Sunday, 30 November 2014

Cat on the News

Hey there Minky, I wanted to read that newspaper. Oh well our cat thinks the Sunday paper filled with bad news belongs to her. So how do I gently persuade her that literary being on the news for all the wrong reasons is not cool? Sure could use a little good news today.

One of my favourite songs of the 80s was by Anne Murray still rings true today 30 years later as the count down towards the remembrance of the birth of the Messiah in this world over 2000 years ago. I could change her words only so slightly and I would still hear the cries of billions of people, "Sure could use a little good news today".

I rolled out this morning the kids had the morning news show on
Bryant Gumbel was talking about the fighting in Lebanon
Some senator was squawking about the bad economy
It's gonna get worse you see, we need a change in policy

There's a local paper rolled up in a rubber band
One more sad story's one more than I can stand
Just once how I'd like to see the headline say
"Not much to print today, can't find nothing bad to say", because

Nobody robbed a liquor store on the lower part of town
Nobody OD'ed, nobody burned a single building down
Nobody fired a shot in anger, nobody had to die in vain
We sure could use a little good news today

I'll come home this evening, I'll bet that the news will be the same
Somebody takes a hostage, somebody steals a plane
How I wanna hear the anchor man talk about a county fair
And how we cleaned up the air, how everybody learned to care

Whoa, tell me

Nobody was assassinated in the whole Third World today
And in the streets of Ireland, all the children had to do was play
And everybody loves everybody in the good old USA
We sure could use a little good news today

Nobody robbed a liquor store on the lower part of town
Nobody OD'ed, nobody burned a single building down
Nobody fired a shot in anger, nobody had to die in vain
We sure could use a little good news today

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Geek Fest

It is that time of year again, the Geek Fest. This year it is held just down the road from us, so it was a perfect opportunity to load Matthew, Maxy, and Jade onto the Vespa and head down to the place where anything and everyone geeky meet.

What a contrast, last year it was very cold and this year very hot. The poor cosplayers must have been sweating in their costumes. Luckily no one came dressed as a wookiee although a few Darth Vaders were melting away in their all black attire. Here is Gary, his son Brendon, Matthew, Maxy, and Jade enjoying the festivities.

Friday, 28 November 2014

Let Sleeping Cats Lie?

It was an early start for Matthew this morning as I am taking him to work for the day. Due to my dawdling start he went back to lie down on the bed to wait for me to decide when was the best time to leave. And I found him like this.

Matthew and Minky were cuddled up together having a cat nap. So do I let the sleeping cats lie or do I wake them up? Uhmmmm.

Thursday, 27 November 2014

It's Party Time

It’s my party, and I’ll cry if I want to. Yes it is time for the second Christmas party of the year to begin and I can let my hair down. Well, okay forget the hair part as I cry.

My work colleagues met at the Barnyard for an afternoon of good times and celebration at the end of a good year. You can see in the above photograph Mr Grumpy is enjoying the company of Noma and Mpho. Christmas parties, end year office revelry, bah humbug!

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Ngwao Boswa

So here is the boss man, Rob, sporting an Ngwao Boss cap. From what I have been told that Ngwao Boswa is Setswana word for Heritage and Ngwao Boss is a brand that draws inspiration from Setswana heritage. So wear the Ngwao Boss proudly!

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

To Bury a Hedgehog

It is sad to report that this morning while walking I discovered that a Southern African Hedgehog had electrocuted himself on our electric fence surrounding our home. This gruesome discovery has hit us hard because we love the wild country living but being in South Africa home security has to be a priority.

I found it strange that it got itself killed as there are places where it could get under the fence harmlessly but somehow chose a low area. I just hope that it wasn’t the relentless rain, an owl, or even one of our cats which could have confused the poor thing last night.

I have buried some pets such as cats and dogs in my lifetime and even flushed a few goldfish but I must say that this is a first time and I hope the last that I get to bury a hedgehog.So as we lay this poor little creature down to sleep, Matthew, still half asleep and I stood over the tiny grave we dug in the breaking light of the new day.

Monday, 24 November 2014

Social Media Law, Bacon, and Baby Rhinos

A seven o’ clock breakfast in Sandton was not cool. Firstly it is way too early for me to start fighting traffic just for a breakfast seminar. Secondly no bacon. Yes no breakfast should be ever called a breakfast if bacon is not involved, seriously people, this is not cool.

I enjoyed the seminar talk on Managing Risk and Compliance of Social Media but there was others who have already been on many of these talks such as Mr X (name withheld as speaker is a lawyer specialising in Social Media) and in his opinion comparing to other talks on the subject that he has been on, this one he rated as mediocre, poor choice of venue for so early on a Monday morning, and wait for it, with a poor attempt of a breakfast. You see bacon plays an important part of anyone’s morning, as they normally are.

