Monday, April 30, 2007

Disappointing Magaliesburg

So, it's been a long and busy weekend! Mom arrived on Thursday afternoon and thank goodness we had plans to stay nearby the airport because it had started to rain (yes, in Joburg winter ... what is up?) and the traffic was horrendous ... apparently because of a super smart move by the Metro Police and an insanely placed road-block. But hey? It didn't bother us.
We went to the Highveld Heaviest Heavyweight Comedy Jam at Emperor's Palace which was brilliant ... although a little late. Although , I must admit that the appeal of Emperor's Palace escapes me. As a casino with alternative options, I think Monte Casino is a far better (and closer) option, but that's just my opinion.

Unfortunately the rest of Thursday night was not very restful. I was up with Production issues from 03:30 till 7 AM! Luckily all Mom and I had planned for Friday was lunch and I could grab a little sleep before then.
Lunch was, I think, the highlight of the weekend. It was a suggestion of JofH's and he is someone's who's restaurant recommendations I trust instantly. You know how it is, there are some people who you can't, it's not their fault they just like different things - for me, this generally applies to anyone who actually likes Primi Piatti.
Anyway, lunch was at Forum Homini's restaurant, Roots. It was a spectacular 4-course meal and we chose the wine-teaser option which finished it off perfectly. It's a fairly expensive lunch, but well-worth it! I think I'll have to plan a group lunch there on day because everyone should try it :)
Luckily due to my late morning catching up on sleep, we didn't eat breakfast and I can tell you we didn't need dinner and weren't even starving by Saturday's breakfast.
After lunch we headed out to Magaliesburg for our weekend away.

I'd booked us in (about 2 weeks ago) at this place on someone's vague recommendation, the website pictures and the sheer availability on the long weekend. A few mistakes on my part, clearly.
Firstly, as I mentioned earlier, there are some people who's recommendations you can trust and some who you can't. It might sound snobby (I am from Cape Town, after all), but some people just don't have the same standards as others. And trust me, I'm really not a 5-star girl ... hell, I trekked around Southern Africa in a minibus and slept in a tent for 5 weeks.
Anyway, let me start at the beginning. After the most magnificent lunch, we arrived at Wickers Riverside Estate only to discover their absolute surprise in our presence: they'd lost our booking. Hello, I'd paid the deposit and everything! And they were saying they were now fully booked for the weekend. My blood began to boil and I fetched my handy laptop from the car. After a half an hour attempt on a piddly GPRS signal I managed to get into my mail and show them the proof of deposit I'd mailed them with the correct dates for this exact weekend. Oh yes, sorry ma'am, we're all new here, we've only been here 3 weeks, I don't know how this could've happened.
They eventually made a plan and found us a room. And there is nothing special to write here about it what so ever. All I can say is it reminded me most of a little place in Richmond that Mom & I stayed when my car broke down on the way up to Jhb (now there's a story to tell!). That place was actually attached to the only Petrol Station in the town. Yup, fabulous.

I'm not actually convinced that the photo's on the website I booked thru are even of the place we stayed! It sounded so lovely:

Wickers Riverside Estate has a reputation for romantic dining with exceptional food at very reasonable prices, with special attention to detail and presentation. We offer à la Carte menus, Table d' Hote service and country style cooking. Personal private requirements such as spit braai's and potjies can also be arranged. Three venues are available to cater for either small intimate parties or large wedding receptions and other personal parties."

All of the above is pure fiction from my experience! After spending the rest of Friday pretty much sleeping and reading, we were horrified my Saturday morning's breakfast. It was cold and the plates were dirty. We weren't eating here again!

So we set out early on the Magalies Meander. Well, let me tell you upfront, it's not much of a Meander. In their large map, it is mostly accommodation. Which did not help us one bit. We looked into some quaint little shops, nothing really spectacular ... actually a lot of rubbish. But we did find a nice gallery where Mom bought a carpet - Dad is never gonna let her visit me again, she always buys some huge item to take back with her ;) And we went to a nice enough Crystal shop. And then we went and made some candles at The Goods Shed, which was fun :) I made a really cool purple one which I used last night.
We went to visit The First Medicinal Nursery which was probably the highlight of the morning :) It was really interesting and completely fascinating ... even for me! Then we had some overly expensive lunch at Kumandine Cafe, it was decidedly average.

After that we took a drive around the area and I showed Mom Goblin's Cove, where Bean & I had taken the Peeb when she'd been up years ago. And then we headed back to our dismal room to relax for the afternoon, more sleeping and reading ensued.

For dinner we'd decided to try the restaurant next door called Ambrosia. Aside from the shoddy service, the pizza we shared was delish! And we even saw Riaad from Big Brother, bizarre!
And then it was Sunday, naturally we checked out without breakfast! And then headed off to Maropeng. Which is really nice and I can recommend it to anyone who is interested in that sort of thing. The only downside was that there is a bit of an information overload towards the end of the "tour". Although very interesting and informative, it's just too much reading to do on vast colourful boards lining the walls.

As Mom commented, I hope the people who go there learn a little about the way we're running our planet into the ground. And I had my own personal wonder at how anyone back in the day ever managed to pro-create ... the mannequin versions they had of ancient man show them as really not much to look at!

And then it was back to good old Jhb for a quick relax at home ... and a little clever-packing before taking Mom to the airport. For the first time ever, I think her flight was pretty on-time.

Which brings me to a quick rant ... which I'll have to mail ACSA about later! I tried parking there - stupid! Although their fancy sign board said there were 19 free bays, there weren't. Hell, you could barely manage to drive thru the parking area at all since all the connecting lanes, that assure you they are in fact a "Tow Away Zone" had been filled with parked cars. I mentioned that to the two random employed for job-creation purposes people standing around the exit point and they offered me a parking spot next to the machine they were resting on up on the curb. Yes, now I know why these folk were hired! Eventually I gave in and succumbed to the lack of legitimate parking bays and found a spot in the "Tow Away Zone". Getting the trolley we managed to nab into the airport was a whole other story since some 4x4 idiot had parked on the curb, blocking the trolley ramp ... and those curbs are serious! At least he had been clamped ... although, he was the only one! Ridiculous, really.

And then Mom was off. It was fabulous to see her again and generally the weekend was good :) Then I went home to relax with a bubbly bath, my new candle and my book. After that I settled in with Grey's Anatomy Season 1 (Okay, I'm a little behind, but I didn't have Mnet in those days!) and some soup - it was chilly!

To my surprise, half way thru the first episode my doorbell rang. Now I'm in my PJs and certainly not expecting anyone. Turns out it was Varen popping by, "on his way home" <- :="" a="" and="" away="" be="" because="" before="" but="" can="" could="" definitely="" dye="" end="" ever="" few="" finally="" go="" grey="" had="" hairs="" have="" he="" heroes="" him="" his="" home.="" home="" in="" is="" it="" little="" lives="" marathon="" me="" miles="" more="" my="" nice="" no="" of="" on="" possibly="" post="" probably="" quotes="" reached="" reverted="" s="" see="" since="" span="" that="" the="" them="" then="" there="" to="" was="" watched="" way="" we="" weekend="" with="" you="">

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Still Me Birthday - Yay!

So, I've finally found a minute to fill you in on the Birthday Fesitivities :)

I had a fabulous evening last night with 15 amazing people I have the privilege to call friends. Varen came by first to give me my present (yes, it was something that could be wrapped ;) ) and to play designated driver for the evening. Although Loulou finally got her car back yesterday so could've handled the job ... but neither of them wanted to wrestle for it so it defaulted to the boy.
We headed out to Xai-Xai in Melville for my traditional starter Darwa. Surprisingly just about everyone joined us there so as they arrived so the order grew ... thankfully it did eventually arrive and everyone crushed and drank to their hearts content. Then we whizzed all the way down the road to Soulsa (these two spots I picked happened to be polar opposites of the same road ... so we got a chance to walk off a little of the alcohol before dinner).

Dinner at Soulsa was fabulous and they really put in an amazing effort for me. They'd printed trimmed versions of their menu (to ensure the food all came out at the same time) and they'd included everyone's names and set it up as per my seating plan. Yes, I had a seating plan.

