We’re Famous!

Us Blands have published a book. One of us was the author and one was the photographer.

OK, it was tenth-cousin Hugh that actually did both!

Mind you, I do play my small part in keeping this particular trappist monastery afloat by testing eyes there mahala every second month! Who’da thunk I’d ever help the Catholics? Holy me! Thank Allan Marais for that. If it wasn’t for us Hugh might not have had Marianhill to photograph.

– marianhill monastery –

Well DONE, cousin Hugh! That is quite an achievement; your book is stunning.

Here’s another beautiful book by Hugh:

. . this one includes sister Barbara and husband Jeff’s Umvoti Villa homestead, now inhabited by niece Linda and husband Dawie, MissMadam Mary-Kate and Meneer Dawie jr:

Hugh has driven thousands of miles around KwaZulu Natal photographing things that interest him. If you like old buildings, graves, churches, farms, railway stations, shops, government and church buildings, houses in towns and cities, hospitals, monuments n kak, seek no more! Go here. 70 000 images!


mahala – free

You can get your own copy of Hugh’s books here or here.

Well, Who The Hell . . .

. . woulda thunk this!? If you’d asked me, I would have rated the likelihood of this happening would be as remote as me falling preggers, but . . . life.

I’m working in a catholic monastery.

Allan Marais moved our St Mary’s optometric clinic into Marianhill Monastery when ‘the province’ said they no longer needed our free service. Anyone smell a rat? Can a juicy tender be somewhere in the mix?

‘Yes, we know you were free, but we no longer need you, even though you were doing a great job and the people loved the free service’ – right!

So here we are! Halleluja, Three Hail Marys, Bless you, and all that. Every two or three months I drive through those pearly gates you see in the above picture when I do my voluntary eyeball-checking stint!

We’re in the bottom left. Fannon building, I think



These pics are from Hugh Bland’s wonderful site .

He is busy recording, cataloguing and preserving KwaZulu Natal history, bless him! Here he is, dressed and kitted out for action. KwaZulu Memories Man!

Did I mention he’s a Natal Cousin of mine?


Natal Cousin – distant relative claimed if said person is famous or doing well