3

Struisbaai Easter Weekend

Struisbaai at Easter time becomes a hub of activity.  Our normally quiet little fishing village is suddenly alive with tourists and events.  On a normal weekend it’s busy enough for the peace-loving locals but at Easter the town explodes and there’s traffic on the normally car-empty roads.   The beach, which goes on for miles, is often empty of people on a normal day, but at on this weekend it’s the first place the visitors head to.

On Easter Saturday this is exactly what happened as it dawned bright and sunshiny after two days of cloud and rain.

The Earl, our grandson, Jay and friend, Ray were off to sea by 6:00 am.  They should have gone yesterday so we could have fish for Good Friday but the rain prevented that so we had to have our Good Friday on Saturday.

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Jay loves sharks!  He cuddled this dogfish and gave it a kiss before releasing it back into the sea.

The rest of the household rose from their slumbers a lot later and we headed to The Shed for the Food Market.   There were lots of goodies to eat but all we bought were some fresh veggies from the farmer’s stall.  We decided it best to go for a proper brekkie at Shipwreck Coffee Shop instead.

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My gorgeous girls at The Shed’s Food Market

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Me buying fresh produce for the weekend

Traffic on the main road was bumper to bumper.  The NSRI (National Sea Rescue Institute) were encouraging folk to part with R 10,00 to boost their coffers.  In return you got a marshmallow egg and a chance to photograph them and their vehicles.

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I gave them R10,00 – after all my men were out at sea!

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Rescue Boat

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On Standby

Josh and I walked to the area where the Land Rover Rally was happening.  We spent some time admiring the landies both ancient and new.  There were time trials too which were fun to watch.

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Land Rover Rally

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Registration Office

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A very old land rover

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Land Rover Passion starting young

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This one is 71 years old – I was told.

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Track Trial

After taking some interesting photographs we went for a long walk on the beach – well, I walked and took photographs and Josh ran on for about 3km.  I thought I’d missed his return but soon after I turned around he caught up with me.

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Somebody scrawled the date in the sand

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And declared her love for Daddy and family

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Abandoned Sandcastles

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Busy Beach

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Fishermen’s Paradise

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Watch out for the jellyfish!

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Most Beautiful Beach in the Country

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Josh running in bottom right corner

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Josh returning

We continued our walk along the boardwalk and as we approached the harbour, Lisa and Laurie waved to show they were there with the former’s friends, Margaret and Frans.   Their kids were having fun on the beach.  Spencer invited Josh to go out with him on the paddle skis.  He dashed home to change into his costume while the adults went to Pelicans for a drink.

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My girls and Margaret sharing a bottle of Pink

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Josh on paddle ski

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Josh and Spencer

While we were there we heard the whirring of a helicopter and observed it doing a practice rescue.  That was fun too.

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It was after three when we finally got back home and I started preparing for the fish supper.   I baked a lemon meringue for the first time in my life – and this was a Banting version that I got from a recipe book written by a local of the Overberg,  Madelè Burger.   Her book is called “Hier’s Die Toortsie Weer”  You can see her blog Here   Her posts are mainly in Afrikaans but there are some in English too.   I am pleased to report that it turned out pretty well.  Not a crumb was left after our dinner. I also used her recipes to make a creamy eggplant dish and a butternut salad.

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Busy in the kitchen

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And it’s done!

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Creamy Eggplant Dish

The fishermen returned at 5 pm, sunburned, tired but happy after catching enough fish to feed eight of us for dinner.   There is nothing to beat eating fish fresh from the sea.

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The Earl cleaning fish

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Josh helping the Earl wrap potatoes for the Weber

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Fish cooked and ready to serve

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Rewards of a day at sea and on the beach –  Weber cooked fish for eight!

 

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5

The 2018 Two Oceans Marlin Tournament

The annual Two Oceans Marlin Tournament took place in Struisbaai between 12 and 18 February 2018.  As always the success of  a tournament such as this is weather dependent.   The boats might or might not land a marlin so to make the competition more interesting prizes for the heaviest bi-catch would be awarded.

