Nostalgia

Just there to make us depressed?

As you know, I’m not a great lover of modern kids. Or, for the most part, of kids. In all probability, I was not a good mother because I never mollycoddled my kids. I suppose they blame me for not making sure they have well prepared and well thought out packed lunches, or home cooked meals, starched linen and towels that reminded them of home…

That being said.

This is not a lament of what a bad mother I may or may not have been.

This is about the things I remember growing up with that most kids of today don’t even have an inkling of. And, as great as technology may be, it has hampered kids of today in many instances.

Theo and myself were talking about getting old – I was invited to a fiftieth birthday party and that made me realise that I have 4 birthdays left including this year, before I, too, turn the half-century!

His sage answer to this remark was “Nah. We’re not getting old, we’re just getting more experienced and wiser” Sure. And old ;-)

But he reminded me of all the things we did as kids growing up. The long distances we would cover either on our bicycles or on foot. The food we ate – invariably home-cooked – we did not do the fast food thing as often then as we do now.

We’d spend more time outside than inside. Garage parties. Two week long camps with the school, learning all manner of things, remembering not much but the experience. I can still remember waking up at night, in my sleeping bag, shivering with cold. Did I die? Not quite. The whole experience was better than one night of sleeping cold.

Listening to Casey Kasim on 702 every Sunday. Taping Human League and Adam Ant and Olivia Newton John – getting all uptight when the family would talk while I was taping!!

Holidays spent on the farm, we would sit with the Grand mom, listening to Radio drama’s. Helping my uncle milk the cows. Playing in the abandoned pig sties. Hey – they were empty at the time and made a perfect spot to play house-house in!!

When I was cleaning out my boxes last week, I came across a whole bunch of letters written to me by various people over the years. Something so much more satisfying in unfolding a letter, smelling the old paper, seeing the hand writing, than  in opening an e mail, don’t you think? Reading the words, in that person’s hand, knowing they took the time and effort to pen this, just for you. I have a card given me by my dude, the Yank. It’s in my Bible, and I take it out ever so often, and reminisce. It gives me better memories than any of the e mails he ever sent me. And that is the power of the written word.

It literally transports you to a time and place when you were younger. Less damaged. More optimistic. A different time. A different place.

We remember typewriters. Bicycles that had brakes you had to step on instead of pull with your hands. Drive-in theatres and road houses.

When a Saturday afternoon was not spent in front of the TV watching some mindless sport, but spent in Johannesburg – at the JHB library, inhaling the reverence of the library. Watching the water pour over the little gazelles in Joubert park. Alas. Those things are no more. The gazelles have been demolished by vandals, the copper sold for whatever they could get for it. The library – it might still exist, but not as I once knew it.

And on that note, I’m readying the topic for my next blog. The New South Africa.

My little trip down memory lane was not as broad as it could have been – doing the blog at work does have it’s draw backs, but i hope you can see some of the things I saw while i was thinking of the many things we used to do and experience when we were young. And if it’s a bit disjointed, bear with me. It’s been a while since I typed up anything longer than a 3 line e mail!!!

Until next we meet, long days and pleasant nights…

How long has it been?

Decades? Centuries?

That’s what it feels like in any case. Much has changed, and just as much has stayed the same. I’m still on my own – that should go without saying. I got myself a brand spanking new car, brand new laptop, brand new phone. Had my first sanctioned leave since visiting my dude in Istanbul in 2010, and came back to the job like so many other, normal people out there.

The car, a little one, serves me well. The old car served me with the laptop and a nice LCD screen TV with a little media player and another hard drive – not such a bad deal. Of course, the youngest helped me spend some of the cash ;-)

The laptop, unfortunately not the Apple I’ve been longing for, came with Windows 8. Not that bad a program, but something’s eating my data. And, data being the premium that it is here in the Suck heap, I’ve been avoiding using it.

