Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Olympics 2012

Its HERE!  The Olympic games are on again.  Every four years there is a little spark that ignites inside me.  Its when the Olympic games starts.  Its a time when countries from around the world who will normally never even speak to each other, come together and compete in one of the most non political activities.... Sport....

I always get a little bit foggy-eyed when the Olympics are on because I really enjoy sport, and this gives the opportunity for me to see sports that I would never get to see normally.  It also brings out the best in humans.  People helping each other and supporting each other.

I have been watching the 5 dedicated HD channels and it has been very difficult for me.  I cant decide what to watch.  Too much choice is never a good thing for a Libran.  But I will soldier on and schedule my time on my new app.  In any event, I am ecstatic that the worlds most gracious and friendly games are on TV!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Amsterdam in a week

I have been in Amsterdam now for a week. I have had to take leave as I arrived a week earlier than my training is scheduled, so I could watch the Madonna concert. Since I arrived, my friends here have been uber good to me, taking me out to places and showing me things. On Monday was Jaco's sister's birthday so she took the day off work too and we decided to go to Utrecht for the afternoon. We had a wonderful time. Utrecht is so pretty and we had a blast acting like teenagers. After a little drink, we made our way to the Rabobank building where Jaco works and we spent time in the art exhibition area where we made visual forms of our voices (I know what it sounds like, but it was cool). We then came home with Jaco. On Wednesday I spent the day in Haarlem, where I walked around and visited the church. This was the town we wanted to live in if we were to move to Holland. Its very pretty. On my way home I stopped at the Ikea store, and once again walked through the shop without buying a single thing. Hopefully I will go back and do so before I leave again. Next week is going to be a very busy work week as I have intense training happening.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Time goes by so slowly

I am in Amsterdam at the moment. Have been here since Saturday afternoon. I have a week of training next week and I had to take a weeks leave for this week because I extended my trip by a week. The reason I did that was because I got a ticjet online for the Madonna concert. Now those of you who know me, know what a big deal this is for me. I have always wanted to see her perform and always convinced myself that I would never get to. So when it all fell into place I was extatic. I started getting a chest cold on Thursday evening and felt a little sick on Friday night when I had to fly out. As usual I did not sleep on the plane and arrived in Amsterdam tired as all hell, feeling groggy from the cough mixture I had been drinking on the plane mixed with the correnza, and still sick. Yet I soldiered on and made my way to the Ziggo Dome where Madonna was performing. Met up with friends of friends and we finally got inside. She started her show 2 hours late but when she started, she proper started. An amazing show. 2 hours of non stop energy and dancing and singing. The best part was how she had remixed her old songs to be a little more updated. I am so happy I took this week off so that I could see her. It was worth every single minute of anguish and every cent. The only problem now is that I am in Amsterdam for a week without my T.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

My big boy

Went walking with the dogs and realised that my oldest is nearly 50, with the middle adolescent at 21 and then the little youngster at 14.  That's why Lucca dissent have many years left, and can't keep up with the young dogs anymore

Thursday, May 24, 2012

The aftermath

After returning from Indaba (travel show) last week Tuesday night, I woke up on Wednesday morning a little swolen.
By Wednesday evening I was so swolen that I could barely see out my eyes. On Thursday I went to the Dr, who confirmed I had a skin allergy from something that came in contact with my face.
The worst of all is that I don't use anything on my skin. I shaved and that is it. So my thought is that I greeted some lady at the show, cheeck to cheeck, and something on their skin came in contact with mine. My skin didn't like it, and told me so.
Its much better now, after cortesone cream and schedule 5 anti-histamine tablets. Blerrie woman and their make up stuff.

Travel, rugby and Sharky

Last weekend was the annual Indaba travel fair in Durban. As usual we were there standing on the stand smiling from Friday till Tuesday. Luckily there was a break in the middle. On Saturday we wentbto the rugby courtesy of a client who has invited us for the second year running. They are two young guys from Knysna. One owns a penthouse and the other an adventure company. They are fun guys to hang out with and as always we had a load of laughs. Its always fu to be the only gay in the village. It gives me poetic licence to throw in some gay related jokes and gross them out from time to time. We even managed to get a pic with Sharky, the Sharks mascot. I also saw my ex ex ex ex boss from Flight Centre, who is Australian and always comes to Indaba. He obviously went to rugby and there he decided to undergo a little wager on the Sharks loosing against the Western Force. I very easy R100 I made. Even if Indaba is crap, at least the Saturday evening is always good.