When I told JofH this he packed up laughing ... I explained that I was in fact serious. He said yes, he knew, that's why he was laughing.

So, perhaps I'm a little obsessive but generally I've never enjoyed my own birthday parties, if you throw them at home you never actually get to stop being the hostess and just enjoy the event. Which is why I'm a fan of the Birthday Dinner at a Restaurant. But as I said we were a big group (15 for dinner) and there were some people there who didn't know anyone except me and others who knew half the table. The seating had to be perfect. I think it worked out fabulously, judging by the non-stop chatter that went on between everyone :)

And aside from the fact that my camera decided to run out of battery after one little picture (the one disappointment of the evening), the evening was a blast!

Oooh, and there was loot. I got pressies! Which is not obligatory at this age, birthday really do surprisingly become about seeing and spending time with your favourite people (I can't believe I just wrote that, I must be getting old!) but it is still always much appreciated ;)

It seems the gift that Varen had to give me at home (away from the maddening crowds) was a popular choice. Perhaps it's the fact that I'm no longer dating the heir to the South African Lingerie Empire that everyone thinks I need new undies? But hey, I'm a girl and sexy frilly under garments never go amis ;) So thanks guys ... I know a certain someone who is looking even more thrilled to the surprise weekend away in May now!

And then it was morning, which is actually when I opened all the loot I got last night at dinner - thank goodness considering all the items that can't be tried on in public.

At work this morning I had a well-scheduled Women's Forum Monthly Breakfast ... which I dearly needed after Bug & Lemon decided I should end the evening with a double Jager on top of my 1 & half Darwa's and bottle of red wine.

And now here we are, I've spent a slow day at work not doing much work but rather basking in the glow of Birthday Attention. As I said previously, I have received a vast number of emails, smses and facebook comments as well as a few welcome phone calls :) Oh and I even had a surprise delivery of beautiful flowers ... from the sweetest un-boyfriend ever, Varen. I am spoilt.

and now I am starving as I wait for the least healthy lunch to arrive. Admittedly I planned lunch today badly (or not at all) and the only thing on offer was a meal that ordinarily makes my arteries clog with the mere mention of the name "Akhalwayas". But it's all that was on offer and since I'm in no mood for starving, I went with the flow. How bad could it be? Do you think it's possible to double your cholesterol after one sandwich?

And Mom is checked in at Cape Town International already ... I am really looking forward to her coming up this weekend, I think it's gonna be a good one.

So that's all the news ... Thanks to all the fabulous folk who came to dinner with me last night and thanks to everyone who has used one medium or another to find a way to wish me today.

Have a fabulous long weekend folks :)

Happy Birthday to Me

It's been a crazy morning so far - Thanks everyone :)

And I promise to do a proper post a little later when I've finished replying to all the emails, smses, facebook comments and phone calls :)

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Position Vacant, Apply Within

Last night was fab, was great to see all the book club girls again :)

Oh, and on a complete aside, I've decided I need new, proper nicknames for the girls. There's Loulou, that's easy. There's Band who's dating Bean's friend Unicef. There's Sal of Sal&Bru ... who will now be known as Lady&Bug. Then there's She of She&War who will now be Lime&Lemon. Then there's 2 more girls who've never been mentioned before: Anonymous Lawyer and The Queen of KPMG. Okay, these may change a little more over time ... nick-naming people is hard work!

Well, we were all there last night at Anonymous Lawyer's ... except Loulou (it was her mom's bday, so she was obliged to be elsewhere). It was a fab evening with some great catering, good company and a few new exciting reads.

And then there's something else I need to put out there ... Varen is taking me on a surprise weekend away in mid-May. It may not sound like the most likely thing two people who're supposed to be officially broken up should do, but I think it sounds like fun and things are good between us at the moment. All ups and no downs.

As he said in his email: "I've rarely (never?), through all of this, been able to plan something nice for me and you and i think that this would kind of be our last hurrah before i set off into the scary world again -- limbo can't last forever you know"

So that caused a bit of weirdness yesterday morning ... I guess, as much as I like the concept of scheduling the end, knowing it's coming up and going out with a bang, as it were, I was still fairly annoyed by this whole situation.

I guess I've figured out the problem with the anti-dating we've sort of been up to lately. We're friends, but only do stuff with each other. We're not dating so we don't invite each other along to anything else we might be doing that involves other people. It's a bizarre sort of relationship. And I just hope it can adjust itself into some sort of friendship when it really is over for real ... although I'm not sure if it would survive either of us dating someone else.

So, in preparation for my soon to be searching single status, here are my requirements:

  • you must be no older than 32 and no younger than 25

  • your English must be good enough to pass as your first language

  • I have a definite preference for dark hair and green eyes (that doesn't rule out blondes, but I seem to tend to date primarily brunette men)

  • you should be around 6ft tall (apparently my subconscious is trying to ensure I override the short genes on both sides of my family)

  • you should have a fabulous sense of humour and also find me occasionally funny (I think of nights lying in bed next to Bean in absolute hysterics. Also, be warned, I'm apparently usually at my funniest when I'm sincerely trying to be serious!)

  • you should have some ambition and a good job (this does not include working till 9pm every night, but will ensure you can one day support your family)

  • you should be anywhere between average and amazing in the kitchen (I'm not fabulous myself, so there should be balance)

  • you should enjoy geting stuck into a good book and be open to reading a variety of themes (I've had such fun recommending books to Varen and chatting about them after he's finished)

  • you should like to try new restaurants and enjoy a wide variety of flavours

  • you should have a normal interest in sport (I'm perfectly keen to go to the occasional live rugby or cricket game but I have no desire to plan my social life around the supersport calendar. Keeping in mind that any sort of interest in boxing or wrestling means you can stop reading now!)

  • you should have an interest in traveling (I like to do at least one major overseas trip a year and lots of local weekends away)

  • you should be able to organise more than live sporting events for the two of us (I'm an organiser by nature, but there's nothing nicer than your better half suggesting a weekend away or putting some effort into the things you do together)

  • you should notice the little things, things I like and things I don't and put this information to good use (Varen taught me the value of this one!)

  • you should be attentive of your own will (everyone needs attention and needs to feel like they are receiving it in sufficient quantities, this should, at worst, be a 70-30 balance)

  • you should have a backbone (not in the literal sense, although this is probably crucial too. I need someone with their own opinions and will know the difference on when to fight me on it and when to leave it alone - ever wishful!)

  • you need to know when to say sorry (that is, when you're wrong or have done something that upset me ... definitely not for everything I call you on)

  • you should like pets (my mom thinks I should marry a farmer ;) I want a miniture pot-bellied pig one day with my border collie, koi pond and guinea pig)

  • any family holiday houses wouldn't go amis

  • there should be a mutual attraction (this one is a deal-breaker)

And that is all I can think of off the top of my head for now ... will advise if I think of anything else. If you feel you or anyone you know meets the above criteria, drop me a comment ;) I figure the interviewing process should take about 3 - 6 months, perhaps longer and I'm not getting any younger!

Okay, so this is more wishful thinking than anything else, but I'm a firm believer of having a good idea of what your "likes" are. I mean, the chances are high that my future Mr. Perfect may not be ideal in every category (what are the chances of that, seriously?) and I also know that what you want is not always what you need from a person. Sometimes we surprise outselves. But this here is what I'm working towards ... I refuse to entertain the very real fact that if I really ever did meet a guy who got a tick in every box, it probably still wouldn't work ;) But hey, I can dream ...

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Birthday Festival Schedule

So, last night was quiet. Which is fair enough since it's going to be a busy week ahead!

I did my little bit (lot) of exercise at Yoga, since because of the busy week my Yoga schedule has rather been thwarted. And then Loulou made dinner which was fab and after a lazy hot bath with my book, I finished watching Prison Break 2.

