Tuesday, 31 January 2012

There is too much beauty to quit

It is month end and the large monthly reports are needed to be started sprinkled with some onsite work. My day was busy from the word go. I suppose all my month ends will be like this. It was a long day for me and so will tomorrow with the reports for a large 4x4xfar company and an accounting software company to be done; I hope I can have a good sleep. My evening was sort of just a collapse at home on the couch. On the TV was a strange movie, by strange I mean weird but "Stay" drew me in with it's strange quirkiness and then wham between the eyes comes the quote that if only we open our eyes a little wider, will we realise that there is too much beauty to quit.

Okay now for a little good news, although the doctors and other learned colleagues are stumped, my sister Theresa has started eating solids, well mashed up solids that is and it aren't Monday anymore. That is two bits of good news on a Tuesday, hey, I am on a roll. My sister landed back at Nelspruit this afternoon and is back with her family, now for baby steps on her way to recovery. There is always hope and beauty for tomorrow.

Monday, 30 January 2012

Buya ekhaya

I rushed early from work this afternoon to get to BBC on time as it is our Home Circle's turn to man the kitchen for "Under the Bridge" program which is a feeding scheme the homeless living along the streams and rivers in the northern suburbs of Johannesburg. It is hard to believe that in a well to do areas of Johannesburg there are people living on the edge with nothing but the clothes on their back.

We soon got organized. I was cutting the bread, Brenda was packing the bread into bags, Jackie was cutting the baloney while Sandy and Emmerlina were packing the baloney along with some crisps into the bag with the bread. Oh and Gary said he was supervising. Soon we were done and I looked outside to see the multitude which was starting to arrive. Khaya, shown above, along with his worship crew started them singing African Christian songs in the all too familiar rhythm. With my kitchen chores done and dark ominous clouds gathering overhead, I said my goodbyes and headed off home on my Vespa before the rain came. I was heading safely to a roof over my head while these singing people will soon be heading back under the bridge.

Sunday, 29 January 2012


There is a new kid on the block, well not so new if you see their toys. Scoots.mobi is a Vespa, LML and Lambretta scooter shop right here in Fourways. They specialize in the real retro and go for the Mod look. They sell, restore and repair the ever so popular two stroke scooters. The partners of Scoots, Bruce and Shaun, invited the Posers Scooter Club, that is us, to join the Aces and Vesparados Scooter Clubs for breakfast at Sofia in Greenside and then ride with them to a vintage car show in Melrose.

Eleven scooters left Scoots for Greenside along a windy route and arriving at Sofia we joined twelve other Vespas and Lambrettas already there waiting for us. After the greetings and introductions out of the way we sat down for a simple breakfast consisting of bacon, eggs, chips, toast and coffee for only costing R25. Then ten vintage Vespas, five modern Vespas, five vintage Lambrettas, two LMLs and a lone Big Boy set off for Melrose to check out the vintage cars and we sure made an entrance with heads turning as our motley group entered.

After the hard work of scootering around Magda easily convinced our eleven scooters to grab a pint at Melrose Arch. The Posers sure made many new friends today and we were thankful for the Aces and Vesparados for allowing us to join them on the ride. For more photos see my Facebook album Aces, Posers and Vesparados.

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Fresh Garden Salad

The tomatoes that are growing in my garden looked so delicious that I went, fetch a container from the kitchen and started harvesting fresh tomatoes, stuffing my face as I went along. My container soon overflowed and there are still lots of fruit waiting to be picked. I better leave that for another day.

Seeing all that yummy tomatoes gave me an idea of what to prepare for supper tonight, a big bowl of fresh salad. So when I was out doing my shopping for dog food, I bought some feta with herbs to go with the salad. So supper tonight was a healthy simple meal of fresh garden salad made from fresh lettuce, also from my vegetable garden, tomatoes and feta cheese with herbs, sprinkled with Cabernet Sauvignon Balsamic Vinegar. Ahh the simple things in life.