So I finally caved and asked

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Hope and Glory

I was watching Invictus this weekend, on Freedom day, for the first time. The movie was mediocre with bad American actors pretending to speak with a South African acsent. The thing that really got my "sad gland" going, was the memories of that 1995 rugby world cup. The way the entire nation felt and reacted. We had just had a very peaceful transitional election and had a man in power that the white minority was not sure about weather he would jail us all, or simply just justify killing any and all white people. Then the rugby World Cup came along, and Mandela showed us and the world that his one and only goal was to build a united, strong, competing South Africa. His goal filtered through to all of us. I remember how full of hope we all were. How positive we were. How we felt like we were standing on the brink of something amazing and we were about to jump into it head first. The game of rugby, and Nelson brought us as a nation together in a single goal of restoring South Africa to a world powerhouse. It was an amazing time in our country. When we won, people went out into the streets dancing, singing and embrasing everything and everybody they saw. For the first time ever we felt like a proper nation. For weeks after the world cup win we were still drunk on the feeling of unity and comradery. The movie made me sad because I remembered these feelings, and compared them to my feelings and our country today. Today we have a country where people are fighting each other more than ever before, where a government is hated by more people than ever before, and where the feeling of imortality has been replaced by a feeling of distrust, disdane and hoping for a drastic fall of government. We do not feel like we can achieve anything anymore. We do not feel like we are champions. We do not feel like the same nation who won the world cup as one nation. Our government has left us a jaded, devided, helpless nation who feel powerless to do anything. We need another Madiba.

Friday, April 20, 2012


There is a winter coming
Cold and wet
Testing summer light for endurance
The Winter with its rain drops
Testing the lasting flowers of Summer

There is a winter coming
a new Winter with new rain
new wind

Will I last this winter

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Dogs, rugby and a red curry

Today was a particularly interesting day. After church this morning (a very interesting service), we decided to go for an early lunch after my sister gave me some money. We ended up at The Sidewalk Cafe in Vredehoek. Very nice place, staff and I had the most amazing red curry. Its just such a pity I only found out afterwards that its owned by the same person that owns Madame Zingara, which means I wont be going back there again. After this we went walking with our dogs and a friend of ours with his dog. Its was quite rainy so the park was nit that busy. The dogs ran around and had a great old time. We took the friend for lunch (we had drinks) where he told us about a group of people (gay, lesbian and straight) who get together every Sunday at 5 to play some touch rugby. I was quite excited about that as I used to play rugby at school, so I said we would join him. It turned out to be only a hand full of people and it turned out that the 16 years since I last played rugby, showed badly. After about 5 min of running, I felt like my lungs were coming out of my nostrils, and my legs turned into hard jelly. It was fun though, however because I am a very competitive sportsman, I got a little edgy as one of the guys in our team was just completely clueless. I might go back coz it was a hell of a work out, but for now, I am aching EVERYWHERE and have grass burns on my whole body. I will sleep like a baby tonight.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Leftover Lent and Joburg

I decided to give up coffee and white flour for Lent this year. It was quite tough because I am Afrikaans and love bread, cake, cookies and just about anything with pastry or flour. The problem is I felt so good for that 40 days. I lost some weight, and my body just feels better. My tummy has not been acting up (apart from the bacteria I picked up in Limpopo) and I feel less sluggish and a lot more active. So I decided to continue this "wheat free" diet. Now I have always been a strong opponent of people blaming everything that is wrong with them on wheat. Whenever someone goes to the Dr for anything from headaches to penis pain, they are told they are wheat intolerant. That still bugs me. However, after seeing that I am better off without it, I am a true believer....can I get an AMEN!!! I am not saying I am wheat intolerant, I am just saying I can do without.

The problem with this new path is when I am on the road on sales trips in Johannesburg. Usually my sister makes the nicest sandwiches for me for lunch and includes a really nice little letter. I told her about my new situation and she made me this amazing spread of cheese, cocktail sausages, cold meats and boiled egg. The problem is that I love to nibble while I drive around. So it was incredible difficult to not buy a sandwich or a burger or a wrap. Finally yesterday, on my last day, I caved in and bought a Woolworths pie..... It was not pretty. Slurping sauce, pie crumbs flying everywhere, and this was still as I was leaving Woolworths. Needless to say today I am feeling it. My tummy is doing roller coaster turns, boiling like the bunny on Fatal Attraction, and generally not happy. Its back to the wheat free for me.

I wonder if you can get wheat free pies?

