Thursday, March 21, 2013

Family of Art


I really like this piece that David did yesterday ....


Acrylics on canvas board.
Not sure of dimensions but reasonable size  (Image is from a cellphone so not best quality).


Sunday, March 17, 2013

Some new abstract stuff

Edit to this post:
I'm revising the Beadlets painting a bit more and adding to it.  Will post it back up here when I've finished it properly.

The one below is hanging on the wall in our entrance hall, so won't be fiddling with this anymore.


Landscape -memories of Perth, Eastern Transvaal.






I have also put these on my abstract art blog.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Scubby Dubby Doo ...

Well I knew I should have not posted anything about my tendency to stuff things up that are electronic and that I don't have any issues with mechanical shit ... stoopid, stoopid ... (Bangs head against wall really hard)

Well I purchased the Subaru Forester, which was all fab and all ... yes?  James (the assistant manager of the garage where I bought it from) phoned me up on Tuesday morning to go and fetch it.  We get there (I went with lady of the house) and had to wait over an hour and a half - as it wasn't at the garage but was somewhere else (who knows where?).

Eventually get the car and drive off down the road.  Only to find when I change down from 3rd to 2nd to go round a corner, it stalled.   Thought maybe I had put it in wrong gear, cos not familiar with it ... but nope.  It continued to stall all the way home - didn't matter at what speed either - even on the highway, changing down from 5th to 4th, it stalled.  Coming into a roundabout and slowing down, it stalled.  Slowing down in traffic, it stalled.  Bloody nightmare bringing it home.  Lady of the house, at one point, was quite far in front of me and had pulled off into a lay-by waiting for me to catch up - I saw her and motioned for her to get into the road in front of me but she wasn't fast enough and I couldn't slow down, otherwise I would have stalled again - so she ended up behind me.  She kept giving me the thumbs up and thought I was being slow because I wasn't familiar with the car.   

Anyhoo, we get home and lady of the house also had a go driving it (after I recounted the sorry saga of how it was stalling all the time) and she had the same problem.   Parked it in the driveway, which is where it stood.  Next morning, went out and it wouldn't start at all - battery dead.  So I phoned the garage and eventually the owner (another James but he's better looking) phoned me back and said that they'd sort it out.   James the Second (the person I bought the car from), had an abscess on his bum, so they were short staffed at the moment ... no, I kid you not.  I also tried my best not to laugh but the good-looking James was hosing himself while he was telling me the sorry story of James II's backside.   Oh well, maybe one of these days they'll come and sort it out ... I'm not holding my breath.  I have actually prepared myself for the fact that I might have to ask for my money back and buy something else that's entirely none-Subaru but which drives in a straight line without dying every time you change gear.   

Sunday, March 10, 2013

In cars ...

Several things I have to be glad about at the moment.  Number ONE being the fact that I've managed to buy myself a Subaru Forester.  (Must mention that this might not have happened without the help of a sizeable chunk of cash money, courtesy of my son-in-law).   The Scub's not  new - in fact, it's practically ready for retirement - 2002 model - but it looks very good, drives really well, is SUBARU and what more can I ask for?  I'm hoping to pick it up next week after it's had a service and been through the MOT.     It's surreal - to think that I've wanted a Scubby since about 2001.  Oh well, good things come to those who wait, hey?    When I have it in my sticky paws, I will take lots and lots of photos and bore everyone to death for at least another month - waxing on and on about how marvellous it is and taking pictures every time it farts.

The heroine in my (er ...unpublished)  'book' (or short story, depends on how you look at it and from what angle), drives a Scub Forester ... previously I had to rely on the guys at Ultimate Subaru in the US to help me with technical questions about what the vehicle could and couldn't do (with a winch) - well now I can sort of figure it out for myself.  I will be completely chuffed with my bad self after I get to grips with the AWD handle, which sits just aft of the gear stick.
I'm not the world's most technical person (cough, chokes up in her nose laughing) but once I've been shown how it's done (by a capable person who doesn't lecture and make me feel like a cretin) ... and I've had a go myself - then I'm okay.   I have to keep telling myself that I DID manage to negotiate a couple of stunts at the Grintek track in Pretoria all those years ago with the Scub Legacy - and that with a car full of passengers.  Electronic equipment does have a tendency to blow up near me but so far, I've been okay with the mechanical aspects of cars.  Hope this trend continues.  

