TomTom Homework Book

Found an old primary school workbook of Tom’s. School was not his very best thing. He summed up school as – S.ix C.rual H.ours O.f O.ur L.ives !! Math – M.ental A.buse T.o H.umans ! Homework – H.alf O.f M.y E.nergy W.asted O.n R.andom K.nowledge ! . . . and ended with a heartfelt plaintiveContinue reading “TomTom Homework Book”

Safari 2003

On our trip up north in 2003 Aitch and five year old Jessie kept a diary; when they got home they made this picture album as a memento of the trip. Enjoy the slideshow! (Slides change every four seconds. To pause a slide, click in the top right corner. To speed it up or toContinue reading “Safari 2003”

A Gardener’s Wisdom

Bruce sent this:always mow the lawn after 3pm.Then the dog turds are dry !! …. Me:Hosed myself!! Just picked up some steaming ones this mornin’Strategically placed by Sambucca the black labrador where I’m most likely to step in them. I just KNOW she’s thinking “Ooh! UGHHHH! There! He can’t miss that one”. …. Jon TaylorContinue reading “A Gardener’s Wisdom”

Mtamvuna River

Tom went fishing with Ryan – his first trip out of the house for ages! Ryan’s Dad Andy took them to The Old Pont on the Mtamvuna River, two hours south of home. I joined them for a lovely braai – chuck, wors and garlic bread. Tom and Ryan braai’d the meat to perfection, butContinue reading “Mtamvuna River”

Let’s Watch The Comrades, comrades!

This year’s Comrades Marathon has been CoVidded – no go. This was the 2013 Comrades ultra-marathon. The route runs past our doorstep, and I have a houseful of hooligans, so I hatch a plan . . ~~~oo0oo~~~

Storm in a Shopping Trolley

Just yesterday I was dispensing my best Calm The Fuck Down advice to a friend, and today TomTom and I have a big fat fight! He went shopping, wheeled the trolley home (knows he’s not meant to) down a steep footpath under the big fig tree and tipped the trolley. ’30 eggs broken and theContinue reading “Storm in a Shopping Trolley”

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”

Mow a Meadow

One Man Went to Mow Went to Mow a Meadow . . . Usually Tobias Gumede mows, but he’s in lockdown in Jozini, so the amateur had to do it. And there were repercussions . . . . . The next week TomTom voluteered to mow! Yes! I shouted! ‘For money, of course’ he added.Continue reading “Mow a Meadow”

A Vrystaat Shepherd’s Cottage

Shepherds’ cottages in Lesotho are often quite primitive affairs, used itinerantly as their flocks graze in that area; then moving on to pastures new, where – especially in winter – a new shelter may be built, or an old one re-roofed with available grass or shrubs. We enjoyed their hospitality there when we went upContinue reading “A Vrystaat Shepherd’s Cottage”

Tom at the German Club

You can tan me hide when I’ve died, Clyde, and hang it up in the shed. ‘Cos I have developed a quite – not a very, but a quite – thick skin. I meet Bruce for a beer at The German Club, which has become a bit more like an Old Rhodesians Club. This isContinue reading “Tom at the German Club”

Tommy’s Hilfiger Genes

Thomas Tommy Swanie junior was slightly hypermetropic for years but now he has finally inherited my fine genes and is now -0,75. Slightly short-sighted. Like me, he can also see into a lot, read between the lines, has great insight – and while his foresight is still developing, he has strong hindsight where he canContinue reading “Tommy’s Hilfiger Genes”

Glorious Self Isolation

So I’m at home in self isolation. It’s like I’m underwater in a diving suit, ‘cept this suit is full of holes. The holes being my kids and their friends and their gregarious, roving ways. Yes, Dad, they say earnestly after getting my full explanation of what gives, having gazed deep into my eyes, noddingContinue reading “Glorious Self Isolation”

Kosi Bay with a Boat

Kosi Bay is a wonderful place and the campsites are superb. Good birding and great habitat. It’s an estuary system comprising of four lakes – Amanzimnyama (dark waters), Nhlange (reeds), Mpungwini and Makhawulani – the system is connected by meandering channels and fringed wetlands before it runs into the Indian Ocean via a shallow channelContinue reading “Kosi Bay with a Boat”

Fogg’s Folly

or Destiny Castle Driving through the beautiful Eastern Free State you see many flat-topped sandstone kopjes like these. But suddenly you say, ‘What’s on top of that one? It’s a CASTLE! Can’t be. But it is!’ Truth is, you knew it would be there – as you’ve been invited to visit it – to beContinue reading “Fogg’s Folly”