Twenty Five boats from all over the country took part.   Each team was presented with a goody bag at the opening function on Sunday 11 February.

I tried to get as many photographs of the boats as I could but some came in too late and some stayed out overnight. Apologies to those who have been left out!

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The competitors only got to sea three out of the six days due to poor weather and sea conditions.  However, nothing dampened their spirits and there was a great deal of camaraderie and catching up with old friends.

And as boys will be boys there was some mischief afoot and the deviants had to ‘pay’ for their misdemeanours.  Each evening the ‘wrongdoer’ would be named and shamed and called the ‘idiot of the day.’  He would then be subjected to the snuff sniffing punishment followed by downing of a shooter.  A fine was also levied upon him!

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Preparing for the snuff sniff – a hammer will strike the contraption and snuff will go up the nose – Close your eyes as it can really sting!

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You were warned!

Over the six days there were several ‘idiots’ who gave everybody else a good laugh and were great sports about the resultant ragging.

Thanks to Marinda and her team, the most amazing meals were provided to all involved in the tournament.   The incredible bar assistants also kept their sense of humour and managed the demanding masses with smiles and kindness. Thanks too, to Elsa for all the record keeping.

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Marinda and team

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Bar attendants

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Elsa our very efficient Club Secretary receiving a bouquet from Club Captain – Hubert

Each evening there was something different happening.   On the auction night, money was raised for a past member’s deceased estate, The NSRI and Suidpunt Deep Sea Angling Club.  Thanks to all who made such generous bids on the rods, reels, wines and Garmin watches.

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Making a bid

Everyone was supposed to dress up for the Hawaii Evening and some did. However, Kosie was the outright winner in his amazing outfit.

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He also joined in the spirit of the evening when the dancing girls appeared.

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All good things come to an end and after a great week of fun and fishing the prizes were handed out on Saturday evening.   The Marlin trophy was unfortunately not won but thanks to the incredible sponsors everyone got prizes for their participation, their by catch or team spirit.   Well done to all the fishermen for going out there and trying to hook a big one!

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Prizes were presented as follows:

Andre Swart – Kind of Magic – 10 Year participation in The Two Oceans Marlin Tournament

Met Eish – Last Year’s 10 Year Trophy

Tony Dalton – Camaraderie Trophy

Certificates were presented  to:

Trevor Brinch vir sy volgehoue ondersteuning en werk om see veiligheid te handhaaf. (for his continuous support and work in maintaining safety at sea.)

Davy Schemuder for  “dedication and hard work towards safety at sea”

Prizes were awared to:

Bi Catch First Prize – Piet Steyn Marias  from Multi – vir ‘n Geelvin Tuna van 14.93kg.   (An Arniston Voucher plus some oil)

Bi Catch Second Prize – ET – Kuduro – Geelvin Tuna – 11.16kg (Black Oystercatcher Voucher and Oil)

Bi Catch Third Prize – Kobin Koch – True North – Geelstert van 7.45kg (Malgas Hotel Voucher and Oil)

Sunseeker II – Five strikes and 1 Hookup (Big Catch Voucher  + Cooler Box)

John Graeme – Hook Up – (Big Catch Voucher  and cooler Box)

Hard Luck Prize to Gareth – Team Tyler for out of Comp Fish (Voucher)

Hard Luck Prize to Koos Pretorious – Team Osprey for 1 recorded strike and 1 out of comp striped Marlin. (Big Catch Voucher)

Best Spirit prize of the book Rugby Vasvrae  – awarded to Team Capetonian, Team Kuduro and Jac van Niekerk, Dudley Rosslee, Bruce – D’Stress and Team Catitude.

Without the following sponsors The Two Oceans Marlin Tournament would not be possible. A Huge Thank you to them all.