Friday, 27 January 2012

Throbbing Strawberry

The core of the Poser Scooter Club went out for a celebratory dinner at the Throbbing Strawberry in Douglasdale. Well I can see why Paulo chose this place as it was filled with eye candy. Anyway that wasn't the reason why we went out on the town; the reason was that Magda got accepted to study B.Tech Pharmaceutical Sciences. And that was all the reason us Posers need to hit the town on our Vespas.

We had a riot at the Throbbing Strawberry and even met Christina, the hostess at the restaurant. Four hours later we stumbled out of the Strawberry and walked across the parking lot to the new dive called Hogshead to see what the fuss was all about. Lots of mid twenties crowd, noisy and plenty of older music mixed with the new. Paulo was happy to stay there all night but Martin and Magda wanted to get back home for some Googling. While me, well after a long hard day at work, I welcomed the just chilling part but bed too was calling.

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Dainfern Cougars

After work I headed towards Dainfern Valley Shopping Centre to meet a friend at the Piatto Restaurant. Now this friend is about to start her second year Animal Behaviorist studies and is interested in making me and my four dogs part of her practical. So we met to discuss it over coffee.

On arriving, I did my normal thing, I checked in on Foursquare and was astounded to see a tip left by another friend under the restaurant's name to watch out for the cougars. Now looking carefully around me, I didn't see any cougars. Although I don't even know how I would recognize one until it's too late. Maybe Piatto is Cougar Central because it is surrounded by upper class housing estates like Dainfern, Dainfern Ridge and Dainfern Valley which must have many housewives alone while the husbands are off to work. For those who don't know what a cougar is, they are the sugar mommies of today, older women who prey on younger men who are young enough to be their sons.

This tip should serve the restaurants in Johannesburg a wake up lesson. You need to take control of what is been said about your establishment on social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare. My friends and I regularly check in on Foursquare and read or leave tips about the service or food. For example the Posers Scooter Club is having dinner at a restaurant in Douglasdale tomorrow and reading up what people are saying about the restaurant, most gave good advice on the best food to order but one writes "The manageresses are really horrible. But the people are nice." Oh dear, let's hope that we get good service tomorrow.

Okay I sidetracked a little, back to the cougars, maybe we were at Piatto at the wrong time because I didn't see any and the meeting discussing the potential collaboration in improving my pack's wellbeing went well.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Dinner at Paulo’s

It is important to have friends who enjoy being in your company and you theirs. And the small group of friends that have become the Posers Scooter Club are just that, friends who enjoy being in each other's company. Paulo is one of the Posers and spending the evening with him was great. Chilling, drinking wine and catching up on all the events since we last met while the salmon steaks slowly grilled on the braai. Priceless!

It is slogging away at work then finishing the day off with good friends is what life is all about. Thanks Paulo and thanks to the Posers Scooter Club for being that dynamic group that you are.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

African Sunset

Someone once said that it is impossible to watch a sunset and not dream. The sunsets in Africa viewed from my patio are so beautiful, that sometimes I feel that I am getting a glimpse into heaven. Yeah, now don't get all theoretical on me, it is just the peaceful quietness away from all the busyness of life and then God paints this stunning sunset as he joins me on the patio.

This year has just started and I am already starting to feel the rush of so many things still to be done, that I forget to stop and breathe. Stop and admire all what is around me. With the uncertainly at work, I don't find time to have a break and appreciate the good things. What I look forward to is coming home and sitting on my patio with my dogs, enjoying God's canvas unfold before me.

Monday, 23 January 2012

Bellowing Dragon

The dragon has sure roared as rain is continuing to fall hard all over Johannesburg this afternoon. Last night being the start of the Year of the Dragon in traditional Chinese culture. The Chinese dragon does not breathe out fire like depicted in many movies and books but is a water dragon which brings the rain. Well somehow they had explain to the children the sound of thunder when the thunderstorm clouds loomed large and threatening.