I was super disappointed in how the series ended ... I was hoping there might be a few more episodes that I had missed off the end. All they've done is set themselves up for the next season. It was a rather a Pirates of the Caribbean 2 moment :P

And my busy week ... tonight is Book Club. Tomorrow night is the Birthday Dinner at Soulsa. Thursday is the actual Birth Day and Mom arrives up from Cape Town. That evening we're off to the Heavyweight Comedy Jam. On Friday Mom and I are off to lunch at Forum Homini's restaurant, Roots and then we're spending the weekend in Magaliesburg.

And that is the schedule that leaves me wit hnot a spare free second for the next 6 days. Yay :)

Monday, April 23, 2007

Let's Do The Time Warp Again

It was a good weekend :) Friday I saw Varen. It wasn't my fault, he cunningly bribed me with The Rocky Horror Picture Show. And anyone who knows me well will understand, I was helpless to resist. It has a similar effect to bribery with Lindt ;)

So I went over to his new place for the first time. It's sort of an interim home until the place he bought is finally finished and ready for habitation. And let me tell you, this current spot is frikkin' miles away. But the unit itself is nice enough ... if it weren't one of 480 or something ridiculous. What is wrong with property developers these days? Give me an old complex with big rooms and plenty of parking any day over these Summercon villages that are taking over the world, where every unit looks identical to 40000 other units around Joburg. Yeah, this place is full of sheep. I can't help but wonder when the styles of today (which are apparently Tuscan, African Thatch and French Provincial ... or things that are supposed to reflect these) are no longer in style and half of Joburg is filled with them. Interesting times coming up, I imagine. Will they just do what they're doing now with all the vast old Joburg homes and rip them down for something new and better? No doubt that's exactly how it'll work.

So he braai-ed for the two of us and we settled in to watch Rocky Horror. Me singing along wildly as he watched the cult favourite for the first time. Don't worry, I'm equally flabbergasted, there are people out there who make it to the ripe old age of 25 without ever having seen one of my all-time ever favourite movies.

I can't really explain why it is a favourite of mine, The Peeb and I knew all the words to the song before we even knew what the words meant or that there was a movie. We found the tape (yes, cassette tape ... it was a looong time ago!) in Dad's vast collection and started listening to it. Even at such a young age, it quickly became a firm fav. I think I watched the movie for the first time when I was in Standard 4 (Grade 6) ... about 11 years old. And since then The Peeb and I have watched the video countless times, been to see it live in all sorts of different stage adaptations (even an African version is Spier once) and dressed up for it regularly.We both own the CD Soundtrack. I think it's a bit of a family obsession.

So Friday evening was fabulous, but made me miss The Peeb and The Divine Miss M (who also shares our uncanny ability to recite the entire script).

On Saturday we did some admin stuff and went for breakfast at Europa. Europa is fab and has one of my favourite sandwiches (I always have one item that I eat religiously at every restaurant ... boring but it's usually when I'm craving that specific thing that I head off to the particular restaurant. At Europa it's their Napoli open sandwich. Yum. And it was just what I needed, I haven't had it in absolute ages.

After that I took Varen for his first visit to the Bryanston Organic Market. On Saturday evening I headed out to Outer Limits for She's birthday drinks. It was a great evening with lots of fabulous people :)

Outer Limits was certainly an improvement on the last time I was there. We tried it one year on my birthday and the food all came out at different times and some food was cold. It was a shocking experience. But I guess that was the restaurant, on Saturday we were at the bar and I've never heard anything bad about that.

Sunday was a fairly lazy morning, Loulou and I wandered Cresta just for something to do ... and everyone is asking what I want for my Bday, how should I know? Then Varen came by on his bike and we rode out for a lazy afternoon of reading at Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens. It was lovely, until the clouds came over and threatened to pour. Which it did while we were on the bike on our way home ... not a pleasant experience. But, it was still a fun afternoon :)

Once home, I enjoyed a warm bath with my book and finished watching Dexter. Brilliant.

Friday, April 20, 2007

"Please" Read My *Yawn* Post

There's nothing quite like a full nights sleep, which I thankfully had last night :) TheBrad kindly took over standby for the night for me and looking at the emails sent round, he had a rough night. But I really could not have managed it a third night in a row!

Instead I went to Yoga. That's right folks, I made it 3 times this week :) Well, that's partly because I know next week is a totally write off thanks to my upcoming birthday festival!

And then I headed off to Sakura for some sushi ... yes, alone. Why does everyone gasp at that? It's a conveyor belt of sushi, it's like going to movies alone. Loulou was out for dinner with her mom and I wanted sushi. I'm such an independent girl ;) The sushi was fab and then I came home to watch some Dexter and CSI.

So here's a topic I've been meaning to write about, and it's a bit of a weird one ... in fact I may be the only person who wonders about these things (if I'm not, please leave a comment to let me know I'm not alone!).

Why do we say "Please"? Is it weird to say that I just don't understand the concept? I realise it is considered polite, but I'm a logical sort of girl and I just can't see the point. "Thank-you", on the other hand, I understand completely.

If I ask you to do something, do I want you to do it any less if I don't say "Please"? Does it somehow change what I've asked for? Why on earth would one single word make a difference as to whether I do something for you or not? What a crazy notion.

"Thank-you", as I said, I understand. It shows appreciation for what has been done ... whether it was asked for using a "Please" or not. There are so many things in life (work particular) that we do not get a choice in whether we do or not. So why would you think asking me to do it with a "Please" would make me more likely to do something I already don't want to? It's not like I can say no to working on this Project or delivering this work.

Oh, and don't get me wrong, I still use "Please" occasionally ... it's been ingrained into me by societal norms, like so many other things. But it still annoys me. I think "Please" is a bit like the whole "Yawn" thing* and we should get over it.

* Certain superstitions surround the act of yawning. The most common of these is the belief that it is necessary to cover one's mouth when one is yawning in order to prevent one's soul from escaping the body.

Etiquette seems a mostly antiquated practice and almost unnecessary these days, who has space for it in a mere 160 char sms? But don't misunderstand, I don't mean to abolish it completely, I think there's a fair amount of improvement in the quantity people are currently using "Thank-you" ... but perhaps that's because I'm a Joburg driver and no-one round here seems to think there's any room for Thanks on the road, even if you let them in at the last possible moment because they thought they were too special to wait in the lengthy turning queue like the rest of us ... something I never do, because really, people need to learn a little forward planning and hell, if I can wait in the traffic, so can you.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Sleep-Deprived Posting

I'm so not in the mood for posting this morning ... which is supremely unlike me, as any regular reader will know.

Yesterday was a completely uneventful, almost zombie like evening. I was exhausted from my disjointed night's sleep but I still went to Yoga, which was satisfying, but also exhausting ... in that "Gee Whiz I really pushed myself hard" kind of way, which I assure you is a novelty for me! I think this is why I like Yoga. Firstly, it's 90 minutes, which is wa-ay longer than I could convince myself to stick out in the gym. Secondly, I can feel the heart-racing muscle-aching effects during those 90 mins, another thing that's tricky to generate at gym. You may have guessed that I don't find gym in any way satisfying or pleasant even ... mostly I find it boring as all hell. It's really just something I do because I feel I should. I don't get that Endorphin rush or whatever it is that the fitness fanatics chatter on about. I never feel better after gym.

Bean always did, he was much better when he went to gym between work & home ... it disconnected him from "work-mode". That is what I spend my half an hour reading in my bath for.

Anyway. I do feel better after Yoga. I feel like I've worked out. And I find myself pushing myself harder than I would left to my own devices in a gym. I used to try going to the classes, but they get equally boring as spinning on a bike or some other equally ridiculous use of my time. Anyway, so I'm enjoying Yoga and the novelty has not yet worn off. I need the class environment, someone else demanding I push myself. And I love the Yoga instructor at this place. She's encouraging and wanders around correcting you where necessary. And doesn't make me feel like an idiot because half the people in class are bent in half while I don't look like I've moved a muscle ... yet, I assure you, they're all straining to their (current) limits.

So I went to Yoga. Went home. Put washing on. Ate left overs for dinner, straight out of the fridge ... how very single of me! And then got to relax in the bath with my book before crawling into bed for another couple of episodes of Prison Break 2.