Bringing me to my next new thing – my absolutely gorgeous iPhone 5. I’ve got both my mail clients on it. My FB. My WP – everything just works, so I’ve been using it more than  I’ve been using the laptop. That is, of course, until I managed to make recovery disks and change the Windows 8 for Linux. Might take a bit getting used to, but i think it will make for a much stabler machine.

Personals, well, I’m still working at the same place. Not without ups and downs, but it’s been more than a year and slowly but surely, I’m becoming part of the team instead of the new one. Suppose it will take some more time, but so far, so good.

Kids are still fine. The youngest will be coming back home after a 2 month sojourn in the States – he worked at the Texas Fair or some such. Sent me pictures of Mustangs and all things American ;-)  And hopefully he’ll bring me back my pop tarts and Starbucks coffee and Moonlight Path shower gel and and and – unfortunately he can’t bring me a corn do, and I did not even think to ask him to bring me some, is it Poppycock or some such? That lovely popcorn mixed with cashews and caramel – quite divine!

The eldest is still in Dubai – was supposed to go visit him now while I had leave, but life happened. Not the worst decision ever, because I used that time to sort out my study – becoming more of a study than a storage room!! About time too! I’ve let my life slide for too long – and since you can’t control everything, I can only control the things closes to me and that means ordering the chaos.

The relationship front – I’m still in a relationship with myself. Think I must cultivate that rather than to bother with the men I do manage to find. If you can believe all the positive thinking things you read, the fault might be entirely mine – either because I don’t love myself enough or not in the right way or not at all – pick one! I like to think that I love myself just fine – it’s when I try and involve other people in that very personal circle that things go wrong. Leading me to believe that I really am better off on my own. Heaven knows I’m not the only one!

This just as an update on life as I currently know it. I have so many topics that I would like to venture in, not to mention I might feel brave enough to attempt the NaNoWriMo again in a few days’ time…

Until the next time I’m on here – be as good as you are able.

Long days and pleasant nights…

New

So.
Today l got my brand spanking bew iPhone 5s.
Could not wait for the iPhone 6 to be released – nobody seems to know when that will be…
Let me extoll, once again, the virtues of having an Apple device.
I imported my sim contacts to my old device. I activated the new device.
When l came home, l backed up my old device and restored the new one using the old one’s settings.
Not a tear shed, not one frowning, wondering, perplexed look crossed my face in the process.
Everything, just as it was, with an updated look and a very comfortable usage method.
Just the same. Just better 😃
I really am in love with Apple.
Sure it’s only an operating system on an inanimate device, but the joy it has brought to my life is untold.
As l commented on one of my friends’ comment on FB : everything does seem to be flowing in one direction instead of in all directions at once. Hope and faith and lots of prayers does bring you to where you need to be in the end.
I hope you are all still well out there. None of you are ever far from my thoughts…
May you always find water and shade.

Long ago…

…I had a rhythm.

Certain things would be done at certain times. I would spend hours reading things, thinking about things to write, thinking up comments to the things I read. I would not feel bad about the things I write, or about the time I spent reading what others have written. I spent hardly any time on FB.

These days, however, I find myself hiding. From the world at large. Just crawled into my warm, safe shell, without giving of myself to anybody that I might come across.

When I have a moment to myself, I think about things that’s past. Words that were spoken in truth that turned out to be lies. Memories made, all built on sand. Dreams dreamt, turning into ashes in a matter of minutes.

What it really boils down to though is that I’ve given away my peace of mind. Knowingly handed it into somebody else’s keeping, Somebody not up to the task. My own stupidity, I know. One should never hand over one’s peace of mind to any other human being. Even knowing this, I still did it.

Now, now I have to make the enormous effort of once again finding the kernel of peace still left within me. The little kernel that I will need to grow so I don’t have to lie awake at night, thinking about things I have no control over.

