Thursday, 31 January 2013

Chastity Belt

One of my most popular posts is the one I did a few days after my birthday the year I first started posting. It is of a male chastity belt and only lost its number one most popular post last year and is now sitting at position five with 513 page views to date while my number one most popular photo of an armoured train has 927 page views.

A photo a day really took off last year with many people taking up the mantel of a photograph each day. Delia with her shocking pink camera took her photo today of an old padlock and key. When she showed me her stunning photo it reminded me of the chastity belt.

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Give the Dog a Bone

Last weekend, I had to buy more dog food so I went the Catbox Pet Hyper to buy some Dog Sense Performer but sadly there was no stock so I had to buy another product to my dogs dislike. To help ease their sadness I bought a lot of treats. Because Skye is in a chewing phase, I added some chewy treats and one of them was two ostrich bones.

This evening after arriving home to my dogs, I handed out some treats and then I brought out one of the ostrich bones to my pack’s delight. I put my smallest Italian Greyhound next to the bone to give you a sense how petit my dogs are. Here is Jade, a little confused on where to start on the bone.

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Mark and the Leopard

Nice title for this blog if I may say so myself. It was our biggest turnout to Home Circle tonight where us homies where outnumbered by the newbies. Yes we just about doubled in size tonight. Here is Mark sitting under the awesome painting of a leopard. I have known Mark and Sue for a long time now but it is their first time to our Home Circle, so welcome and too the other two couples.

News on Matthew, well he has been booked off school till Friday which doesn't make me happy as I believe in High School every day missed makes it harder to catch up and understand the rest. But I must relent as health is more important. For the next two days Matthew will be undergoing a battery of test at the cardiologist.

Good news from my sister Theresa, she came up from Nelspruit for a follow-up after they removed her entire thyroid just over two weeks ago because of Hashimoto's Disease. All is looking well even though her throat is still very sore and making it difficult to eat solids. The doctor said it will take up three months to heal and that she must not rush eating solids.

Monday, 28 January 2013

Blue Dress

Aaah the blue dress! Well most of us were feeling the Monday Blues, Noma decided to buck the trend and come to work wearing a blue dress. Everyone was impressed with firstly her courage and secondly that how lovely the dress looked on her. And it somehow helped the Ghanaians win their African Nations Cup football match tonight because Noma's partner is Ghanaian.

Continuing with good news, Matthew's test results have come back normal for thyroid and epilepsy issues. So that just leaves the hyper ectopic heart condition which could be causing the blackouts. He has been discharged from hospital this afternoon but has been referred to a cardiologist for further investigation.

I want to thank you for all your continued prayers. It has been a tough six months medically. It started with Theresa’s been diagnosed with Hashimoto's Disease then it was my prostrate problems, followed hot on its heels by my kidney stones. Not soon after that Theresa had her entire thyroid removed and Matthew started having blackouts. Thank you for your support and prayers.

Sunday, 27 January 2013


It was a joyous occasion to see my friends from Canada. I better not say it any more but from right to left are the first class Canadian family Suzanne, Nic, Nika and Aidon. I wish I could have spent more time catching up with them but I had to rush after my BBC duties.

But the joy was short lived as Matthew is still in hospital. The doctor told me that they sent Matthew’s blood for testing for deep epilepsy and thyroid problems. I never heard of deep epilepsy but he told me that the seizures associated with epilepsy are not shown but the sufferer has blackouts and are sometimes not even aware of them. Also they pick up a hyper ectopic heart beat which has pointed the doctors towards thyroid issues. The doctor said that the thyroid issues are genetic and was also very interested in my mom's thyroid problems and my sister’s recent Hashimoto's Disease. Oh dear it doesn't sound good.

Keep praying. The blood results should be out tomorrow.