Friday, April 6, 2012

Vow of Silence

Today is the Crucifixion of Jesus. Its a solemn, respectful day that celebrates, but also reverence the day that Jesus went through the most final of things, death, for us. Its the day that started the fulfilment of a promise to us. A process that we commemorate every year. I have decided to enter into a day of silence today. I want to be quiet, listen and hear the world. It has been a very insightful day. I had to keep quiet when I wanted to scream, and say nothing when I wanted to sing. It has been amazing.

A child is born

We were privileged enough to be invited to a naming ceremony yesterday. Its a couple from our church. The father, Kolade, is from Nigeria and the mother, Emma, from South Africa. The ceremony was amazing. The Dean presided over it and there were various elders of the Nigerian extended family that presented different articles to the child. Honey, salt, water, wine, palm oil, various nuts etc. Every one of these had a special significance and it was so special to be there. Afterwards there was a great feast, but I could not partake as I am ill. We left there and went to the Cathedral for the Maunday Thursday service. Another special day. It seems like the Easter feeling is coming back to me.

And the name of the little Nigertonian.....
Mokedeayo - Announciation of joy
Dideolu - the arrival of the star
Brian - Strong & valiant

Mokedeayo Dideolu Brian Arogundade

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Its that Holy time again

Its Easter tine again and I am feeling a little less than holy. In past years I have been very happy and content during this time of the year, and even though we are serving again at the Easter Vigil, I am in a very strange space in my life right now. I need to get something rolling and going now because I am feeling like I am loosing momentum. We were serving at Palm Sunday where we walk from the company gardens to church with palm branches to commemorate Jesus's entering into Jerusalem. It was very special as usual, and now there is only the Vigil left.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Clarity of Soul

I have started a new ritual every morning. I have started to meditate. Yes, Christians can also meditate. Every morning when I wake up and while it is still dark I do some meditation. The reason for my meditation is to stand still before the day starts and to try and get some calm into my soul for the day ahead. Is it working? I think so. I am slightly more calm at work and things bother me less. There are all these theories of meditation to see and feel God and to be closer to God. I am already close to God, so my meditation is really just to calm me down as a person and to get the day going on a nice relaxed way. My "mantra" or phrase I repeatedly say in my head to clear my thoughts is Maranatha. This is an Aramaic word that means "Come, o Lord". I find this very appropriate, as I meditate for the Lord to come and calm me down, and give me peace. Its something that I am really enjoying and look forward to every morning.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Monday, March 12, 2012

Light Friday Entertainment

Some friends and us organized to go to a UMF (Ultimate Muaythai Fighting) contest held at Grand West over the weekend. Let it be said, we thought we were going to watch some MMA Cage Fighting, so when we got there and saw what it was, we were all a little surprised. I for one had one of the best evenings out in ages. I found the whole cultural history around Muaythai so fascinating. The ritual around honoring all sides of the ring, and their teachers and their parents. The whole traditional aspect, the history and the respect towards everything, which is so central in most Eastern cultures, is what attracts me to this sport. That and the fact that it is a semi religion in Thailand. I had a great time watching the fights and the ceremonies. We also got a bonus with two MMA (mixed Marshall Arts) fights that were awesome, but somehow paled in comparison to the culturally rich Muaythai fights.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Music is water for the soul

I am sitting at work bobbing my head and tapping my toes to tunes that are busy infiltrating my spine and making my whole body want to get up and move it across the floor. No I am not listening to Die Antwoord, they just make my skin crawl. I am listening to a dance CD produced by a local DJ. House Afrika's Deep House Sounds 5. it is a Joburg based production house that is bringing back sooo many good memories of my play-dates in Johannesburg when I was still a young-en. This is real Jozi type music that you don't hear down here in Cape town. This is the one and only thing about Jozi that I miss, the black influence in the dance music up in Jozi is unmatched down here...

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Gay vs. God

I am back at that age old (redundant) discussion. This morning I got a phone call from my mother telling me to tune in to their favorite radio station. RSG (for those out side the country, its a very Afrikaans, religiously inspired, station for the true Afrikaner). They were having a discussion about being gay and your place in the Afrikaans church. The discussion was the normal discussion about how ridiculous the church is with their exclusion or their "ok but not too gay" rules. I am not going into that because we all know where I stand. What was interesting is that there were so many people who were there and spoke out against the church and how they were comparing it to the race debate in our (Dutch Reformed) church. They had also contacted many church leaders and key figures to joint the discussion on the opposite side of the coin, who believe differently, but they all declined..... How we for years believed that allowing black people into our church, was not right in the eyes of God, and how we found bible versus to prove our point. Just like the church now is finding these verses to prove the gay issue. It was also nice that my mother phoned me to tell me about it.

Its time for young people to take their churches back. Stand up for what is right, not just right now.

My Travells