Thursday, December 23, 2010

Goodbye 2010

I didn't get much sleep last night, but am bright and awake this morning ... because it is my last working day of 2010!

It has been quite a busy week, considering it was a short one. The final SCM Dinner for the year where @clairam went all out with gammon and turkey! Was delish and such fun :)

Tuesday evening was spent sorting the house out, a bigger job than you can imagine. Well, it was more like tidying since there is barely any cupboard space in the bedrooms, but I now have the spare room to fill with stuff that was taking up space elsewhere. Barely got any packing done tho.

But, I did do a full costing of Holiday 2011 and it still appears to be viable :) So now I wait till the end of January before I can start booking - Real Russian Tour prices only come out then and I've pretty much decided that I should do one of their tours because even tho I could take the train on my own, a) I don't speak or read any Russian and am unlikely to be able to in the next 4 months and b) I think it's be a huge waste to go all that way and not actually get to explore a bit of Moscow (will prob spend 2-3 days there if I do the tour) and c) at least this way I am likely to know the people sharing my berth on the train somewhat better ...

But that's okay, I got everything packed yesterday afternoon. I am taking wa-ay more clothes than I could possibly need for 10 days in Cape Town, but I managed to get it all and the xmas pressies to fit so I'm feeling okay about it :) Plus, I figure the pressies need padding in the bag so they don't get damaged! Yay, will be in Cape Town this evening, can't wait to see the fandamily, spend some time at Millers relaxing and catch up with good friends :) YAY.

And then last night @scottjorton brought round his power tools and made sure my new safe was attached to the wall before I go away. I bought a safe on the weekend after *finally* investigating safety deposit boxes at banks. There are no deposit boxes currently available at the bank I tried in my area and the cost alone would quickly surpass buying a safe for the house (depending on the size, I guess?). So anyway, I am very excited to have my safe, most especially now that it can't just be picked up and walked off with.

And then we went for dinner, with a quick detour to his office to take some awesome night shots of the almost full moon last night and the gorgeous night skyline of Sandton. Next time I am *so* taking my camera :) Ended up having a late dinner at Metro Lounge, am so glad I've discovered their delish Grilled Vegetable Salad with Haloumi. Yum.

Oh, and Project Property 2011 has already taken some twists and turns and may not turn out quite the way I'd planned ... But will explain more when the idea has settled.

Doubt I'll be posting while in Cape Town (although it's been known to happen occasionally), so if not: Have a wonderful End of Year break with your special people and see y'all in the New Year :) Cheers to 2011.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Last Work Week of 2010!

Ah, the last work week of 2010. Where has the time gone?

On the plus side my mood is fabulous and I had a lovely happy weekend :) I didn't actually do too much. I don't think I did anything on Friday evening (if I did, I have already forgotten!). Oh wait, yes. I remember, I spent the evening working on a new project of mine (anyone suspect I may have a little too much of my grandfather in me and be unable to complete all these things I start? I guess it depends on where / if there is any urgency!) And on Saturday I somehow ended up doing lots of shopping ... although I only went out for a few very specific things, things that needed replacing now that TheHousemate has moved out and taken his stuff with him, I had no cups for my kitchen. Which isn't a very big problem for me since I generally don't drink hot drinks very often. But on that very rainy Public Holiday, I realised that I absolutely needed cups because I couldn't even make myself some hot chocolate.

So that was the plan on Saturday. And it was very successful :) And while buying cups, I spotted the chair I had on my 30th Birthday wishlist. I decided to buy it! I know, I am spending far too much on myself over Longvember, but I know that I've wanted this since April, so it's not an impulse buy so I'm okay with it :) and I love it! (Plus I've already put most of my bonus into my bond, so I'm not being completely frivolous!)

Nothing much else exciting happened on Saturday, I worked some more on this new project of mine and watched some series. And started to brew Project Property 2011. More on this once I know more, but the truth of the matter is that I am beginning to think I really need to buy a place that I can actually live in. I am a strange person in that every since moving up to Joburg I've never properly settled in here. Well, the closest I came was probably when I was living with Bean, but even then, and with Varen, the plan was always eventually to move either overseas or home to Cape Town. So I still have a bunch of furniture I've left in Cape Town that it didn't make sense to bother shipping up here ... but I've been here 6&half years now. I think it's time to admit that I live in Joburg and still will, at very least, for the next 3-4 years.