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Flap-necked Chameleon

Arriving back home in the head of the mid day sun after a morning of month end shopping, this little fellow was seen crossing my driveway. The Chamaeleo dilepis or Flap-necked Chameleon is known are known to grow about 35cm and this chameleon was close to 25cm. I think this is a male because I found on the internet that the males have a distinct swelling at the base of their tails and this one does although I didn't see any small backward projecting spurs on their hind legs. But I am no herpetologist so please correct me if I am wrong.

While carrying him or her to a safer location it changed colour and lost its dark green spots which reminded me of the traditional Zulu story of why the chameleon manages to change its colour. You can read the story here Four Generations of Sibanyoni and you can find out why the chameleon is very sad for letting God down and has been hiding from Him ever since.

Change of subject, Matthew is still in hospital and has blacked out three times today. They are still waiting for the results from the blood tests and it looks like he will be in hospital till Monday. Please continue to pray for him.

Friday, 25 January 2013

Hospital Adventure

Matthew, my son, is so excited of spending his first night in hospital that he can remember. While I am so anxious about him been alone in hospital and angry at the same time about the circumstances of him being there in the first place.

From what I found out is that he has been having blackouts since Tuesday and has been off school for the last four days. The doctors are busy running tests and kept him in hospital for observation. Even through Matthew is on his adventure, prayers are needed.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Simba Whimpers

Noma loves her Simba potato chips which is also known in other parts of the world as crisps. But today, Simba sure let her down. Simba started in the potato chips industry way back in 1956. And on their website they proudly state that "Over the years, Simba has changed and evolved to reflect what is going on in our country." Well it should read deteriorated not evolved as to me evolve states that it has gradually changed for the better.

Well, how can I use this platform to air my gripes about a company. Easy, you see Simba over the years have shrunk their packaging down to what we get today, 36 grams of chips surrounded by air. What made us so cheesed off, was that the packet of Simba Smoked Beef Flavoured Potato chips that Noma bought today was mostly filled with air with a few potato chips at the bottom. See the photo above. Yes that was all of the so called 36 grams of chips. Horror! Dismay! Disgust! I emailed Pepsico, the company that owns Simba, but as of this posting I have received no reply.

Simba says that it Roarrrs with flavour but I am afraid that Simba has thrown its crown to the ground and the chip kingdom is now in dire need of a new king. Will Simba step up and take back his rightful place as king or would another chip company proudly step forward!?

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Rest Less

Hump Day is about over and Delia needed to remind herself that she needs to rest less by scribing onto her fingers REST LESS. I thinks she pushes herself too hard. Oh well not that she listens UNLESS I bring out the grammar nazi out of her and I know all the right buttons to push. Yes you do know the difference between your and you’re but it is far too early in the year to be pushing yourself like this. Courses will be done and conversions will fall into place one step at a time. As I have always asked "How do you eat an elephant?" And the answer which you already know is "One bite at a time". And you're not a crazy grammar nazi as we all know that you have a pleasant disposition.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Spotted Eagle Owl

Waiting to greet us as the Home Circle arrived at Sandy and Andy's home in Bryanston was this juvenile Spotted Eagle Owl who has only recently moved into the area. There must be plenty of food in the area. The owl is still too small to hunt cats and little dogs but rats and pet rabbits must be plentiful. Well the local Grey Louries were not too thrilled and they sure voice their opinions and for all their rantings the owl just swivelled it's head and gave them an annoyed once over.

It was a pleasure watching this young owl only metres away from us while he watched us watching him as dusk turned to evening.

Monday, 21 January 2013

Something Fishy

Men don't wear pink, men wear salmon and Sven knows how to wear salmon. This afternoon it was our Home circle's turn to help out with the Under the Bridge feeding scheme at BBC. While we were about to prepare with the food parcels, Sven came round to say hi, wearing this fishy looking pink tie. Well he does work at BBC so that was not the odd thing, oh yes the salmon tie.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Weaver and the Pothole

Nothing comes between Matthew and sashimi, not even the soft falling rain, potholes or closed stores. Matthew wanted some sushi for lunch so we drove out to our favourite sushi dives in Fairland but only to find that the sushi chef will be in about an hour so we decided to head across town to Mina Moto at the Wedge in Morningside to find that Japanese restaurant closed for renovations. So we headed down the road to the battleship of Japanese restaurants, Yamato and sushi was enjoyed in quantity by both Matthew and I.