The sun tried a last ditch attempt to let us know that he did his best but the water dragon won this battle so we got this half sunset half rain evening followed by a thunderstorm as the dragon bellowed a victory roar in the clouds but try as he might tomorrow the sun will be back. He may have won this skirmish but the victory is ours. So my Vespa will have to wait for another day.

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Enter the Year of the Dragon

Here be Dragons. Not just any dragons, but the Yang Water Dragon. The Joburg Photowalkers and the Poser Scooter Club all trekked north to the Buddhist's Nan Hua Temple outside Bronkhorstspruit to celebrate with thousands of others the start of the Year of the Dragon in traditional Chinese style. The Water Dragon only occurs once every 60 years so you can imagine how big the event at the Nan Hua temple was.

Matthew and I got here early and went straight to the main temple for some early photographs before it got too crowded. While standing at the large doors, I did not go in because I knew from a previous visit that I could not take photos inside the temple and that it was disrespectable to take photos of the deity but the monk saw me standing outside looking in, insisted I go in. What a monk who does not understand the rules, so I explained to the monk about my camera, he answered, "Today special day, you go take photo" Now I am not one to be given a invite like that twice started taking my shoes off, and again the monk intervened and said "Special day, leave shoe on, we clean after". Okay,now that doesn't happen every day, so I went into the main temple and took photos inside and of the lighting of the candles ceremony all with the blessings of the monks. By that time the temple started getting full so Matthew and I proceeded outside to find the Joburg Photowalkers and the Posers Scooter Club.

It was even more packed outside with more arriving by the minute. After finding most of my friends, Matthew and I went and got some food to eat and did not have long to wait for the fireworks to start, followed by the Dragon Dance and Lion Dances. Towards the end of the dance ceremony I had a chat to the new incoming Chinese ambassador and with who I think was his wife. The performers were from the South African Taiwanese Hakka Association, so trying not to spark an international incident I asked how does the ambassador feel about all the Taiwanese performers with no mainland representatives. He answered very diplomatically that he ambassador for all Chinese including Taiwanese. I was tempted to join the ambassador, Mosiuoa Lekota, the president of the Congress of the People, and other political and cultural delegates who I did not recognise, for tea but thought it best not push my luck. It was an enjoyable day and I have posted photos on my Facebook album, Enter the Dragon. With over 800 photos to choose from, it was hard to select something that would envelope the whole day but this photo of Lucy's string dragon caught my eye. Have an awesome Year of the Dragon.

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Two Speeds

Saturday has been a rest day, sometimes you just need to take a nap and get over it. Okay I did a bit of cleaning around the house like putting my clothes in the washing machine and setting the program, mopped the floors and when the load of washing was finished I hung the clean clothes for the coming week up. Then it was feet up and relax. Here is Matthew showing how it is done. Plop on the couch, feet up, telly on and Skye cuddled up. What more can he ask for. Oh, I am coming with that cool drink.

Oh yes don't forget I did a bit of exercise late this afternoon by taking the dogs for a long walk at Delta Park for two hours. It is good for the dogs to get a bit of socializing with other dogs and the nice thing was that Maxy, my fast Italian Greyhound got some good running in against a Whippet which was awesome to watch as the Whippet was just that much faster than Maxy. Now for Skye to hurry up and grow. Greyhounds, Italian Greyhounds and Whippets have two speeds, flat out and fast asleep.

Friday, 20 January 2012

A Whippet called Skye

Wow, I am sure dedicating quite a few posts to my dogs lately. Well after the holidays I am heads down at work and don't get much time to have a break or even think about a photograph a day. Luckily this is my weekend with Matthew, so I left early from work and headed for the East Rand to pick him up. Driving east gave my my time to rest from all the reporting and coding in the week. Ahh, the fresh smell of the weekend with Friday being the anti-Monday.

