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Post a Day Weekly Photo Challenge Satisfaction

The theme for the  Weekly Photo Challenge is Satisfaction.

What a lovely prompt this week.   There are so many photos I could choose as I really find many things in my life satisfying. I’ve chosen a few that I think reflect the meaning of the word.

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My grandson – satisfied with his catch at Sani Valley Lodge, KZN

Me and My Girls

Surrounded by my last class of Grade Ones at the last day of school in my last year of teaching. Most satisfied that it was a good career.

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My Hubby – Content with his four grandchildren

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Satisfied with the retired lifestyle – caravanning at Ebb and Flow – Garden Route National Park Western Cape

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Share Your World 13 March 2017

Here are my answers t0 this weeks Cee’s Share Your World Challenge

Do you push the elevator button more than once?  Do you really believe it makes the elevator faster?

Where I live there are no elevators but when I’m in a place where there is one I only press once. If it takes too long I use the stairs.  It’s usually quicker to use the stairs and as I use a step counting watch it helps my totals. But there are times when going up and down stairs with packages or luggage is not very practical so the lift I will use.   I have a friend who avoids lifts at all costs as she is terrified of them. This is phobia that started when we were kids after watching a movie with a scary lift scene in it.

Do you plan out things usually or do you do them more spontaneous (for example if you are visiting a big city you don’t know?)

I do the initial planning for our major holidays – where we will stay, for how long and more or less what we would like to do while there.  But we are both spontaneous and would change plans at the drop of a hat.  Some of our local trips are decided today, leaving tomorrow.   Trips abroad can never be last minute as it takes time to get Visas and most countries require South Africans to have visitors’ visas  before entering their borders.  This takes time and is fairly expensive – so yes – planning is required well in advance.

Describe yourself in at least four uplifting words.

Loyal, Entertaining, Adventurous, Fun.

If you had a choice which would be your preference salt water beaches, fresh water lakes, ocean cruise, hot tub, ski resort or desert? 

All of the above.  I have lived near the sea most of my life and can’t imagine my permanent residence being anywhere else. I go to the beach almost daily, my hubby has a fishing boat, we like fresh fish – no – we could not live inland.

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Kiora is his pride and joy

Our holiday destinations often include a stay next to fresh water lakes or dams – you’ve guessed it – for freshwater fishing.   There is something about being next to a calm body of water that is calming – and I love it.

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Sani Valley Lodge at the foot of the Drakensberg Mountains

Pictured above is our favourite Freshwater venue – and there you might also find a hot tub!

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This one was meant for Granny and Grandpa but the kids decided it was theirs!

I went on a skiing holiday more than 20 years ago and loved it but it’s not top of my list anymore.

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The Earl and me about to embark on our first ski lesson – ski instructor on left

I’ve been on two short ocean cruises and thoroughly enjoyed them – but haven’t been tempted to make a habit of it – but now that I’m older I think it might be the best way to see Europe and so a big one is on our bucket list.

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On board the Achille Lauro – a four day cruise from Durban to Bazaruto Island and back.

The desert certainly has its own appeal – done it got the photos but not rushing to do it again.  However, I would encourage everyone to visit a desert at least once in their lives.  Our desert of choice is The Namib and it is awesome.

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Climbing a red dune is compulsory

The one thing not on this list is actually at the top of mine – The Bush!   I will never grow tired of visiting the wildest parts of Africa.   We had to cancel our Kruger National Park trip because the Earl was still recovering from surgery but it won’t be long before we’re back!

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Nothing beats coming across a scene like this

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or spending a few hours watching birds at Lake Panic

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

I am always grateful that I live where I do.   The weather is changing – it’s cooler in the mornings but I know we will never get the freezing temperatures I have  read other bloggers write about.   Most are welcoming the Spring and looking forward to being able to go into their gardens!  How lucky am I that this is possible for me throughofut the year.   I love Winter because the wind seldom blows and that when it’s not raining the days are sunny. I can still walk on the beach and only need to put on a fleece or a jacket.

I am looking forward to having friends to stay this weekend. Next week there is another fishing competition in Struisbaai – The Bottom Fish Nationals – and The Earl and I will be taking photographs for that.

Have a good week everyone.

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Struisbaai and The South League Competition

What a successful South League Off-shore competition it was for Team Kiora – Earl, Gus and Karla (10) and Team Red-Head – (Sam (18) Gareth (22 and Chris (Die ou man at 31)

They all had brilliant catches but Karla was the hands-down winner!   This amazing little girl who has been fishing with her dad since she was barely out of nappies caught two yellow-fin tuna 13,39kg each and two skipjack tuna, 4 Kob, 1 Santer and a red stump.