With full bellies Matthew and I headed back home and on the way we found the reason why God allows potholes in our roads. Potholes and faulty traffic lights are plentiful in Johannesburg whenever a few drops of rain fall. But we stopped just short of a pothole near home and spent quite some time just watching a Southern Masked Weaver bathe in the pothole while one of his females watched in amusement. Hallelujah, eventually he encouraged her that it is not just about building a house for her but bathing and smelling nice as she gingerly joined him in the puddle of the pothole.

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Le Farm

Lucinda and George invited us to the opening of Le Farm in Timsrand. Le Farm is a conference venue with accommodation and although it still has a long way to go, the venue is on the right track. This evening we were entertained by Gordon Franks, who was a maestro on getting the guests involved. Here is Gordon trying to get Matthew to sing along. We had a wonderful time with good food, dancing and company. We will be back but now I need my bed.

Friday, 18 January 2013

Ashton International College

Matthew started Form 1 at Aston International College this last week and when I went to pick him up today for the weekend he quickly got dressed into his school uniform so that he could proudly show how smart he looked. And he did look elegant although I better teach him how to make a Windsor Knot as that School Boys' Knot is no good.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Classic Bob

Things are getting back to normal around here. Theresa was discharged today. At work we are getting settled into our work after the summer holidays. Noma is getting acclimatised and is making sure that the air conditioner is always switched on which is culturally not done. Delia came to work sporting a new hair style, the classic bob cut. To top it all, tomorrow is Friday and I believe Delia is getting new contact lenses which mean no spectacles tomorrow. Oh well there goes her geeky looks, no glasses and a bob.

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

She Speaks

After work, I went around to the Donald Gordon Hospital to visit my sister, Theresa, after her operation yesterday evening. Before I went I was brushing up on understanding sign language as I was not sure if Theresa would be able to speak. The surgeons had removed her entire diseased thyroid and close by are the vocal cords which can easily be damaged.

On arriving, I was so relieved that Theresa could speak and boy didn't she stop talking. They have moved her from High Care to the General Wards which is a good sign or maybe it was because she was talking too much. I enjoyed my conversation with her as we continued chatting on and on until her supper arrive.

Next came the bonus, Theresa is starting to eat solid food after many months on a liquid diet. The starter was vegetable soup which she sipped half of the bowl before nibbling on the cottage pie and cauliflower. After a mouthful of each item except the potatoes, she was full. After some more talking, she then proceeded to polished off the jelly and custard. Although only a little bit of solid food was eaten, the good news is that she is now able to swallow even though with a bit of pain. Not only does she speaks but she eats too!

The doctors say that if her swelling goes down she can be discharged tomorrow and Theresa is looking forward to that.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

The Elevator

My sister, Theresa has just come out of a three hour surgery where they removed her entire thyroid. She is in a lot of pain which is to be expected and the doctors have her on morphine. Today's photo is of my sister being wheeled into the elevator (the lift as we call it here) to take her down to theatre on the first floor. I told her as they were wheeling her down the passage that when she walks back out she must carry her head under her arm to scare the living daylights out of everyone.

We want to thank everyone for their continued prayers and thoughts for Theresa and her family.

Monday, 14 January 2013

In Spite of Ourselves

I had a wonderful nothing much planned but always on the go weekend. I felt well rested this morning. But around me it was not so rosy. One work colleague had a weekend from hell and my sister, she is not having a good time.

Well for my sister Theresa, it has not been going well for some time now. Last year after battery upon battery of tests she was finally diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Disease. She has gone from about my size to just bones with skin hanging off. Hashimoto is an auto immune disease of the thyroid, not hypothyroidism which is a condition, this is a disease. It is on the opposite of Graves’s disease on the scale of auto immune thyroid diseases. The many doctors and specialists that she has seen can’t or won’t help Theresa and one has openly told her that there is nothing that they can do until her thyroid dies, that is if she lives that long.

