Tandem Post: In My Garden

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The place where chaos reigns,
Madness collides,
Frustration often prevails,
Craziness is encouraged,

Where love is always in bloom,
Mistakes are nothing but learning curves,
Judgement is frowned upon,

Where flying is encouraged,
Fun and laughter are compulsory,
Tears are optional.

In my garden, green fingers are not a requirement. Just the gentle touch of a mother’s hand. My hand.

In my garden I’m blessed with three amazing flowers.

We live. We learn. We grow.

This was part of a weekly tandem blog. Thank you for reading ☺

To see what’s blooming in my blogging sisters gardens, check out their posts by clicking the links below:

Chevone from Chevs Life

Shelley from The Deal Is

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Tandem Post: Ja Baas

“Ek sal dit net een keer probeer.”

“Nee, ek is nie verslaaf nie. Kan enige tyd ophou as ek wil.”

“Dit gee my ‘n buzz. Laat my van my al probleme vergeet.”

“Nog… Net… Een… Hit…”

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“Ja baas!”

Hoe baie van ons jong mense word vasgevang in dwelms?

“I’ll only try it once.”

“No, I’m not addicted. I can give it up anytime I want to.”

“It gives me a buzz and makes me forget about my troubles.”

“Just… One… More… Hit…”

“Yes boss!”

How many of our young people are caught up in the web of drugs?

JA BAAS (YES BOSS) was part of a weekly tandem post between 2 amazing bloggers and I.

For Chevone’s post click here

For Shelley’s post click here

Drug abuse is real and it affects every one of us. Whether you’re the user, loved one or family member of a user or some man or woman on the street.

Let’s educate our kids and stop the cycle.

Thank you for stopping by ☺

Tandem Post: Danny Boy

Thump… Thump… One step, two step. Thre… Crash. The last one is not to be.

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Tempers rise as frustration hails. I can only imagine what must be going through their minds right now. Everyone is doing it so why can’t they.

They look at each other. Almost like a silent “I got this”. Slowly they rise one by one. Unsteady on their feet, determination is the order of the day. The cycle starts again.

Thump… Thump… One step, two step. Thre… Cra… Nope, we’re going for Three step, four step. Crash!

The wails start in tandem.

“Oh, Danny Boy
Danny Boy

I get knocked down
But I get up again
You’re never gonna keep me down
I get knocked down
But I get up again
You’re never gonna keep me down”

I sing and cheer throwing them way off course. They stop crying and look at their crazy aunt. It could be the fact that I’m tone deaf or that they’re wondering which circus lost their monkey. Whatever it is, it worked.

My nephews are learning to walk!

Determined now more than ever, they get up again. Ain’t no one gonna keep them down.

I can only imagine a few years from now kids be going “Chumba-Wha…?” And the twinzels be like “Chumbawamba! Duh…”

And that folk, is also how we teach kids songs of days gone by 🙂

This was part of a Tandem blog between 2 amazing bloggers and I. As always, thank you for reading and please go check out Chevone from Chevs Life and Shelley from The Deal Is posts of this week.

Tandem Post: Coffee?

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It started out with coffee…

Coffee is much more than a dark liquid best enjoyed whilst hot. Whether you prefer it strong and black, with or without sugar or cream or even not at all, when you’re invited for coffee it’s hardly ever as cut and dried as that. When you’re asked “Coffee?” there is usually a reason behind it.

In the movies, when someone invites you for coffee after a date it’s usually a proposition. When someone of the opposite sex invites you for coffee (in real life) it sometimes means that the person is interested in you and it could be the beginning of a new romance. When your friend invites you for coffee, you know it’s going to end up in a long chat that’s probably overdue. It may just turn into lunch or supper because you know that it may just be a while before you find the time to fit each other in to your busy lives. Sometimes it acts as an olive branch too. Finding it difficult to talk to someone or bridge a gap? It’s amazing what an invitation to coffee will do.

Whatever the reasons behind “Coffee” is, I always get excited for a few reasons.