I am ever hopeful though. Things are not nearly as bad as they could have been. I live in abundance for the most part. I have use of all my faculties, all my bodily functions are still running smoothly. My little new car is the bee’s knees – still has the new car smell and even though it’s a huge expense, I feel that it was not a bad move at that.

What I keep coming back to though, the thing that overshadows everything good in my life, is that I was gullible enough to listen to lies. I was sufficiently desperate to hear the words and chose to negate what I knew was true – if somebody seems too good to be true, they invariably are. I so wanted to have a forever with somebody that I went against my own instincts and believed the crap I heard. I built my dreams, not on rock, but on the sand of a tidal beach. Soon to be washed away to nothing under the force of the waves of reality.

I live in that reality now. I live with the echoes of those words in my ears. The memories still hurt. Time might stop that from happening, maybe. The eternal sunshine of the spotless mind – would that I could come across a machine that will make my mind spotless. That will let the sun shine over the dark thoughts hiding in there. That will remove all traces from my thoughts of the one person that, like a snake in the grass, saw my weak spots, knew them, learned them and hit me where it will hurt the most. In my belief of my own worth. That broke my trust in even seemingly good human beings. That will cause me to think long and hard before I let another person into my fortress again.

It’s a vicious circle I’m afraid. You don’t want to be alone all the time, so you reach out to people, every time putting yourself out there. The more you give, the more you can get hurt. And that, I suppose, is life, not so? If you close yourself off from pain, you also close yourself off from joy. And I quite like my little joys. I will not live without them.

It will take me a while to find my equilibrium again. For me to feel that I’m not quite as useless as I was brought to believe. That I, as a person, am actually worth at least some effort. I will get there. With time, quite a bit of effort and maybe some chemicals – but eventually my mind, if not spotless, will at least be free from the constant badgering.

Until then, bear with me. I will get my rhythm back – it will just take time.

Long days and pleasant nights…

What’s in a …

…car?

Is it really only a means to an end, a method of travel, a way to get from point A to point B without the use of feet – yours or a horse’s?

Is it a means to be judged in the eyes of society, or a means to make you feel better about your stature or size?

We all have a dream car. Well, maybe not all, but, if you like cars, you probably have a secret fancy to a specific car. Be it an old fashioned muscle car, or a brand new luxury model filled with all the bells and whistles or even a little Fiat 500. If you like cars for more than functionality, chances are you have had dreams about owning your dream car. Or one day maybe driving in one. Or just standing next to it!!

Me, I like cars. Not so much the newer models – they all look alike and they cost way more than I think a car should cost. Be that as it may. I need to replace the car I’ve been driving for the past 9 years. It’s going to cost me more to fix it than I really care to spend and it’s not really financially viable to try and fix it. It will never be the same as it was when I bought it, and, let’s face it. New cars are not quite made to last like the old ones were.

Decisions made, money sorted, I went to test drive a little car today. Same make as my current car, just brand new and much smaller. I don’t have a family to cart around anymore. Just me. I need better fuel efficiency so I am better able to make my budget work for me. I should have the little one probably next week this time if all goes well.

That being said.

After the test drive, I went back to the old man that has been with me for a long time. And I was kind of sad to know that I have to sell him. I could certainly use the money, and it’s pointless having a car that’s just going to park off taking up space. It’s still a sad thought, all rationalising aside.

Thinking back on the years we spent together though, I have to take sentimentality into account. It was the first car I bought myself – with no male help or advice or admonishment. I chose it, I financed it, I paid it off. I even serviced it and changed the brakes and tyres on it. It was the car that took my kids to school. That took them to parties, their father. The car that never let me down when the kids had a problem that only I could help them with. The one I used to visit so many randoms. The one that the old man crapped in when he had his operation and also the car that took him to the vet for his last trip.

It was the car I cried much tears in. Hearing a tune that made my dude come to life again. The car I used to go visit C with. The car I drove back from hospital after my week’s stay in traction because I had nobody to come and fetch me. The one I used to travel 160km’s a day to get to work after I came back from Iraq. The one I used to go to countless interviews when I was jobless.

