Miss Molly

Miss Molly, though a little overweight, is a handsome beast. Within the parameters of her species, one might add. Dogs and cats are lovely companions and so are steady friends. Pete and Toets are relations and such friends and when they invited us the other Sunday for a meal, we used the opportunity to capture …

A general Consensus about Grandparents

Nikki wasn’t too pleased with this addition to her pool early in the morning. Cute as the sight might be – proud parents presenting their off-spring to the world – Egyptian geese are great grazers and subsequently poop a lot like cows in a meadow – and would eventually have to be herded to find …

A week’s parenting in Hout Bay

A pair of peacocks – extended part of the family.   Our parenting days are well behind us, but every now and then we do a run of acting in loco parentis – and we always enjoy such occasions whenever and where ever they occur – in France, Germany or like now in Hout Bay. It makes us …

A case of burnout – reading Kafka’s “The Metamorphosis” (Die Verwandlung)

Kafka’s third book, The Metamorphosis. The first edition, 1916. The cover illustration is a lithograph by Ottomar Starke. (www.kafka-franz.com)   Franz Kafka (1883-1924) in 1912 wrote his story “Die Verwandlung” (The transformation or, as it has become known in the English speaking world: “The Metamorphosis”). The story is conventionally read as a story about an overworked …

In our Father’s Garden – under the Pepper Tree

Our friends from France – Eliane and Arlette together with her husband Richard – are on a nostalgic journey to places in Lesotho where they were born and grew up as children of Missionaries of the Paris Evangelical Missionary Society, today called Lesotho Evangelical Church – the second largest faith group in Lesotho after the …

Domestic Goddesses – a Foodie Blog of Note!

Named, for family reasons, after St. Thekla – a 1st century Saint and convert to St. Paul himself – our Thekla has, we feel, many characteristics in common with her saintly namesake. Passion, commitment, fascination, open-mindedness, intellectual engagement, charm and enduring humour are some of these qualities. Most saintly, probably is that she is a …

A summer’s day walk-about in Kalk Bay

Kris, Anni and Leo are visiting us for a month and what better occasion than to use Valentine’s day to do an outing from Hout Bay via Chapman’s Peak to Simon’s Town along the coast to Kalk Bay. The weather was perfect, the mood festive and Leo, the little fellow all bright-eyed filled with curiosity. In …

Return to Dorp Street

With Dirki and his Katie Jane back in the country for a good long spell, last Monday the opportunity presented itself to have a picnic in the garden of our Dorp Street home which is presently leased to Retha and her little daughter Rood. Dirki wanted to show Katie Jane around Stellenbosch, his old stamping …

A Christmas Story

A CHRISTMAS STORY for all our dear ones! Yesterday, the 21st of December, the day before the shortest night of the year, we had to phone the glazier about some panes of glass. The man, Johan Cloete, who we did not know, told us, exuberantly that he had just finished loading 500 panes of security …

Thekla and Adam

Adam and Thekla decided on a very private wedding ceremony at their home in Observatory and an opportunity for family and friends to congratulate them at her sister’s home in Hout Bay. Nothing fancy – a glass of MCC (The Cape’s version of Champagne – as good as the real stuff), bread, dips and cheeses. …

Alpacas at Helderstroom

Colleen had diarized the Villiersdorp Alpaca Open Day on Sunday. A good opportunity to give Michaelene and Gary an outing and for ourselves an excuse for a little excursion into the countryside. Alpacas are considerably smaller than llamas and were bred for their wool whereas the llamas served as beasts of burden. However, “Llamas, along …

Summertime – at long last!

What a wonderful weekend we have had, busy but so very enjoyable. Summertime – at long last! Michaelene, Colleen’s goddaughter and her boyfriend Gary, both cerebral palsied, flying in from Jo’burg for their annual holiday with us and Thekla and Adam giving us a midday treat at Casparus. This stretch of beach will soon be inundated …

A country baptism

Percy and June had asked us to be present at the baptism of their first-born son to be christened in the community hall on the Sutherland Trust Farm in Elgin, a major farming community in the Western Cape. The child is baptized with olive oil. We enjoyed this lively event of a charismatic baptism in …

Pióbesi Torinese – a visit in Piedmont

We were invited by the family of Barbara and Filippo Gautier di Confiengo to spend a weekend with them together with Dirki and Katie in their home in Piedmont. Dirki had formed a close friendship with their son Carlo. Last year, in a freak accident Carlo fell to his death. Since then Dirki has become …

Conspiracy of silence

Colleen went to her book club this morning presenting among others a book she was reticent to introduce because of its sordid content. Yet, she thought and said it was important to take note of a book that is out there, published by a reputable company, about abuse in marriage. And the courage of the …

Isabella

Ferdinand II of Aragon (1452-1516) and Isabella of Castile (22 April 1451-1504) Isabella Maria was born 29 April 2011 to Carmen and Gunther and if you look at her she has all the makings of a queen of kinds. Isabella Maria, our grand niece – commanding but fair and farsighted – born on the feast …

Bipolarity

Bipolarity is another name for a condition that has been with mankind since we left the tree-scape, entered the land-scape and began to roam the world.   It is a name for a condition within the conditio humana we all are subjected to and most of us have more or less under control.   It …

Mother’s Day

Thekla and Adam had a wonderful surprise in store for their mothers in Betty’s Bay. First, a long lay-in with coffee in bed. Then a super breakfast accompanied with a reading of a text they both had composed for the occasion and after breakfast a foot and hand massage! Here is the text wich they …

Ageing – not for sissies

“Getting old is not for the faint-hearted!” Sybil used to say. How true is that?! As a parent when your children do not ask you for advice any longer but instead are offering advice to you, that is when you notice you have grown old enough to be on the way out. “On the way …

The Nemo Tank

Our grandchildren were on holiday and we took them to the Two Oceans Aquarium at Cape Town’s Waterfront. Milling around with lots of other kids at 15h00 we had the good fortune to be at the tank side amphitheater to watch the feeding of rays and sea turtles. Feeding the sea turtles involved a bit …

A Christmas Carol

Carol singing at Christmas time in Europe is such a wonderful tradition which goes hand in hand with drifting snowflakes, early darkening afternoons, Christmas markets and brightly lit streets and people drifting into churches looking to re-live the feeling of Christmas they remember to have had when they were children. And that is good and …

Sweet Dreams – a home in Hout Bay

Nikki and Bob’s home in Hout Bay where we are staying with Michaelene & Gary for the next while – one aspect of it. It is a home of sumptuous proportions on three levels. This is what you see on entering level two – what would normally be the ground floor which here is substantially …

Cerebrally Palsied

The wind is hassling us with speeds of 40 to 45 kms/h drying the soil out; the plants are stressing. So are the humans. The air is charged and tempers flare up in a moment, but also die down just as easily Michaelene and Gary, our cerebrally palsied niece and her boyfriend were stuck on …

Christmas 2010

Adam and Tex are with us today. It’s always fun to have them around with their fresh and exciting ideas and their little love squabbles. Wrapping up and preparing the house in Betties to make it good for Dirki, Luke and Katy to enjoy who will be visiting from the middle of December for a …