1) I lalalala LOVE coffee

2) Coffee has become a common denominator in life.

3)Some of my greatest friendships started off with a cup.

4) Catching up with my friends and family is always a treat and coffee is the obvious excuse.

Coffee doesn’t always taste as great as it smells but let’s face it, it is the best damn excuse to break the ice and speak to someone.

So, coffee? Anyone?

*This was part of a weekly tandem blog series between Chevone from Chevs Life, Shelley from The Deal Is and I. Go on and click their links to see what they’ve got to offer this week by clicking their links. Who knows… They may just invite you for coffee too 😉

Thank you for reading ☺

Tandem Post: Dis Nag Vir Jou

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Sirienes wat klank in die koue donker nag.

Die blou lig so helder soos die dag.

Iewers blaf daar honde en vuurwapen skote ego.

Biddend buk mense in hul huise en wag vir daglig om aan te breek.

Dis Nag Vir Jou as jy jou kop by die deur uit steek…

#LifeOnTheCapeFlats

This was part of a tandem blog series between 2 amazing bloggers and I. To see what they have on offer this week, go click on their links (below) and show them some love.

Chevone

Shelley

I will NOT be silenced… Hear me ROAR

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Don’t you think it’s funny how the people who know nothing about you always have the most to say? How they feel it’s their right to tell you what to do or not do?

I don’t think it’s funny. In fact there are a whole lot of uncultured words I can use for it. But I won’t. At least not yet. What I will say for now is that when we ASSUME, it’s nothing other than making an ASS of U and ME.

I don’t know what it is about me, but the cover of the book is  the total opposite of what’s in my heart and mind. It never gets old how people tell me “You’re nothing like I thought you’d be like.” Yeah… I get that a lot.

Since 2016 started I have been insulted, patronized, offended, lied to, confronted over B.S., things have been spoken (purposefully and out of sheer ignorance) over my kids lives, my marriage has been under strain because of interference and I’ve been properly dismissed by people who know Jack diddly squat about me or my life. For a while there, I almost lost it. The black dog came for a brief visit before I shot it down again.

Just when I let my guard down and think I can have a normal mundane existence, someone comes and disturbs my peace. With the result that I have been breaking ties and making enemies with people. You see, there comes a time when you open your mouth and the monster inside rears it’s ugly head. Everyone feels they are right and apologies are not required. But what if I also feel that what I do and say is right?

Why should I respect someone who has no respect for me? Why should I watch what I say when I’m not extended the same courtesy? Why should I allow someone to make me feel like I’m an outsider? Why should I accept, that after the damage has been done, someone didn’t mean what they said? But why did they say it in the first place? Why should I not react when someone tries to tell me where to get off? Why should I have to explain myself to people who have obviously made up their minds about me or a situation? Why should I believe that someone is doing or saying things because care, or better yet (and also my personal favourite), that God sent them? Why should I allow someone to tap my hands with the Bible? And why should I have to apologize or feel guilty for fighting back?

I’ll tell you why I don’t have to ‘anything’ right now:

I am not arrogant enough to think that I don’t need people or their help. We all need people in life. It is however my prerogative to seek help when I need it! And from whom I choose. Trust is a big thing to me.

When someone messes with me I can handle it but when they mess with my person, they mess with me. Nobody put’s Keith in the corner. The B.S. imposed on him affects me too. It has effects on my marriage and whether my relation to someone is by blood or by the law, I expect people to respect it. You don’t have to like it or accept it but respect it. It’s been proven that even though blood is thicker than water, relatives cause you more hurt than your friends or even strangers. Is it any wonder why I don’t place that much value on some familial relations?

When you say things like “What you’re doing right now will come down on your kids” what the … (insert word of choice) do you mean? And while you’re at it please also explain what the … (again, insert word of choice) it is that I’m doing. You know what? Don’t even try to answer it. Nothing you say will excuse that. No freaking thing. You don’t get to get away with it. Period. That is a pretty screwed up thing to do.

