Tuesday, 16 June 2015

I'm a little bit broken

happy picture to keep me calm and serene

These things happen, my usual modis operandi is to ignore stuff - things have a way of disappearing or fixing themselves.

Two months down the line.....very itchy rash everywhere- still here- eyes still not mine, fingers definitely not- I have hard as rock longish nails which I've never had- quite nice... but my hands are broken, they say 'mechanics hands'- except my mechanic has lovely hands. Other stuff comes and goes- Breathlessness, some nausea, fatigue - but now I have lost my voice.... The art teacher kindly tells me this is sexy, but I have it on good authority I sound like a chipmunk.

Now my doc says it's time for more tests and maybe a referral- if you know me, this is not good, nor me- so you understand, I had my babies at home in the bath- ain't nobody gonna cut me up at home!

New plan- I'm clearly going to have to own this mess I've become.  

On observation, it seems to react to stress- I know, really?? 

I've thrived on stress since my first job at the newspaper- it was a challenge to beat the 3 pm deadline chute as it shot off to the 4th floor works dept- I'd arrive breathless but triumphant. Then onto catering and/with 3 kids- pftt... a walk in the park.

I suspect as my grandmother would have said- my chickens have come home to roost, and they're looking like they flew from Siberia.

It's time to say no, when I would have said yes and time to walk a little slower.

It's also time to conjure up my 6 year old self, picture me, pig tails and all, my grandparents explaining that tomorrow we're going to the doctor and he's going to burn with dry ice that nasty wart by my toes all gone...burn, freeze, toes...and an active imagination....it didn't take long to decide that when I woke up that wart would be gone all by itself- and it was.

So dear 'whatever is wrong with me', I acknowledge you, I understand where you are coming from, I embrace what you are telling me and I've taken it to heart. Thank you for the nails and the kilos I've lost, I'll keep those if I may?

But unless you are going to reveal the lottery numbers in my rash, I am respectfully and kindly telling you it's time to piss off.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Brewers Co-op Woodstock

A bunch of guys and one lady have got together to form the Brewers Co-op in Albert Road, Woodstock,

 our buddy Daniel being one of them, so last Thursday we popped down to do some serious tasting- 

I quietly, and a bit bashfully arrived as a non beer drinker, but was quickly lured by all the sparkling honey hues.... by the end of the evening I had tasted several really delicious beers, knew a bit more about the different processes- everyone is very passionate- and had a favourite in the cider.

You can catch one of their free beer Thursdays (they await their licence) tomorrow from 6 pm-don't worry about the rain and the cold, there's always a big crowd of kindred souls and plenty of beer.

Woodstock drive-by

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

A Prince Albert wake at a labyrinth

On a clear day you can see forever-

follow the dusty road for 37kms exactly from the Weltevreden turnoff,

pass a Fig farm- next time-

you'll soon come to the signpost.

Here at the labyrinth on the farm we gathered-

it rained as we cried,

 it cleared as we remembered

 and in the end the sun warmed our shared grief.

Walking a labyrinth was a new experience for me, 1 km in and out,

it felt profound and spiritual- 

horses, dogs, friends, strangers: all coming, going, connecting, passing.


On the way back-

an adventurous skaapie grazing happily on a different side of the fence, just like Gary.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Blah Blah Bar and Ferdinando's pizza

I promise I didn't try and keep this a secret, you know I love to share...we just needed a few more visits to make sure I had the best pictures of  Blah Blah Bar 

Now a quick glance at the pictures and you'll see just what kind of wonderful this place is-

But if you need words- it's trendy, but casual in a cool artsy kind of way -
Erdmann Contemporary is upstairs.

 Regular live music downstairs, just keep an eye on their facebook page. 

It's a perfect party venue, not too big, a bit edgy, sort of like a home party in an alternative rich person's Victorian house.

and in the back.......Pizza!

I know- can this place get any better?

