Synch In

This week passed by in the blink of an eye. The international news has been full of tragedy and senseless death. In one day my twitter feed was full of a stream of shocking events.

Then I open my email and it was also full of various pleas: to shut down horrific zoos, to stop the decimation of the orangutan habitat and stop the certain end of their population, to punish a cop who shot the family dog at a child’s birthday party and it was all just too much for me. My heart was hurting. I’m an empath and I absorb the energy of those around me. There is so much pain.

I felt despair creeping over me.  I posted something on Facebook about feeling full of sadness and my friend Cathi posted this to me…..

It made me feel a bit less panicked. It seems to be her role in this life as she has come to my rescue before. I think she and her sister Mandi and I have been soul sisters for centuries. 

Focusing on that alone, that we never die, we just change in energy and structure. That calmed me. I started to relax into it. To feel at synch with the Universe.

And then I started thinking about all of the Conspiracy Theories I read about that say in order for the Earth to function in balance there is the need for limiting the population of the earth to 500 million which will require the extermination of nine-tenths of the world.

Or the theories that the population is being controlled by the big pharmaceutical  conglomerate – everyone is to have autism or Alzheimer’s or is on antidepressants regardless of the circumstances that keep resulting. That AIDS and Zika are man made viruses to control population. That the current frenzied race war and religious terrorism are both being generated as population control.

That sort of stuff keeps a girl up at night.

We also had most of our week in SA full of torrential rain and crazy weather.

There was even snow on the Drakensburg mountains 

and there was a tornado in Johannesburg! 

In Durban there was flooding and several people died when their cars washed away or when their homes were part of a mudslide or flood. 

Eventually our weather in the cape steadied and it stopped raining. We rejoiced in our beautiful winter sunshine.

I sat on my balcony when the rain stopped.

I love my view. It brings me peace.

Norm has been so amazing this week, shopping and cooking healthy Banting meals for us all.

He made fillet steaks with steamed cauliflower, sweet potato fried in butter, and mushrooms fried in butter. 

One night I made scallops wrapped in bacon and fried in butter, steamed baby corn and asparagus and gem squash mashed with butter.

One night we had take aways from Posticino which were brilliant. We had chicken schnitzel and it is proper thin European schnitzel. Divine.

Wednesday I had a workshop at a new client so was in a different area of town I don’t know. That stressed me but it was good doing new things. 

Friday evening Norm and I went out to one of our regular winter faves Papino’s.It wasn’t that busy when we arrived but none of the staff came near us. Norm went to get a menu. We waited about 15 minutes. The owner sat people at tables all around us but was oblivious to us desperately trying to get her attention. Finally Norm lunged after her after the forth time she came near us but totally blanked us. The people at the table next to us waited ages and left after no service. Another table also sat for a few minutes then left and yet another complained loudly about the service. The owner was totally oblivious. 

Our food was deposited and she popped by to ask if it was ok, but we later had to go find a waiter to bring a doggy bag for me. 

It was delicious as always, that is why we endure the service.

We got away as soon as we could. It was chaos.

Saturday we needed a few bits and pieces and so we went to the Blue Route Mall. We ended up buying 2 pair of jeans each as ours are way too big. Here are my before and after jeans.

The ones I got are a size below the black ones.

We got a carpet for the lounge. Excuse my slippers and beast.

And we bought a cooker in the sale. It is Smeg and mixed, gas and electric.

We had an easy night watching Telly and relaxing. 

Sunday I got up and went for breakfast with Retha to The Riverway Cafe.

We then went on a few errands, Retha got a nice floor lamp and I got some bedside lamps and cushions.

Norm and Panda seemed to like the cushions.

We finished our errands and Retha dropped me home.

The weekend was so busy and flew by!

I hope you all have a good week. I hope there are no disasters this week, but somehow that doesn’t seem likely. There has been a shooting today already in Austin. I pray for the families of the victims. I pray for all of us. It’s a dark time.

