue the tradition on our stairs. It was an excercise in patience too, as lying around on the stairs really brings the sloppy finishes that the builders left us with into sharp focus!

9 things

Nine things about my mother ...

Yes, I know that it should be 90, in celebration of her birthday last week, but you'd get bored with reading the list, long before I got bored with making it.

1. My mom moved into the granny flat at our house earlier this year. it was a big move for her, away from all the friends she had made in the retirement resort (it was never an 'old age home'). It has been an interesting journey. We have spent more time together than we have since I was in school and it has been an adjustment that has been easier than I expected.

2. I am much more tired than my mother. Or is it laziness? Every morning I take her a cappuccino made by Greg and without fail she is up and dressed, make up on and ready to tackle the world. I am up and dressed too, but most days all I want to do is go back to bed.

3. I have never, ever seen my mom lying down for a nap during the day. Not once.

4. I am awed by the patience my mother has with the people who treat her like she i…

riding high

One of the things that Greg and I have in common is that we really wanted to live in an old farmhouse-style house in a small country town.
It was a romantic dream that led us to buying a really lovely property in Moorreesburg - 5m high ceilings, Oregan pine floors, a swimming pool and loads of space indoors and out. Our lives there were a mixture of fun and frustration. We discovered that it is not always easy to live in a country town where many of the people are still fuming about the English victory in the South African (Boer) war over a century ago. We also met some wonderful people, and made some friendships that we don't keep up nearly enough.
One of the highlights of the Moorreesburg year is the Skou and it is a highlight of our year too, even though we no longer live in our lovely Swartland home. This year, we had even more fun than usual because we decided to take Taylor with us.

A handful of keys

Sometimes memories are best captured in the mind and the heart, rather than on camera. The pic here is a prime example of that!

Last night we were fortunate to be given tickets to A Handful of Keys which is currently on at the Theatre on the Bay and wow! What an experience!

A Handful of Keys is a show that I have been wanting to see ever since it first opened in 1994. But somehow, in spite of everyone raving about it, there was always a reason not to get tickets (procrastination being the main one). It features two pianists and their baby grands, a wardrobe of amazing costumes and pure, pure talent.

The show was a co-creation by Ian von Memerty and Bryan Schimmel and, over 1450 performances later, more than 420 000 people have enjoyed the magical mix of music, memory and humour. The current show is directed by Ian von Memerty and features the fabulous Roelof Colyn (who has been part of the show since 2011) and the elastic-faced, 19-year old (19!!!) James Smith.

In a new addition, the s…

Treasure trove

If you are into searching for hidden treasures, then the Milnerton flea market is the place to be on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays. We are looking for some fittings for our antique toilet cistern, and the weather was lovely so we decided to go for a stroll.

I was wondering how many steps we had taken as we meandered down one side of the large area and up the other, but my fitness app thinks I was riding a bicycle for the 51 minutes we were there, and recorded 8.65km. As a by-product of its confusion, I am now seriously worried about what I look like when I walk. Do I stomp? Do I glide? Do I sway from side to side?

The people who visit the flea market are as varied as the junk treasures on display. Sadly I did not get a picture of the woman whose unique style of ice cream eating should really have been recorded. Most people - I am sure - eat an ice cream cone by licking it. This woman stuck her tongue out in a way that would made her the star of any New Zealand team doing the…

inspiration in a coffee shop

In my lifetime as a journalist I have interviewed many people from all walks of life. Some world famous, others for whom fame is only a dream.

Today I had the privilege to interview a man who will surely rank as one of my top five most memorable interview subjects.

Dakalo Muavha has just begun his fellowship in the sub specialty of urogynaecology. When he has finished, he will be the first black male urogynaecologist in South Africa. But that is not the most remarkable thing about him.

The picture above which I got off Google Maps is the road to Masiza High School in a deeply rural part of Limpopo. Here's the other side of that road:

This is where Dakalo went to school. The middle child of a single, unemployed mother, his  dream for as long as he could remember was to be a doctor. He was the only person in his high school to do maths on the higher grade, and as his teacher was only able to teach standard grade they often had to work out problems together.

Google maps won't l…

on the way back?

I've been thinking of my blog for a while now and wondering whether to revive it or to start a new one. 

There are some good things coming up, like our trip to the US for the WFSJ conference which is also going to include a train trip across the country, so having a blog again seems right again.

I'm not sure really what happened. I stopped reading many blogs and started associating them with work more and more. I do know that writing in other people's voices, which is  what I spend most of my time doing, needs an antidote. But I have said 'I'm back!' so many times that I am not saying it this time. 

Just a little, quiet 'maybe'.

Part of the returning to blogging has been rediscovering old favourites, like Julie's Moments of Perfect Clarity which I used to read with a cup of coffee every day. Then I started just keeping up with her days on Facebook and Instagram (blogging is a kind of sanctioned stalking). Reading her blogs again has reminded me how much…