I've never hung my light from Morocco and I haven't hung my photo frames on my photo wall. I feel like I really need a place to settle and not expect to move again, a place that is mine. Anyway, so that is the plan, I'm not sure if it'll be successful or not, but it's what I'm aiming for by the end of 2011.

On Sunday morning I was up early and headed off to Newtown. I'd booked myself and J9-double0blonde on a 5km "Fit in the City" walk thru Joburg's inner city with Past Experiences. The weather was absolutely perfect for it (for some reason I like getting a bit rained on) and I had a fabulous time :) I find walking gives me such a liberating feeling, I can't really explain it. And the city was pretty empty, it was really lovely.

After that it was off to a friends house for a lunch-time braai. It hailed a bit at her house while we were there, much excitement.

I left at about 15h30 to go home and clean the bunny hutch for the last time this year, and only just got it finished by the time it started pouring with rain. Followed shortly by much more extreme hail. Sheesh. Was awesome to watch tho :)

And now, I have about a billion things on the go ... I am in my anxious-holiday phase, where I'm not sure if it'll all come together. There are 3 visa's to arrange and 2 different things to book, and then flights on top of it. I never know what order to do it in and it always feels a little like a leap of faith at this point. Of course, once everything is booked and confirmed, I can bask in the excitement of my upcoming trip, but I'm not there yet. And then there is the Project Property 2011 worry niggling in the back of my head. I have already found something I think might be it, but am waiting for the agent to send the plans thru and then I have to hope the bank will give me *more* money, for *another* property ... sigh. So needless to say, it wasn't exactly a restful sleep last night.

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Day of Something Something

Yesterday was a public holiday here in South Africa and it was about as perfect a public holiday as it could be. Well, I wouldn't want them all to be like that, but I think I definitely needed just this one.

On Wednesday evening I joined Loulou and some friends at The Baron for a few celebratory drinks (all these people starting their leave :( ). It was quite fun, but I'm really not the sort of girl who meets people in bars. Unless there is perhaps some random connection to someone else in the group. Anyway, it was a very rainy evening.

And when I woke up the next morning, randomly at 05h30, it was still raining. In fact by this stage it was already starting to flood parts of the garden. But I do absolutely adore this weather when I can stay nice and warm in bed :) Which thankfully I could. And I did. I went back to sleep for a bit and then spent most of the morning in bed watching series. It was awesome :) Exactly the relaxing do-nothing day I think I needed.

I went to watch Scott Pilgrim in the afternoon. Sadly it was no where near as good as I was expecting. I like the idea of what they were trying to do, but I didn't really feel like they quite got it right.

And that was about it for the day. Am feeling quite refreshed today. It may have to do with a half-empty office tho :)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Already Planning

This is probably your last day at work of 2010. Lucky you. I'm still here till the 23rd. Although already I'm getting frustrated by the lack of stuff to do. Which is great ordinarily, but not so much when you are responsible for billing 7.5hrs each day.

But, I am staying upbeat because I picked up my new lights yesterday during lunch and hung them when I got home. They're not quite as awesome as the originals, but are close enough.

And most especially what is keeping me happy at the moment is that I think I have decided on Holiday 2011. I know, usually I don't start thinking about it until the year has actually started but I decided to do just a little research in the meantime and it's now a fully grown idea :) There is still plenty to be figured out and expenses to be calculated, but it's looking pretty likely that 2011 will be the year of the Trans-Mongolian Railway and a bit of a visit round China!

I haven't figured it all out yet, but instead of doing a tour for the Trans-Siberian trip like I was thinking of in 2008, I think I'll just do the Trans-Mongolian trip on my own. I expect it'll be about 7 days on Train 4. This train crosses Siberia, cuts across Mongolia and the Gobi desert, then enters China.

Once in China, I only knew there were definitely 2 things I wanted to see: The Great Wall and The Terracotta Army. But have (rather obviously) added Giant Panda's to this list. Yesterday I was wondering if I was sub consciously working my way thru WWF's list of species (based on the menu on the left): Tigers, Giant Panda (potentially this trip), Rhinoceros (and plenty of other experiences, I do live in South Africa!), Polar Bear, Whales and Dolphins (have snorkeled with both in Mozambique), Elephants (African and Asian), Marine Turtles (a failed attempt), Great Apes. Guess it'll have to be Tiger's next! Hahaha. I wonder if anyone else can say they've done all this?

I was also thinking of adding the Hunan Zhangjiajie National Forest Park (the place where they filmed part of Avatar) to the list of must-do's, but after looking around for trips in China, I can't find any that go there. Admittedly it has only been one day of sporadic research so, who knows. But I've found a 15-day Intrepid trip that covers the first 3, so that's what I'm thinking of for now.