The men on Team Kiora caught a yellow-fin tuna each, Gus caught 2 skipjack and they each caught 5 Kob.

Team Red Head also did quite well with some yellowfin and red stump.

All the other teams did well too so it will be interesting to see the final results.

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Kiora coming onto the trailer – Struisbaai Harbour

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Karla at the weigh-in with her Yellowfin Tuna

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The smaller species count heavily towards points

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Quite a catch for a 10-year-old girl.  She beat all the participating junior boys!

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Team Red-Head – Sam (Skipper) Chris and Gareth

It was a rewarding day. But after the fun, the cleaning of the boats and fish as well as the cooking thereof must follow.   Karla was exhausted but she still willing did her share of the work.

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Still smiling while cleaning the fish

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Totally exhausted but still prepared to fry the delicious fresh fish

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Sam, Chris and Gareth ready to partake of a feast of fish

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Fishermen’s Friend, Andrew who mans the shore-based radio communications joined us for Earl’s famous fried fish

It was very late when everybody finally got to bed and I can assure you nobody was up with the early sparrows chirping outside my bedroom window!  We decided that cooking breakfast was not an option so instead we headed to Potpourri in Agulhas and enjoyed their delicious fare instead.

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It was way cooler outside than in and what a happy brekkie it was

 

 

 

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Birding on The Agulhas Plain and Fun with Friends

It was fairly windy on Wednesday so we did not expect to see many birds when we set off for a drive.  And, no we didn’t have record breaking sightings but still we enjoyed ourselves

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Roberts No 1 – Ostriches in the company of cattle egrets

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I am always happy to see our National Bird although this time they decided to keep their distance.

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Later in the day this Blue Crane posed obligingly

It was good to see a number of Steppe Buzzards on the telephone lines and also hunting in the farmlands.

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This was one of many that we saw on the ground

At lunch time we stopped at a farm called Nachtwacht which has a restaurant for fine diners.   As it was the middle of the week we found ourselves to be the only patrons there.  Nevertheless we were served with the most beautifully prepared rack of lamb served with mash and vegetables.  The service was friendly and the waiter treated us like Royalty. There was also an interesting art gallery in an old stable.

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Nachtwaght Restaurant between Bredasdorp and Arniston

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A fine place to dine

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The rack of lamb was stunning

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We found a Paradise Flycatcher in the garden

On the way home we found a troop of baboons who scarpered into the bush at our approach except for a few brave ones who obliged us with a photo shoot

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This little baby felt quite safe on Mommy’s back.

When we arrived home Earl discovered that his friend, Gareth from England had arrived in Struisbaai so he invited him for supper. We cooked a chicken in the Weber and had a very pleasant evening catching up.  The next morning Gareth came for breakfast before moving from his accommodation to stay with Clive who was down for the weekend.

There is a South League competition this weekend so quite a few Capetonians are here for the weekend.  Friends of ours from Aba Dabi are arrived on Thursday too.  Earl took Gareth around Struisbaai and Agulhas this morning and he was amazed to see how the place had grown since his last visit.   In the afternoon I went for a swim and met up with Clive and Gerald – another chap from the past!

We all got together for dinner at Seagulls.  What a great evening we had.

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Gareth and Clive enjoying their first pre-dinner beer

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Ray and Percilla 

Earl and Helen

Percilla’s photo of Earl and Me

Gus, Jacqui and Karla arrived for the competition after 8 last night having been held up by all the roadworks on the way.  We’d already had a lovely braai by the time the boys, Gareth, Sam and Chris arrived but they had stopped to eat at The Spur in Caledon.  They’d towed Sam’s new boat down.

This morning the fishermen and one fishergirl were up before five and ready to launch at 6.   Jacqui and I had a wonderful day to ourselves.  We walked down to the beach for a swim then went to Potpourri for breakfast.   It is now almost 4 o’clock and we have just heard the call for lines up on the radio.  We will soon be invaded by the gang and hopefully it will be fish for supper tonight!
Tomorrow I will publish the photographs.