This morning was equally disjointed, if not more so. At least TheBrad will be on standby tonight so I can get at least one decent night's sleep ... 3 nights in a row would be too hectic for me and I might show up at work with a hand-grenade ;)

Which is why this post is late and not very enthusiastic, I'm feeling a little sleep-deprived and everything is rather happening in slow-motion today.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

A Perfect Stormy Evening

I'm a bit bleary-eyed from a far too awake early morning of Production issues. It's my first night back on stand-by and I'm sick of it again already!

Anyway. Had a fairly evolving evening last night, but it was great :) After some racy Google Talk with Varen yesterday afternoon, he popped over after work. I know we have been seeing each other quite a bit, but the spontaneous nature of it seems to work.

Oh, and Varen found out my secret yesterday afternoon. I knew about his secret new blog. I didn't tell him I knew because he didn't want me to, but he figured it out from the IP address hits on StatCounter ... he's getting as sneaky as me ;) Sorry, I can't tell you the address, it's still a secret - well, from the rest of the world, at least ;)

Anyway, we watched a couple of episodes of Heroes. And then I suggested dinner at Cranks. Haven't been there in a while and it seemed like a fabulous idea :) And it was. We were sitting outside with the glow of their neon lights enjoying their fabulous Thai food and watching the pouring rain (I do love the storming weather!). And although the conversation did mostly centre round us and our relationship and the seemingly un-conventional nature of it with it's many ups and downs, the evening was perfect.

And then we headed back for another episode of Heroes. I still really can't decide if I like this show, I think I'm just really watching at this point to see what happens.

Oh, and in other news, I finished reading Jodi Picoult's Salem Falls on the weekend.

Jack St. Bride was once a beloved teacher and soccer coach at a girls' prep school - until a student's crush sparked a powder keg of accusation and robbed him of his career and reputation. Now, after a devastatingly public ordeal that left him with an eight-month jail sentence and no job, Jack resolves to pick up the pieces of his life. He takes a job washing dishes at Addie Peabody's diner and slowly starts to form a relationship with her in the quiet New England village of Salem Falls. But just when Jack thinks he has outrun his past, a quartet of teenage girls with a secret turn his world upside down once again, triggering a modern-day witch hunt in a town haunted by its own history...

It was okay. The same
formula mass-produced flavour of her other books I've read. At least this one had a happy ending (compared with The Pact) and an ending at all (compared to Keeping Faith). So I guess she is improving. I still can't quite understand why people rush out to buy her books yet, tho. It's the sort of thing I'll read if it's around ... me, I need mystery, intrigue and a serious twist in the ending for a book to rank worthy ;)

> Follow Jodi Picoult on Twitter

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Are You Happy?

So I wrote this whole post ... and then it disappeared. This does not bode well for the day :( I will try it once more ...

I had a nice relaxed and balanced evening last night with a little bit of everything. Managed to get to yoga :) Had dinner at home with Loulou. Had a good read of my latest book in the bath, with bubbles even. Watched an episode of Prison Break 2 and then one of Dexter. I'm dying to finish them both, but I am further thru Prison Break (having started it first) and am absolutely loving Dexter ... so I can't pick. Therefore I've decided to split my Series Viewing Time equally between them, fair is fair ;)

And I was thinking last night ... which brings me to another total aside, why do I form the best blog posts up in my head at the most un-postable times, like in the shower or as I'm falling asleep? It's times like these I wish I had a dicta-phone in my head!

So, I was thinking about this whole "life" thing again. I'm hoping I'm just getting marginally depressed because I've been skipping my Omega's. Anyway, the "life" thing. I'm wondering if I'm not completely screwed up ... forever, with no hope of recovery and a nice settled life with someone I love who loves me. Our parents and grandparents (well mine, anyway) seemed to get married so young, I guess to the first person they thought they could marry, and they stuck it out (for the most part). These days I think we have a lower attention span and less patience (thanks to all sorts of mod-cons) and it's affecting our relationships.

But I'm not sure who's got the right idea. Should I have married Bean when I first realised I wanted to, would it have resolved our problems or given me more strength to push thru them ... or would I have ended up miserable, wandering thru life as a mere shell, accepting what I had and not believing more existed.

My grandparents have been married over 50 years and I wish I could've met them when they were young. When they'd first met and (I assume) fallen in love. When they were first married. These days they don't seem to like each other that much, they've just accepted each other and the other's un-ending presence in their lives. When did that happen to them?

And today it's all about to change as Gummy moves into an Old Age home. Marga will be really alone for the first time in forever. They've been together almost double the time they were alone. And as much as I'm sure she's almost looking forward to the break from him (the last year or so has been fairly exhausting for her as his memory goes, but more so by her own stubbornness), I'm sure she will be floundering in figuring out what life is like on your own.

So how is this affecting my outlook on life ... well, I'm wondering where one goes from here. I wasn't happy enough with the 2 and a half year relationship I had, so I left it. When does one get to the point of accepting that this is your life and you chose it. Will it magically happen to me if I end up in a close-to-marriage situation again, or will I just grab hold with two hands for fear of growing old alone and just accept the way life turns out.

It's a strange thing to think that the average person does settle down and get married, but there are no statistics to show if they are happy. Well, I'm sure everyone is for a while. But when does that change and what does it take to accept that? And is it better to love or be loved. How does one find that middle ground? I've tried both in the last 12 months and I am no closer to an answer, it's just left me still searching for the possibility of both :)

Anyway, enough of my crazy life questions for today ...

Monday, April 16, 2007

A Mere Two Day Weekend

So another weekend flies by ... a mere two days this time, so no wonder it seemed over in a flash.

As an aside, who do you think started the whole 5-day work week, 2-day weekend concept ... and what the hell were they thinking? I can sort of understand it back in the day when there was possibly less to do on your weekends ... but why have we not re-assessed this yet? The general public masses conforming to the silly corporations and what's best for them. It saddens me. Bring on the 3-day weekend!

Anyway, enough of the craziness that occasionally invades and on to the weekend news.

Friday I wanted a relaxed evening at home ... in fact that was my plan for the whole weekend. I don't know why but I wasn't feeling terribly sociable. Varen was hoping to see me so I caved and said why not. He came over to give me Heroes and I heated some Woolies soup for us and we started watching. I can't decide if I like it or not yet ... it seems to be very popular at the moment, but we'll see ...

Then on Saturday I had to come in to work for a Production Implementation. Oh and it turns out Idiot PM is going thru a divorce, that's why he's been such a tyrant. Anyway, the implementation was smooth and TheBrad & I were out of here within 2 & half hours. Got to enjoy some extra time on facebook, so not a total loss ;)

Then I went and relaxed at home with Loulou and watched Prison Break 2. Until Varen called. He had sneakily-accidentally taken my iPod headphones when he'd left the night before and wanted to bring them round ... and maybe watch some more Heroes episodes. I went against my better judgement ... hey, I didn't have any plans and I was keen to see how the series progressed. So we made plans for him to come over later after I'd popped out to visit JofH.

We got Sfigati take-out pizza and settled in for a long evening of Heroes, we got thru a marathon 5 episodes!

So, it was a little weird, seeing so much of him this weekend. Luckily we've decided to detox this week. The time we spend together is great and we have fun, but I don't want to over-do it and ruin the way things are right now. Eventually that'll happen anyway when either of us meets someone else, no doubt. So enough thinking about that crazy situation - it makes sense at the time, okay!

Sunday I spent very lazily ... got up at a leisurely hour after watching more Prison Break in bed - gotta love laptops! And then went out to do some admin stuff and a general shop for this week, I needed smoothie ingredients ;) Can you believe I'm still making them regularly!

And then I spent the afternoon watching more Prison Break and started on Dexter. Now I may not be sure what I think about Heroes (even after 7 episodes) but I love Dexter. It is fabulous!

And then I got an invite from Sal&Bru to a spur-of-the-moment Poker evening. Fabulous :) I last played with them (and they are very organised!) when Bean & I were broken up the first time, in fact I think we may just have gotten back together. It was fabulous and I won that time, so yes, I was keen.