So yeah, now just to get thru today and enjoy the Public Holiday tomorrow :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Weekend That Was

Right, so back to regular programming. Last Thursday evening was book club which was good. On Friday I went out for a drink with @samanthaperry at The Brazen Head - seems everyone is celebrating last days of work lately :P Not me ... I'm here right up until the 23rd. And then it's off to Cape Town :) Yay.

On Saturday I had a busy morning. It started with a very disappointing visit to the Post Office. I had ordered new lights for my bed from The In Thing (it may sound peculiar, but it makes much more sense if you've seen it!) ... wa-ay back forever ago and was waiting for them to arrive on a shipment from Thailand. They finally got to South Africa and I got my tracking number for them last Monday. So I figured if I go to the Post Office on Saturday morning they should be there. But there was no slip in my post box and I couldn't check a damn thing on their useless website from my phone :P Pffft. Already now annoyed by this, I went to the actual Post Office and figured if there wasn't too much of a queue I'd try just asking. Well the lady was completely unhelpful. Apparently their system was down nationwide and there was nothing she could do for me. Sigh, after my Post Office experience with The Peeb's gift and now this, they are NOT on my #brandplus list!!

Then I went to Sandton (still had Mom's last gift to buy, but had no bright ideas!) and ended up having breakfast with @Rubyletters at Mugg & Bean, which was lovely :) And the morning ended super well because I did find Mom's last gift before I left the center!

Then I popped into DJMike's to collect my Hard Drive full of series :) Yay. I may never leave my house again (except for work and my trip to Cape Town - hahaha). And then it was off home again to swap keys with @samanthaperry. I'll be fish-sitting for her while she's away and she'll be looking after The Bundles while I'm away. A great arrangement :)

And that was pretty much that till I headed out in a huge storm to J9-double0blonde's 30th Birthday Picnic. Not ideal picnic weather, but she had a great back-up plan in the lounge ready :)

And then on Sunday I had a very lazy morning in bed (the weather has really been playing along for just that!) and then met up with Loulou at Koi for a sushi lunch - delish!!

And that was about that for the weekend. Last night was SCMDinner, as usual :) And oh boy am I really looking forward to the public holiday on Thursday! Just really in a non-focused work-space right now! Plus this weather is so perfect for staying in bed, NOT for getting up early and going to work :)

Monday, December 13, 2010

An Anniversary of Sorts

So, today is a Monday. And usually I'd be writing down all of what I got up to on my weekend ... but that'll have to wait. Today is a significant Monday.

Today it is exactly a year since Varen and I broke up. And exactly 4 years since Bean and I broke up. Yep, lucky girl that I am, the 13th December has been break-up day for me, 2 relationships in a row. Just imagine what'll happen when it finally falls on a Friday! In future, I vow to never see or even speak to my boyfriend / husband on this day. It just seems safer all round. (And just think, next year I'll be celebrating on 13-12-11 :P)

So, this probably has a little something to do with my generally not upbeat mood of late. I mean, it's been a whole year and I'm still single. And although I'm okay with that generally (since I haven't met anyone I wish I was dating), it's still tough when you reflect on where all your exes are.

Varen is living in the States with his new girlfriend, who is apparently pregnant (with his kid, for the second time this year). Bean is, last I heard, living happily in a house he bought with his long-time boyfriend in London. And if we look further back in history ... even The Lying Pilot has been married 6 years and has a son now. Actor-Writer-Director is definitely married and has been for quite some time, I dunno if he has any kids yet. The Queen of Melodrama is, as far as I know, in a long-term relationship and High-School Love has been married for many years now and has 2 kiddies.

That's right folks, all my failures have become someone else's success story ... sigh. And that's great for them, I guess. But it really starts to make me wonder about myself. Self doubt, awesome, just what I wanted for Xmas this year :P

And don't get me wrong, it's not like I can think of a single one of them and wish it hadn't ended or that I was still with them. Not. A. Single. One. So, that's a plus, in my book. But after a year of not very many exciting boy-stuffs, it's getting a little tedious and I'm losing faith a little ... I mean, I guess if you get to 30 and you're single, there's probably a reason, right? I know there's a reason I am. And those reason are (frighteningly) becoming more pronounced as I get older and especially as I've spent more time on my own this year. I'm cynical about relationships, I'm cynical about boys ... and yes, I know girls & boys are different and their brains work differently and they don't think about things the same way we do and and and. None of that makes this any easier.