I’ve been hearing the damn R word tossed carelessly quite a bit lately. What rumours are everyone talking about? I haven’t done anything to be chastised over. Well, except for being verbal and keeping a loaded gun to gun down dragons. It’s called self defense. People really shouldn’t be surprised over retaliation. There’s only so much anyone can take.

Have those dragons considered how they would feel if their lives have been disrupted and any old fool and their brother attacks them? Have they considered how they would feel if I come round and stick my nose in their personal affairs? Do unto me what you’d like me to do to you because what you see me doing is a reflection of yourself. So who is the shitty person really? Guess no one has thought about that. 

Respect is earned. Don’t expect it when you’re not willing to give it in return. Respect is also not over using the “Because we care” card. Neither is it the “We are the adults or the godly bunch” card. Telling me that you respect me but you can’t back it up with your actions is just lame on so many levels.

People’s misconstrued notion of support does not impress me. Support is when you show someone you care. It is not an impromptu meeting here and there and wanting to force them to see things your way. Getting all up in their business and being a bit cunning about it too. Yeah, I picked up on that. Going behind someone’s back and being surprised to find all present. Support is also not trying to turn siblings against each other. Oh? That wasn’t the intention? Could have fooled me.

Waiting for us to fail is setting us up for disaster. We stand no chance thanks to the nay sayers and do wellers. We’ve already lost thanks to you.

My boxing gloves have been stashed and instead I’m a ticking time bomb right now. So… Any other questions or attacks you have up your sleeves?

I’m adult enough to the same people who remind me that I’m still a child while their argue with me like their equals. Seriously what’s up with that? Am I your child or an adult you want to tell off? In case anyone has to wonder, maturity is not measured in years. You may have your age but do you know what I have? I’ll just leave that one hanging. But do think about it sometime, won’t you.

I will NOT be silenced. If you knew me you’d know that I don’t back down either. You’d know that I don’t find your concerns silly. They are genuine. You’d also know that I am pretty reasonable in general. There is nothing general about my “new” normal and it pisses me off. You’d know that when you make your intentions clear and don’t come in any sort of guise, I will listen. I’ll even answer questions should you have any. Bearing in mind that I will refuse to comment on things you don’t need to know. My business is mine and yours is yours. You’ll also know that I can see straight through alterior motives. I don’t have to know exactly what it is, but if it walks like a duck… I’m intuitive like that.

I will NOT accept the fact that you think I’m inconsequential. I know who I am and if I don’t matter to someone, that’s ok. I’m a grown woman who knows that not everyone in life will like me. It is what it is. I may not matter to you but I mean a lot to those who matter to you. Ever think of the power that may yield? Don’t bother thinking about it too much, just know that if I wanted to be the wicked witch of the west, I could be.

If you knew me, you’d know that I don’t aspire to be a First Class … (insert word of choice). Life is short and I know as well as the next person that being a complete SOB gets no one anywhere. I’m a lover not a fighter. That said, I want you to know that right now I am roaring and it will take time to get over this. I’m even adult enough to know that I shouldn’t expect any apologies. Not everyone is wired that way.

I will NOT be placed on a leash either. So don’t try using Keith as a go between. Our beef is ours. Own up to it and we’ll talk about it. Maybe then, some respect can be salvaged. Be prepared when you do come and choose your words wisely. For now though, I’ll say you win. You are right. Whatever you are right about. I don’t want to be right or win if it means losing myself and my principles.

This is me. No nutshell because I’m way more complexed than that. Let’s call it a part of me that needs to be seen right now.

You’re welcome.

Tandem Post: Pacifiers

“Shut up you fool!” He snarled at her. Grabbing her shoulders, he violently shook her. “You need to get a grip. We’re not making it out of this alive, no matter how loud you scream and shout.” Head pounding, body aching, he’d had enough of being strong for anyone right now. He knew that it was only a matter of time before the druglords came back and killed them. He kind of hoped that they’d get it over and done with already. He couldn’t bear another round of torture. He turned and walked to the other end of the room they’d been locked up in for five days. Five long days of torture.