Bottom line I didn’t have much to compare with, I enjoyed the talk and found it informative but all I could rate it with was in terms of the breakfast they served and yes this one was mediocre. Not worth fighting the traffic to Sandton for. Luckily for me I was on my Vespa which allowed me to whisk through the gridlock surrounding Sandton during rush hour as one does on a Vespa.

After the talk, I had to walk across to Sandton Mall to buy a new belt as mine conveniently broke yesterday and now I found myself beltless. Maybe it was this that caused me to crave for some bacon. The shops were all geared towards the coming Christmas but something caught my eye. “Have you seen my mother?” cried a baby rhino on a poster. Under the Stop Rhino Poaching poster was these hand painted porcelain baby rhinos. And there you have it, the ahhh cute moment of my day.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Rain, Loadshedding, and Walks

The heavens opened up this morning which left us wondering when would this torrential rain would come to an end. While the rain just continued, we started looking out for any tell tell signs of animals collecting in pairs or some bearded man building a large boat.

Somehow the rain did come to an end, the skies turned blue and the sun started drying up the saturated land. But Eishkom, our only electricity producer thought it a perfect time to continue with load shedding. To make the best of a bad situation we decided that a walk will do us good.

So walk we did along this dirt road and into the country side. Here is Lynda and Matthew with Patch, Maxy, Podge, and Jade, during our walk. Toto this aren’t no yellow brick road. Happily we can report back that we found no animals walking two by two, nor any crazy man building an ark, nor the Emerald Palace but I nice walk was had by all.

Saturday, 22 November 2014

A Cat in a Pear Tree

It looks like Eskom or should I say Eiskom is on an Electricity Load Shedding program to counter their bad planning and inefficiency. While they get bonuses for what nobody knows, we consumers have to pay through our noses for electricity and then they simply load shed because they can’t supply.

So what do you do when there is no electricity for about four hours every day? Well we spent the time relaxing. In our new garden we found a number of fruit trees from apricot to pear trees, and uhmmm these apricots taste awesome. Minky our cat also enjoys the fruit trees, well not the fruit or the nesting birds dive bombing her but the simple act of monkeying about in the branches.

Friday, 21 November 2014

Ikhwezi Primary

The print side of eKayaMedia was busy with a deadline that require hands to help Ikhwezi Primary School, one of our Corporate Social Investment programs. As they say more hands make light work, and with the digital team getting stuck in, soon we had the deadline licked. Here you can see Sandra, Wayne, Mpho, Pabi, Noma, myself, and Ilana striving for excellence.
Even though we managed to complete the CSI project in record time, Eskom's bad planning caught us out with electricity load shedding, go figure.

Thursday, 20 November 2014

The Traffic was this Bad

Although it is just a hop onto the Vespa and an easy buzz into work, most don’t have the luxury of a Vespa and have to suffer the Johannesburg traffic woes. This morning was even worse that Lynda could kill if it was in her nature. Sadly Johannesburg has this effect on others and road rage over spills, taxis become a law unto themselves, while normal citizens suffer.

Here is Lynda showing me how bad the traffic was today and all I could respond was Date Night, put your feet up let me spoil you.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Inspired Daisy

After over indulging on good food and wine last night. I slept in a bad position which put my damaged knee under pressure. My knee problem started way back when I spent 2 years in the army under the Conscription draft. I was in the mounted light infantry using horses to patrol. My knees took a pounding due to the long hours in the saddle and to the consistence kicking and biting of the horses while riding in formation. After stepping down after a long patrol, my knees used to collapse until the knees remembered to carry me.

This morning I could hardly walk so I got back in the saddle of my Vespa, and rode to work. Imagine seen a big man on a bright coloured Vespa riding in the traffic with crutches. Under excruciating pain, Ella gave me some Cataflam and within an half an hour I was right as rain.

Talking about rain, this afternoon we had a small thunder storm and after the rain, I browsed through the gardens looking for inspiration. It was here that I spotted the daisies’ covered in water droplets.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Christmas Dinner

With the year ending and Christmas just 5 weeks away, our Home Circle group held their Christmas dinner at Andy and Sandy’s home.

As always an awesome spread was laid out and it was a grand end to the year. The starters were followed by roast turkey, lamb, potatoes, and vegetables as the main course. And hot on its heels was dessert.