After scouring the internet for help, the family found a doctor in Johannesburg who does the operation so last month Theresa came up and saw her. The specialist only deals with children with thyroid problems and after looking at my sister, she was shocked that none of the previous doctors were willing to help so she found a surgeon who was already on his summer vacation but he came in and saw my sister. So tomorrow my sister is having the operation to remove the diseased thyroid.

So the sun sets on another weekend, I ask my readers to pray for her, the family and the surgeon. In spite of ourselves, God has blessed us to be a blessing to others.

Sunday, 13 January 2013


Only nine days old, Kheilan arrived at BBC this morning under the watchful eyes' of her parents Gareth and Venessa. Gareth looked like a proud dad and he didn't look like he was losing too much sleep though. Congratulations to both of you on the birth of your beautiful bundle of joy. Reach for the skies, Kheilan.

Saturday, 12 January 2013


Well today started as most of my Saturdays start and that is with washing. First my dirty week's clothing then the entire dog’s blankets ended up been washed and by nine I was on my way to town which later ended up at the Oriental plaza in Fordsburg.

After town it was a relaxing afternoon at home. Sometime later during my relaxing bit my neighbour Jacqueline who was about to leave for a party asked if I could take some photographs of her, so her front lawn became a mini photo shoot. Ahhh the life of an expert photographer!!

Friday, 11 January 2013

His and Hers

I have seen many variations of the signage indicating the restrooms for males and females. Some even absurd but at Lucios Pizzeria they had these mosaic busts for the different sexes. Now Lucios, voted a number of years now as the best independent Italian restaurant in Johannesburg, is still my favourite restaurant. I don’t recall seeing these his and hers busts before but maybe I have been distracted by all the Ferrari memorabilia. Lucios always represents to me good food and good company.

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Do Not Move

First thing this morning, before anyone arrived, I put an upturned bowl next to Noma's desk with a note that read "Do not move bowl unless you plan to kill what's underneath it. Thanks!"

The first to arrive was Noma who is terrified of insects and arachnids. The upturned bowl was too close to her desk so she carefully prodded it towards Delia's desk with her out stretched leg. I was just about rolling on the floor trying not to laugh out loud. She then proceeded to check under her chair and desk in case whatever was under the bowl didn't escape. A good start to the morning.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Almost Heat Wave

Well I do believe that there was a heat wave in Johannesburg today. Well I didn't feel a thing as I was cooped up in an air conditioned office doing some catch-up. From what I can see from the weather service, the temperature was only 32˚C and in order to be called a heat wave the temperatures have to be 5˚ higher than the expected average for the month and have to last more than 3 days.

Well the expected average for January is 29˚C and it is only day two of this sizzling heat. So no heat wave yet and I expect it will get hotter before the rains come to cool the city down.

Now at home it is a different story, no air con, oh dear, I better get a fan or two up and running. Here is a photo from my computer at home through the blinds towards the setting sun. I took it while on the phone with my son, Matthew. He started High School today and he said that he enjoyed his day even with his blazer on. Well I pray that this will be a positive time for Matthew, as he learns and grows.

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Hair Fashion

In Africa, the women like to braid and add extensions into their hair all in the name of fashion. For as long as I have known Noma, she has worn hair extensions fashionably. I used to tease her every time she came in with a different style, plastic (synthetic) or human hair (made from poor exploited Indian Untouchables).

Yesterday Noma came to work sporting her own hair. She was wearing it with pride. You go pretty girl.

Monday, 7 January 2013

Back to Work

After the summer break it is back to work for us plebs and to add insult to injury it is a Monday. Looking back on today, we should have eased into things instead of jumping straight in. After three weeks on leave, we came back to three weeks of piled up work.