Arriving back at my cottage in Treesbank, Matthew was surprised how big Skye has grown in two weeks. After bringing his stuff inside and greeting Maxy the pack leader first, Matthew picked up Skye and plonked himself on the couch. The two of them watched a bit of TV together then later went outside to play in the garden with all the dogs. Today's photo is of Skye sitting on Matthew’s lap while he is playing on the computer. Now as I write this blog, both Matthew and Skye are having a catnap on the couch. It seems Matthew and Skye are becoming what Matthew and Maxy used to be when both were very young, inseparable.

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Who loves you more?

Every morning, except weekends of course when I leave for work my three Italian Greyhounds and one Whippet say goodbye and then watch me disappear into the distance. They look so sad when I leave but I can I return they bounce around celebrating that I have returned. Even when I return on my Vespa, I see them standing on the patio, looking out and trying to see if it is me buzzing down the road.

Leaving this morning and seeing the look on their faces, I could not help but take a photo and share it with you. They are from left to right Skye, a 8 week old Whippet; Maxy, a 5 year old Italian Greyhound is watching carefully if I am going to leave the gate open; Jade the saddest looking Italian Greyhound  is just over a year  and Patch, another Italian Greyhound which I believe is 13 years old.

This reminds me of a joke...
How do you tell who loves you more, your wife or your dog?
You put both of them in the boot/trunk of your car and wait for a few hours. Then when you open up to set them free, see who is happier to see you, your wife or your dog.

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Italian Greyhounds and a Whippet

Yesterday Erika asked if I could photograph my latest addition, Skye a Whippet puppy together with my three Italian Greyhounds. Well this is my first attempt. First of all I had the wrong lens on and secondly trying to keep four sight hounds still in one place was near impossible. Remembering that Erika suggested that I put a cookie on the camera worked like a charm, well I didn't use a cookie but their favourite treat, Wests Beeno Rollies. Now next time I have to get them sitting together out of their basket and with the correct lens on. In the meanwhile this photo will have to do.

Skye can now get up and down my steep stairs with ease. It is a sight, seeing him jump down a stair at a time with the weight of his rear nearly tipping him head over heels every jump. Climbing back up is a mission but he tackles it now with as much gusto as an mountaineer climbing Kilimanjaro has. Skye loves to play and one of his favourite targets is Maxy's wagging tail, much to his irritation. Maxy sometimes joins Skye in typical greyhound play but tends to get a little rough with Skye who then darts to cover. Jade accepts Skye but play is not her forte, she is more a love and cuddle type of dog. Patch allows Skye cuddle up to him at night whereas Maxy would move away.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Mexicano Nachos

I belong to this amazing home group were we have become a family, supporting and building each other up. This year the Home Circle started off as usual with an incredible dinner, but this time we had this amazing nachos dish made by Sandy and then we finished the Mexican off with a wonderful homemade ice-cream and fruit salad. It was a great start to the evening and we finished it off with a discussion on the upcoming year. I think our home group is going to be high on BBC’s prayer list as we opted to stay dynamic family group. Anyway friends are the family you choose.

Lebogang, the daughter of Mildred and Steven who have been coming to our Home Circle for over a year now, will soon be the big ONE. Well only in March that is. Here is a photo of Mildred with baby Lebo. Steven who was working when we were enjoying a good dinner at Home Circle will be proud when he sees this photo.

Monday, 16 January 2012

Monday Skye

Wake me up when Monday is over. Friday was not such a great day at work either but it was an awesome weekend in between. And then Monday had to happen. I decided to test leaving Skye for the whole day with the other dogs. So I gave him a big breakfast then set off for work and only after arriving did I realise I left the office keys at home. Rather than heading back home to fetch them, I decided to wait for the next person to arrive for work, not knowing that I would be waiting for two hours. I could have made it home and back in that time.

Anyway, once opening the office, we were hit by this wall of stench. Someone forgot to take the rubbish out on Friday and did it hum. Promise not me.

Just before lunch time I decided to phone to see how Skye was coping and was told by the neighbour that Skye climbed down the stairs and didn't know how to get back up. So I rushed back home only to find Skye back upstairs wagging his tail. He must have had a busy day because he is now past out on the couch. A note of concern is that I noticed his right ear lying the wrong way. I could not find anything wrong with his ear, I hope it is alright.