Was a quiet evening with only 4 of us there but we had a good few rounds, lots of laughs and Daddio would be so proud because I won again :)

Friday, April 13, 2007

Fun For Friday

I realised that I haven't posted any cool or bizarre websites lately ... I guess my crazy life has rather taken over my focus :P

So here are two to help you waste your Friday afternoon, if you are as bored as I am.

The first is Prickie. And before you get any exciting ideas, I'll tell you that they sell the largest collection of unique Button Badges online. I think there are some really lovely ones and some crazy ones. Makes me wish I knew what to do with those sorts of things, but I don't.

The second is Death Switch. A little morbid yes, but an interesting concept none the less and ideal for me with my need to still be organised even in death. The basic concept (and this is a very watered down version) is: the Death Switch will regularly prompt you for your password to ensure you're still alive. After it has "figured out" that you're dead, it sends off your stored messages (things like passwords, last goodbyes, where you buried your life's savings etc.).

A Good Evening With Old Friends

I had a fabulous night last night :) I was a bad girl and skipped Bikram again ... I don't think I can manage it two days in a row. But I had a good reason. Beukes was up in Jhb on business and drinks were in order.

I rushed home after work so that Loulou and I could take a brisk half hour walk around our neighbourhood (it makes a nice change to gym as a form of exercise) so that I didn't feel completely guilty about skipping yoga. It was fab, we should do it again.

And then I zoomed off to Newscafe in Sandton (after an obligatory shower ;) ) to meet up with DJMike and Beukes and some of their mates.

Quick background: DJMike's family has been friends with our family since he and the Peeb were in pre-school. Beukes was a school friend of DJMike's who I've known since he was about in Standard 4 (that's Grade 6, for you youngsters). Anyway, Beukes and I became better friends once we were all out of school (and let's not mention that crazy 21st with Britney, Marilyn Manson and Green Day!) and he's now living by the sea in Durbs. DJMike has recently (this year) moved up to good ol' Jhb.

It was fabulous to see them both again, although a pity Beukes had to rush off to the work funtion he was up here for. DJMike & I decided to head off for some dinner and a good catch up. I suggested Luca's since I was (shock, horror) having a Luca's Salad craving. It was a lovely evening and ended early enough for me to be home in time for CSI ;)

And now it is Friday :)

Thursday, April 12, 2007

How To Build Your Own Coffin-Barometer

I know a secret. Isn't that fabulous. And I'm dying to share it ... but I can't. I doubt it's even something that would interest most of you, but it sure interests me. Thanks Daddio, for spilling the beans ;)

And so far today is (mostly) a fantabulous day. Here's a quick "Thanks" to the Traffic Gods who made this morning's traffic seem as though everyone who was back at work yesterday is now on Easter Break again!

But then I had to deal with an Idiot Work Person ... let's call him Smither's. He's a complete waste of space, so much so that I barely know he works here. Except for the odd occasion I have to deal with him and he goes off on one of those typical boy power trips. When you ask for something truly simple to be done, it can take him days ... because he's oh-so busy with his other high and mighty tasks. Luckily I don't have to deal with him often, but this morning he sent me a reply email blah blah-ing on about how we need to tell them when we're accessing their database. Hello, we are decomissioning the software that currently accesses it and our software is taking over that role. He should be well aware we're accessing his data! Obvious.

It should hurt to be stupid. I think I need a T-Shirt printed with that slogan!

Oooh, and in other exciting work news - well, sort of exciting drama for me, I guess. I'm sure I've mentioned our Idiot Project Manager before ... I need a name for him, because there are so many I may need to differentiate ;) But let me give you some background ...

Originally we had Crazy Lady the Project Manager. But since she is not results-driven (ie. we never hit one deliverable) she was promptly removed. And the company did a stupid thing, they hired a new Project Manager from the company who's software we are working on. Enter Idiot PM on stage right. Now to say that TheBrad & I had a personality clash with Idiot PM from the start would be ... completely true. It's been a rocky road since then but we've muddled thru and although he takes things personally and I find him patronising and condescending, for the most part we've got our work done. Unfortunately for him, although I like my work to be appreciated, sending me a "Thank-you" email with 8 exclamation marks doesn't quite do it for me.

In a fabulous quote Varen sent me a while ago: "multiple exclamation marks are a sure sign of a diseased mind". Pahahahahah. Best I stop using too many then ;)

Anyway, things have been getting rather more strained lately and yesterday he & TheBrad got into an email war. And this is fab for me because I get to be the one lying-low, for a change! Basically in response to a heated email TheBrad sent, Idiot PM replied that he should now see why we kept changing Project Managers and that this could be the last nail in his coffin.

TheBrad and I are wondering if we should stick a picture of a coffin on the wall and add new nails every few days ... as a sort of count-down ;) I think it would be hilarious!

Last night was fairly uneventful, managed to get to my Bikram Yoga class on time and it was fabulous, although it does leave me too exhausted for much else. Loulou made yummy Nachos for dinner last night. Spectacular. And other than that I did nothing but read my book.

Although I did chat to Varen a little. Randomly smsed him to say hi and it turned out he was in hospital with food poisoning! so he had a far more eventful yet less pleasant evening than me.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Bean's Birthday

So, it's Bean's birthday today ... I'll have to phone him in a bit to wish him. He's in Cape Town at the moment enjoying a bit of a holiday before he heads off to his new single life in the UK. Weird. I'm sure I'll be quite emotional after chatting with him ... depending on how long the call lasts. But right now, I'm fine.

And have to dash off into a meeting ... back in a bit ;)

Righto, I'm back ... Last night was very quiet. I missed my second yoga session, I was 5 minutes late ... damn Jhb traffic :P Oh well. Loulou and I are definitely going this evening :) So just had a fairly relaxing night at home.

On the retrospective reporting, I finished two books on the Easter weekend. First was Ben Elton's Chart Throb.

"Chart Throb" is the ultimate pop quest. Ninety five thousand hopefuls. Three judges. Just one winner. And that's Colin Simms, the genius behind the show. Colin always wins because Colin writes the rules. But this year, as he sits smugly in judgement upon the mingers, clingers and blingers whom he has pre-selected in his carefully scripted 'search' for a star, he has no idea that the rules are changing. The 'real' is about to be put back into 'reality' television and Colin and his fellow judges (the nation's favourite mum and the other bloke) are about to become ex-factors themselves. Ben Elton, author of "Popcorn and Dead Famous" returns to blistering comic satire with a savagely hilarious deconstruction of the world of modern television talent shows. "Chart Throb" is about one winner and a whole bunch of losers.

It was okay. I appreciated it more when I caught a bit of American Idols on tv last night. It wasn't nearly as good as I remember High Society being.

The second was Wicker by Kevin Guilfoile.

When his teenage daughter is killed, and no one is arrested for the crime, Dr. Davis Moore does the unthinkable: he clones the unidentified murderer from the genetic evidence and has the child adopted by an unsuspecting couple, the Finns, who name him Justin. With his partner as Justin's pediatrician, Moore is able to follow the child's development, hoping to eventually identify the killer through their similarities. But that's not as easy as it sounds.

This was brilliant. I thoroughly enjoyed it and it had a lovely twist, a couple actually, at the end that even I didn't see coming. If you like murder mystery, read this one.

> Follow Kevin Guilfoile on Twitter

Oh, and in between all that I made my call to Bean. It was fine. Nice even. Good to hear his voice :)

And now on with my busy work day ...

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

A Lovely Looong Weekend

So, it was Easter. A big thing if you subscribe to any vaguely Christian belief. Luckily, I don't (let's not get into that now) ... so for me it was just a nice long weekend off work :)

It started off well. I went to my first Bikram Yoga class on Thursday. Which was so much better than I expected and I'll definitely be going back for more, and probably dragging Loulou along with me too ;) And I think that was about that on Thursday evening. Kept an eye on my new bird-pet and watched the usual tv while my body recovered.

Friday we headed off to FreeMe to deliver the Crested Barbet. He seemed to be better (before the car-ride) and even ate some of the banana they'd told me to give him. Thanks to an update from She, I found out he was just stressed and was released on Saturday. A job well done.