The car that never left me in the lurch. The one thing I could depend on in this topsy turvy life of mine. Go out, the old man will start, no matter how cold or how wet.

Yes. It’s only really a cabin with a motor and four wheels attached to it. it was also an enormous part of my life. It helped me make many memories – memories that will only live on in my heart once he’s sold.

So, no. I’m not getting my ’68 Mustang or my 68 Karmen Ghia. I’m getting a brand new car, out the box. A car that still smells new. A car that has not belonged to a single other person but me. A new car. For the first time in my life, I am getting a brand spanking new car. Well, hopefully I am. it’s not my dream car by any means. But it is a dream come true. To own my very own new car. Not having to take other people’s crap anymore.

I don’t suppose it’s a dream many people have. And if they do, it’s not always possible. But I made it happen and I’m going to follow through with it.

I have been blessed indeed. To have the ability to make my finances work in such a way that I can afford this and still have money left over. I might suck in the romance department, but that is really the only place my life is not as I would want it to be, and even that can be lived without.

I am a woman alone. I am able to pay my dues. I am able to look after myself.

And I am able to look myself square in the eyes when I put on my make up in the morning.

Why? To quote L’oreal, because I’m worth it!!

Here’s to hoping the financing is approved and that I will have a whole pictorial to share with you next week this time.

I’m in a classical kind of mood today. It’s cold here in the suckheap tonight. A wind has been blowing on the Highveld for the past three days and today it turned into a razor. As I sit here and type, my fingers actually hurt from the cold.

Hope the music helps to make you warmer, or cooler – depending on where you find yourself.

May you always find shade for your head and water for your table.

 

Music Passion

One of the few I have.

Dolly from allaboutlemon hosts the music passion every month. Every month she has a different theme and for June she asked me to do the honours in choosing said theme.

Since I’m still very much in awe of Muse’s musical prowess, quite surprisingly so, I chose one of their tunes for my addition to the theme “Falling” I’ve downloaded quite a few of their albums and I think I need to get the rest too – they are quite on par with Queen regarding nuances and change of style, and they are all exceptional musicians. Nothing there that’s not to like :-)

I’m going to take the liberty of saying that any variation of the word would do, seeing as though some artists take liberties with spelling, as well as that it can be either in the title or in the lyrics. Makes the choosing that much more varied.

And, since I chose this month’s theme, I thought I’d give you another tune – one a bit more in line with my usual postings regarding tunes.

Why not find your favourite “Falling” song and play along? The worst that can happen is that you will have some fun while choosing!! I know I did ;-)

PS on the Muse video – worth it to watch the movie too – one of Jim Carey’s better films.

Progress report.

As promised.

The weekly update. I suppose, looking at what I’ve done in the week so far it does not look like much. Those of you who have done embroidery will know that, even though it’s not really brain surgery, it is quite time consuming. But, every day, I do a bit more. I also have to figure out what to do with the pattern as I go along – don’t have anything other than my imagination to use for this ;-). presuming not one single thing will be the same as any of the others!! Which will probably make is even more uniquely mine that it might have been had I used a pattern.

IMG_3377

IMG_3378

IMG_3385

IMG_3398

IMG_3399

 

In other areas of my life, well. The status quo is still as is. I’ve not heard anything to get my Macbook from my service provider, but I am following other avenues – If I’m not capable of sharing my life with the male of the species, I might as well enjoy playing with a new toy in the shape of a lovely new computer. Not to mention the fact that I’m thinking of getting a new car as well. Then again, we’ll see what happens in that regard. Plans have been made and followed through on, now it’s just a matter of waiting to see if the Universe agrees with me.

To that effect, I have a post or six planned, but my mojo is still not what it should be in the writing department.

