Childless Cathedral

Aitch needed a break and Barbara Jeff, LindiLou and Robbie agreed to have the kids on their Umvoti Villa farm. So off we went to a luxury stay in the Cathedral Peak Hotel. The breast cancer had spread to liver and bones and the treatments she opted for were severe. Here was a break fromContinue reading “Childless Cathedral”

Snow’s Here!

Pictures coming through from friends in lockdown in Harrismith and district The top photo is the view from friend Koos Beukes’ stoep of the Maluti mountains on the Lesotho border. In the middle ground is Qwa Qwa kop. What a magnificent view! The others look like views of the Drakensberg from the N3 highway. SharedContinue reading “Snow’s Here!”

Lockdown Lookback -2

Re-posting ancient content as a lookback during lockdown. This post from my matric (or senior high school) year back in 1972. I chose it as just yesterday Sheila discovered letters I had written home from the course! So I added one 48yr-old letter and re-posted it here from my early days blog – http://www.vrystaatconfessions.com VeldContinue reading “Lockdown Lookback -2”

Simes' Cottage in Lotheni

There’s a lovely old sandstone cottage in the Lotheni Valley, one of the Drakensberg / uKhahlamba’s beautiful valleys. We had some great adventures with good friends and our kids up there. As an adult retreat it’s my idea of paradise: no electricity, no cellphone reception, no wifi. Peace. Plenty of hot water, a gas stoveContinue reading “Simes' Cottage in Lotheni”

Lion Kills and Weddings – Live Footage!

Jessie discovered and avidly watched live-streamed game drives on the internet. Most were from the Maasai Mara in Kenya, and the Sabi Sands in our South African lowveld. Then she found out ‘her connection’ to it: The producer was a big supporter of hers when she first arrived in our home as a little girl!Continue reading “Lion Kills and Weddings – Live Footage!”

Victor Simmonds, Artist

Dad: “Victor Simmonds was a lovely chap and a very good artist. He was a little man, grey, a lot older than me. What? How old? Well, I was probably 35 then and he was grey. He was probably 50. He lodged with Ruth Wright on the plot next door to ours, Glen Khyber. IContinue reading “Victor Simmonds, Artist”

Secrets of the Cavern

Off to the ‘Berg with the kids. To a hotel! A real hotel! The Cavern in the foothills of the Drakensberg. At last their Dad listened and took them somewhere they didn’t have to cook and clean! (This was back in 2012). They loved it. Especially once they worked out one of the secrets ofContinue reading “Secrets of the Cavern”

Annie and her Sherpas summit Mt aux Sources

Mt aux Sources, winter 1998. Sheila organises a gang to summit the peak. Lots of people. Sheila can organise! Ann Euthemiou brings two strapping nephews as sherpas to haul her four-poster double bed and duvet up the chain ladder. I hand out my special paklightna snacks at all stops on the way up. Once upContinue reading “Annie and her Sherpas summit Mt aux Sources”