So, actually mostly what I've spent this liberating year of turning thirty and being single doing is adjusting my mindset. I am no longer pinning all my hopes on meeting a Mr Right that I can spend the rest of my life with. Well, that'd be nice and is Plan A but, as realism sets in, I've come up with Plan B and Plan C too.

So, Plan B is far more realistic than Plan A. For Plan B I only need someone who can commit to at least 5 to 10 years (or more) together. Someone to have children with. And no, divorce etc. is not ideal and no, I didn't have to experience it as a child, but see, I want kids, and ideally I'd rather not do it on my own, but I am also realistic about the probability of meeting the person I could spend forever with in my next few child-bearing years.

See, what I realised is, I could meet that Mr Right when I'm 45 or so and still have 30 amazing years with him (which, being 30 myself, I can attest is a fair portion of time and not to be sniffed at). But, I can't wait till I'm 45 to have my children. And I want children. If you don't that's fine and you can continue on your merry way until you meet that man, but I cannot.

And so, although Plan B is not perfect (and, of course, Plan A would be infinitely better), it still provides those children with a father. Plan C would be to do it alone. Far from ideal, but may end up being a necessity. I refuse to let the whims of personality and the people I meet to dictate my life and if I have children or not. And hence I will, given no alternative, do this alone (well, not entirely alone because if that becomes the course of action, I'll definitely be moving home to my family in Cape Town - which, is actually also part the plan regardless of which of these outcomes end up becoming reality).

And so, these are the things spinning in my head lately. Reality and the things that we need to do to achieve the things we want from life. It's no easy thing to adjust the mind of a person who's believed her whole life that you meet someone, you fall in love and live happily ever after. Life, sadly, is just not that easy. Well, perhaps it is for some, it's true I've seen some amazing relationships amongst people I know. But I guess I just have to accept, it's just not that easy for me. And, the thing I'm still struggling with, is that that is okay.

I won't lie, it's hard for me to read or hear that you got engaged or married or are having a baby. And the only way to get thru that and be happy for you is for me to know that I have a plan and am not leaving it up to chance. There are some things I know I can't control, like meeting someone amazing. But I'll stick to having a plan for the things I can control.

And that said, who knows if I can even have kids (another thing left to Life's Wheel of Fortune and chance). I mean we spend our whole lives trying not to and the only way to know for sure if you can is to actually do it. Hardly the kind of litmus test one hopes for in these situations, but such is life.

On the plus side, I'm definitely not rushing into anything with anyone in order to achieve any of this. Having these alternatives prepared in my mind means that I'm open to whichever outcome ends up occurring. So, for now, until I meet someone that really turns my head (or turn 34), I am in no rush.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Watching The Pot

I went to see Harry Potter last night :) I really rather enjoyed it. Although my only gripe with the whole Harry Potter movie thing is that you know what, I don't really remember the books enough anymore for it to be a problem watching the movie and complaining about what they left out (this is a good thing in my opinion) but, that also means I barely remember where the last movie left off. And these are not actually separate stories anymore, they are one long story (most especially with this one being split into 2 parts). It'd be nice if they gave me a quick catch up. Because you would probably, I expect, be completely lost if this was the first Harry Potter movie you ever watched (assuming you had not read the books).

Much the same as in the books tho, I do not enjoy the character romances that are developing. It seems completely unlikely and I think that's a part of the book Rowling got horribly wrong ... but that's maybe just me. But, aside from all of these things, I did enjoy the movie :)

Other than that, not a lot has been going on in my life. I had a quiet Tuesday evening at home. The bundles are all fine, and I have found a bunny-sitter :) Thanks a billion @samanthaperry! Occasionally lately, I'm worried about myself and thinking it might be time to go speak to someone again, just for a little perspective, but will leave that till next year. And other than that, life continues as normal :) Neither here nor there, sprinkled with both good and bad and much in-between.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Good Times

Had a lovely evening out with the girls last night :) At our previous dinner we decided that what we really needed to end off this year was a big prawn dinner and that's just what we did!

@Arkwife, @Rubyletters, @louisabouwer, @jackson_files, Doodles and myself spent the evening at Coco Bongo sitting at an ideal round table (it makes conversation so much better :) ). Awe, we had such a lovely evening, catching up, eating kilo's of prawns and swapping Secret Santa gifts (thanks @jackson_files, I *adore* mine!).