Later that afternoon, and I truly do mean afternoon, Loulou and I headed off to Newscafe in 4ways for sundowners ... Which swiftly got out of hand. There were many shooters being bought, the first few by us, the next lot by the neighbouring tables of boys ;) Phlippy, Chew the Cud and some of their mates eventually showed up and I know a good time was had by all. Although I can't explain why most of us woke up with a signature in black marker pen on our body the next morning.

Oh, and there might've been a late night drunken phone call to Varen, but at least I (apparently) didn't say anything too regrettable!

Blegh, Saturday morning. The worst hang-over I've had in ages. Luckily Loulou was there with Panado's and Energade. Eventually I was feeling well enough to emerge from my bed. And then we headed off to the KES Rugby Festival.

I'm not entirely surewhy we went, it seemed like a good idea at the time, a way to spend the afternoon ... it certainly wasn't about the rugby. We spent the afternoon in the beer tent. It was not fabulous. It had some nice sociable bits, but mostly I would've rather been back in bed reading my book!

And then there was the idiot. Now, I'd love to blame my fragile state, but I can't. When I am in the vicinity of a moron, I cannot help but drip contempt and utter nothing but sarcasm. It's a curse. So this idiot showed up attached to an ex-colleague of Loulou's. He was long passed drunk. He reached that "Girls want me more if I'm vulgar and crude" stage of alcohol poisoning. It was more than unpleasant but fairly good sport since he was too far gone to follow most of my biting retorts ;)

After that, Loulou & I went home and watched The Sweetest Thing on dvd.

This plot begins with Christina Walters (Diaz) and Courtney Rockcliffe (Applegate), all-around party girls, attempting to ease their roommate Jane Burns (Blair) relationship-induced depression by taking her on a girls' night out. During that evening Walters meets Peter Donahue and falls for him. However, having missed her chance that evening, Walters and Rockcliffe spend the rest of the movie chasing him down, driving a Saab 9-5 station wagon.

It was okay. Typical Cameron Diaz chick flick. Nothing requiring a brain for this movie ... perfect for the way we were feeling ;)

Sunday we woke up late and headed off for all-you-can-eat sushi at Sakura for lunch :) Always fabulous. And then we decided to head over to the Rosebank Craft Market for the rest of the afternoon - neither of us had been in ages.

It was a lovely way to spend the afternoon, wandering between stalls :) I must find time to go back to the Bryanston Organic Market and the Irene Country Market sometime too.

That evening we watched a couple more dvds. Derailed and The Covenant.

The protagonist, Charles Schine (Clive Owen), is an advertising executive married to a schoolteacher in Chicago. The introductory scenes of the movie reveal that Charles' marriage is deteriorating due to the stresses of caring for a teenage daughter who is seriously ill with diabetes, while the parents both have busy careers.
While on a commuter train, Charles encounters an alluring woman named Lucinda (Jennifer Aniston) — he had forgotten his fare and was about to be thrown off the train when Lucinda offers to pay for it. The attraction is mutual, and the two begin meeting more frequently. Ultimately, the two are intent on consummating their affair in a shady hotel. Just as Charles and Lucinda are about to have sex, an armed man later named as Philippe LaRoche (Vincent Cassel) bursts into the hotel room, beats Charles and brutally rapes Lucinda. Charles and Lucinda agree not to report the crime, as they do not want their spouses to learn of the affair. Shortly after the incident, Charles is blackmailed by LaRoche, who demands money in order to keep quiet about the situation.

In 1692, in the Ipswich Colony of Massachusetts, five families with untold power formed a covenant of silence. One family lusting for more was banished, their bloodline disappearing - without a trace.
Until now.
The Covenant tells the story of the Sons of Ipswich, four young students at the elite Spencer Academy who are bound by their sacred ancestry. As descendants of the original families that settled in Ipswich Colony in the 1600s, the boys have all been given amazing powers, by the right of their heritage.
When the body of a student is discovered after a party, secrets begin to unravel which threaten to break the covenant of silence that has protected the families for hundreds of years.

Derailed turned out to be fabulous with a wonderful twist even I didn't see coming. And then, of course, there's yummy Clive Owen! Definitely worth renting.

The Covenant was rubbish. Admittedly it doesn't sound brilliant from the write up, but it was way worse than I was expecting. Although there is some pleasant eye-candy. So if you're looking for story-line, this is not the movie for you. If you'd rather watch mindless boys, then definitely rent it ;)

And then it was Monday. Got a bunch of admin sorted out ... went thru the boxes I brought back from Bean's. Didn't cause much emotional upheaval, so that's a good sign, right? And did some shopping ... although the cute little shops I wanted to check out were all closed, typical. But Cresta was buzzing and that many people wandering aimlessly tends to drive me nuts, so I went home and finished my book (more on that tomor!)

And then Varen came over. It was planned. He'd sneakily got his manager to okay him taking his laptop home for the weekend to clean off all his stuff because I would deliver it safely this morning. So really, I had to see him. But it was also lovely to see him. And we're still officially broken up and free to continue on with our lives, where ever they may lead. But I think we'll forge some sort of friendship, mostly over email, no doubt ... but with the occasional dinner or movie ;) It's better that way. I do really like him, but as I discovered this weekend, he really was correct in figuring out that I was just not in a relationship space right now. I'm enjoying being single and doing whatever I want.

Anyway, he spent the afternoon and we watched Garden State.

California Waiter/Actor/Pill-popper Andrew Largeman (Zach Braff) recieves a call from his psychiatrist father (Ian Holm) to learn that his paraplegic mother has died. After nine years Andrew returns home to New Jersey for the funeral and the life he thought he had left behind. Set to a soundtrack hand-picked by Braff, Andrew befriends a rather unusual girl who just happens to be his polar-opposite, Sam (Natalie Portman), reconnects with his now grave-digging buddy (played by Peter Sarsgaard), his father, and eventually himself. Through his escapades with new and old friends Andrew heals parts of himself he hadn't realized were even broken- leaving himself and everyone else asking should he return to California or stay home in the Garden State?

It was alright. I do like Zach Braff. It had some truely hysterical bits, but Natalie Portman was just annoying ... no one's that zany in real life, are they?

And then we got Ghazal's Indian take-out - yummy! And that was that, a marathon weekend with a good dose of relaxing, going out and having fun all round :)

Thursday, April 05, 2007

I Did Something Stupid, But I Might've Saved a Life

So I started the morning with a very curt and polite email to Varen. As I said before, we haven't been talking or mailing since Tuesday because he decided he needed some space. And, since I'm a respectful sort of person (sort of), I respected that and have not attempted any contact since then. Until this morning.

I needed to say Goodbye. It is his last day at our mutual company and it seemed the right thing to do. Also I needed to tell him that I wouldn't be attending his farewell drinks later today due to his same request for space. I also mentioned that this would be the last email I sent him ... and if he did ever want to get back in touch with me, it was up to him.

A little while later he mailed me, "hi". And so it began. Innocently at first, until I asked exactly what he was doing after having asked for his space, since he hadn't made a single mention of reading my initial email (I'd sent it to his gmail address, not his work one so I wasn't sure whether he'd read it or not). After some far too deep and meaningful emails about the wrong perceptions we both had of how the other was coping post break-up, I called him to ask him why he was doing this?

We chatted and he said he really wanted to see me so, either I should go to his farewell or he was coming to see me for lunch or I needed to tell him that I didn't want to see him and he'd leave it at that. I couldn't do any of them. I wanted to see him too, obviously ... we have that chemistry I was talking about ;) But I knew it would be a bad idea ... so before I could figure things out in my head, he said he was coming over (to our other offices) now.

And he came over and we went for a very nice lunch, good old Mochacho's, just like before :) And now what? Exactly how much had we screwed with our mental and emotional well-being? Obviously not enough because somehow we ended up at my house after lunch, luckily (?) I live quite close to our Second Offices. Crazy stuff.

So, I'm confused. We can't date again, we can't go back to the casual "seeing each other" that we tried after the last time we broke-up. I don't really know what happens now, does anything? I guess we'll play it by ear. As I said, we've tried breaking-up loads of times.

