Build That Wall! 

The week in LaLaLand is over. No harm, possibly a few fouls. I did try, and mostly succeeded, in keeping my anxiety under control. I’m aware that the new alt-right who are in charge of the White House are hitting hard and heavy early with the hopes of protest fatigue setting in and the normalization of alternative facts and repression to overcome the resistance. There will be no breather before the storm, the storm was launched full throttle straight out of the gate. 

One thing we didn’t expect to see was Arnie terminating Twitler’s arrogance and narcissistic rants with this video.

This was my reply on Twitter.


So I have also had a few rants and raves, but I kept it to Twitter mostly. I think that will be my approach. To separate my social media profiles into different agendas. 

It has been another week that just disappeared before my eyes. 

On Tuesday night I put a beef roast in the slow cooker overnight and made a delicious pot roast for Wednesday’s dinner. I just steamed green beans and made fondant sweet potatoes when I got home that evening.


The following night I fried mushrooms in butter and added the remaining shredded beef roast and a container of cream. I chucked in the remaining green beans and served with mashed cauliflower and gem squash. 


It was very tasty. 

I’ve been busy taking pics from my balcony for friends who are making collages for Valentines.


A cute idea! One of my Covet fashion house girls made one for me.


Our new garden wall is up and the pesky tree removed.


This pic was taken on Thursday, on Friday they plastered it. They will let it dry and come paint it once dried. It looks bare without the tree, I think I will plant a bush or maybe another Bougainvillea there. We can train it to run along the wall and give a nice bit of colour and curb appeal. Another renovation project almost complete. 

Friday night we wanted a relaxed evening in and so we just got ribs and burgers from The Kitchen Takeaway in Hout Bay, they have amazing food. 

I had a lazy Saturday morning but Norm pottered about in the kitchen doing bits and pieces of tiling and trim and around 3pm we headed off to the Hout Bay Harbour to meet Norm’s friends who were over from St Andrews in Scotland. We met them upstairs in the bar at Mariners Wharf


The view is stunning. 


We had a drink then we took Steven and Karen up to Chapman’s Peak to show them the view. 


We then drove back to Hout Bay beach and were lucky to get a lovely table at Dunes. Dunes is a busy restaurant directly opposite the beach.


We had a great view and managed to get some shade as it was very hot,


I had salmon roses to start and they arrived quickly and were fresh and delicious. 


For my main I had fried calamari strips and Norm had grilled Patagonian calamari tubes. 


I tried a bite of Norm’s and they were tasty, the lemon butter was divine. My fried calamari strips were tender and the batter was crispy and not oily, it was really nice. 

Karen had the mussels which I didn’t take a pic of but I did sample and they were delicious: huge, plump and juicy, and the serving was very generous. I will try these next visit. I also tried one of Steven’s ribs but they wer no patch on the Kitchen Takeaway’s. They were dry and chewy. But based on the brilliant service from Blessing, our waiter,  as well as the starters and the other three mains I would give our meal there a good solid 4 Kitten Stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

We left there and went to Woodcutters to catch the rugby but it was rammed. We grabbed a table out in the beer garden and had a coffee. 

Steven and Karen had a taxi booked for 830pm so we eventually took them back to the harbour and saw them off. 

That night we found Mr Leopard Toad back in our lounge. Norm had snapped a pic of Mr Toad 1 and Mr Toad 15 and it is definitely the same bloody Toad. 


Check the marking right rear flank. This time Norm drove him far away. He now is on a bit of green still in our neighborhood but it’s a lotta hops away. 

We are having a pajama day today. The most strenuous thing I’ve done is make brunch.

I cooked eggs scrambled with cheese, and served with avocado and tomato and delicious salty Joostenberg organic bacon from Oakhurst Spar. 


Norm is having a snooze and I am watching fluff on TV and drinking iced coffee in the heat. The dogs are having naps and it’s lovely and quiet, exactly how a Sunday should be spent.  

I hope you have a peaceful weekend.

Advertisements

The Spokeswoman 

The week started off so gorgeous, so sunny and  hot! We had a lovely 27 degrees Celsius on Monday and Tuesday was even hotter, allegedly hitting over 30 degrees. As I work in an air conditioned office I often have no clue what is going on outside. It’s like Antartica in my office, we freeze. 

I wondered will it finally stay warm, can I actually now move from boots to pumps? “Pumps” is another of those words which seems to mean a different thing in different countries.

In the US, a pump is a sexy, closed heel.


In South Africa a pump is flat.


I get so confused. Maybe it means both? Since my hip replacement I can no longer wear heels. I miss them, I never feel properly dressed up without a sexy pair of stilettos.