Coco Bongo has a Monday night special on prawns, R99 for a kilo. It was delish, and I can't remember the last time I had prawns, but I do think I prefer my memory of Adega's kilo of prawns (which I think is all I've ever ordered from them). Only because they came in a big container which had one of those flames underneath keeping it warm. By the time I was onto my last few prawns at Coco Bongo, they were definitely cool.

So nice catching up with everyone :)

Monday, December 06, 2010

Long Weekend

So, it's been quite a busy weekend. On Thursday night I went to Wolves for the first time (not quite sure what the fuss is about, I had a completely different expectation of the place after having heard about it from so many people) with J9-double0blonde, @saulkza and @Nadgia. Always nice to try somewhere / something new tho. They had some live music which wasn't very impressive - we were sitting outside and I was barely aware there was even anything going on and it didn't seem like the sound quality was that great but anyhoo.

On Friday we had our Office Year End function, which was pretty awesome :) We started the morning with a walking tour around Newtown and part of the Joburg CBD with Jo from Past Experiences. I absolutely *loved* it! I think I got some great photos and I am super keen to do a few of their other tours now. After that we had lunch at Nikki's Oasis, which was neither here nor there for me, but it suited our day and was conveniently located. We had a blast with our Secret Santa as well :) Thankfully 12 of us had hired a bus to get from the office into town and back. And after the day a handful of us continued the party at one of our colleague's houses. Was a good day :)

But I definitely hate the after effects of too much alcohol these days. I hardly drink much at all anymore and I definitely despise that anxious feeling the next wondering if I did or said anything wrong or offensive to someone. And I replay the whole thing in my head over and over. Paranoid, much?

Saturday was fairly lazy, but I did finish shopping for Daddio's xmas pressie. Now I only have one outstanding item left to buy :) I can not believe how organised I've been this year. But I definitely think the strategy of finding one thing a weekend is working for me - hahaha.

On Saturday evening I went to Piccolino's in Fourways with @samanthaperry and @SynStalker - another new spot for me :) And let me just say that even tho I had to pay extra for both Avo and Feta (I mean really ?!?), the pizza was *delish* !! The venue is a bit weird tho, but I imagine as an afternoon spot it works far better :) I'd go back.

On Sunday I decided to haul out all the photo frames I've been collecting for my one-day wall. I know, it's very silly, but I can't seem to accept that I actually live anywhere because I keep expecting to move and so don't properly unpack / set-up some things (my Moroccan light has never been unpacked). And the thing with my photo wall is that it's far easier for me to justify not hanging them because a) the collection is still growing so how would I know yet how to hang them and b) none of them have photos in them yet so why bother yet.

So I decided it was time to find some photographs for the frames (especially with my impending Cape Town trip ... I need an idea of what I'm looking for when I'm down there too!) so the morning involved eating left-over pizza, reading my book and sorting thru old family photos inherited from Daddio's Dad. I found some awesome ones and then decided to head off to the Rosebank Rooftop market ... for more frames and potentially to finish my xmas shopping (just need one last thing for Mom). I didn't do any xmas shopping tho, but I did do plenty of shopping for me :) 5 new frames! And some new drinking glasses and a brand new spatula (all part of the "yay I live on my own again" celebration!).

And then I headed off to @jarredcinman's for sundowners. A lovely weekend actually.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

December Already

Wow, it's the first of December. Which means The Housemate is moving out today. This is both good and bad news. Bad news because I'll no longer have someone sharing the rent. But I think I've also learnt that if I do ever live with someone in future, a 6month lease is all I'm willing to commit to up front. As much as I mostly enjoy hanging out with The Housemate, I don't know how living with each other has affected our friendship. I think it'll go back to the was it was before, but only after some time. It is also a very strange experience living with someone you are not emotionally involved with. And I think the little cottage was too small a space for me to be sharing. So I am definitely looking forward to having the place all to myself again :)

In other news, things have been quiet. SCM Dinner on Monday night and a night at home last night. I've had a very difficult letter to write in the last 2 days regarding a house they want to build on vacant land right next to our holiday house. We all had to register as I&AP (interested and affected parties) and had to get our comments in by today. We're all opposed. If they do build it, it will be very sad and completely change our experience of the place :(

And I need to figure out something for the bunnies while I'm in Cape Town over xmas and new year. Sigh, the worst part of owning pets! I hate imposing on people and everyone who lives on our property seems to be away over the same time.