The weather has turned quite bad lately - when we were going and coming back from the garage that's selling the Scubby - the roads were completely flooded in long stretches, it was quite scary making bow waves with the Ford ... then when we were on the highway, the snow started coming down in large drifts.   We passed two accidents (and one looked very serious) within the space of a couple of hundred metres.    Granddaughter is supposed to be going on a school field trip on Monday to Holt Hall, they are staying overnight and I really hope it won't be cancelled due to the weather, she will be completely devastated and so will we, cos so far it's cost quite a bit - what with the extra gear we had to purchase specially for this trip (orienteering and what not).

Oh well I've got to get back to editing another hour-long transcript I'm working on that has to be submitted by Tuesday's 12noon deadline.

Friday, March 8, 2013

For Mum


My mother would have been 89 next week (12th March).  Before I left South Africa,  Paul very kindly picked me up at the airport and drove me around, so I could take her ashes to the beach and sprinkle them over the sea- something she wanted.   I made light of the day and tried not to think about it at all afterwards.  Just another thing on my 'Leaving South Africa To Do' list that I could tick off.

Our cartage consignment will be arriving in April, I think and most of my personal boxes are filled with my mother's things.  So many other things of hers had to be disposed of before we left SA and I still feel guilty about that.   We sold or basically gave away so many things that she owned - basically a house full of clothing, books, records, furniture etc. etc.  It makes me very sad when I think about it and I have this stupid expectation that she will phone me and ask where such and such a thing is and what have I done with it?  

I have tried to hang on to some of the 'precious' things, things that have a value in monetary terms as well as sentimentally.  I keep seeing her little home back in Kidbrooke in my mind's eye and her opening the wooden doors to welcome me when I came for visits.  The smell of her hair, the way she hugged me, the smell of her home - always clean and neat and fresh.  So many things I remember about her, like she is still here, living and breathing in my life.   But she isn't, is she?  I remember sitting with her before we moved back to Gauteng, after I'd packed her house up in two days, drinking wine with her and joking about how her life was going to be in Jo'burg and how much fun we were going to have.   Two months later she was dead.    It was so wrong, she was taken away from me too soon.  I feel so guilty about that and I don't know why because I did nothing wrong.  I suppose I'll always feel like that.    

People always say when a loved one is close to death, that it is best if you can be with them at the end ... well it's NOT!   There is nothing on this planet more stressful than watching your mother die, listening to those final wracking breaths and knowing that you can do nothing to stop it.    She waited for me that day, she waited for me, so that I was with her when she went.   Sometimes, I wish she hadn't.

She's been dead three years on the 10th July this year - so much has happened since 2010.   Not a day goes by that I don’t want to phone her and tell her about something the kids did, or something I have done, or just general family news.   I can’t believe how much I miss you mum.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Jumping in to the UK workforce, boots and all

Well lady of the house has secured gainful employment - really pleased for her and a great achievement - only one interview and that's that.    She has secured a job in the centre of Norwich, working for an insurance company - completely new department, so she won't have to put up with tiresome biddies who have been working at the company for years and want to constantly boss her about (not that you can do that with her anyway but you know what I mean).   She will receive excellent training and at a later date, complete a course which will give her a recognised qualification in the financial advisory field.
Something she's wanted to do for a while.   Her horoscope said that she would start a new career this month and would have a meteoric rise to the top in super-fast time ... so that's also something to think about.    

Now all we have to do is get man of the house into some kind of paid employment and we will be 'a' for away.    

Went to the dentist yesterday and was told that I have an infection under one of my top teeth, so treatment is the first option, then once the inflammation is down, we are going to get the nerve deaded and removed.  If that doesn't work, then tooth will be yanked out.   I love dentists,  and don't mind having my teeth worked on at all.   I was really pleased when I came home yesterday (despite my curling mouth - I looked like a stroke victim for a couple of hours until the anaesthetic wore off).   The great thing, I always say, about going to the dentist is you go there in agony and come out with no pain.  Well yesterday that was the case up until 5pm, but then as the drugs started to wear off, the thundering pain returned and it's kept up a steady throb ever since.   I guess I need to give the penicillin chance to work (didn't have to pay for it - how's that?!) ... hopefully the infection will be gone by the start of next week, otherwise, I'm going to have to go back and ask her to pull the tooth - there's only so much of this crap that I can take.

My brother is settled in Hungary - after a 24 hour drive!  God, how awful.   But they arrived at midnight or so and the neighbours had lit fires for them in the lounge and bedroom - so the house was toasty.   They seem to be managing to settle in quite nicely in their 'new' home.  Their furniture arrived at 2am last Sunday morning.   

I've got some typing work to do over this weekend - so will do that on Sunday. 

I'm taking little missy into Norwich tomorrow on the bus (if the weather's nice) to pick out a present for her mum for mother's day - should be fun. 


Ancestry


My Granddad used to sing this to me ...


it's only starting to make sense now.