But it’s been so many years since I wore heels it would be hilarious to watch I’m sure. 

And then Thursday arrived and in typical Cape Town fashion,  I reverted back to boots as it was storming so badly it sounded like the house was going to blow in when I was getting ready for work. Once I got into the city the heavens opened and as well as icy cold wind and drizzle it started pouring giant splodges of rain. I have a long walk and I just zipped my jacket and put on my hood and plodded and splashed across town, dodging people running and went to my office. It’s impossible to use an umbrella in Cape Town.

I looked like a drowned rat when I got to work. I shook off and put what bits of me I could manage under the hand dryer. At least my thighs got dry in front and the back of me didn’t get as wet as I was walking into the downpour. 

drowned-rat

But that is Cape Town for you! Crazy daisy weather.

On Monday evening I had a phone call from Washington from a woman from Democrats Abroad asking if I had submitted my ballot. When I told her I hadn’t registered before I emigrated and that I left the US so many years ago that I can’t even remember my last address or Social Security number in order to register she said she would see what she can do. Maybe I can vote after all! That would be fab to vote against the Donald. I never answer my phone, the fact I answered an unknown US number is a real exception.

I then received an email from someone and she was zero help, suggesting I ‘figure out how to open the pdf’ that I told her wouldn’t open. Gosh why didn’t I think of that! She sent a link to a website which provided no guidance at all. So I’m back to square one, unable to register without proof of tons of info from 30 years ago. I’ve moved over 40 times, no chance will I know an address from when I lived in LA! Bugger.

I cannot face another president coming into the mix where I am going to be quizzed on ‘WTF is America thinking??’ every time a random stranger hears my Yank accent. I had to endure this for all of the years that Bush was ineptly banging around the White House. I cannot explain how a moron gets elected. I assume it is by the support of other morons but I am not the International American spokeswoman on moronic behaviour. And no I also cannot explain what is going on with the blatant murder of blacks by police in America. I am as horrified by these recurring deaths as anyone – I cannot explain it to others. But still I get quizzed. Luckily I’ve been out of the US and lived so many places my accent is a hodge podge. I escape scrutiny on occasion. 

Meanwhile life goes on. 

This week was over in a heartbeat because I was so busy. 

Norm was working on Monday evening so Caitlin and I ordered a Thai cafe order for home delivery. But as we took so long to make a plan then had to await the delivery dude, it was very late by the time we ate and it was time for bed soon after we finished.

As a result of having no leftovers, the next day I decided to take some smoked salmon to work for lunch so I walked to Food Lovers Market and visited the salad bar and made up a simple salad but they had no ripe avos so I bought a tiny perfect avo at the corner shop for only R3 and I took it all back to the office kitchen to construct it. It went so nicely together. It also meant a nice midday stroll out  in the gorgeous sunshine.

The drama continues over the appointment of Hlaudi Motsoeneng into yet another executive position after being deemed unfit to serve as the COO. Now several of the SABC board have resigned and the parastatal is in deep trouble. The blatant disregard by the ANC of the findings by the Public Protector had already led to some resignations but the latest shenanigans has resulted in the last few members who seemed ethical to finally jump ship. The company is in a mess as is everything the ANC touches, Mandela must be so disappointed.

The medical infrastructure is barely functioning.  The incompetencies in the hospitals mean you don’t want to get injured in an accident. If you go for surgery where you select the hospital and surgeon yourself then you are generally ok. But you don’t want to be injured and especially not out in the remote areas.

Norm has started with getting the kitchen prepped for the renovation project. He has packed up a lot. 

We had a moment of panic this week when we rang to check progress with the company we paid to produce the cupboards and discovered the guy whom we were dealing with no longer works there. OK, to be perfectly honest, in reality I panicked and Norm just regretted telling me. 

He rang them the next day and confirmed that all was in order and the cupboards would be ready on Monday the 10th as planned. However as things often pan out, when Norm followed up with the painter she said that she wanted to get a full sized door to use as the demo piece for approval. When she drove to the site to collect a door they showed her one which was the wrong design! She had heard the whole story directly from me about the design so she agreed with them that they would pay her for the doors and she will produce and paint them! Thank goodness for the painter who seems so switched on. She should have a sample available on Monday for us to approve. I’m excited beyond measure. 

Norm has started chipping away at the tiles.

Meanwhile on Facebook, one of my Mom’s friends posted some of the cutest pics from January 1992. This is me and my children a year and a half after moving from LA to South Africa.

Caitlin would have been 3, Lily just turned 1 and Trevor was 5. So tanned and golden. Like a negative of them now, they never go in the sun and have dark or black hair. 

How did I have 3 children under 5 and have painted nails?  This was Africa, there were no nail salons. 