  • Robertson’s Toyota
  • Raymarine Navionics
  • Garmin SA
  • Tiletoria
  • FPM
  • SQM
  • Aarbeidsvreugd/Unifruit
  • Simrad
  • Penn Fishing
  • Arniston Hotel
  • Realty 1 Agulhas
  • Addis
  • Big Catch
  • Big T Lures
  • Black Oyster Catcher
  • Breco Seafoods
  • Caltex Struisbaai
  • Coke
  • Cornelis Ham
  • Distell
  • Henk Aggenbach
  • Andrew van Zyl
  • Lourens Odendaal
  • Malagas Hotel
  • Maxel Reels
  • Seaport Supplies
  • Ski Boat Magazine
  • South Sea Suzuki
  • Suidpunt Marine
  • Van Loveren Family Wines
  • Zulu Overland
  • Viljoensdrift
  • Airwise
  • B&D Tegniese Dienste
  • Bon Courage Wine Estate
  • Build It Franschoek
  • Certainty Charters
  • Dirk Odendaal
  • Glenwood Wines
  • Rising Wave Accommodation
  • Johan en Elizna Theunissen
  • OK Grocer Struisbaai
  • Paul van Niekerk
0

Share Your World 30 October 2017

Here is my contribution to this week’s Share Your World from Cee

Where do you eat breakfast?

Funny you should ask, because this is my favourite meal of the day and it is usually quite an elaborate affair.  I seldom eat breakfast in bed.  I like to be up and dressed and seated at the table.  Usually my darling husband cooks it for me, at least twice weekly we go to our favourite coffee shop where they don’t even ask what we want as the just know, and on rare occasions I am the chef.   Properly brewed coffee is essential and no matter where I am the quality of the breakfast is greatly influenced by the quality of the coffee! If the weather is good I like it al fresco, if it’s in a cold place a roaring fire helps otherwise a lovely ambience indoors will do.

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Typical Shipwreck Coffee Shop Breakfast – Fried eggs, bacon, cheese grillers tomato and coffee

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Scrambled Eggs Al Fresco at my garden picnic table

 

 

Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want have a evening with?

My ideal evening is in the bush with friends who enjoy it as much as I do.  There is nothing to beat, sitting outside your caravan, watching the flaming sun sink beneath the horizon,  listening the sounds of the wild, glass of wine in hand exchanging stories about the day’s adventures.  Priceless!

094 Polentswa at the table

My fantasy companion would be Sir David Attenborough because I would love to chat to him about his lifetime of doing wildlife documentaries.  What a fascinating life he has had.  How lucky we are to be able to spend any number of evenings watching said documentaries!

If you could be a tree or plant, what would you be? 

I would choose to be a Baobab Tree.  She is the queen of trees. You cannot miss her standing proud on the African Savannah demanding to be admired.   Not only would I be a wonderful sight to behold I would also be permanently among the wildlife that I love so much and I would be a great asset to their lives. Because the baobab has many useful properties, it is widely known as the Tree of Life.  How wonderful to be a Life-giving Tree.

Baobab products are useful to mankind as among other stuff soap, rubber, glue, traditional medicine and cream of tartar are made from their products.  But best of all it creates it’s own ecosystem and provides food and shelter for animals, birds and insects.

It is a deciduous tree so during the dry winters it has no leaves and its bare branches look like roots  hence it’s nickname – the upside down tree.

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In Winter it is The Upside Down Tree

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In Summer It dons it’s leafy finery

 

 

What inspired you or what did you appreciate this past week?  Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination. 

The Earl and I left Struisbaai at 6 am this morning and considering the state of his health one year ago I appreciate how fit and well his is now.   He coped well with the driving and we made sure to stop frequently.  We are overnighting in Middelburg in the Eastern Cape and will do another day’s drive to Kokstad tomorrow.  This is the start of a three month trip away and I will be blogging about our adventures as often as I can during this time.

story teller

6

Right Place, Right Time

The Earl and I needed to see our accountant in Stellenbosch last Friday.  Not wanting to do an overnighter we set off bright and early on the two and half hour drive that would get us our appointment on time.   As luck would have it the Rapport Holiday Show started in Stellenbosch that day too. We’re having a caravan built by Gecko in Haenertsburg and as they had a stand at the show we thought it might be a good idea to check it out and see if there was anything else we needed while there.