Rainbows and Memories

The last few weeks have been incredibly hard. Last Saturday was Pierre’s funeral. The sermon was mostly in Afrikaans for the benefit of Retha’s parents and Pierre’s mom who had all driven down to Cape Town. Pierre’s godsons Roark and Tristan were both here as well, it was very special that they could support Retha and she could be there for them. There were other friends and family members there too, it was a small, intimate guest list.

After the ceremony we all moved off to Ke-monate restaurant at Signal Gun Winery. The view was stunning.

They had a private room for us and there was plenty of the winery’s own delicious wine on the go and they laid on a stunning buffet of kebabs, bread, cheese and various delicious canapés. 

It was all really lovely. The day was cold yet sunny and they had a big roaring fire. We spent a few hours there, then Alison drove me back to Hout Bay so that I could feed the doggies and let them out for a run round before dashing out again. I felt dreadful leaving them on their own so much but I had no choice, Retha had to be my priority. 

Retha and Tristan came in an uber to collect me and we went off for dinner. We had planned on going to the CBD for Japanese food at Haiku, but when the uber driver stalled his dodgy car several times we decided on the spur of the moment to stay local. 

We bandied about a few suggestions of places to go and somehow decided on The Lookout Deck down at the harbour as they were having a prawn special and I was ravenous.  

We sat down and I immediately remembered that The Lookout was where Retha and Pierre had their wedding reception. It was also the venue for one of the first times I had gone out for Retha’s birthday after I met them both. It is rife with memories. We have both had a lot of incidents where we feel Pierre guiding us. This was one of them I am sure.

We had a lovely evening chatting and thinking about Pierre. Most importantly it got Retha out of the house and into a more positive energy. 

The cremation was done the following Tuesday. Again, I had a thought about Retha that morning while I was at work and messaged her to say I was thinking of her and she replied to ask how I knew? As my message came in she was putting down the phone from the call from the staff at the crematorium. I’m sure Pierre nudged me that my soul sister needed me. 

The memorial service held for Pierre’s friends and clients was held yesterday at Riverside Estates in Hout Bay. It is such a stunning venue.

We started at 2pm and at 2.30 Norm called everyone in to sit. He said a few words about Pierre and he then asked Retha to say a few words, then the floor was opened for everyone to come up and speak. A client told a story about having spent a fortune trying to find a squeaky water pipe with no joy, only to have Pierre fix it when he rocked up after fixing her Mac with a new washer. Others talked about Pierre’s love of women in sexy high heels, another his love of food and skill at cooking. 

We had asked everyone to come prepared with a story about Pierre. After all, a Memorial should be about memories. What came through clearly was that Pierre was clever, talented, passionate, loved and admired. He touched so many lives. A young man was there who owes his career to skills that Pierre taught him.

Everyone mentioned his huge smile. There were lots of people there, it was special to see how many cared about Pierre. 

Pierre had friends there that he had known for many years. One friend drove down from Johannesburg just to attend.

 He had friends there whom we have met through Twitter and had a lot of fun with.

He had friends there who were part of his various sports and interests.

Local people from Hout Bay popped in and paid respects. Friends, family and colleagues.

Someone described it as a happy sad occasion. 

After the formalities we asked everyone to light one of the candles we had brought. It all coincidentally worked out it was all beautifully colour coordinated. 

Pierre even sent us another rainbow.

After 5pm the last people there went round to Retha’s for drinks, then after the guests all drifted off home, Norm and I, Roark, Retha, Louis, Patty, Robin and Naomi (Retha’s brother and his family) all went out for dinner. We spent an evening surrounded by the comfort of loved ones and made sure the day ended with positive, healthy energy.

Now we have to heal. The reality of daily life has to occur. Retha has been very open and raw with her grief, I am very proud of how strong she has been while being so fragile.

I’ll be her water wings if she needs them.

I know that I’ll never see a rainbow without thinking of Pierre and remembering his smile.

See you in our next life my friend.

Nobody Knows the Trouble 

I never would have imagined I would lose two friends in the space of only a few months apart. First my friend Anze and now on Friday my good friend Pierre deciding to end his life.