Days in which he’d been trying to plead innocence. Both his and Sharon’s. They didn’t know what was going on. Neither the “boss” or his cronies listened to them. They didn’t buy the fact that it had to be a case of mistaken identity. He’d feared the worst for Sharon. What the thugs threatened to do to her. Thus far her safety was thanks to the beatings he had to endure for her sake. She didn’t come off scott free though. They’d had some fun scaring the bejeesus out of her. Although no physical scars, he was sure that she’d be haunted for the rest of her life. He almost laughed at the irony. It was only a matter of time before they were killed.

The resignation in his voice scared her even more than him shaking her shoulders. Neil was the toughest guy she knew. No other guy she knew would have been able to handle everything he’d been through during this time. The fact that he’d taken the brunt of her punishment as well made her even more in awe of him than she already was. They were in this situation together. How did a romantic first date turn into this nightmare? She wondered for the umpteenth time. No wonder people who’d been through some traumatic experience ended up trying a romantic relationship after they were rescued. Fact is their almost romance is how this started in the first place. Therevwasvavterm for it. What did they call it anyway, she wondered.

“To think we hardly made it past our first date. What happened to the whole “till death do us part” bit?” Sharon commented drily. No hint of humour in her voice, yet Neil knew her well enough to know that past the hysteria and the hopelessness of the situation, this was something that she would have laughed about for a while. Tears would form in her eyes as she would belly out at some joke. Her laugh and sense of humour were of the few things that made him fancy her.

He couldn’t blame her for being so scared and for deafening him with her screams for help. Hell, he was afraid too. He turned to face her and bridged the gap between them. Without a word, he knelt down and took her hands in his. “Sharon, will you marry me?” She could not have picked a better or worse time to bubble with laughter. She pulled him up to his feet faster than she than necessary. Neil flinched in pain. She was sure his ribs were broken.

Cupping his face she kissed him. It was Neil who broke the contact, “I take that as a yes” and he kissed her again. Nothing could top the feeling of being in each other’s arms, seeking the only comfort they could give one another at this very moment. They have become each other’s pacifiers.

This was part of a weekly tandem blog. The place where 3 bloggers unite and give you their POV of 1 title.

Hope you enjoyed this… Now please go give some love to my partners in creative crime ad see their interpretations of PACIFIERS.

Click here for Chevone
And here for <a href="http://thedealis.wordpress.com”>Shelley

Die Vreemdeling

It’s Thursday and guess what? It’s #Tandem time with Chevone, Shelley and I.

After a good break, we are back and looking forward to stretching our literary/creative muscles and sharing it with you. This time around we’ll be doing many of our posts in Afrikaans because we share an equal love of the language.

To my English only readers, I will try my best to translate my posts. To my readers who may have a much better command of Afrikaans than I do, please don’t hesitate to correct me on any grammar and/or spelling errors. Bearing in mind that I’ll be using some Engli-kaans as well.

Die Vreemdeling

Sy staar na die vrou met die vaal oë, omring met donker kringe. Die vrou lyk leweloos. Amper soos iemand wat lank laas ‘n ordentlike nagrus gehad het.

Is sy siek? Of is dit ‘n tekort aan slaap?

Die lyntjies by haar oë is bewys dat sy eens op ‘n tyd baie gelag het. Sy wonder wat het van haar sprankel geword?

Haar klere hang soos sakke om haar lyf en sy lyk troebel. Het sy gewig verloor?

Gee sy nie om hoe sy lyk nie?

Self haar hare lyk ‘n bietjie woes. Het hierdie vrou geen trots? ‘n Vrou se hare is haar kroon…

Wie is hierdie vreemdeling wat haar terug kyk in die spieël?