It was almost midday by the time we got to the show and  all we’d consumed was a good cup of coffee offered to us by the accountant.   We chatted to Keith and Alison, took some measurements, ordered an aircon and a storage bag and then headed off to look for food.  Well foolishly we’d come without cash and the food vendors didn’t have card facilities so we decided to head back home with the intention of stopping in Franschoek for lunch.

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This is what I caravan kitchen will look like

Did I mention it was a beautiful day and the drive there and back over the mountain passes was stunning.

Franschhoek is an hour’s drive from Stellenbosch and we were listening to Pippa Hudson on Cape Talk as we drove.   I was getting hungrier and hungrier and then she interviewed Pieter de Villiers – a local chocolate maker!  Pippa – please – I was drooling!   I had never heard of de Villiers chocolate and it is only available from certain Woolworths outlets or his own chocolate cafes.   Living in Struisbaai I would not have easy access to this delicious sounding chocolate – Probably just as well as I am a Banter and only occasionally eat 70% dark chocolate – But ooh I was dying for some as I listened to this mouth watering interview.

Pieter only uses UTZ certified cocoa beans grown in Africa. UTZ certified stands for sustainable farming and better opportunities for farmers, their families and our planet.

Everything is made from scratch – from sourcing and roasting their own cocoa and coffee beans, to making their own ice cream and a wide selection of confections.   His wrappers are also very special and have an African look.

We were five minutes away from Franschhoek when the interview ended and we’d discovered that there just happened to be a De Villiers Chocolate cafe in town!

I said to Earl, “I’m having lunch at De Villiers Chocolate Café.”

“You can’t!” he said  “You’re banting.”

“So what,” I said “This is serendipitous. I am meant to have chocolate today. I need chocolate today.   Why else would I hear this interview just as I’m entering a place where that cafe is calling to me.”

Well of course I didn’t exactly have lunch at the café – we first dined at MC, googled the address of the café and then went there for coffee.  My two favourite things in life – coffee and chocolate.  Preferably together.

Lunch at MC for Earl was springbok pie and Eggs Benedict for me – the Banting version.

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Franschoek is the prettiest town in South Africa and has wonderful eateries

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The cafe where you can taste before you buy

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The patio area

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Coffee for me, ice cream for The Earl, and all the ‘lekkergoed’ we bought

The coffee was excellent, the ice cream delicious and I walked away with a packet of drinking chocolate, three slabs of 70% chocolate – the cinnamon and chili is to die for – and two bars of chocolate nougat.

Yes I was certainly in exactly the right place at the right time.

De Villiers Chocolate

1

Cape Agulhas Presents Its Best Face For Kokstad Junior School

Today it was our privilege to meet up with our grandson Simon when his school tour stopped to visit the Southern Tip of Africa.  The teacher in charge alerted our daughter to the time they would be coming through Bredasdorp, she alerted us and then we timed it just right to meet them coming through Struisbaai.

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Here they come – a very excited granny takes the photo!

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A close up and then they all pulled over so we could say hi to Simon

After an initial big hello to Simon our grandson, Aiden our great nephew and Robyn, daughter of our kids’ best friends, we followed them to Cape Agulhas

The Kokstad Junior Grade Six classes were two weeks into a three week tour takes them from Kokstad to Cape Town and back.   En route they stop at interesting places and it forms part of their Life Skills programme.   It’s epic and hats off to the teachers and helpers who take these sixty-eight lively pre-teens on such an amazing, educational tour.

The kids are exceptionally well-behaved.   On this trip they’re divided into groups and have chores and responsibilities that are character building. Many have never been away from their protective parents before and so this is a huge learning curve for them.

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There are developments afoot at the Southern Tip and road works meant a little wait before entering the car park.

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The controlled but excited group getting ready to do the touristy thing at the southern tip

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Our gorgeous Robyn Baker

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Si-Si pretending not to be embarrassed by his grandparents attention

There were some other tourists at the view point but being a Monday the kids had the place virtually to themselves.