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Vegetable soup

With her last day in hospital, the doctors have one more blood test result still outstanding, and then Theresa is out of hospital but only as sort of a day patient. I posted on Friday that Saturday would be her last day, but it looks like Dr House can change his mind.

I visited Theresa at lunch time and while there her lunch arrived so she was tempted to try the soup of the day. She managed to get a few spoons down and found out that it was vegetable soup. As usual I was my impatient self and wanted to shovel the soup down but good things come to those who wait and it seems for those who eat soup at 3 spoons per hour. Theresa has had cortisone which has numbed the reflex muscles but by the third spoon, Theresa said she could feel her throat muscles trying to react and stop the soup passing. And they still can't find the cause.

Anyway tomorrow Theresa will be staying in Pretoria with my brother because this week's appointment is with Dr House 2 who is based in Pretoria. The following week it is back in Johannesburg so we will see what happens then. In the meanwhile here is another spoon, open wide.

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Alexandra Township

Joburg Photowalkers' first photowalk for the year was into the township of Alexandra because this year Alexandra celebrates their 100th year in existence. Alexandra is that dark secret of Sandton where most of us keep well clear from because of memories of their violent past have stayed with us. Now The Alexandra Heritage Centre is trying to change that perception and they gladly lead the Joburg Photowalkers on a photowalk in their township visiting a large number of heritage sites.

Alexandra started off as a farm belonging to a German settler and named the farm after his wife Alexandra. It was sold to be developed as a township of Johannesburg in 1905 but no-one wanted to live there because it was too far to walk to the gold fields. So in 1912, the stands were offered to non-whites. It became one of the few places in South Africa where blacks could own land in as urban area. Soon Alexandra grew into a thriving but over crowded community. Like most non-white townships in South Africa it was not forgotten by the violence of Apartheid era and the so called Six Days War, is remembered by red painted sidewalks where the youth and police violently clashed in 1986.

Alexandra is now like the forgotten suburb of Johannesburg as most of the struggle and heritage attention is put on Soweto. Like Soweto, here too did the Joburg Photowalkers find the people of Alexandra warm, friendly and inviting. Today I even stopped at an unveiling of a tombstone party and was welcomed in, had food and danced to a brass marching band. I wonder when looking at this man sitting outside the party tent if facial lines and wrinkles could talk, that it would tell a story of Alexandra so fascinating that we would sit for hours just listening. At first glance Alexandra is not a pretty place as you tend to drive quickly past but if you just open your eyes, you will see the vibrant township life that is just below the surface. Will the ugly duckling shake loose from its shackles and become a tourist swan in Johannesburg now that it is turning 100 years old?

Friday, 13 January 2012

Dr House Fails

Well Dr House, not his real name, gave up today after exhausting the entire medical journal of all known illnesses, diseases and syndromes. Or maybe with all the people praying for Theresa, that she has been miraculously healed because when they went in with the endoscope all they found was bruising. Not even a sign of the possible hernia, nothing. Dr House was at a loss for words.

Theresa is so bruised that she still can't eat other than slowing sipping on jelly and health shakes. Not sure if she can eat again, Theresa is to be discharged tomorrow and Dr House has made another appointment for her with another specialist in Pretoria next week. Dr House, it seems has past her on to another Dr House, let's call him Dr House 2, as don't we all like sequels.

With what's happening with Theresa, it is all uncertain, just like Johannesburg's weather. I mean I have all about forgotten about the highveld summer thunderstorm and in the last few days it has struck with awesome feistiness. This afternoon it didn't just rain, it hailed. With me even being not certain about my job, this is certainly uncertain times.