It's also not just any pizza, it's that pizza that I've been promising to tell you about, it's Ferdinando's pizza,

I really can't describe this little pizza kitchen to you- take a look and you'll see- but I can tell you how it makes you feel- warm and happy.

That's Ferdinando there on the floor looking for a treat.

What kind of rock star proprietor thought of all this you ask? 

Ja, ja- say no more, he was born to it.

I'll finish with some stunning 'drive-by's' taken by the art teacher on our way there

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

A life well lived

If I think of Gary, it's his laugh and those devilishly twinkly eyes first, even after his strokes, he'd charade us into remembering an incident in the past and laugh heartily - delighting in the memory.

And boy, are there a lot of memories- an adventurer at heart, fear and consequence...please....pfftt...that was for us mere mortals - you don't believe me?

Going way back, how about his 'make it or break it' drive to Sun City, a lot of cash was involved and yes, you guessed it, he placed it all on Red - no half measures, he was an all or nothing kind of guy- and yes, Black came in.

I hear the click, clack, clunk of the backgammon board, Fanie and Gary laughing, playing late into the night.

Then there were the poker evenings- you can tell a lot about a person by the way they play poker.

 He won with delight, lost with grace, rarely sat out - even with a bad hand, enjoyed a good bluff- especially if it was on him, loved to go all in and always gave you a chance to win back your money- a good poker player is a rare find.

He loved hang -gliding, not always successfully- poor Lisa!
 Adored nature, one weekend, combining both at either Beaverlac or Porterville, Gary's- 'let's go for a little walk', turned out...well, as you can see below.....fortunately I wasn't a first time mother.

Passionate about horses, to watch him with his horses on the farm in Prince Albert was almost religious.

He wrote well and with humour, he would have had a great blog- Gulliver's Travels a favourite of his, Siouxsie and the Banshees his best CD at our house- good whisky a necessity.

 So many more tales, schemes and adventures to reminisce - but one thing I know- 
your friends are all better people for having known you.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Al Bairre and Shortstraw at Kirstenbosch

To spread a picnic blanket on the lawns of Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens on a summer Sunday evening, to sit, sprawl, stand or dance, drink in hand ...this is Cape Town  - is an exceptional experience.

It doesn't matter if you're there for the music, the gardens, the people  - ( so many beautiful people, where do they all come from- no really? )  - it's the combination and then you look up at the mountain and *sigh* - a very deep and satisfied *sigh* and happily pour another glass of wine.

Long ago as young mothers with first, then 2nd and yes, some of us 3rd children, we would get together weekly,  mainly for our sanity, often in Kirstenbosch under the big tree. 

This last Sunday one of  those little tots took to that stage with a bunch of his friends and owned it.
They played with such joy and exuberance-
 We loved them, Cape Town loved them!

After Al Bairre came Shortstraw, another fabulous Indie rock band - by the end of the evening everyone was on their feet...even those who were having trouble finding their feet.

Bless you dear Kyle for giving us moms a perfectly plausible excuse to jump up and down, sing, shout and cheer like our teenage selves would have done.

Friday, 6 March 2015

Fire Tales

Now that the ash has settled and the paintings are back on the wall - minus the spiders and cobwebs behind them of course... there are tales to tell.

Our road leading to the top of the mountain is very long, winding and steep, the properties huge, surrounded by high walls or hedges, almost 30 years on and we only know by name or face, sometimes by both, a couple of neighbours.

This is no Wisteria lane, but last 'fire night' everyone was flushed into the street.

To be fair I'll start with myself, when packing clothes to evacuate, in went those louboutins, my fur stole etc....to put it kindly I would have looked like a ditzy old bat the next day in my heels, party dress and fur stole!

My daughter packed responsibly, including the grade 11 maths papers she was marking...safe to say, I think they would have preferred if they had burnt.

My son packed all this clothes, computer, skate board, basically everything except his school books and school uniform- say no more.

 And in the road....