Other than that, I'm hoping to start my #365 up again today (the first seemed like a good excuse to get myself going again!). I just have really not been in the right head space to be hassling with taking a photo a day recently. And I haven't done any work on The Concept lately either ... I was waiting for the computer to be formatted and now I just need to get down and do some work on it ... but it's hard with this semi-holiday attitude.

Monday, November 29, 2010

FOUR Years

Wowee, would you believe that today I've been blogging for 4 whole years! FOUR. Shoo time does fly, but plenty has happened and changed during that time. And I have a prettily packaged record of all of it right here.

In other news, the awful week is over and I'm feeling upbeat about this week :) I got my car back on Friday morning. I decided not to go to Mozambique with my friend and 3 guys she met at a club in Cape Town :P And I had a pretty decent weekend.

It started on Friday evening with drink at The Old Rose with half the SCM Dinner crowd :) And I just felt in a better mood by simply being around people. I know that sounds silly because technically I'm around people all day at work. But it is different.

On Saturday I got some xmas shopping done: The Peeb's gift is now in the country and hopefully en route to my Post Office. I've got half of Mom's gift and on Saturday got half of Daddio's. All going smoothly and far longer in advance than is usual for me, it's not even December yet :) Haha.

And then @Rubyletters & I went out to Melville for lunch before heading to the Sass Sale. I suggested Xai Xai since I haven't been in ages but have such awesome memories of chicken trinchado & darwas there. I will say the place has changed a fair amount since I was last there and I was disappointed because the barman was only getting in at 4pm so no darwas for us :( But the trinchado was just as I remembered :)

And then it was off to @cybersass's place for the sale. OMG. I've wanted one of her 1 Dresses since she wore one to a bloggirls lunch. And this afternoon a whole bunch of us descended on her house, watching in awe as she adapted the dress and showed us a million different ways we could wear it. I think we all definitely left with more purchases than we intended (I certainly did!), but it was such a lovely afternoon (this coming from someone so compltely unfamiliar with shopping with girl-friends). Everyone looked awesome in the dresses regardless of body-shape. It's really quite amazing. So what did I buy? I got myself a maroon A-line 1 Dress, a black boob-tube (helpful for wearing under the dress depending on the style) and a long coat in dusty pink. Would you believe I fell even more in love with the dress as I stood in front of my mirror trying different styles later that evening!

So the evening was pretty quiet after such a full and busy day. On Sunday I had an exhausting morning, with gym and cleaning the bunny hutch, but then relaxed for a bit before a friend of mine came over and re-installed my laptop for me - yay! I am loving being back on Windows :) And then we went for a late lunch at Luca's, which was lovely.

And that was about that. I still have plenty swirling in my head and do need to get a big post written about that, but haven't had the time, plus I haven't exactly been in the right head space to dwell without making myself feel worse about things.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

It Is Broken

So here's hoping today is better than yesterday.

My car is currently broken. I need a whole new clutch. And I've driven less than 40000kms. I am supremely unimpressed. And, even living as close as I do to work, woefully unprepared to be car-less. But anyhoo. Hopefully I'll get it back later this afternoon and all will be right in the world again ... aside from the R4500 missing from my savings :P

Luckily my plans last night involved people coming to my house for our year-end poker evening :) Was awesome, but a late night.

There's other stuff going on in my head at the moment. Lots. Which I really need to turn into a proper blog post at some point. But there's not enough time right now ... on with the day!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

so this is my life

*sob* This week has just been marvelous :P Nope, that's a lie. Work has been especially terrible and stressful in the last 2 days, from having someone stand at my desk screaming at me (long story) to everyone wanting a piece of me to work on their project yesterday. Sigh. Yesterday calmed down about half an hour before I left, thankfully. But today I have to train a client for 3 hours, on something I haven't touched in more than 6months (mebbe a year?). The awesomeness continues.

I went for my walk around the neighbourhood after I got home yesterday, hoping to clear my head. All I really did was plan a "pity post" for today. Sigh, I guess something to do with being about 2weeks shy of being single for a whole year now with no prospects in sight and the whole xmas season thing (life always gets kinda introspective then, as in what did you accomplish this year, and as busy as the end of year rush is, it's always oddly less social as people spend time with their families and end-of-year work functions).

And then life did one of those things it sometimes does to surprise you. I got a msg from @scottjorton saying come for a drink, we're just up the road. And I thought, I could climb into bed and watch more episodes of Friends and pretend the world outside didn't exist, or I could go out and have a much needed drink with a friend. So I put my big girl panties on and faced the world. I really needed that, someone to give me a lifeline to get out of my head.