 

 

 

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#NABLOPOMO 8 Life is Good

NABLOPOMO

It has been such a happy day today and it got me thinking about how lucky I have been in my life.  Even though there have been hard times and struggles and days where I’ve thought I can’t do this anymore. But looking back nothing seems bad at all. Everything seems so worthwhile.  Some things I used to stress over make me laugh now and I wonder why was I so fussed about it all!  I am talking about raising kids of course. All that nagging and training and insisting on good manners and responsible attitudes – I took it all so seriously.  That’s the great thing about being a grandparent – you’ve done it all and the kids turn out fine – well most of them do.  I do know the most amazing parents who did everything right who’ve had little demons that turned bad and I am not one to blame the parents – there comes a point where the child has to take responsibility for the path he chooses!  But when one’s child does make wrong choices in his adult life it is heart-breaking for the parent. How does one cope with that!  Tough Love – that’s how.  I strongly believe that you allow so much and no more. Let that adult child know – I’m here for you – but there are the rules.  Allowing them to abuse you is not love. Giving in to their demands is destructive to you both. It is hard but there comes a time when you have to let them go their own way and then to move on with your own life because usually you’re not the only one affected and you are needed by other people in your life too.

But I am so lucky – my daughters and granddaughter are perfect and my grandboys are getting there – hey – boys take a little longer.

I had a good giggle when I saw this on Facebook this morning – this could have been written by me!

Teach a man to fish

This has been the story of my life! But lucky for me my hubby catches the fish, cleans it and I don’t even have to cook it – he does that perfectly too. So he takes his rod and goes fishing and I take the gold card and go shopping!

Today was such a day – look at the happy faces of these two guys out on the boat.

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My hubby on the boat with his mate, Tommy

While this fishing excursion was on the go, I took Baby Daughter and Second Grandson out for a bonding breakfast.  I had not seen them in some time and had some catching up to do. I wanted First Grandson to come too but he was gamed out and sleeping it off so we left him at home. Hubby phoned to say he’d hooked enough food to feed half of African and that I should be sure to invite two couples over for dinner. Baby Daughter had plans for lunch so bade us farewell and off she went while Second Grandson and I finished the shopping – what a pleasure to have him as my assistant – he put all sorts of things in the basket that I might have forgotten – cupcakes being an example!  But seriously – having a 17 year old push the trolley, pack the car then unpack it is such a privilege and saves an old lady’s back.  And it’s all done with a smile.  Then as I was setting the table I knocked one of the candles of the chandelier with the tablecloth and it broke.  He rushed to my assistance and informed me that actually they were all dead and needed replacing – I wouldn’t have found this out till the evening – remember I’ve been away for 4 months!  And hooray we had enough replacement candles which he changed for me and helped give the dusty chandelier a clean!

First Grandson was gaming – again. “I don’t need to study, Gran, I know my Physics.” No arguments – I just switched off the internet and said, “Then get an A, boytjie – Study some more”  And he did!   When Grandpa got home he asked him all kinds of questions about his work which he ‘knew’ and now ‘knows’ better!  Yes I am a lucky gran!

Our guests arrived at 6:30 and what a great evening we had.  It’s so good to get together with wonderful friends who have always been around in good times and bad.   These are the kind of friends you hang onto forever.  Some people come into your lives for a season and a reason and sometimes you’ll see them again and sometimes not. If you do it’s great if you don’t you’ve valued the time you did have and no regrets – but then there are those with whom you have a real bond and that is what I appreciate about the friends we had this evening.  Always a  pleasure to be together.

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Enjoying the Braaied Yellowtail caught by Hubby

Oh yes – Life is Good – Very Good indeed.

And I’ve done this Blog 8 with two minutes to go before the end of this day!

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#NABLOPOMO 5 Angels at Sea

NABLOPOMO

A drabble tells a story in exactly 100 words. It can be used in poetry or prose. I wrote this one when my hubby nearly drowned after falling off the back of the boat on which he was fishing. 

Angels At Sea

He’s overboard in the icy choppiness of a darkening sea.  Crashing waves and roaring winds drown his cries for help. He gulps litres of ocean and begins to drown.  His finger’s broken; he can’t remove his sea-filled boots and soggy clothes but angels buoy him up.

At the harbour the skipper finds him gone.  Distraught he turns to search the wide, dark, sea. Angels guide him to his mate.

He smells the diesel, hears the engines’ chug and sees the bright search light.  Arms reach down and angels give them strength to yank him back aboard to fish another day.

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Struisbaai Holiday Day 18 New Year, New Personal Best, Die Mond Nature Reserve and Surfing

Last night our sleep was disturbed, not by the sound of loud music and party goers, but by the explosive sound of a fireworks display.  Lauren and Allan got up briefly to see the sky lit with flashes and stars but then went back to bed.  Lisa and Jay also woke up and Jay persuaded his mother to take him to the harbour to see what was going on.  Lisa put on a gown and drove to a spot where they could see the whole exciting welcome to 2013!