So for now, for safety's sake (emotionally and mentally), I'm still single ... but I wouldn't rule out seeing Varen again ;) See, I must be stupid.

Oh, and the Life we might've saved ... as we were leaving my place and heading back to work, we noticed Honey in stalker mode. And then we saw a cute colourful little bird hiding against the glass sliding doors. Dad says it's a Crested Barbet (and it must be since I found that picture >). Clearly this bird was not flying away and after chasing the cat away, we noticed there seemed to be something wrong with it's wing. I couldn't just leave it to die by cat.

So we caught it and it's now in my room in my laundry basket with some water and bread (what do birds really eat, anyway?). So, tomorrow I'll have to try taking it to FreeMe, where She volunteers and see if they'll take her (I say her, but how should I know?) ... if she survives the night in my laundry basket ;)

The way I see it, technically we saved a life by being emotionally stupid. I guess I can live with that ;)

Have a fabulous Easter Long Weekend, everyone.

Can Anyone Else Smell Peanuts?

It's a good morning today. I'm feeling better about things and enjoying my single-ness well, for now at least. Yesterday evening I went to see Miss Potter, alone.

The life of Beatrix Potter is the most enchanting tale of all.
Beatrix Potter has delighted generations of children with her books. But she kept her own private life locked carefully away. Oscar-winning star Renée Zellweger is now bringing her secret story to the screen in Miss Potter, the first film directed by Chris Noonan since his charming 1995 movie, Babe. It is set in the high summer days of late Victorian and Edwardian England, during which Beatrix develops her natural skills as artist and story-teller. When she finally publishes her debut book, The Tale of Peter Rabbit, she becomes a writing celebrity. It also leads to courtship and her first love with publisher Norman Warne, played by Ewan McGregor. Their relationship and his marriage proposal in July, 1905, was to change Beatrix's life for ever.

I grew up having Beatrix Potter stories read to me by Marga, my grandmother. In fact I think she owned the entire collection! Along with Enid Blyton, she was certainly a staple of our childhood.

And, I loved the movie ... although Renee Zellweger does spend far too much of the movie with her face scrunched up in that way that only she can.

So, aside from enjoying my single-status for an evening at the movies, I've now got an entire long weekend to contend with. And, don't get me wrong, I love public holidays as much as anyone ... in fact I'm all in favour of the current Holy Holidays for All debate. But when you're newly single, I fear this may just be more alone time that I can quite deal with right now. At least Mom is flying up for the next one at the end of April :) Yay.

Oh and in a total aside, what sort of illness would the smell of peanuts indicate ... or rather, if not a human ailment, how about some sort of impending car engine disaster? It may sound peculiar, in fact I'm sure it will, but I noticed it twice while driving last night. And I know that I have an acute and often creative sense of smell, but it was very strange.

There I was, happily driving along and suddenly the car is filled with the smell of peanuts. And I can't quite tell if they were those yummy chocolate covered ones, which I originally thought, or those salted ones with the red skins my grandfather used to love. Odd.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007


This morning I am annoyed. With Varen. And since my arrival at the office, the idiot people here.

I'll start with Varen. Do you know he's deleted his blog? That's right, deleted it right off the internet. As if it somehow had something to do with me, because I started him blogging. Or perhaps because I know he doesn't like the idea that I'll read it. And now we're doing the not talking thing either.

I completely understand, but it is still annoying as all hell. I accept that he had floated along on my up and down for as long as he could and tried as hard as he could to make this work the way he wanted and needed. Unfortunately we wanted and needed different things from each other. Now neither of us is getting those things.

It seems so ridiculous. And it was the same with Bean. This person who you build up a bond with, a friendship along with everything else. And when you lose everything else you lose their friendship. It's sad. And annoying. I can't make him talk to me and I'll respect the space he needs but, that doesn't mean it won't annoy me. At least for him, he's moved and I don't know where to ... so there's no chance of me popping in for a visit or a chat and he'll be off to his new job next week. He'll have all the space he needs.

And no doubt he'll find someone to fill my spot soon ... why is that annoying? I guess I'd like to believe I'm not that easily replaceable, but everyone is. I miss someone believing in me like he did, I guess because at the moment I'm too fragile to believe in myself too much right now. I still feel like the terrible person who broke 2 hearts in a record time. But hopefully that's just my head attacking me again ... hopefully.

And now there is idiot work. The people here drive me nuts. Is it a girl thing? Does it happen everywhere that no matter what your experience, if you are a girl you get side-lined for the boys? I forgot to mention that TheBrad is back early from the Caribbean. Apparently, based on the amount of partying they did in the 2 weeks he was there, if he'd stayed and tried to continue at that level of endurance, he probably would've killed himself. Oh well.

And I know I should be thrilled. No more 6 weeks of standby and being the only resource on all our projects. But I'm not. I'm annoyed. At the moment I'm working on our 2 current projects. And before TheBrad was back they would need to check all decisions with me, no matter which of our offices I was in. Now they've gone back to that idiot way of thinking that if one of us is around and in a meeting, that is sufficient. Forget the fact that they could be making decisions regarding the projects I'm working on ... Who cares, one of the project resources is there. I should be conference called in ... no, no, apparently they'll just let me know after the meeting. Well, no I've logged out my phone and I'm not interested in any of them this morning.

Do you wanna know the sorts of things I have to put up with? I once sent out an email regarding work we were doing and some stuff we needed done by someone else, who happened to be sitting right next to me. When he got the email, he picked up the phone and called TheBrad. That's right, I sent the mail, I was sitting right next to him and he phoned TheBrad who was at our other offices to talk about the questions I'd asked. It is more than Rude.

I know TheBrad has been here longer than I have and certainly has more experience on the workings of our systems, but I've been here almost 2 years now, it is not an insignificant amount of time. It is just annoying. On a regular basis decision that affect me and the projects I work on have decisions made over my head or without me even aware that there was even any discussion being had. And I on the other hand try and always keep people informed about what's being done and decisions being made and the status of work currently being done - since I am overly communicative, but I'm sure none of you noticed that, at all ;)

Blegh, why exactly did I decide to stay here? Our line manager (one of the reasons) has been away pretty much since that public holiday in March. He's back today, thankfully. I need to speak to him. I need to vent. I need to feel like I am respected for what I do. I doubt this will happen today. Annoying.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

So Where is That Fine Line?

It's hard to see an ex-boyfriend after the fact. With Bean last Monday, it was about the history. It brought out all the old emotions we had felt while we'd been together, but that are now dormant and hiding away in the dark recesses of my memory.

Yesterday afternoon, I bumped into Varen. I guess the only way we actually managed to break-up this time was becasue we did it on the phone. When I saw him, it was about the chemistry. We've never been good at sticking to the break-ups (there have been a few!), I think because everytime we see each other it degenerates into the good stuff, the physical attraction, the chemistry. Luckily, this time it seems to have stuck, we kept our smart hats on and admitted that as much as we wanted this, it doesn't work right now and it's not the healthy option.

Hopefully I'll get to that comfortable place with both of them one day, the place where you can see each other and enjoy each other's company and truly be hopeful that their lives are better now and they have found happiness.

It's the same with most of my other ex-boys. As I've said before, HighSchoolLove and I have this arrangement down to a perfect tee. Queen of Melodrama and I have this to some degree ... we're generally amicable when we see each other and tend to wish each other the best where neccessary. I feel similarly about
ActorWriterDirector ... although I have no driving interest in his life these days.

The Lying Pilot is another story altogether, I'd probably still catch my breath if I saw him tomorrow. But it's more of a self-protection gut-reaction ... like if you had to find yourself facing a lion in the veld. That anxious "Oh Shit!" kind of tummy-tumble. It's not about the pang for what was lost or history like I share with Bean. It's not a feeling of continued interest or chemistry like I have with Varen. It's abject fear of someone who has hurt me. So, as you can imagine, I'd prefer not to see him again.