So I thought things were going to be better today. I was wrong. Things were already worse before 7am. I got in my car and I dunno what's happened to it, but something weird. And it must be pretty damn bad if I can even tell that it's not driving right! And it just got serviced in October and it's not under the maintenance plan anymore. And quite honestly I'm terrified. I have no idea what to do. The car place where I got it serviced isn't answering their phone yet this morning, I'm doubt I'm going to have time to get it there and get myself back before my 3hr training session, anyway.

And now, it a true "this is my life" story, my friend has just invited me to Mozambique for a 4day weekend next weekend with some people she knows. Sigh. I can't think about this all right now.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Winding Down 2010

Sigh, really. Monday again, already?

Weekend was pretty good. That good mix of completely relaxed and busy :) On Friday night Loulou had suggested drinks at Bar Fusion after work. So I went and @Rubyletters, @scottjorton and @ClaudeTschepen came along too. Wow, I would not recommend the venue at all. Well, let me rephrase. The venue seems very nice. But there were perhaps 9 other people in the place besides us. There were literally more wait-staff than patrons. Which doesn't make for a great fun after work drinks. Ah well. It's still good to try new places, right?

Later @Rubyletters, @scottjorton & I went for dinner at The Swiss Inn. We shared a very delish cheese fondue :) Fun times.

Saturday started with breakfast out with CollegeInstructor. He'd heard about a nearby little spot that was apparently very good, called Le Souffle. We got there just after 8:30 and were their only customers. Sigh. Again, with the trying new places and them having no customers ... ah well. We ended up staying anyways. The breakfast wasn't too bad, but the service, considering at their busiest we were 1 of 4 tables, was shocking :P I wouldn't bother with it again.

And then I went out on another pre-xmas shopping spree. It wasn't terribly successful. Sigh. I had a relaxing afternoon tho and on Saturday night I went to The Fairy Godmother's birthday party :) Which was lovely. Nice to meet some new people and get dressed up!

Sunday was *very* relaxed. But I did emerge to go and watch Red, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Such fun :) Seriously, go watch it.

Anyway, all mostly good. Aside from some inner mumblings in my head ... which is par for the course as the year winds down. So I'm trying as best I can to just ignore it all.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


Ah right. Regular posting ... you must be bored of book reviews two days running now, I'm sure. Since I know those are about the least interesting thing I post (it's more a record for myself).

So, it's been a quiet week, influenced by this bizarre cool and overcast weather we've been having (don't mind me, I love it!). Monday night was SCM Dinner as usual. On Tuesday I got home and wanted nothing more than a lazy evening to myself. I climbed into bed early (after a walk around the neighbourhood & some run-around time with the bunnies) with my book and read about solidly (minus a break to grab some dinner) for 4hrs, finishing my book. I didn't really feel relaxed afterwards tho because I stayed up later than usual just to finish. Yawn. But I've realised that often one needs these sort of recharge evenings, to be alone, uninterrupted and just do something entirely selfish. One of the perks of being an adult, I guess. Sure I had other stuff I could probable be doing. I haven't taken a #365 photo in about a week now ... I think it's about to die a slow death, sadly. I am just not inspired by the things surrounding me anymore. And I could also have put the evening to good use working on my concept. And there are other things I'm sposed to get done, but it's easier just to ignore them too. Sometimes there is only one thing that you actually want to do and everything else can just take a back seat. So I let it.

Yesterday was better tho. Although filled with another escapism alternative, I went to watch Unstoppable. I really quite enjoyed it, didn't have to think to hard and was just the sort of movie I needed. And again, this morning I've been reading up about the true events that inspired it.

And when I got home, I started working on my #Concept again and got some good work done, I think. All in all, I'm feeling a lot more back to normal today than I have in the last 2 weeks :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

House Rules by Jodi Picoult

Jacob Hunt is a teenager: brilliant at maths, wicked sense of humour, extraordinarily organised, hopeless at reading social cues. And Jacob has Asperger’s. He is locked in his own world – aware of the world outside, and wanting to make a connection. Jacob tries to be like everyone else, but doesn’t know how. When his tutor is found dead, all the hallmark behaviours of Jacob’s syndrome – not looking someone in the eye, odd movements, inappropriate actions – start looking a lot like guilt to the police. And Jacob’s mother must ask herself the hardest question in the world: is her child capable of murder?