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Aiden

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Robyn with her group

The kids were given relative freedom to explore after the compulsory photographs had been taken.

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Robin and her group at the Southern Tip of Africa

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Simon waiting his turn

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Simon and Aiden’s Group

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Michele’s group

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Simon playing a stone kicking game with his friend – BOYS!

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A lot of fun was had throwing pebbles into the rock pools

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Collecting rocks and exporing the rock pools was also fun

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Where’s your rod Simon?

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Not today, Gran – I want to see how far I can skim this stone!

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That’s a good bowling arm he has there!

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Robyn rock hopping with her friends

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Smiling for Mom and Dad

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Hand away from face please Rob – Nice one of your friend though!

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Thank you, that’s better

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Aiden and his gang of rock exploring friends

The kids have been to Robben Island, The Science Museum, Cape Point and other wonderful places.  I asked Simon what his favourite part has been so far – first he said that he liked the movies at Somerset Mall!  Then his friend, Liam, said The Science Museum and his eyes lit up and he said – Yes definitely that!   One lad said he liked Robben Island but – Too much history!  I think it was all too confusing for him.

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The whistle blew – time to go

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Liam (I think) and Simon

What a great morning – the weather cooperated, the kids were delightful and we enjoyed our interaction with them all.   Bon Voyage for the next week, Kokstad Junior – Grade 6 and Teachers!  Thank you for letting us join you for the morning.

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The Famous Agulhas Lighthouse

 

 

 

 

3

Share Your World 3 July 2017

Happy Independence Day to all Americans reading this blog today – 2017/07/04.

Here are my answers to Cee’s Share Your World 3 July 2017

For your main meal do you prefer sweet and sour, hot and spicy, spicy and sweet, bitter, salty, bland or other?

I love food and as long as my meal is High Fat Low Carbohydrate, I tuck in with relish.  I enjoy most cuisines.  For our main meal we are pretty basic – meat, fish or poultry, sweet potato, vegetables and/or salad.  The South African braai features at least three times a week.  We also cook in a kettle braai.   I enjoy Greek and Italian food, curries and sushi.   When I’m in a foreign country I eat what the locals eat while still trying to avoid too many carbohydrates.

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The coals are ready – the fish goes onto the grid

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The end result

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My friend Willie even ate the eye – we’re funny that way in South Africa – well some of us!

Where do you hide junk when people come over?

A great deal of junk was disposed of during THE GREAT MOVE.    Still some was brought to Struisbaai with us.  Some is stored in the garden shed. The photographs, Video Tapes and CDs are in the spare room cupboards waiting patiently to be sorted.  One day …….

Otherwise the entertaining area is okay – not perfect but the guests just have to turn a blind eye.

What daily habit would you like to introduce to your life?

I’ve stuck to good daily habits my whole life.  I’m giving them up now!  I do like to take a daily walk but when it’s cold I think – what the heck!

No seriously – I need to sort out the stored junk – so perhaps half an hour a day?

If you were to perform in the circus, what would you do?  

I would only work in a circus that excluded animal acts. Animals belong in The Wild. I enjoy watching trapeze artists, tightrope walkers and acrobats.  The trapeze is probably what I’d like to do but it’s a bit late to start that now!

Optional Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

The last two weeks have been tough.  After two months in hospital my beloved aunt was finally diagnosed to have inoperable cancer and two weeks later, on Sunday, she died.  I am grateful for the care she received from family, friends and hospital staff and that her suffering did not drag on.  I am also grateful for the happy times we had spent together.  May she Rest in Peace.

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Leonie and Me on the last holiday we shared – Tasmania 2013

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Photo of the Week 15 June 2017

This week’s challenge for Photo of the Week is Ships and Boats

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Tall Ship in Sydney Harbour

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Meisho Maru – Japanese fishing boat wrecked near Cape Agulhas, Western Cape South Africa

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My husband’s ski-boat, Kiora – Struisbaai Harbour, Western Cape South Africa

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Rowboats on the hard at Struisbaai Harbour

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Narrow Boat on a waterway in Hertfordshire, England