Thursday, 12 January 2012


Dr House, not his real name, and his team still hasn't found what is causing my sister not to be able to eat. The specialists and doctors can see all the swelling in the throat walls but nothing indicating what is causing it. With another battery of tests completed today and nothing to show for it, just another likely cause to cross off the list of possibles. They even x-rayed her hands, now I am not sure how her hands are linked to her throat, go figure.

Oh, one good thing was that Theresa managed to eat some soup today without gagging. It is the first bit of food pass her throat in over three weeks. But I suppose it isn't funny but I had to laugh when Theresa went on to tell me that after lunch when examined by the ENT (Ear Nose and Throat) specialist she threw the soup all up. Luckily it was on the floor and not on the ENT's lap. The ENT was surprised that even with local anesthetic Theresa's gag reflexes still managed to work so well.

What is a bit concerning is that in the scans they can see possible evidence of a slight hernia near the celiac plexus. Tomorrow they are going in with an endoscope to check the back of the throat, the throat muscles and down to the stomach, stopping to see if it is a hernia that is showing on the CAT scans. If it is then they may have to operate. Along the way biopsies will be taken and tested.

So even though all the wise men are still in the dark, Theresa is still managing to smile and is praying for a break through soon.

Wednesday, 11 January 2012


If you fall I will catch you, time after time. With Theresa my sister lying in hospital and all the tests and prodding still ongoing it has been hard for her family. Hans (her husband), Danielle (her daughter shown above) and Jaen-Jurie (her son) are all in town supporting Theresa. The days are long and the end is not in sight.

As I am writing this blog post, Dr House still hasn't found the cause yet of my sister's problems so it looks like it is going to take a bit longer than expected. But we all know that Dr House always gets it right in the end and saves the day. "Idiopathic, from the Latin meaning we're idiots cause we can't figure out what's causing it." - Dr House.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Linksfield Hospital

It is day two of the working year and my sister, Theresa was driven up by her husband Hans and their two kids from Nelspruit to see the specialists at Linksfield Hospital after being hospitalised because she could not eat. See my earlier post Skinny Malinky for more information.

After work I went round to visit her and also to lead her family to where I stay so they could crash for the night. Now I am not easily impressed but Linksfield Hospital sure impressed me with their efficiency of how they treated and dealt with Theresa and her family. By the time I had got to Ward C at Linksfield, she had already gone through a barrage of exploratory tests and investigative scans with the specialist doctor at every test and scan viewing the results as they came available. I should call him "House" from the TV series about an eccentric investigative doctor called House. The preliminary results show that there may be a growth in her throat but a closer look is needed.

Please pray for my sister and her family, the specialists, the doctors and all the other medical staff involved.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Can I sue Ballito?

I have just come back from a wonderful holiday at Ballito but three things really irked me down there and that was...

1. The town of Ballito running out of water over the Christmas holidays, their busiest season due to bad planning. The holiday seaside town taps ran dry for a week at their most busiest. There were even reports of holiday makers packing up and cancelling their accommodation.

2. The amount of chicken bones and beer bottles all over the beach. I was so concerned for my dogs as it was a handful restraining them. Who is going to pay for the vet bills if a bone does them any harm? And the broken glass, heaven forbid. I can vouch that it was one of the worst beaches I've ever been too.

3. The potholes. Yes the potholes, one in particular cost me a new tyre, thank you very much. Does anyone actually repair the roads in Ballito. I mean some of the seafront properties cost in the region of R10 million rand. How much rates do all those multi-millionaires pay for their holiday homes? Can some of that money go into fixing the infrastructure instead of building more malls.

Other than my three bug bears, I had a wonderful time only because I spent most of it north of Ballito at pristine beaches that was safe for my dogs and me.

As you must notice from my tone that I am back at work, day one and in need of a holiday to recover from my holiday and a new tyre.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Mijbil vs Skye

Ah look, there is a good looking man with a pretty puppy. They look so cute. As my holidays draw to a end, today is wash day and bonding with Skye day so after putting a load of washing on, Matthew, four dogs and I joined a Italian Greyhound Walk at Golden Harvest. Thankfully there were four other Whippets on the walk although fully grown. Matthew had to carry Skye most of the way because his little legs are not fully up to strength but everyone's attention was on Maxy as he was being his dominant self and putting the testosterone filled males in their place.