I doubt I'll ever feel that way about Bean or Varen, I imagine if I ever were it would've kicked in by now. I guess it's the difference of you breaking up with someone versus someone breaking up with you while you are still madly in love with them. Perhaps that's how Bean will react to me one day, tho. But I sure hope not. I like to think it's purely because I discovered that the whole year I spent with The Lying Pilot was a farce and he was not emotionally involved at all. Whereas I was very much emotionally involved with Bean and it was certainly not a lie.

So I don't know how the next few days will go. I imagine my life will carry on quite as normal. It's a survival mechanism and human's are famous for it ;) That's not to say I won't miss Varen or that I haven't missed Bean. I just need to pick my life up and and not wallow. I can't stay in my room forever ... although I'm pretty sure there'll be quite a bit of that going on. Luckily I've got at least half of DH2 to still watch and there are quite a few good movies showing at the moment - and I don't mind going alone ... it means you're certain not to have someone whispering in your ear thru-out, which we all know I just can not bear.

So, again I ask you, where is that fine line. Varen needs some space from me. I haven't suffered quite the same level of emotional loss ... I still want to be able to mail him the funny little articles or bizarre inventions I find online, that I know he'll love. But, it's hard for him to see my name in his inbox. Yesterday we managed to get away with it being that it wasn't quite real yet and maybe, just maybe, we could've still changed our minds. I doubt he'll be as forgiving for the rest of the week tho. I bet he can't wait to be at his new company with another sweet female colleague to tempt ;) Kidding! But, somewhere in my head, I wonder about that and it's likelyhood. It was always an in-joke with us, while we were together, I'd always get to veto his female employees ... he has a little bit of a history in that department ;)

What is it about ex-boyfriends that say that even if you don't want them, because realistically you know it's not a relationship that'll last for life, no one else is allowed within 50 feet of them either. It's in a similar place to that fine line. Once you can get happy for them in their new life, it's easy to accept they've moved on ... because usually you have too. But you always need to be the first. The cardinal rule of break-up, do not see the ex until you have successfully moved on and are looking so much hotter than when they dated you ... is that just me? It's actually a wonder I've ever managed to see any of my ex-boyfs based around that sort of crazy rule ;)

And that's what's wandering round my head this morning ... the evening was fairly uneventful. Watched ER and some more DH2. Got an sms from Varen asking if he should come over. Luckily I was still feeling smart and told him to ask the friend he was out with if it was a good idea, cause it was the only way he'd get an honest answer. All the while Loulou was shaking her head in the background. Funny how other people are usually much smart at making thew right decision for you ... I guess it's about being removed from the emotions. So we escaped making the same mistake and getting back together less than 24hours after breaking up ... again.

Here's hoping today will be better :)

Monday, April 02, 2007


Oh, and will you look at that, I hit 100 blog posts with the last one. That's gotta be commemorated ... Here's to the next 100, let's hope they contain less life upheaval and more sanity :)

And Just Like That, Things Can Change

So it was an interesting weekend. And now it's turned into an interesting morning. Where to start? The beginning, I guess.

So Friday night was amazing. Such fun. Varen, Loulou & I went to the Cool Runnings in Fourways for the 2007 SA Blog Awards. We got to meet loads of other bloggers in the flesh. I must say it is a rather strange order of events, you get to know these people so well by reading about the minute details of their lives and yet you still have no idea what they look like or, usually, how old they are. So after quite a few drinks and the actual awards ceremony (I lost to Steve Hofmeyr, I am devastated!) we started wandering around asking everyone what their blog name was ... it's hard to tell who the person behind the blog might actually be, I guess it's like going to a masquerade ball without the masks. I got to meet Phlippy, Peas, Champagne Heathen, Jam and ChewTheCud. It was fab, it is always nice to meet new people in Jhb :) People say that the folks in Jhb are so much more friendly than in Cape Town, but I've never thought so ... perhaps because I've never really (till now) had to make that much of an effort myself since I had a ready-made group in the form of Bean's friends, which is clearly useless to me these days.

Oh, and it appears that the full tally is now up and I came as the 11th Best New Blog. Oh well, at least I tried ... and got some fairly great exposure while I was at it ;)

After that, the three of us headed out to Say What! in Sunninghill to meet up with Phlippy and some mates of his. And then we ended off the evening with a little foosball at a dodgy pub round the corner from home.

Varen ended up staying over ... too much alcohol and too late a morning meant driving was not an option. Which was nice because we got to have breakfast on Saturday morning at Doppio Zero, where I dutifully had my all-time favourite breakfast, the Eggs Napoli :) Then he followed me around while I did my shopping. Which was nice. It's weird how you can enjoy someone's company when doing the littlest things.

Then he dropped me back at home and went to get the rest of his stuff ready for his move on Sunday. I went out and did some more shopping ... needed some new boots for the upcoming winter. That evening we had decided to watch 300.

Prepare for glory! 300 is an adaptation of Frank Miller's epic graphic novel. Using hyper-real renderings similar to Miller's own graphically stylized illustrations, the film tells the true story of 300 elite Spartan warriors led by their fearless king Leonidas (Butler), who thwart the charge of Xerxes and his massive Persian army at the battle of Thermopylae. Facing insurmountable odds, their valor and sacrifice inspire all of Greece to unite against their Persian foe, leading to the origins of democracy.

I thought it was rubbish. Just another Troy, but with no-name brand actors - the leading lady looked like Brooke Shields but sounded like Keira Knightley, if you can imagine? And the storyline was fairly weak, couldn't apply logic to any of it. Which is generally fine, but then admit that you're making a fantasy story. I did like the colour-washing they did tho :) Otherwise, average. Watch it if you must.

Saturday evening didn't go very well between Varen & I. I'm not sure if was just an overdose of seeing each other or a purely mood thing ... he'd booked tickets for the wrong day online and so we had to queue and end up sitting in the second row from the front and we had to grab a quick food-court dinner.

So on Sunday I had to go back to Bean's, luckily he'd moved out already, and fetch my fish-pond from the garden. I thought we'd leave it there, but he was going to get rid of it if I didn't take it. Yet another example of something I put effort into that he never gave a second glance to. Which left it in rather a state when I saw it for the first time in months ... forget fish-pond, think stagnant body of water.

It took ages for me to clean it out, catch the fishies (2 had managed to survive, miraculously!), get the whole shebang into my car and back to the place I share with Loulou. I've included a pic of how it looked when I first got it. It looked quite different on Sunday.

So that was exhausting work. After relaxing for just a little I headed over to Sal&Bru's for a Sunday braai. Varen and I had briefly mentioned possibly doing something in the afternoon after his move, but I hadn't heard from him yet. Plus after Saturday evening I thought we needed a little space.

The afternoon was fabulous with lots of really great people and it was just what I needed, even tho all the happy couples highlighted my own unstable state.

Was exhausted when I got home at about 7:30 and proceeded to spend the rest of the evening in bed watching DH 2.

And now it is today. And it appears Varen and I are over again. Which is fair enough. Somehow whenever I've ended up thinking I should end it and let him off the hook for putting up with my chaos, he gets in there first and I fight for him to stay. Weird. So this morning when he called I decided I was done fighting for this crazy set-up that passes for a relationship.

He's been fabulous to put up with all the ups and downs that I've put him thru. He has jumped thru any number of hoops to try to make this work. I on the other hand, can not give him what he wants, needs or deserves ... at least not at this point. I wish I could let him plan the wonderful romantic weekends in advance, but i can't think that far ahead right now. How do you explain to someone that if you don't really like yourself right now, there's no way you could believe that they could really love you. Even if they do.

It'll be painful and he'll be angry and I'll go back to being numb and we'll both get over it. And hopefully one day he'll even speak to me again :) Hopefully.

So, to Varen: Thanks for the amazing good times. I will miss your company and conversation. I hope you will survive the next few months being the responsible big brother (which I have no doubt you'll be fabulous at), living with your 2 brothers. I hope you won't stop your blog just so that I can't "check up" on you. And I wish you all the best at your new job next week. I'll be thinking of you :)

Funny how I seem to be getting used to this chaos, it hardly seems to cause a blink anymore, just a mild sense of loss ... that can't be good. Call me emotionally unstable.

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