Monday, 17 November 2014

Go Blonde or Go Home

They say that blondes have all the fun, is simply a matter of opinion but according to Rod Steward they do. It has nothing to do with having fun but science, plain and simply science tells us it is all up to the climatic conditions. Cold weather switches on the gene responsible for blondes. So why the obsession about blondes?

Before I continue, do I say blond or blonde? Well from what I have been taught since I was a young pup, is that both are correct in terms of the fair hair but the difference is in the gender. Blond is the masculine form of the feminine blonde. So I am a strawberry blond and she is a blonde even though I prefer a red head.

Anyway Pontsho turned up to work this morning with blonde hair, not natural of course but bottle blonde, a shock to the system I must say. Pontsho was hiding her hair under a doek as she is now having second thoughts. Well it is go blonde or go home as they say it.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Vashta Nerada – Count the Shadows

There are things that live in the shadows. When I was a young boy I used to always check under the bed before switching off the lights then run from the light switch and leap onto the bed from a distance. I was afraid of what was under the bed might reach out. "Everyone at some point in their lives has the same dream: You sense someone in the dark. You get out of bed. A hand reaches out from under the bed and grabs your ankle. But what if it's not a dream?"

Fear makes companions of us all. What if their are things living in the shadows and one of the things are the Vashta Nerada, microscopic beings. Although individually they are like specks of dust, not dangerous but when their numbers get out of control they swarm and can devour the flesh straight off your bones in milliseconds.

When swarming they tend to mimic the shadows, your shadow. Count the shadows, if you want to live, count the shadows. And stay out of the shadows. Best of all run. And Scarlet and I ran.

Late in the afternoon, on my Vespa, I counted the shadows.

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Pascal et Geraldine

It is that time of year again, the Canon Roadshow. It is where I get to meet some old friends such as Alan, Craig, Desiree, Mark, and as shown above my Belgium friends, Pascal and his lovely wife Geraldine.

Friday, 14 November 2014

The Tortoise and the Vespa

When the weather is great, I really enjoy taking to the open road on my beautiful red Vespa GTS300 Super. Arriving at work this morning I saw this tortoise slowly trudging along at its own pace and without a care in the world. Thankfully the speed limit here is only 20kph due to the wildlife in the area so this tortoise was easily avoided by the nimble Vespa.

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Farmer Goes Topless

With all the soaking rain that we have had in the last week, I wasn’t surprised to see the farmer next door earnestly preparing his fields. The sun was setting when I arrived back home to find the topless farmer chugging away on top of his red Massey Ferguson 268 tractor. For my non South Africa readers, in Afrikaans we would call a farmer, ‘n boer. Racing against the remaining light, the boer with his broad smile continued ploughing the land while I watched from the side.

In a way it was therapeutical just watching this basic component of our food chain, die boer op sy plaas in Afrika. Ja nee with the sound of the tractor, klap klap klap, my troubles became so distant.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Baby Making Weather

It’s a dreich day, and as a teenager we used to call this type of weather BMW or Baby Making Weather because with the rain set in, you just want to stay in bed. Yes as I lay in bed listening to the pitter patter of the rain onto the roof I wanted to call in a Duvet Day.

Many moons ago I used to work for a corporate company which allowed employers to take a Duvet Day for when they just wanted to go back to sleep and this morning was one of those days. Sadly Bosasa does not recognise Duvet Days so I took my time getting up this morning and heading to the business park in the clouds.

The base level of the clouds is very low today which enshrouded Mogale Business Park in thick clouds. The office park has sort of a bonnie charm to it that reminds me of the highlands. Forget about the pink flamingos or the gorillas in the mist, we have blue cranes strolling through the mist. Now where’s my bed?

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Soaking Rain

So here I am, down with man flu and the weather outside is making me long for my bed but work has to be done. The weather down in Cape Town must have heard me moaning about it and decided to come up to Johannesburg just to let me know that it is missing me. With the rain set in there is not much else to do other than work or sleep and this flu bug that I have is forcing the latter.

Oh look Jane, our office cleaner, just popped into the office from the soaking rain all dressed up in makeshift plastic rain wear. It must be wet outside, zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz back to my pillow.

Monday, 10 November 2014

Virus Gone Airborne

Last week Philip and Sandra from down the passage fell prey to a flu virus. Yesterday afternoon I felt that I too was coming down with something and by evening I was out for the count with some cold or flu bug.

This morning I had either to drag myself to a doctor or to work. So being a man I decided the latter being the wisest course of action for now unless it gets worse. Arriving at work I found out the Ella too came down with something last night. Darn, it looks like this virus has gone airborne and is spreading. After a few hours at work I felt even worse so I dragged myself off to the pharmacy for some self-medication and bed.