I had wanted to name the little feller Mijbil after my very first dog as a child. I got Mij the day after the movie Ring of Bright Water was shown on South African television in 1979. The movie and book are based on the autobiography of Gavin Maxwell who had a pet otter, Mij on the Sandaig Islands near Gleann Eilg. I balled my eyes out when Mij was killed and the next day I got a puppy. My dog Mij was the love of my life and I was heart broken when we had to part when my dad got a job in the Kruger National Park and no pets were allowed. Anyway I gave my son Matthew the choice to name my new dog and he named him Skye. But one day another dog will carry the name Mijbil. Interesting the Sandaig Islands is right next door to the misty Isle of Skye.

Here is a poem by Kathleen Raine who was in love with Gavin Maxwell and from which the title of the book and subsequent movie was taken.

The Marriage of Psyche

He has married me with a ring, a ring of bright water
Whose ripples travel from the heart of the sea,
He has married me with a ring of light, the glitter
Broadcast on the swift river.
He has married me with the sun's circle
Too dazzling to see, traced in summer sky.
He has crowned me with the wreath of white cloud
That gathers on the snowy summit of the mountain,
Ringed me round with the world-circling wind,
Bound me to the whirlwind's centre.
He has married me with the orbit of the moon
And with the boundless circle of the stars
With the orbits that measure years, months, days, and nights,
Set the tides flowing,
Command the winds to travel or be at rest.

At the ring's centre
Spirit or angel troubling the still pool,
Causality not in nature,
Finger's touch that summons at a point, a moment
Stars and planets, life and light
Or gathers cloud about an apex of cold,
Transcendent touch of love summons my world to being.

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Chelle and Skye

As some of you might know that I always wanted a Greyhound, Whippet and an Italian Greyhound. Why? Well because I am tired of people calling my beautiful Italians something they not and by having all three I can educate them the difference. So when I was offered a pedigree Whippet puppy I didn't have to think for long, now I have one dog too many but who cares as I am on the road to having all three of the greyhound breeds. When I get a bigger place, someday, I then aim for an Azawakh (a type African sighthound), Borzoi (Russian Greyhound), Galgo Español (Spanish Greyhound), Magyar agar (Hungarian Greyhound), Saluki (Persian Greyhound) and a Sloughi (another type of African sighthound). So what gives you a clue that I like greyhounds?

Wake me up, I am dreaming. I started the day early at 5am with another wonderful walk at Christmas Bay then went back to Paws for Thoughts to pack for the trek home. When all ready, Matthew and I went to pick up the new member of my family, Skye. He is a beautiful pedigree Whippet puppy. It was a long drive back to Johannesburg with frequent stops for the dogs. I stopped in Pietermaritzburg to see my friend Robbie and bumped into his sister in-law Fiona and her daughter Michelle. Here is Michelle holding Skye. About midway between Harrismith and Villiers, I was starting to fall asleep. Maybe it was from my early start of the day but thankfully we made it back home safely.

Friday, 6 January 2012

Wave House

The drizzle turned to heavy rain last night but by that time we had finished our braai on the patio and were safely tucked in bed. By morning it was all blue skies so we headed down to the beach before it got too hot for the dogs. We parked at Sheffield Beach and explored the low tide pools.

After about two hours, Matthew wanted to go boogie boarding so we took the dogs back to Paws for Thought and then headed to Durban for a safe children's beach. That is one the nice things about Paws for Thoughts, you can leave your dogs in safely while you step out for a while. Matthew and I ended up at Addington Beach and spend most of the day there just in front of the uShaka Marine World. Matthew had a wonderful time on his boogie board while I sat and watched from the shade of the beach umbrella.

