1

If we were having coffee

This challenge is hosted by Nerd in the Brain

I have a specific person in mind as I write my post.

If we were having coffee together it would probably be before breakfast at our favourite restaurant, Bistro Sixteen82, overlooking the vineyards. The weather would be sunny and we’d choose to sit close to the open sliding doors.   I would say, Isn’t it a perfectly gorgeous morning and you would agree.  Or that was how it used to be before you went away.

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Bistro Sixteen82

If we could have coffee now because you came to visit, I would take you to Shipwreck Coffee Shop here in Struisbaai.  It’s not as fancy as The Bistro but I’d tell you that here you can get the best cappuccino outside of Italy.  I would have loved you to join my friend Meg and me there yesterday – but maybe one day soon …….

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Best breakfasts, Americanos and Cappuccinos ever

We’d sit beneath the umbrellas and smile at the sunny weather.   We’d sip our coffees while we waited for our breakfast or perhaps a slice of chocolate cake.

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You’d say – “So are you happy here in Struisbaai?”  but of course you’d know the answer to be yes.  And I would say and how is Perth?  And you would tell me all the news of Margo and her kids and Robert and his and how you try to get to see them as much as you can between juggling your teaching and keeping your pretty new home and garden ship shape.  And I would say how I’d love to come and visit.  You’d tell me that would be great but we would not be able to go out for coffee because it’s so expensive in Australia so you would make if for me yourself and I would assure you that would be just great.

If we were having coffee together we would reminisce about the wonderful weekend we had here in Struisbaai five years ago – just us five girls.  We’d remind each other of what we did and where we went and how much fun we had fighting over who would get that scarf from Potpourri.

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And you would say that every time you look at the paintings you bought you think of us.

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And I would say how much we miss you and that I admired you for uprooting yourself to be close to your kids and grandkids.  And you would say you miss us too and reassure me that even though it’s been hard you have enough part time teaching jobs and you’re doing fine. And I would say has it all been worth it and you would reply – “It has!”

And then Rachel would come and give us an omelette that rivals any that The Bistro could produce and we’d laugh and chat and enjoy our food and order another black coffee and cappuccino.

 

5

Share Your World 10 April 2017

Here are my answers to Share Your World 10 April 2017

Have you ever participated in a distance walking, swimming, running, or biking event? Tell your story.

My first fun run was 5 km which I ran with my friend Chantal (She features later in this post too) – I was in my forties and she was in her thirties.   Then in my fifties I ran an 8km fun run with my grandsons who were about 8 and 9 at the time.  They were both fun events but like Cee I was not ever a competitive runner but enjoyed jogging for exercise.   The last time I ran more than 1 km was when I was 60.   I’ve decided it’s time to slow down to a walk.

Name one thing not many people know about you.

My life is an open book.  Most of my friends have known me for a very long time and I can’t think of anything they might not know about me.  I lived in my home town most of my life before retiring to Struisbaai but some people may not know that from the age of 2 to 5 I lived in Johannesburg and started my formal schooling there.

What is your favorite flower?

My favourite flower is the South African National Flower – The Protea

Things I want to have in my home (paintings, hot tubs, book cases, big screen tv etc)

I am very happy with everything I have in my house (all of the above except the hot tub) l’d only change one thing – the floors.  I’d like either wood laminate flooring throughout or tiles that look like wood laminate.

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

As much as I love living here at the southern tip of Africa, I do miss my Cape Town friends and family.  So I’m always grateful when they come to visit for a few days.  After much re-scheduling Chantal and Jeremy made it here this past weekend.  How wonderful it was to have a good catch up and not have to try and get all the news in during a quick dinner date fitted in when we go to Cape Town.

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The placemats at Potpourri in Cape Agulhas suited each of us appropriately

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Chanty certaily loves her songs

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Translation for overseas readers – That what we have is enough!  Definitely The Earl’s Motto

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And everyone knows how much I love my coffee

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Jeremy wants all those gorgeous girls out there to know that he is taken!