Here then my music choices for tonight. I’m still in love with Muse – think I might make an exception and go watch them live should they ever come to the suck heap to do a show!!

and a song I have not heard for a long time. made the memories heap up fast and furious…

 

may you always find shade….

Ineptocracy.

or, if you will, idiocy.

Politics in the suckheap.

Lead by the biggest idiot in the history of mankind.

Jacob Zuma. A big, fat, ugly, useless idiot of a man.

That’s being inaugurated AGAIN today.

wtf

Every day I hear the news bulletins, the few I do hear to and from work and over lunchtime, I hear more and more idiocy. inadequacies, ridiculous happenings – not in the world of actors and pop stars where such things belong, but in politics. Now we’re not talking about the fact that every single government facility and service has gone so far backwards so as to be almost non existent, we’re talking about the things the politicians do. The parties they host, the traveling expenses they heap on the tax payer. The stories of government officials embroiled in gang activity, drug smuggling, murder, tax fraud, tender fraud. and these are new things. It does not include their pasts – I don’t think we have a single member of parliament from the ANC’s side that was not in jail for something or other before 1994. The head idiot himself has been embroiled in such things all through his tenure as president. And he’s chosen for president again.

It would seems that Africans love a buffoon. They like the arse that dances at his rallies. That wears animal skins every time he gets married – 5 and counting. the idiot that sings struggle songs and shit like that.

Folks, as an aside. The struggle is LOOOOOONG since over. You got what you wanted. Why are you still so scared of 5 million people? That’s the only whiteys in a sea of darkies. 5m as opposed to 50m. an overwhelming majority. But they are scared of us. Why? is it because we are still keeping things going? Is it because we, instead of harping on things we can’t change, try and make a better life for ourselves and, by extension, everybody else in the suck heap? Is it because they realise that without the few whiteys they’re allowing to work there won’t be enough taxes paid to keep them in their lavish lifestyles? if those are the reasons, they must be very scared.

ineptocracy

At the moment we have 16 m people and counting, on welfare. Has to be an insurance for being voted in again in another four years’ time. Instead of creating jobs with sound planning, they invite every sick, lame and lazy person from the rest of Africa to come and join their battle here. Come, have your baby here, we’ll give you a grant.

Every morning I drive through Diepsloot. An informal settlement/low cost housing eyesore. People live in shacks made from corrugated iron as often as not. It spreads as far as the eye can see. One big squatter camp. And what do you see on many of these shacks? DSTV dishes. They live in shacks. Pay a token amount for utilities, if at all, no rates and taxes. And they have DSTV. Which costs I think, about a grand for the full sweep and probably something like R350 for the lower ends of things. I, on the other hand, pay rates and taxes through my nose. Pay for water and electricity at a premium. And I can’t afford DSTV.

 

assistance

And then we have the parliamentary sittings. Where the fat cats sit and sleep as often as not. Sleeping on the job. That I pay for dearly. What is their use there then? makes it clear that they are there, not for the good of the great unwashed, but because they are a buddy of a buddy of a buddy. It’s called cronyism. And actual word for what’s happening here today. They are making laughing stock of the dignity one would expect for such supposed exalted positions. One would expect at least some decency and brains for people that’s been chosen to rule the country. Look at the picture below and see what it’s like in our parliament.

 

eff

 

This post was brought about by what I saw as I left the maul. A string of helicopters flying over in a somewhat cock eyed formation. They can’t even do that right and it’s not a battle of any sorts. We have an airforce and army there only for show. One apparently only there to make the world look at us with even more disdain than before. Because of the head idiot being inaugurated again today, the whole of Pretoria has basically been cordoned off. Why they have to make such a big hoo haa about it I have no idea. You switch on the radio and it’s being broadcasted live. So I can’t listen to tunes because the idiot is important.

I did not vote for you. You are not what I would choose for a garden guy let alone a president of my country. I have no choice in the matter however. I have to live here. I have nowhere else to go to. And I very much resent the fact that when people hear I come from South Africa they look at me with sympathy in their eyes, followed by laughter and ridicule.