Image credit Josh Mercer Photography.

His wife Retha is my best friend.

I never would imagine Pierre could do this. But it shows that you can never tell what a person feels on the inside from their outside. We ‘met’ on Twitter and later in person when  he and Retha attended one of my Halloween Parties.

They attended every year after that.

We had such fun.

We became part of the Cape Town twitterati for a while, attending some posh events.

And we had a lot of dinners out just the 4 of us.

We were such good friends and had such fun. I remember the night it was so incredibly hot, we swam and had a braai and my crazy neighbor turned a hose on us because it was a week night! 

Pierre was incredibly fit. He loved to surf, he grew up in the Eastern Cape, so surfing was a love from his youth.

Pierre also loved to hike. He was blessed with the beauty surrounding us and some stunning mountains to scale.

Pierre and I were so alike in personality and Retha and Norm are so similar. Pierre and I were both what some might call ‘temperamental’ but what we both liked to call ‘passionate’. Retha and Norm were our rocks. The anchors to our sailboats. 

We rant, we shout, we wave our arms. We express our emotions loudly.

Except on Friday, his voice stopped. On Friday the darkness overcame the light. 

I’ll miss you my friend. I hope you’ve found peace. There was a beautiful rainbow across our bay the day Pierre died, I think it was his final hurrah. 

Typical of Pierre to go out with a bit of drama. I would never expect any less. 

My Sunshine

I can’t believe it is over a week since I fell ill and yet I am still sick. My head is so congested. But the show must go on.

After work on Monday I was faced with my lack of pot roast for dinner thanks to naughty Navajo and had to come up with a new plan. I had aubergines, mince and mozzarella in the fridge so I thinly sliced and lightly fried the aubergines. I fried the mince until brown then added cumin, paprika and lots of garlic and some chili. I fried onion and red pepper then puréed it and added to the meat with some tomato purée and a tin of chopped tomatoes. I let that simmer for a bit then layered the mince, aubergines and mozzarella in 2 rounds of layers then baked. 

Last week in my blog I mentioned that we were having censorship imposed by the SABC and that many TV shows and radio shows have been cancelled when their hosts tried to expose corruption. We’ve been advised as well that the TV and radio stations are being forbidden from mentioning protests or anything else which can cast the ANC in a poor light prior to the elections. 

SA TV History is ironically repeating itself.

The Twitterverse went wild when Jimi Matthews announced that he had quit his job this week.

Several other journalists had written to ask for the recent decisions around censorship to be reconsidered. 

However the decisions are being made by a man unsuitable to fulfill the post he holds. Hlaudi Motsoeneng lied about his qualifications. The SABC did not act on the Public Protector’s findings about his suitability for office. There are other instances where the Public Protector was ignored if you remember my previous blog about our fabulous Thuli. If only she were President! 

The speech made by Mmusi Maimane tells of the unethical changes to try and hide the ugliness and reality of poor governance. Rather than do his job in a transparent, responsible manner, Zuma prefers to hire people to manage to hide the truth or to be his lapdog and do what he needs done. The truth is not hidden, it comes out via Twitter or other social media platforms, today everyone is a reporter. However it isn’t freely available via the national broadcasting channels.

We received a R400 speeding fine in the post this week from when we took our road trip up the coast to Wilderness.  That’s so annoying, the cops hide in the bushes. It seems so sneaky. Taking lessons from the top though, why should we expect clear transparent behaviors. 

Image source.

Several new projects came through this week so I’m busy, busy, busy. I did make great progress on my data rules for my main project so it was a good week work wise.

Wednesday evening Norm and I cooked dinner together. Fillet steak is one of my faves. We boiled tiny sweet potatoes and I had 1 of those mashed with butter, we also sautéed mushrooms in butter and garlic, and fried red cabbage in balsamic and butter to go with the steaks.

Thursday morning was so ridiculously cold. It was 9 degrees Celcius outside when I was walking across the damp, misty foreshore at 730am. I spent all day in meetings talking, but sometimes that means you all set off in the right direction on a new project quickly and cleanly with no faffing about. So we actually are making great traction on the project.

