Wednesday, September 26, 2007

S'wow, its Cape Town!

So we made it! and guess what... the world didn't start turning!

Cape Town is another planet, the place looks modern and acts modern and has all the mod-cons you could desire, but the mind is still in some foggy romantic past. They hear the ring of swords on the beach, or the fire of muskets around Devils Peak, or perhaps the creak of wagons leaving for the Transvaal (the sigh of accompanying relief!). And everywhere people run...

Seriously, this town is really laid back. The people are like "morĂª is nog 'n dag"[Tomorrow's another day]. That's also another word that is liberally used... "like". As an adjective, an adverb and a noun??? Only in Cape Town ha-ha-ha! And everywhere people run..

How did we get here? (from the previous post)

Beaufort Wes - Leeu Gamka - Lainsburg - Matjiesfontein - Touwsrivier - De Doorns - Worcester(wine, rugby and visit!) - Paarl - Cape Town - Bantry Bay(phew... feet up, chill out Cape Town Style!)

And everywhere people are still running... From what? To where? Running from mortality, from their demons, from their clutter, from their black Beamer, from their inevitable flab... Running to their dreams, to their lovers, to their end? And everywhere they still run! I am exhausted!

Me, I just take the bus there and enjoy the ride!

Friday, September 21, 2007

The Road to Beaufort Wes

So the world stop turnning today...

We stepped into a time machine and travelled through history, Anglo Boer War battle sites rushed up on the left and and forgotten dorppies[1] crowded in on the right! Names like The Battle of Langberg, Magersfontein, Modderfontein and Belmont. Turn off's to Prieska, Koffiefontein and De Aar.

All part of a world, a reality, a time we usually read about or hear about. It was an adventure in the true sense of the word, new and wonderful experiences. Like washing down Springbok Pies covered in blatjang[2], with homemade Karoo Gemmerbier[3].

Rustenburg - Derby - Koster - Lictenburg(tea, visit) - Sannieshof - Delerayville - detour :( - Ottosdal - Wolmaransstad - Bloemhof - Christiana - Warrenton - Kimberly(rest, visit, sleep) - Hopetown - Britstown - Victoria Wes - Three Sisters - Beaufort Wes(sleep, now!)

The last 1200km's have whoosed by, and have included all the above and as a bonus catching up with Family in Lichtenburg & Kimberly along the way. Tomorrow promises more of the same, in fact better 'coz there will be the prospect of the Cape Fold Mnt's and the Atlantic Ocean, as well as more Family visits in Worcester. The Bokke[4] will not be in the pies either, they will be handing out some rugby lessons to Tonga in France :)

Check back soon for "The Gery Hornbills - Wine Tasters Guide to Cape Town"

Vocab for Non-South Africans!
[1] Dorppies - small towns
[2]Blatjang - chutney
[3]Gemmerbier - ginger beer
[4]Bokke - The Springbok Rugby Team (SA's National Team!)
Go Bokke!

Here are some scenes from the "back seat".

Monday, September 17, 2007

Imagine all the memories....

I am lost for words..I'm having unknown poetry in my head;lyrics to a lovely light tune.
It's something between 'Purple Rain' and 'Imagine'
Thinking about us.
Here's a few precious memories, I wonder if you remember....
The first movie we went to see together, with Julia Roberts in it.
John Lennon's 'Imagine' playing in the open-air restaurant we had dinner at.I think it was there I fell in love with you.
Or maybe it was at Paksa...when you looked at me incredulous while I explained some unexplainable thought in my head, having my samie behind my desk with you standing around.
Then again, it could have been when you vowed to go with me when I had this crazy idea to learn to play the Saxophone - I couldn't even blow the thing.
It wasn't really when we visited the Zoo, taking wine and holding hands, you telling me your friends called you Mc Guyther(you know I can't spell...) .But I did notice your legs that day in short for the first time.You looked so good.
Certainly it wasn't your purple volleyball tracksuit pants or the brick-coloured shirt you used to wear with the red jersey.
The wire-art mouse and bookmark you made me is still dear to me.
Your 'koets for a coach ' blunder on your first visit to my Afrikaans friends.They accepted you so unconditionally, I wasn't expecting that.
I don't know ! But I do know we have got what it takes to make many more memories for our golden days to be reminiscing on ,sitting in our Bosveld Pozzie , listening to the bush sounds and a humble fire and some red wine to complete the ambiance.
This is no poem or love letter . But it's in my heart right now.I Thank God for you,my tree
Happy Anniversary my Baby .

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Place of Wisdom

On a recent holiday, we went to Mapungubwe in the Limpopo Province, South Africa. Located 70km West from the Beitbridge Border Post(Zimbabwe South Africa), it's situated at the confluence of the Limpopo River and the Sashe River, where South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe meet. It's still a very wild and unspoilt part of Africa, just the place to unwind, smell and taste nature without the taint of industry, and to reconnect! It also claims to be where "Elephants Child" - Just So Stories, Rudyard Kipling (1902), got his trunk.