We were treated to a car show, one neighbour made at least 7 trips - my heart fluttered at the sight of a 1950 silver Porsche 356 coupe, I know.... thou shalt not covet thy neighbours goods- or something like that- but what a beauty.

Around the first corner, a fierce argument about fire etiquette, evidently it's prudent to pack, but not to flee unless told to, instead stay and extinguish any embers on your property- I'm in agreement, the poor firemen needed all the help they could get. 

The neighbour who played the entire 'Grease musical' last party- turned out to be a charming and witty lady.

The gentlemen who we thought was mostly pickled- is always pickled and the Cannabis plantation didn't need to be saved as the cops found it last week.

Strangest comment - ' If a horse comes down the road just direct it to Greens Restaurant'

Strangest sight- at about 6 am a cyclist in full gear, head down, peddling fiercely up the road towards the fire.

That was my blog ..... then this morning I walked up our road to the mountain.

I cried when I stood on the top.

top of our road

My children spent these past holidays setting their alarms for 3.30 am and then hiking up the mountain to the top for the sunrise- they came home at 8 am- flushed and exhilarated from the magic of the forests in the hours before dawn, the sunrise through the trees, the wildlife and birds in the dense tree top canopies in the ravines- surely home to all the escaped parrots.

Don't talk to me about the fynbos- the trees are all gone.

 I missed my chance to share the experience with my children- you won't hear "I'll join you next time" leave my lips again.

The vineyards mostly saved, some are scorched and unfortunately some of the red grapes not yet harvested

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

SARDA boot sale

See how the boot sale has grown

Sorry, pizza tales will have to wait- my pictures were rubbish, I'll just have to eat more pizza to get some good pictures...enough said.

Instead, I'll tell you why I bounced out of bed early last Saturday morning- SARDA boot sale starts bright and early at 8 am, (3rd Saturday of the month) the traders are let in from 7 am and the rest of us are cordoned off outside till 8 am on the dot and then mayhem!

 People run, I honestly wouldn't know which way to run- a friend tells me her man can smell a bargain and knows instinctively which way to run- and it's true.

This is what I got- not at all what I needed, which was garden shears, zinc bath, hose pipe, terribly boring- instead I think I see a tea party with cocktails, some work for the art teacher to fill the frame and a bit of beach bat to work off that pizza.

I spent R210 in total, biggest bargain were the 10 side plates for R2 each and the cutlery for R20.

Got the upholstery cloth for R40- thinking a tablecloth?

The 'what was I thinking' purchase was a doughnut maker- I only paid R10, but still- as you can see that gooey mess inside is pretty much how it ended.

Good news is from March you can sleep a little later, as the boot sale opens to buyers at 9 am- bad news is there will be more people to fight off....better start training my nose.

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Hannalie Taute- Cross my Heart

Heidi's Erdmann gallery in Kloof street is currently home to Hannalie Taute's original exhibition- Cross my Heart.

Embroidery pigs are flying, stitched on rubber patchwork, there are dolls with tales to tell, a punching bag that dares you- the last picture is a 6 piece installation entitled 'She's a wreck'

'who needs courage' 'Mandrakes pollinating'

'I'll cross my heart when....'

'Dress is power ' 'Hare today- gone tomorrow' 'Nike of another race'

'She's a wreck'

We absolutely loved the exhibition, so many interesting pieces, an incredible amount of work and time must have gone into them.

The art teacher was brave enough to pin a needle in the artist's heart - Hannelie wore a rubber dress with a padded heart and offered pretty needles- the art teacher missed the 'sweet spot'..I think that was good?

Refreshing 'Once upon a time' cocktails inspired by the artworks were offered around and downstairs in Blah Blah Bar the Sharena Sol Orchestra played the most captivating Balkan, gypsy, jazz sounding music.

Sharena Sol orchestra

Did I mention we also ate the most scrumptious pizza? Promise to share next blog...

Drive- by Llandudno
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