Saturday, September 29, 2012

Off to the Bush.

After a week in the city spending lots of time with our Oscar who has been SO sick it is time to set off for the bush. Sarah took her staff on a team building exercise to Maputo. She is so impressed with the development in Maputo. The group also spent a few days in Belem which she. Said is great for a beach holiday! The night before we left it so happened that we were to have dinner with a former pupil, then fellow team player and now good friend Midgie. He was so proud and pleased to hear of Sarah' s impressions of Maputo because in the late sixties and early seventies his folk came to South Africa to find a safe haven and start their lives afresh due to the civil war that raged in Mocambique.

Midgie took us to a restaurant in Kensington, Johannesburg where we used to live and he says the area has become very Cosmopolitan with great Portuguese and Italian restaurants and coffee shops. He was recently widowed and is retired so he meets his buddies at the coffee shop next to the restaurant and it gives him great comfort.

Early the following day with a VERY loaded car we bade farewell to the city and set off for the Bush. It is a beautiful drive for the second half of the journey with Dullstrom and Sabie look so lovely with bougainvilleas and hibiscus in full loom. The countryside is green and lush with every shade of green in evidence. This is such a beautiful time of the year in the Lowveld. I am so happy to be hot.....for the first time since we left Malaysia. I do enjoy the heat....but enough of that.

Just before turning into Sabie Park I spotted an elephant wandering through the bush on the opposite side of the road.....this augers well, that is for sure!

After we had unpacked and getting sorted the noses zebras came sniffing around. What a lovely welcome. We also spotted a few impala later once the sun had gone down. It is full moon so it never got very dark which is so lovely. It is lovely to be back.



I am so pleased that after my last little vent, to have received some pleasant notes from friends afar encouraging me to keep writing. As it so happens, yesterday I was "car guarding" our over loaded car while en route to the Bush House and hubby was doing the shopping, when I happen to tune into SAFM. Nancy Richards has a show " " and the topic of the day was Blogging. Nancy had been to a conference on blogging recently and met some of South Africa's top/ popular bloggers and was interviewing them on her show, on the radio. The questions being addressed were a)why people blog and b)how to blog. The technical "how to" info was not all that helpful for the complete novice but the " why" was most encouraging!

The bloggers being interviewed had slightly different ideas and interpretations as to why people blog but the discussion was most helpful and encouraging and the following are just some of the points I took away.

# Blog as if no one is reading your blog.

# Blogging is the new form of praying!!!

# Many people use it as a form of venting!

# Blogging is learning to live in purpose.

# It should be done with passion

# Blogging is sharing your journey

# Be authentic

# Keep it topical

# You never know everything!

# Enjoy what you do!!!

The point I would add is have the camera charged and ready ALL the time!

I think these pointers are food for thought and most encouraging. I am glad I was at the right ace at the right time!

Regarding security....I liked what one of the bloggers being interviewed said:

Although there are bad elements out there often the Internet is made out to be a much bigger Bad wolf than it really is!! After all someone looking for porn is not really going to look at a blog called Mommies Craft class or like mine "Beyond the Quilt" ....maybe if I called it "under the quilt" would be different!! So that put that one to rest.

Thanks Nancy for the most interesting show and hopefully many more South African women will find the time to blog!!


Sunday, September 23, 2012

Catching up.

It amazes me that I allow negative comments to affect me at my age and stage! A while ago at a dinner I had organized, I had to hear some rather negative comments by a "friend" about blogging! While I argued back and tried to shrug off the rather critical comments e.g. "why would you want strangers to read about your life" it left its mark and I have battled to put pen to paper.

The question to myself is, why do I blog? I love writing and while the form of my blog is more a visual record of my travels, my quilting and in general, my life, it is fun and creative! It is wonderful to connect with other bloggers and read of their lives. I read blogs about quilting, sewing, reading, travel, thinking, cooking and just plain family life. I have my favorites, of course! I used to write group letters so this form of writing has replaced that form.

The people who criticize Blogging, Facebook and other forms of communicating are often the people who never participate anyway so possibly they have no idea what fun it is and how it opens the world up for the likes of me. I am going to shake off those feelings of self doubt and continue doing what I really enjoy. Blogging here I come!

Another reason for the delay in adding to my blog is the fact the Internet connection we have at home is rather weak which results in my only using it to check my Inbox. We spent almost two weeks at our flat on the South Coast and the weather was awful. The rain and wind pounded our sea facing windows and I found it a little depressing. The weather, together with the adjustment of being back home, far from our families, made it all rather unsettling.

The most amazing thing in Toti is no matter the weather someone is always on the beach defying the weather conditions.


The worst day ever in Toti was last Thursday. Not even mad dogs and Englishman would venture out. However, down on the beach there was this lonely figure. He seemed to be wearing a thick coat or cape and he lay In the surf and let the freezing water cover him. He stood and then walked deeper and deeper and then he came back out. I really wondered if he had the death wish and was about to take his life!! Do I call the life savers, the police or one would venture out in this awful weather. This fellow must have been there for about an hour!! I wonder if he survived.....?

On other days it LOOKED lovely outside but putting a foot out of the door, you just knew the best thing was to stay put and do things at home. Some friends suggested bed, choccies and cup a soup. I was itching to use my sewing machine after an absence of seven months and while I have a few big quilts lined up to do I decided to do some fun things. Thus i started my "Owl" project.

My dear niece Unity got quite excited and put in a request for an owl of her choice and chose the fabrics from my stash and I had fun making it for her new home!

He does look wise and watchful!

I also love pickling and made a few bottles of beet root and pickle onions, stocking up for our weeks in the bush.

And the last thing I did was visit the local library which is my favorite haven. I never fail to tell the staff there how much I love coming there and they always give me a huge smile and say REALLY? What a difference a compliment makes!!

After unpacking, sorting cupboards out, getting rid of seven months of dust, spending time with friends, we repacked our cases and then set off back to Johannesburg to babysit Oscar while Sarah treats her staff to a weekend in Maputo!

Now that I have caught up with my blog and got issues off my chest I will write regularly and continue doing what gives me and hopefully others pleasure. Thank you for reading my entries. Happy Blogging fellow bloggers!!


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Back Home!

After spending time in Johannesburg we are heading home tomorrow.

Spring is in the air, however in comparison to the weather in K.L., I have found it dry and just a little chilly. We have had loads of fun with Oscar and have enjoyed seeing a few of our good friends. I guess these are some of the things that make coming home so special.




More Friends



More fun,

And even more fun!


And a few familiar sights!

We will be back soon Oscar, to have even more fun!! (note the sox).