Norm stopped to buy some chicken breasts and we made a lightly curried coconut cream chicken, mushroom and broccoli dish. We served with caulimash.

We never normally cook together so it was fun to be doing so again. We even got on without arguing! And the resulting dinner was yummy.

Thursday was Lily’s last day at work at her current job in Cape Town. She has been down here living with us for over 5 years since I moved back to SA. Going to university for four years then a year working. She will be working for Josh and his Dad’s electrical firm doing admin in Great Brak. She studied so long to do events, I hope she isn’t giving up her career for love but I do know how hard long distance relationships are and they have been together for 8 years now so I do understand. I am going to miss her so much, she seldom goes out and she hangs out with me most of the time so I’ll miss my little sidekick. I just want her to be happy though so her decision needs to be about what she wants, not what I want.

That night we went to bed about midnight. The alarm triggered as soon as we locked up. It was pouring rain and the rain poured under the door onto our upstairs landing and flooded upstairs. It also poured off the front balcony in a sheet, triggering the beams below. It took ages to figure out what was going on and over ride it. 

Friday came round finally, I hadn’t had many 5 day work weeks lately! Josh came down and he and Lily had a birthday party to attend and Caitlin was going for drinks after work. Norm and I decided despite the freezing weather to have a date night so we went to our fave winter venue, Papino’s. They always have a roaring fire. It didn’t disappoint, it was so cozy! We both ordered the Hollandse Biefstuk described as a “Pan-fried beef fillet with mushrooms flambéed with brandy”. I also ordered the side of their yummy sautéed mushrooms. Norm was virtuous but I ordered chips as they used to have amazing crunchy fat chips, but these were skinny fries so they ended up not being worth the carbs. 

It was delicious, to go with we each had a glass of Sauvignon blanc. Norm trotted round the corner to Spar to get a bottle of wine and some nuts to nibble on for at home later that night. We headed out as soon as we finished and chilled out at home for the rest of the evening. We were both due up early the next day. 

Norm was up and out early to a Neighbourhood Watch meeting. As Mzudumo arrived to do the garden Lily made Mzudumo’s breakfast and got him started. 

I was away early too as I had a hair appointment in the city. While she styled my hairdresser and I were discussing the article I had found which validated the fact my hair is thinning. The fact that it is exactly 6 months since I gave up sugar and carbs makes sense according to the info in that article.

It’s also interesting that it seems to be coming back less gray. How can a dietary change act as an age repellent? 

How does my hair look? I can tell its thinner.

I stopped on the way home to get Mzudumo a sausage roll pie and some chicken for his lunch then headed home.

Saturday evening we had a family games night at home to say cheerio to Lily. Caitlin’s fella Wesley came round too so there were six of us. We drew straws for teams and played two games of 30 seconds and ended up with me, Josh and Norm winning the first game and Caitlin, Lily and Wesley the second. We ordered pizzas and some of us had Banting pizzas from Cassarechio and some of us had proper pizza from Mimmi To Go. I had Mimmi half Hot Latina and half Manuel. It was delicious. 

Caitlin made Banting brownies and we all had a brownie. We had lots of fun and laughed so much. I will miss those casual fun noisy evenings with my girls.

Today the kids got up and packed Josh’s truck and Lily’s car. I took a pic of one pile of her bags and posted it on Facebook along with a lovely post. I then got this message.


I quickly deleted it but a lot of people saw it. How embarrassing. This is the censored one. This censorship is best for us all.

They got all her stuff packed up.

We all sadly hugged and off they went. I’ll miss her so.

It was a stunner of a day suddenly after a week of freezing cold and rain. I had breakfast outside with Elvis and my mountain to try and cheer me up.

The dogs tried to cheer me up too and followed my every move.

I had a mooch round the garden. I just pottered about enjoying the sunshine and tugging the occasional weed. My flowers are doing so well with the recent rain.

Lily has just messaged to say they made it safe and sound. I hope her new job goes well tomorrow, but most of all I hope she is happy.