“Ek wil weer voel. Ek wil hê hierdie hartseer en pyn moet verdwyn. Ek gee om hoe ek lyk en ek wil weer mens wees.” sê ek vir die vrou in die spieël. Ek wil dit eintlik vir haar skreeu. Wie is sy om my te beoordeel? “Ek is gereed maar ook nie. Waar begin ek? En hoe? Ek is tans die vreemdeling in my eie lewe.”

The Stranger (English version)

She stares at the woman with the dull eyes surrounded by dark circles. The woman looks lifeless. Almost like someone who hasn’t had a decent night’s sleep in ages.

Is she sick or is it a lack of sleep?

The crows feet at the corners of her eyes indicates that she once laughed a lot. She wonders what happened to the sparkle?

Her clothes are ill fitting and she looks shabby. Could this be because she lost weight?

Does this woman not care what she looks like?

Her hair is a mess. Has she no pride? A woman’s hair is her crown…

Who is this woman staring back at me from the mirror?

“I want to feel again. I want out of this slump I find myself in. For the pain to go away. I do care what I look like and I want to be more human again.” I tell the woman in the mirror. I want to shout at her. Who is she to judge me? “I’m ready but also not. Where do I begin? And how? I am the stranger in my own life right now.”

This was part of our weekly Tandem blog where 3 bloggers unite and give you their POV of 1 title. Join us every Thursday at 13h00 for our different takes.

For Shelley’s version, click: https://thedealis.wordpress.com

For Chevone” version, click: https://chevslife.com

Dear Mitchum: Thank you for the memories

You know that moment you hear a song or smell a certain scent and it triggers some kind of memory? When it makes you literally forget what you’re thinking and feeling at that moment while you relive that memory.

For me, there are a few songs that take me to moments in my life as far back as when I was 5 years old. When my dad still had an abundance of hair and a beard.

“Karma Karma Karma Karma Karma Chameleon
You come and go
You come and go
Loving would be easy if your colors were like my dream
Red, gold and green
Red, gold and green”

The other is dancing with my mom to the beat of Eurythmics “There must be an angel”. I love that song and it always brings back fond memories of our old house.

“I walk into an empty room
And suddenly my heart goes “boom”!
It’s an orchestra of angels
And they’re playing with my heart.”

My mother-in-law passed away last week and currently I am purely existing and not living. There is no way I can explain what I am going through. For the past week Keith and I have been hurt, offended, walked over, disrespected and so much more. So much so, that grief has taken a back seat to fending off attacks. That hurt has me wondering the importance of my presence in her life when she lived. My common sense tells me to not be phased by any of this. I sit and wonder where all these supposed bff’s and close family were when she was alive. But I am only human and I am deeply hurt and so sick of hearing “What she would (or would not) have wanted”. This is NOT about me but I think I was close enough to her (and knew her well enough) to know that she would not have liked, nor tolerated, her kids being subjected to this kind of behaviour from anyone.

This morning however, when I applied some Mitchum (for a change), I took a whiff and was transported to a happier time in my life. I was walking down Hope Street in Town with my girls. It’s where we usually parked when we took 1st K for his tutoring sessions on Saturdays. We’d walk from there to the Parade before going for breakfast. (It’s best to hit the parade early to get your hands on the good stuff.) Then, after feeding our faces, we’d make our way to other little stores where I always found a bargain. My Jasper Conran boots were bought (at a steal) on one of those expeditions. Then we’d brave our way to the Company Gardens and run away from the squirrels. I. Cannot. Handle. Squirrels. Neither can Little K. I would happily take off my shoes and sit on the grass (far away from the squirrels obviously) and people watch. Trying to see our city through the eyes of the foreigners. I’d gaze at the mountain and the old buildings and wonder, like I always do, what the city was like fifty or even a hundred years ago. How many people had wandered the streets of Town? What legacies have they left behind to their loved ones?

For a while today I was in a happy place. I know that my underarms will start crumbling in a little while and I’ll be too embarrassed to raise my arms because of it. But thanks Mitchum. Thank you for taking me away for a while, and making me feel. Thank you for the memories 🙂

Things I wish I could tell my Mother-In-Law right now

“Hellllurrr! Howzit?”

