Saturday, January 17, 2015

A Peek at my Week

Where I have been?
I got back up here in Natal nearly 2 weeks ago with a granddaughter for a week. We had great fun exploring together and we went to Butterfly World - I love it there and so did Jessica. She fluttered around happily with butterflies on her finger and shoulder. We dipped candles at The Junction on the Midlands Meander and enjoyed archery so much that we came home with a crossbow, called for scones at Piggly Wiggly and visited the Mandela sight with the amazing sculpture. We also spent the day at Ushaka Aquarium which although is irritatingly very commercial, still is home to a really good collection of fish and amphibians and Jess wanted to see the dolphin show so we sat clapping as they frolicked in front of us.
Who have I met.
Staying up here at Vs lodge means that I meet people all the time. They go under the name of 'guests' and most of them are nice normal people but some of them are really just not nice! I have met a variety of 'guests' this week! I have also met the top matriculant in PMB whose proud family chose to celebrate his 7 A's matric pass here. I forecast a great future for him. I also met our resident water monitor on a quiet walk around the dam one afternoon.
What have I bought?
A variety of throws, cushions, candle holders and bits and pieces to try and jolly up the rooms from rustic to romantic on a shoestring budget. Its amazing what a difference that these have made. An all in one black cat suit to hide the damage made by a dozen mince pies and  too much trifle over Christmas. Other than that I have spent most of the month trying not to buy anything and avoiding that four letter word SALE
What I have learned?
I have learned that once you know the facts about dolphins becoming depressed and dying when in captivity read this article from Blue Voice, then you will never truly enjoy a dolphin show again and I applaud Port Elizabeth for not having them in the Oceanarium there despite the loss of revenue. I love dolphins and have swum with wild ones in Australia which was quite magical but they are no different than any other wild mammal and don't belong in zoos - they belong in the wild. I have also learned that I can do a vertical take off when suddenly coming across a water monitor on an afternoon walk and that no matter how nice you are there are some people you just cant please - it's their problem not yours!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Waiting for the storm to pass

I cant believe that this is my 5th year of blogging and although I haven't always reached my goal of four blogs per month, at least I am writing and that is one of the purposes - the idea being that to write well you have to keep at it! Malcolm Gladwell in his book Outliers, says it takes 10 000 hours of practice to achieve mastery in any field so perhaps on my 10 000th blog I will be a master of the blog! OK so not in this lifetime LOL.
I don't have a lifetime left but I do have a whole new year lying before me and yesterday I bought a new 'inner' for my diary and as per usual when I see those blank pages it fills me with both fear and excitement. Fear that I will not fill it with enough work to keep me going financially - everyone who is self employed will understand this - and excitement that those pages are mine to fill - again everyone who is self employed will understand!
I do sense a year of great change ahead - I've been spending more time in the mancave and leave again today, this time Jessica is coming for a short holiday. An exciting holiday is already in the diary as V and I will be visiting Singapore and Thailand in February to see Sean, Nadine and Katherine. Not a place that was ever on my bucket list but I am so happy that I can see these special people, curious to explore the new and am also curious as to how I will handle the humidity or rather how my hair will cope - I will start practising interesting ways with a bandanna shortly - I don't have ten thousand hours to practise that either!
I am hoping this year that I will be able to show V my roots in the frozen north and introduce him to my family there and I know there will be other interesting places to explore together. I am so happy and grateful to have him in my life.
This month is also the anniversary of loss and I have amazed myself in many ways at how I coped with all the changes that terrible day brought. Again I am reminded that its not what life throws at you but how you handle it. When life gives you lemons - make lemonade - or better still grab the tequila and salt and throw a Mexican themed party!
My year ended on a pretty down note as my car gave up on me travelling though the Transkei and as I sat by the side of the road helpless and traffic whizzed past, I wondered how long I would sit there immobilised with fear at being in a dodgy area, three hours from Pietermaritzburg and seven hours from PE with no knowledge of car engines. I tried to start the car and it was dead - not a sound as I turned the key and yet I turned the key again and again before I realised that the car wasn't going to come back to life. This was how it was and no amount of thinking positively was going to change the situation. All I could do was to accept that I was stuck, rely on friends and family and pray that I would reach my destination safely. Another lesson learned on my journey and not one that is unfamiliar. Acceptance, Prayer and Friends and Family - these are essential companions on my journey called Life.
Grateful that I have all of the above - I continue on my journey this year .......on foot as my car is still out of action - Where is that tequila???