This morning I had to start the New Year off well.   My second oldest grandson, Joshua (14) – a good cross country runner – caught me up five minutes or so into my run and as his brother had done on Sunday encouraged me to increase my pace.   I felt really good this morning and got into a good rhythm.  I left home  between 7:07 and 7:08 and was back by 7:40.   I had knocked 6 minutes off the time I did on Sunday!   Later I drove the distance and found that I’d run 4.2 km.   I am now aiming to get to 5km before the holiday is over and to get my pace to over 9km per hour.   My goal is to run 5km in 30 minutes.

The weather since Christmas has not been as wonderful as it was before.  The wind simply does not want to go away!   It has not managed to spoil our fun but it would be nice to have a still day before the kids return to Kokstad.   Today we packed costumes, fishing rods and a picnic and made our way to De Mond Nature Reserve which is situated 26 km south-east of Bredasdorp on the south-western Cape coast. The reserve lies at the mouth of the Heuningnes River, between the coastal villages of Arniston and Struisbaai.

Entrance fee for non Wild Card holders is R40 each.  Thankfully the grandparents and grandchildren are all on our card so only Allan and Lauren needed to pay.   Because the lagoon is classed as sea fishing, the  licences were valid and there was no need to get fresh water permits.   The walk over the suspension bridge evoked a giggle or two and then we hiked along the river bank looking for a good spot to fish.

Crossing the Suspension Bridge

Crossing the Suspension Bridge

Grandpa and Simon stopped at a small bay while the rest of us continued until we found a suitable beach and settled ourselves to tan, bird watch and fish.  Gramps and Simon soon caught up and were soon joining Jay and Allan on the mud flats.

Simon Allan Grandpa

Simon Allan Grandpa

Jay knee deep

Jay knee deep

The bird life was interesting.  I found three species of plover, black oyster catchers, curlew sandpipers, swift tern, Kelp gulls and cormorants.  A flock of flamingos were at a distance at first and then obligingly flew toward our spot and settled right in front of us.

Sand plover

Sand plovers

Kittlitz's Plover

Kittlitz’s Plover

White-fronted plover

White-fronted plover

Flamingos and curlew sandpipers

Flamingos and curlew sandpipers

Swift Terns

Swift Terns

A flock of flying flamingos

A flock of flying flamingos

Greater Flamingos right in front of our spot

Greater Flamingos right in front of our spot

After a couple of hours fishing was abandoned as a fruitless task and we hiked back to the picnic site where we enjoyed our seed loaf and a variety of cheeses with tomato and lettuce or jam.   In spite of the windy and cool weather, nobody complained.  It was just great to be in a different place, to enjoy the scenery and each other’s company.

Hiking back

Hiking back

Enjoying a windy picnic

Enjoying a windy picnic

Simon, Jay and Josh travelled with Grandpa and me in the Fortuner while the others went on ahead in Allan’s car.   We took it slowly and enjoyed the roadside birds and animals.  We found a yellow mongoose, steenbok, Blue Crane, Yellow-billed kite and steppe buzzards as well as a number of small birds like red bishops, sparrows, wheatears etc.  I was ecstatic when Earl spotted two Denham’s bustards although they were too far for good photographs.  It was lovely to get one in the same frame as a steenbok.

Steenbok

Steenbok

Steenbok and Denham's Bustard

Steenbok and Denham’s Bustard

Denham's Bustard at a distance

Denham’s Bustard at a distance

Yellow-billed Kite

Steppe Buzzard

Yellow-billed kite

Yellow-billed kite

My exhausted younger grandsons fell asleep in the car

My exhausted younger grandsons fell asleep in the car

Later in the afternoon we took the kids to the beach to boogy board.  There were lots of kite surfers making the beach scene even more interesting.    The kids enjoyed the sea but after half an hour I couldn’t take the wind any more so walked home ahead of everyone else.

Wind surfer - Josh on wave in the foreground

Kite surfer – Josh on wave in the foreground

Shan in the foreground

Shan in the foreground

Earl had not accompanied us – but instead taken a nap.  When he woke up he braaied a yellow-tail – one he’d frozen from an earlier catch – not as nice as fresh from the sea but quite delicious nevertheless.  The kids re-kindled the fire after supper and toasted marshmallows – a great treat.