This is the part where you’re supposed to say “Dit gaan goed dankie my kind” (I’m well thank you my child) right before you ask me about your kids. You know, the ones I gave birth to… And then we’d proceed to you telling me about some person or the other that either passed away or who is ill. Then I’d pretend to know exactly who you’re talking about because I’ve learnt that it’s better than you trying to force me to remember someone I’ve never met or seen in my life.

I’ll say shame. You’ll tell me about their relatives and the funeral and and and… I’ll crack a silly joke about how the people in your hood are becoming an extinct species and you’ll chide me for it and we’ll laugh because you think it’s true somewhat. Remember how I told you that there’d be no one left to attend your funeral? Well, there’d better not be, because I’m not ready to let you go.

We came to visit you the other day. I kissed your forehead and rubbed your arm before I fled. It was difficult to see you just lying there. I couldn’t bring myself to come back again. But I was right outside the door. Filing my nails. You know I don’t bother filing it much, but hey, anything to keep busy. And then buffing it for good measure coz I was right outside with the Judgy McJudgersons of this world. You should see my nails shine. I was that disinterested in having meaningless conversation with the nay sayers and do well’rs. I’m sure you’ll know exactly who I’m talking about.

I miss our chats. The ones where you talk about days gone by. When you embarrass the heck out of me with some topics. Daughters are not supposed to be privvy to some of the information you give me, but hey your secrets are safe with me.

We don’t know what to tell the kids anymore. Little K is still mad at you for being in hospital this long. We can’t bring Middle K for visits because, like me, she can’t handle seeing you looking all frail. I can tell you that we’re not fooling 1st K one bit. And Miss Z is feeling it so much more because you’re not home with her. The kids miss you and are really worried.

People have probably wondered why I don’t visit you that often. You know how people talk… It makes me feel better knowing that you don’t wonder. I never quite understood when your sister would say “Gee vir my blomme terwyl ek nog lewe” (Bring me flowers while I’m living). Now I know the true meaning of it. I hope I’ve done enough for you in your healthier days. I guess I did because I feel that peace and calm you told me about once when you spoke of the time your mom was ill.

There are so many things I want to tell you and I pray that we’ll have an opportunity to have those conversations. Like:

You missed out on something very important in Middle K’s little life and I can’t wait to tell you. Happened the day before you went to hospital.

High schools for Middle K and Miss Z. The application process doesn’t seem too nightmarish anymore. But it’s still that time. My shattered nerves.

Little K is enjoying being a 1st grader. All I’m hearing these days is my teacher this and my teacher that and the year has barely started!

About your hair… It actually looks quite fine for someone who’s been in bed for as long as you have. We’ll bring some Argan oil when we come again. To touch it up a bit. Just remember I want my comb back. This joint custody is not working. *laughing* I’ve been looking for one similar to mine for a while now but haven’t found one yet. I guess I’ll have to find one soon before you decide to keep mine for good.

I didn’t find any of those shorts either but it doesn’t mean you can have mine. I know that was the deal, but please can we look for another one?

“My kids, you’re all I’ve got. You, Keith and R. If I’m not around anymore, I want to know that you guys will all get along and always remember that you are family. We are family.” I can hear you utter those words to me in the silence of the night. It won’t be easy, you know your kids, but we’ll try. Families need to stick together. We’ll argue, fuss and fight but we’ll pull through. We always do. You don’t have to worry about us.

I want you to know that I’ll take good care of Keith and K3. They are my life and no one loves them more than I do. Let’s not even have that debate because I’ll win. Only because you can’t exactly talk now. Oh, how I miss hearing your voice. FYI when we get to have that debate again I suppose I’ll let you win. If only by default. Your heart and all.

More than anything, I miss you. If I promise to sneak you an oily chop or other unhealthy food to hospital will you get better sooner?

This is not goodbye…