We went from a first world country to a badly off third world country in a matter of years. We went from a place of order where things worked to a place where nothing works unless you line palms and pockets. Really wish I could run away somewhere.

Alas. I’m stuck here. All I can do is write about it when it gets to much.

Hope your Saturday is a good one.

 

Irritation.

I’m currently a sufferer.

Irritated at myself for allowing another person to steal my peace.

Irritated because I feel myself doubting the existence of love between a man and a woman.

Irritated because that seems to be all I can think of – truth be told, I wanted to make the heading of this post “You Bastard” but I refrained. Not his fault he’s just human. Apparently all mine because I’m not. And there I go again. That’s why I have no blogged – this is all I have in my head and until I can get that the hell out of my psyche I’ll be very poor company indeed.

came across these pics on FB tonight…

awesome life

I’m just finding it difficult to see the awesomeness even though I know it’s out there, somewhere.

 

destinations

 

How many difficult roads do I still have to travel? What lesson am I to learn from what keeps on happening over and over again other than the fact that I’m a useless human when it comes to romantic love? I am good with my hands, have a relatively good mind, good grasp of concepts, but I totally suck at relationships. I should stop bothering them.

victorious

 

 

No, I was not. I’m not quite victorious in the romance department though. Good with everything else, so I’m thinking one out of everything else ain’t bad.

Time for some tunes. Not slow, smooth, jazzy tunes. Loud, rocky tunes. But still good tunes nevertheless…Fits my mood – until we meet again, may you always find water and shade…

 

It’s the making…

…that counts.

Not the finishing so much.

Words I used in answer to Huntie’s comment on my previous post about Operation Chair.

I’ve ever been a crafter. Not a majorly artistic one, or even a very perfect one, but I have my core competencies as they say in the business world :-)

Now, going through yet another mortifying emotional experience, I thought it best to start a very ambitious project. It could look gorgeous, it could look disgusting. If the latter is true I would be very disappointed, but I’ll make another plan or start over again, or do something completely different. The main reason this project came into being was to help me deal with the emotional crapstorm I’m sitting with.

And that has been crafting’s saving grace in my life up till now.

At one stage I did papier mache – made all kinds of things. Shelves and clocks and dustbins – you name it, I tried my hand at it. With varying degrees of success, but some of those things are still being used in my house to this day. Things I made when I just moved into my house, and had to deal with children going away for the weekend or for the school holidays, leaving me at a very loose end, trying to make sense of what’s happening in my life.

I also have a doll’s house that I’ve been fiddling with for the past however many years. Making the little bits and pieces that makes a doll’s house what it is, has occupied many of my waking hours. Granted, not now so much as it has, but many people have asked me what I’m going to do with it once finished.

My answer has always been, that’s not the point. The point is never really in finishing it, although that is the end result. For me at least, it’s not so much about the finishing, the completing of the projects as it is for the healing that happens while I’m in the thick of things. To me, doing the handiwork that goes into a crafting project, getting dirty, figuring out ways to use your tools differently, making a plan where you only have the raw materials, that’s why I craft. Not to display my fortitude and perseverance.

Just to occupy my many solitary hours with something less destructive than parking off, watching TV, which is what I would have done had I not been a crafter.

Now, I still have many solitary hours. I fill them with a bit of reading here, a bit of internetting there, and a whole lot of crafting. And it’s helped me through many difficult times in my life. Seeing my creations come to life has given my life a kind of purpose. It always gives me a reason to go home, to try something new and unique.

That’s why I always tell anybody with some kind of emotional thing going on. Keep your hands busy. Sooner than you realise, your head would have worked through the drama on it’s own, leaving you, hopefully, whole and a bit more content, and you have something to wear or to hang on your wall – seems like a win win situation to me!!

Happy crafting ;-)