The ladies are back at work too, looking like they had a wonderful summer break, not like me who decided to drive back the day before. By midday I felt like it was time to go home. Delia, shown above, managed to smile for the camera while I wanted to crawl into a little hole and sleep.

Isn't there a mariner's saying that mentions that a calm sea at the beginning of a journey spells an ominous voyage. Well today was a rough start of the year for me so here an adventurous year ahead.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Trek Home

I didn't get much sleep last night because I kept waking up, not sure the reason though. When I finally woke up at six, I started getting all our things together and woke Matthew up to start packing the car for the trip home. It is a seven hour road trip in the heat of the African sun. Thankfully my aircon is working perfectly.

Here is a photo of Skye which I took in the early morning while all my children were still fast asleep. Isn't he cute? The Italian Greyhounds like burrowing under the blankets no matter how hot it is where as the Whippet Skye loves to lie on top of them all.

But I am thankful to be home safely as the news of all the road fatalities during the holidays is not good. So to all who read this post, may you have a blessed 2013 so much so that you can become a blessing to someone else.

Saturday, 5 January 2013


My best friend, Robbie, from my High School days came down from Pietermaritzburg to spend the afternoon with Matthew and I at Ballito. It is our last day here on the Dolphin Coast before heading back inland to Johannesburg tomorrow.

Robbie and I spent the afternoon sitting on the porch, catching up on old times and on news of other school mates, of where they are now and what they doing with themselves. Later I put some steak on the webber and slowly cooked the meat to perfection while we continued catching up. Soon the afternoon turned to evening with all the catching up on Robbie and Jerome incidents of our past.

Friday, 4 January 2013

iShaka Marine World

Today was dedicated to iShaka Marine World where Matthew spent the day enjoying the water slides while I watched from the sides. But I was not alone as Lynda joined us as she too is on leave and staying with her parents in New Germany.

While Matthew was having fun, Lynda and I explored to aquarium. It was here that I found these lovely examples of the Pterois Miles or the Devil Firefish. They brought back memories of my first ever sea dive at the reef called the Crèche off Ponte De Ouro, Mozambique. As the group of divers dropped from the surface to the reef, we landed in a school of Devil Firefish. I eyeing out these venomous fish in the ebb waiting for the rest of the group to join. It was an interesting first dive for me.

Thursday, 3 January 2013


After taking the dogs for a walk along the beach, Matthew and I went to the Gateway Shopping Centre at Umhlanga Rocks so that Matthew can practice boogie boarding on the Flowrider at the Wavehouse. But on arriving we found a whole new section of super tubes at the Wavehouse, so Matthew’s day just got more exciting.

Just before the end of the day, we took the dogs back to the beach to stretch their legs but the wind was blowing and we were getting sand blasted so we headed back to our cottage by the sea.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Sheffield Beach

Matthew and I left Nelspruit at 06:30 and headed for the Dolphin Coast. We arrived at our destination, Paws 4 Thought at Ballito just over eight hours later. At first the scenery was wonderful, driving through forest covered mountain passes but later the surrounding countryside flattened out and became endless. We were so relieved as we took the Umhlali turnoff and soon we were frolicking on Sheffield Beach.

It was Skye's first time on a beach and he really enjoyed himself. Only Patch and Skye were not afraid of the water, were as Maxy and Jade just watched us enjoy the tidal pools from the water's edge.

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Day One - Quad Biking

Like last year, Matthew and I trekked up to Fredriksdal to spend the first day of the year with family. This time we had a braai and the children enjoyed themselves quad biking into the forest.
Here is Matthew taking Danielle for a spin on the quad bike. Later when Matthew and Jaen was out in the forest plantation the clouds started looking ominous but luckily for them they arrived back just as the heavens opened up in a cloud burst of note. We had to save the braai by moving it onto the patio. After the downpour, the mist crept in and the kids wanted to get back out to quad in mud. Welcome to 2013.

Day One was relaxing with lots of food and family. Good way to start the year and Matthew enjoyed himself.

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