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The sky was amazing at the Southern Tip on Sunday

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A yellow mongoose or six greeted us on the way to Arniston

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This morning we had breakfast at the harbour

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The gang waiting for service

Next week I am looking forward to Easter.  The kids will be coming in large numbers!

2

Delightful Weekend with Good Friends

We love having our Cape Town friends to visit us in Struisbaai from time to time and last weekend Tony and Sharon came up to spend Saturday and Sunday night with us.  The weather couldn’t have been nicer.

During our many years of friendship, Sharon and I have waked many miles together so it was great to have her company on my daily strolls.   Of course we did the mall, the harbour and the beach but on Sunday we headed toward Cape Agulhas where we planned to meet the guys for coffee at Potpourri.

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It’s compulsory to visit the harbour

We didn’t make it to Potpourri as we bumped into our mutual friend Sheryl who was working in the garden in front of her B&B.  She was delighted to see Sharon and invited us in for coffee. So we rang the guys to join us and spent a few hours with Sheryl and Alan instead

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Sheryl showed us round her beautiful B&B, Agulhas Ocean House

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Each room has stunning sea views

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The en suites are so luxurious

On Monday we drove to Arniston and looked for birds and wildlife on the way.

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We saw a few birds including blue crane, bokmakierie, pied starlings, sparrows and canaries but I’m always delighted to find the Denham’s Bustard

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Also a little bokkie resting in the veld.

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This rock kestrel at the car park overlooking Otter Beach

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View of Otter Beach

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Tony and Sharon enjoying the view

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It was an amazing day

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View from the deck of The Arniston Hotel

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The cake and coffee was to die for

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Not the Banting Diet!

Sadly our friends had to leave when we got back to Struisbaai but it was so good to spend those two days with them.

 

 

 

1

The All Coastal Bottom Fish Interprovincial Competition

The All Coastal Bottom Fish Interprovincial Competition was hosted by Suidpunt Deep Sea Angling Club at Struisbaai from Tuesday 21 March to Saturday 25 March 2017.   Thanks to Leander Wiit (Chairman of Western Provence Deep Sea Angling Association), DP Burger (Convener)  and Louis  Becker (Tournaments Officer) for their organisation of the event.

The three days fished were Wednesday, Thursday  and Friday.  Conditions were superb although the sea was quite rough on Thursday.

There were nine teams, namely

  • Western Province White – DP Burger (Captain) Iaan Viljoen and Gus Rautmann
  • Western Province Blue – Morne Marais (Captain) Ron Pennninkhof and Philip van der Walt
  • Western Province Juniors – Christof Dahl (Captain) Divan Burger and Karla Rautmann
  • Natal DSSA – Abed Khan (Captain) Heino Meyer and Timothy Munnick
  • Southern Cape White – Terry Terblanche (Captain) Koos Scholtz and Johan Crouse
  • Southern Cape Blue – Rod Kieser (Captain) Chris Schorn and Thys Uys
  • Eastern Province Black – Wayne Gerber (Captain) Christopher Gerber and Sheena Gerber
  • Eastern Province Red – Kevin Clark (Captain) Peter Dawson and Alie Matthysen
  • Border Deep Sea – Rory Leonard (Captain) Allan Ford and Everitt van Loggerenberg

Thanks to the skippers who put in their boats for this competition

  • Kitty Cat – Pietro Cutino
  • Haven – Colin Joubert
  • Sea Dodger – Roger Marais
  • Cavalier – Mark Truter
  • Men @ Work – Piet Wessels
  • GT – Patrick Christodoulou
  • Relentless – Daniel Hughes
  • S-Catman – Louis Bekker
  • King Fisher – Erik Dahl
All Coastal Boats

The boats used in the competition.  Thanks to the awesome skippers.

 

All the catering was done by Marinda de Kock and her team. All can attest to the superbness of the breakfasts, lunch boxes and dinners.

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A Delicious Spread at the Opening Function

The radio communications were ably controlled by Andrew Perris and assisted by Earl Fenwick who also took most of the photographs.