On the way back home we stopped at Gateway Shopping Centre to fix my internet problem and while there we discovered the Wave House and Matthew could not resist the Flowrider. It was a perfect end to his day. But not for me, somehow I misplaced my parking voucher and was forced by Gateway to pay for the full day even though I was there for less than 3 hours and could prove it. Bad Gateway, bad. It will make me think twice before going to that mall again although Matthew loves the Wave House.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Christmas Bay

It is much cooler than yesterday's humid blast with soft drizzle falling. A perfect day for the beach. So at 5 am I headed for Salmon Bay, the most southern of Ballito’s beaches and walked north with my Italian Greyhounds in the early morning sun. We have been told that the beaches have been cleaned after the New Year long weekend but there was broken glass, beer bottles, chicken and chop bones everywhere. It was a nightmare for me trying my three away from the bones. Two hours was enough for me and headed back to Paws for Thought for breakfast.

Matthew and I decided to find a better beach to walk the dogs. So we went north away from the big city and found Christmas Bay, a perfect beach to walk the dogs and for Matthew to snorkel the tidal rock pools. It was a perfect day with no crowds and no mess. Just Matthew, three Italian Greyhounds and I on a beach all by ourselves with only bottle nose dolphins to share it with us as they frocked in the back line.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Paws for Thought

It was a long hot drive down from the Lowveld to Ballito with a number of stops along the way for my Italian Greyhounds. But once here it was walking into luxury for dogs. We have booked into the self-catering cottages at Paws for Thoughts and were pleasantly surprised to found it so much better than what the website showed. We are tried and bushed after the drive and it is very humid here so I will post more about Paws for Thoughts later but here is a photo of the flower in our room and that two Rottweilers, Moya and Max are on patrol while Matthew, Patch, Maxy, Jade and I sleep safely tonight, Good Night.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Skinny Malinky

Theresa, my sister, has a health problem that has crept in recently. She hasn't been able to eat solid food for over a week now. And this has resulted in the weight melting off her body. The doctors diagnosed Sjogren Syndrome, it is when the immune system starts to attack the salivary glands, tear ducts, and mucous membranes, but now she can't swallow at all so she sits all day sipping liquids battling to get it down. She is waiting for the specialist in Johannesburg to come back from his Christmas holidays so she can undergo an investigatory operation to find the cause.

I spent the last few days with her, although we had fun, I can see that she is suffering and she is getting thinner and thinner and soon there will be not much left of skinnymalinks. Let's pray that the specialist can see Theresa soon. be able to correctly diagnose her problem and that she can get better soon.

Monday, 2 January 2012

Slowveld Swim

"I don't know what we did, no no no, I don't remember, no no no" said Robyn when I asked her about today. Day Two Twenty Twelve started as any other day, except we weren't in Kansas anymore but in the Slowveld.
"Why the Slowveld" asked Robyn, well the area we in is technically called the Lowveld but time slows down here hence it is also known as the Slowveld. And we can do slow very well when on holiday. Today was earmarked for swimming in the pool, drinking litres of ice cold cool drink, eating hotdogs and ice-cream. So that is what we did, slowly. We just relaxed by the pool all day and finished the evening with prego rolls and more ice-cream.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Fourteen, Thirteen, Twelve and Eleven

Before I say anything, I want to wish all my readers a happy New Year and may 2012 be so much better than the previous, oh I know it will be.

The first day of 2012 fell on a Sunday and Matthew and I went up to a small disused railway sliding called Hendriksdal which in the middle of a forest plantation to visit my folks for a Sunday roast. Oh course my three Italian Greyhounds were dragged along, not that they minded.

After a huge lunch, I took some photos of all my mom's grandchildren, Danielle (fourteen), Matthew (thirteen), Jean (twelve) and Robyn (eleven). Then all of us went on this long walk which must have been over 5km long into the forest with three Italian Greyhounds and two Dachshunds. We enjoyed ourselves getting lost in the forest. With the wind blowing through the trees and the dogs bouncing ahead, the cousins had fun being together.

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