Norm is on a mission to grow his own tomatoes. His seeds have sprouted.


 His mom always had a load of her own tomatoes, as did my Grandmother. There is nothing better. I was not thinking properly as we chose rosa tomatoes which I love, but if we had planted large tomatoes we could have had fried green tomatoes, I miss those! 

I found this low carb recipe on a blog I want to try: Low carb fried green tomatoes.


The #FeesMustFall protesting is still going on with the university students. The University where Lily attended was full of chaos on Thursday. The protesters threw human feces at the police and in return the police fired rubber bullets. The government have sat firmly on the fence proving ineffective at controlling the situation.

I worked on 4 different projects this week, doing data analysis, project planning, created a presentation and reviewed someone’s document so it was varied and the week flew by. 

Caitlin flew to Johannesburg for a few weeks leaving on Thursday evening. It was unfortunate that Norm had work and they both were away. 

Early Friday morning Norm also flew away to speak at an event. Here he is having dinner with the parents of SA Gold medalist Wade van niekerk and SA Athletics officials. 

Meanwhile I was attending the launch of my friend Darryn Clark’s new location for his business Time Menders with my friend Annie. Darren is an artisan who makes and repairs clocks. It’s a stunning venue full of classic cars, bikes and various bits of Americana and memorabilia. 


It is a fabulous space with good clear energy. Some of those old spots can have a lot of bad juju hanging around. I hope it’s going to be a successful venture. They want a pseudo Biscuit Mill vibe with a coffee shop and maybe restaurant or cafe but with artisans occupying the stalls not just selling the usual same old tat you see at so many markets. 

In typical SA fashion, the blokes stayed round the fire and the women all sat comfortably round the lounge area and didn’t mingle. Of course we did talk about menopause and abusive men all night soooooo I can’t blame the blokes really. It was a man free zone.

We went very early and so we left early too and got home by 8 as I wanted to go spend time with Lily and Josh who had arrived just after I got home from work. I was so glad I wasn’t on my own that night. The wind picked up again and the rain was intermittent. The garden is loving it. 

Saturday it again poured with rain in the morning and we woke to overcast misty mountains.

I had a lazy day on Saturday and Lily and Josh were off to the track for training on Josh’s bike. He is racing next week so they are coming back again. Norm flew home from Bloemfontein late yesterday afternoon. 

I wanted to cook something for dinner but we had nothing much in the fridge and I was too cozy to shop.  I thawed out a bag of frozen raw prawns. I fried 3 small peppers, red, yellow and orange, 4 red Birdseye chillis, an onion and 4 cloves of garlic. I then added a bag of chopped butternut. I added double cream, coconut cream, 2 cups chicken broth and 2 tins chopped tomato. I flavored with chili powder, cumin, fresh coriander and paprika. I let it simmer until the butternut was soft then used the hand blender to make it all smooth. I cleaned and tailed the prawns and cut them into small pieces and washed them and added to the soup. I then added provolone to a sheet of baking paper and cooked til bubbly.

I topped the soup with fresh cream and chopped cilantro to serve. The provolone ‘crackers’ added a bit of crunch.


That soup was to die for. So much flavor and bite. Mucho caliente baby. We just relaxed the rest of the evening, I was happy to have Norm home. The animals were cozy too.

Lily and Josh drove back this morning and Norm and I headed out to do errands. It was sunny but there was a bit of chill in the air. My flowers were looking for the sun.


We went to Hirsch’s and bought a stainless steel extractor hood to go with our new cooker.


That is another thing sorted. We tried to find lighting and a bar fridge but no luck.

We were starving by the time we left the shop so we went to Mugg & Bean for a bite to eat. I had the Cobb salad.

Norm had the low carb Eggs Benedict. Instead of an English muffin it had mushrooms.


We did a shop for toiletries and bits and bobs at Clicks then decided to go to Constantia to do a big grocery shop, we were out of everything. On our way we spotted a huge fire. We never saw what was burning.


We then did a Pic n Pay shop for basics, then got our meat and veg at Woolworths. 

Norm walked the dogs and we relaxed a bit then we made dinner together.

We stuffed chicken breasts with spinach and marscapone then baked it. It was soooo tender. 


To go with we made mushrooms, gem squash and steamed cauliflower. 

The weekend has flown by, tonight we are watching Creed, the Sunday movie. Tomorrow my car goes in for a service so I am working from home and then in the afternoon I am at the dentist for the second phase of my root canal treatment. Hopefully it won’t hurt as much. 

I get to see my painted sample cupboard door tomorrow, I’m so excited! 

I hope you all have a wonderful week ahead. Xxx