Thanks too, to the following people, Grant van der Westhuizen, Elize Beukes and Dick le Roux   for doing an awesome job as weigh masters at the scales, Mark Westhook for organising the bait and Louis Becker and Patrick Christodoulou for doing the scoring.

At the opening function it was great to see the teams dressed in their colours, newbies were capped and there was an auction to predict and ‘buy’ the winning teams.  He/she who predicted the first, second and third winners would win a handsome cash prize.

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Leander Wiit and Patrick Christodoulou with the newly capped WP Juniors – Divan Burger, Karla Rautmann and Christof Dahl

Launching time was 7:00 am which meant a chilly and early rising if you wanted to enjoy a good breakfast before setting off to nab your catch.  The aim was to get as many bottom species as possible.  They had to be measured, photographed and released. However, if it was a pending record fish it had to be brought to the scales to be weighed.   Yellowtail could be caught, kept and brought to the scales for points.

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Busy at the scales

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An awesome catch of yellowtail by Southern Cape White -Terry, Johan and Koos

The Gerber family – Eastern Province Black –  did exceptionally well and were a tough team to beat!

 

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Sheena Gerber achieved a SADSA Lady’s 6kg line class record with her beautiful yellowtail

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The only juniors fishing and didn’t they have an awesome time – not to mention a three day break from boring old school!

A special word of thanks is due to the skippers of GT, Cavalier and Haven for hosting the Juniors.  Thank you guys for your patience with and your guidance and support of these delightful youngsters.   Long may they continue with their passion for the sport.

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Christof Dahl holding his Red Stompneus which is a pending 6kg line class junior record.

It was a close competition and on Saturday all held a collective breath waiting to hear the final results at the prize-giving function.   Roger and Sonja Marais were particularly delighted to hear that Western Province Blue, the team they ‘bought’ were the winners!

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Sonja and Roger with the winning team!

 

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What an exceptional Eastern Province family in second place

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And Border came an awesome third

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Pietro Cutino (Kitty Cat) was the skipper in third place

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Colin Joubert (Haven) was placed second

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And the top skipper was Louis  Bekker (S-Catman)

And so ended another awesome Suidpunt Deep Sea angling event!

 

 

 

 

 

6

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.

4

Fishing and Fun in Struisbaai

Our daughter, Laurie, brought a group of friends to stay this past weekend.  What a great time we had with Cara and Shaun, Dylan and a young girl visiting from Turkey named Cansu – pronounced Yunsue.

They all drove up together after work on Friday evening and we met them at The Michael Collins for dinner.   The fun began from there and it was midnight before we got to bed.

In spite of this Dylan, Shaun and Earl were up bright and early and went out on Kiora to try their luck on the five and twelve mile banks.  And it all went well – more of that later.

We girls chilled a little longer in bed but when we arose Cansu cooked us a Turkish breakfast.  She heated olive oil in the pan, threw in chopped green peppers, tomato and garlic and fried them till soft then mixed in some eggs and then topped it with grated cheese and cooked it slowly.   We sat out at the picnic table and enjoyed this delicious feast.

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Breakfast was a Turkish Delight – Cansu and Cara

Our mission for the day was to show Cansu what the area had to offer so off we set to climb to the top of the Agulhas lighthouse.

 

Cara and Laurie stayed down below but I went up too. The last ladder that takes you to the top is the scariest of all.  You may only go up one at a time.  When I reached the top I found a mom and a very scared little girl refusing to go down.   I stopped to encourage her telling her the story of two other little ones I’d recently had in the tower who were just as terrified but very brave.  Just hold on tight and don’t let go and you will be fine, I said.  I think just hearing a voice other than her mom’s did the trick as the tears dried up and she went straight down.

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Dad and Little Sister were waiting to welcome her – what a brave girl!

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Cara and Laurie walking Caper the Daschund

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Magnificent View from up there

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Down the scary ladder she goes

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But she was not afraid

It is compulsory for every visitor who comes this far south to stand at the very tip of Africa.   As it was the weekend there were a number of visitors but the wait was not too long.