There are places around Mapungubwe that have a "just created" look, rough landscapes waiting for God's finishing touches. The quiet sky with grey winter clouds scudding across the sun, is only punctuated by the cries of Fish Eagles. Everywhere you look is an adventure and the African Veldt threatens to overpower your senses. There are glimpses of Eden, beckoning between the Fever Tree forests and on the Baobab covered Koppies[1], you are beset by God on all sides, to miss Him is impossible! Hmm, maybe I'm getting too poetic here, ha-ha-ha. The truth is, going over what I've written, evokes that same feeling I had when I was there, and this after all is what I want to get across.

The name Mapungubwe means "the Place of the Wisdom of the Stone". Now I totally respect other cultures beliefs and histories, so I will not try to comment that aspect of Mapungubwe, you can follow this link to find out those things from far more learned people than me :)
I did however, make my own small discovery. It's a discovery that goes on being discovered and the more I discover, the less I realise I know about it. Eish[2], now I've got you intrigued.

As I've said, to miss God in that unspoilt, uncomplicated place, is impossible. This is the Wisdom I discovered out there, we live our lives with so much clutter around us and in us, that we miss God. Yes we make an effort to be in contact with God through Church activity, Bible Study, Fellowship groups, Christian getaways, Literature and DVD's that we hope will strengthen our relationship with Him and a whole host more of "approved" Christan endeavours! But I fear that what we achieve most of the time is to change the clutter of the world for the clutter of the Church. Don't get me wrong, I do believe that much good comes from all the various Christian Pursuits of Happiness, but we have to learn that God wants us to seek Him first, and then He will add the rest!(Matt 6:33)

So I stop looking at, and dealing with, the clutter(of any nature) and let the Spirit open my eyes! I find myself at the Place of Wisdom, back at Mapungubwe, beset by God on all sides. And in the same way that Elephants Child got his trunk lengthened "on the banks of the Great grey-green greasy Limpopo River, all set about with Fever Trees", so too am I having my faith lengthened "at the feet of our Great Redeemer God, all set about with Angels". And I know now that I know so little, what's more, I rejoice in this because I see the beginning of Wisdom. Benjamin Franklin said "Life's Tragedy is that we get old to soon and wise too late." and so my prayer is that God willing I continue to discover His Wisdom, sooner rather than later.

At least this is what I strive to do, but often find that I have let the clutter back in (Rom 7:7-25) But that's a Post for another day!

Terminology for non-South Africans:
[1] Koppies - small hills, mesas, buttes
[2] Eish - an African expression of exasperation

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Opening Gambit

Kings pawn to E4!

Over the past few months I have felt increasingly challenged to "put my money where my mouth is!" Let me be clear that no-one has actually laid down the gauntlet as it were, rather I have been internally challenged. On the one hand there's my family, both immediate and extended(love you guys!), and on the other there's my friends, in particular the Bible Study Group that meets at my house on a Wednesday evening.

My wife, her sister and I've lost count of the rest of all the family members, have all started "Blogs" for various reasons, primarily I believe as a way of keeping our global family informed of each others plans, hopes, dreams, happenings etc. This has necessitated my wife to call on me for help with her Blog Post's, "how do i..." and "where do I..." and so on. Now I know nothing about Blogging or the tools used, but it's all fairly straight forward and if you can use MS Word then you should be okay in finding your way around a Blog Post. This said, I couldn't have been further from the truth it seems, things I take for granted as an "IT guy" are not as straight forward to the BPC group as some refer to them (the Before PCs Group)...

Add to this the fact that I have been reminded over the past few weeks that one of the easiest ways to strengthen your Faith is to keep a record of all the "tests of faith" that you've been through and how you fared in them, more importantly what God has done in your life through those tests. We're doing the series "Testing of your Faith" by Dr Bruce Wilkinson (a Walk Thru the Bible Series). In the series, he teaches that in order to strengthen our Faith, we need to look to the past and be reminded of the provision of God in our lives and then to look to the future and to see the promises He has in store for us. Well the promises are all in His Word, but my past is a personal journey and unless I write that down it will become dimmed over time and more difficult to remember. Now, ask anyone who knows me and they'll tell you that I'm not big on routine, ha-ha-ha, I don't keep any regular habits (good or bad), and I certainly don't journal!

Then I realised that I spend soooo much time in front of a PC everyday, for work and pleasure, that I might just as well use that as a medium to at least put some thoughts down, maybe organize some chronology of past events in my life, and as a bonus, get up to speed on Blogging!

Anyway, so that was what I was challenged by, now the bigger challenge will be to keep this up!

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