So now I am over dosed on Grippon, Coryx, and Linctagon-C, all I need is sleep and my body’s immune system should be capable to take care of this nasty piece of work.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Val and Ken

Ohhh, this was a lovely surprise. Fancy bumping into Val and Ken at BBC. Ken used to be the pastor here at BBC a few years back and is now shepherding a church down in Cape Town. So what’s this issue that Cape Town is the place to retire to? If it wasn’t for all that wind and rain, yes it would be ideal but as the bergies say the mountain will still be there tomorrow. Anyway it was great seeing Val and Ken again back up in Johannesburg even though it is for a visit.

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Jukskei Runs Through

At the bottom of our new place, the Jukskei River runs though. Although the river looks peaceful and tranquil, I wish that it was clean but that is not the case as we are downstream from many poor communities including informal settlements.

So now as we take up our long walks again, the dogs can enjoy the open spaces to run while we appreciate the surrounding scenery and the quietness of it all.

Friday, 7 November 2014

All Aboard the Yizo Yizo Express

Yizo yizo this is it, all aboard the Yizo Yizo Express to escape to the place where we dream of, a place that we will find comfort and safety. That is what a lot of children that find themselves in conflict of the law dream about, a change of scenery from the four high walls and bars that they find themselves behind.

This brightly coloured painting was painted by a young boy who found himself at one of the Bosasa Youth Centres, a place of safety where children who find themselves in conflict with the law are kept. Along with scenes of his childhood, he painted a bus with the destination Polokwane, a large city far to the north of Johannesburg. On the side is painted Yizo Yizo Express, Yizo Yizo means this is it. Yes this is what this young child is dreaming about as he painted this picture. This is it a way back home. All aboard the Yizo Yizo Express.

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Shane and Baby Noa

Shane came a visiting down to the creative side with Azuree and their little baba Noa. Ahhh you can see daddy is glowing while baby is in awe with all our colours in eKayaMedia. Mommy Azuree looked on protectively while daddy Shane proudly introduced us to little Noa. So much to see, so little time daddy.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Wakeup Call

What a difference does a quiet night does to your sleep. No trucks hooting, no warehouse sirens blaring, no construction, and no all-night parties, to break your sleep, just the sounds of country life.

Except in the mornings. The birds are up early tweeting away with abandonment and the one eyed fiery ball of our sun comes peeping over the horizon with his wakeup call. Ahhh the country life, just what the body ordered.

Now to figure a way to get to work past the rush hour traffic of cattle on their way to the pastures.

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Phillip’s New Hair

After I took yesterday off to move all the heavy stuff from our old home to the new, I arrive at work to find Phillip sporting a new look. Gone are the middle and side parties, here is Philip, one of our Brand Co-ordinators, wearing his new short, back and sides, hair style along with a smile. Well that’s how we roll here at eKayaMedia, the Marketing and Branding arm of the Bosasa Group.

Monday, 3 November 2014

Johannesburg Traffic Jam

No doubt many of you my readers have either heard about the terrible rush hour traffic jams in Johannesburg or even have your own horror stories to tell.

Traffic has all gotten worse with the eTolls pushing traffic onto the side roads but that is not all, now we hear that a Eskom coal storage silo has collapse damaging a feeding conveyor system at Majuba power station. With this setback, Eishkom has announced load shedding which means traffic lights will be out. But as things are up here in Jozi, traffic lights have a mind of their own and heaven forbid if it rains as we have the only water phobia traffic lights in the world. And here comes the rain on cue.

So how has your Monday been in this chaos? Well it is day two of our move to our new home and above this is my traffic jam. Far from the normal madding traffic jams, I get stuck behind some Farmer Brown and his livestock.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

View from the Stoep

So today the move begins to our new temporary home. The issues with our previous home has become untenable with the huge influx of low cost rooms being built on the property.

Away with the noise from the surrounding factories, sirens, all night parties, hooting trucks, building construction, and did I say all the drunken revelry, this is our new view from our front stoep or as you say in English veranda. Ahhh finally peace and tranquillity. But serenity comes with a cost, a little extra further to travel from the city although not much further than before.

Saturday, 1 November 2014

Birthday Hive

Matthew’s birthday is only on Wednesday but the end year exams start the following Monday so he decided to invite a few friends over for some online gaming at the Hive in Montecasnio.

Online gaming for the boys was awesome fun with a few teething problems. After wasting an hour of stop starting they were finial switched to LAN where the boys kicked some Zombie butt for the next two hours. Killing Zombies can be hard work and soon the boys worked up an appetite so they ended off at the spur here in Montecasnio. From left to right are Akanakaishe, Rudolf, Matthew, and Justin.

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