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In 982 a Japanese fishing boat, The Meisho Maru 38 wrecked at Cape Agulhas and can still be seen on the rocks today.  We took Cansu to see it.

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The rocks are rugged – you wouldn’t want to run aground here

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Cansu poses with the ill fated Meishu Maru

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The threatened Black Oystercatcher 

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Casper loves the beach

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Some fynbos

By this time we were all hanging out for a cup of coffee so the delightful gift shop, Potpourri, was our next port of call.  We sat outside as we had Casper and shared a scone – a first for Cansu.

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Potpourri

The boys, in the meantime, were having a great time at sea.  Soon after we got home, Earl called to say they were on their way in and they had fish for supper.

There was a lot of activity at the harbour and some fishermen were cleaning their catch and throwing the guts into the sea.  This attracted about ten stingrays into the shallows.

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A stingray swims in the clear water

These creatures have become very tame, will eat from a friendly hand and allow people to stroke them.  Cansu was fascinated. She kicked off her shoes and waded in.  One of the locals had bits of fish and was feeding them. He told her the stingray was pregnant.

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Getting close and personal with a ray

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“It feels like a jellyfish with fur,” she said

I yelled to Canu to watch the tail but I was on the jetty and she didn’t hear me.

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Ouch – the tail brushed against her leg

Cansu got a fright and there was a small graze on her leg which bled but there was no harm done – the spikes did not penetrate her skin and there was no swelling or pain afterwards.  We just treated her with Allergex ointment and she was fine.

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The Fishermen returning after a successful day at sea

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Shaun has a Santa and a Red Stompneus  Dylan has two Red Roman

Laurie made us a lovely spinach salad, Cara made garlic bread and new baby potatoes and Earl fried the fish – we had an amazing feast.

More of this lovely weekend to follow.

 

 

 

 

 

6

Struisbaai Marlin Competition 2017

Last week The Suidpunt Deep Sea Angling club once again hosted the Marlin Competition. This annual event is a great drawcard for deep sea anglers and a wonderful highlight on the Struisbaai calendar.  This year 27 teams from all over the country took part and the competition ran for six days of which only two were not fished due to poor conditions.

The club catered all meals for the teams and there was a wonderful vibe at the evening dinners.  Earl and I hosted Andrew, who was the communications officer and we were appointed the official photographers for the week!

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What a Spread

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Hardworking Girls behind the scenes

The rules of the competition were fairly complicated but this is how I understood them.  A marlin had to be landed, photographed, a DNA sample taken then released.  A video of the fish swimming away also had to be taken.   The angler/boat who caught the last fish would be declared the winner – this was so that their enthusiasm would last to the bitter end!

Three fish were landed.  Osprey caught the first, Woes Lekke the second and Salti the third.

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Crew from Woes Lekke with DNA Sample – second Marlin landed

On one of the evenings Andrew was the Auctioneer and some generous bids were made for the wines donated by some local estates.

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Wines on Auction

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Sold to that man over there

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Should we or shouldn’t we – they did

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A special wine bottled in honour of Shanga

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Shanga is Andrew’s dog who goes everywhere with him

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And what am I bid for last year’s banner?  Quite a lot it turned out and this year’s one went too.

The auction raised R39 000 for the club.  Thanks to all the bidders this will be put to good use a Suidpunt Deep Angling Club.

On Friday there was a pirate party at The Club which was great fun.  Earl and I were the judges and we found it difficult to choose so in the end gave one individual prize and one group prize.  There was no female prize and I was the only girl to dress up and the judge can’t win!

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Tattooed and scary?

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Captain Morgan ready to pillage

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Beware of this lot on a dark night

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The organisation of this event was mammoth.   The caterers did an amazing job and kept us all well fed.

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Hungry anglers enjoying the catering

Struisbaai, I think, thoroughly enjoyed having the anglers visit for a week and each afternoon the harour was a fun place to be as the boats returned from sea.

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The winning boat escorted in by the birds

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Feast from the fishermen

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No fighting please – there’s enough for everyone

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The Stingray will not be left out

 

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Second boat to land a Marlin

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Team Salti were the winners