I got home last night and did just about nothing but read this book (escapism, anyone?). Anyway, I enjoyed it. It's not up there with My Sister's Keeper or The Pact in terms of screwing with the way you think about things, but it is better than some of the others. Although the "twist" is glaringly obvious from well beforehand.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Imitation in Death by JD Robb

'No matter how many times you looked at the horror man inflicted on man, you never saw it all. As Lieutenant Eve Dallas stood over what had once been a woman, she wondered when she would see worse than this...' The summer of 2059 is drawing to a sweaty close when a killer makes his debut with the slashing and mutilation of a prostitute. He leaves behind a note addressed to Lieutenant Eve Dallas, commending her work and inviting her to participate in his game...and signs it Jack. Now Eve is on the trail of a serial killer who knows as much about the history of murder as she does, and he's paying homage to some of history's most vicious, and infamous, killers, beginning with Jack the Ripper. But who will he choose to emulate next? And will Eve be able to stop him before he decides to finish the game by coming after her?

As always, I ♥ the In Death series, and this one was no different. I had Daddio bring up a few to Natal so that I wouldn't have to take a book down to Cape Town with me in December just to lug back home. Because I know, as has become tradition, that while there I'll plow thru as many of the In Death series as I can. They're ideal holiday reads for me!

* This book is part of the In Death series: Naked in Death (1995), Glory in Death (1995), Immortal in Death (1996), Rapture in Death (1996), Ceremony in Death (1997), Vengeance in Death (1997), Holiday in Death (1998), ~Midnight in Death (1998), Conspiracy in Death (1999), Loyalty in Death (1999), Witness in Death (2000), Judgment in Death (2000), Betrayal in Death (2001), ~Interlude in Death (2001), Seduction in Death (2001), Reunion in Death (2002), Purity in Death (2002), Portrait in Death (2003), Imitation in Death (2003), Divided in Death (2004), Visions in Death (2004), Survivor in Death (2005), Origin in Death (2005), Memory in Death (2006), ~Haunted in Death (2006), Born in Death (2006), Innocent in Death (2007), Creation in Death (2007), ~Eternity in Death (2007), Strangers in Death (2008), Salvation in Death (2008), ~Ritual in Death (2008), Promises in Death (2009), Kindred in Death (2009), ~Missing in Death (2009), Fantasy in Death (2010)

~ included in Anthologies

Monday, November 15, 2010

My Weekend

Yawn. Am tired today, could happily have stayed in bed today! No doubt something to do with a late bedtime and the overcast weather this morning. And I'm feeling like a terrible person too, because when I went to see the bunnies this morn I realised I hadn't refilled their water bowl after cleaning the hutch (about 3pm yesterday afternoon). Lily was sitting in the dry water bowl :( And after I refilled it while they were having a run, she found the empty jug I'd used and tipped it over and stuck her head right in licking the last of the drops ... And once her & Coal found the full water bowl I think they both sat their drinking for longer than I've ever seen before. Poor bundles :( :( But they are luckily fine. I can't believe I didn't notice when I said goodnight to them last night when I got home.

Anyway, the weekend, right. Had a work thing followed by drinks in the office ... which ended at about 6pm. And then headed off to The Old Rose to meet up with @clairam, @scottjorton and some others for an after work drink. I hate The Old Rose, I have no idea why people go there, but whatever. After that @scottjorton and I ended up going for dinner at The Codfather, which was yummy (I had sole).

Saturday was, I guess a pretty lazy day. I did a bunch of admin in the morning and not very much for the rest of the day, which was lovely :) I browsed for xmas pressies, but didn't end up actually buying anything yet (am somehow terrified that as soon as I buy something I will find some other perfect gift because there are still so many weeks till xmas!!) Aaargh, and the *perfect* pressie that I bought for ThePeeb & her boyf has yet to arrive in South Africa ... sigh. I will relax again when I have it with me but till then I'm still a little panic-y about it. Oooh ooh, and it was The Peeb's birthday on Friday (I'd already given her her bday pressie in Natal) and she got a new gorgeous little girl-kitten on Saturday :) :)

On Sunday I went on my neighbourhood walk (took a week off after getting back from Natal because I was so drained last week) and cleaned the bunny hutch, did grocery shopping (have I told you how *awesome* the new PicknPay on William Nichol is?), made a delish lunch and relaxed and read my book, and even worked on my Concept a little :)

I ended the weekend off with dinner at my great-aunt & -uncle's place. Was fab to see them again before they're off back to the UK for a bit. I absolutely love hearing all the old stories :)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

All In My Head

Not especially in the mood for blogging this morning. Actually I haven't been in the mood for much since I got back from Natal. I had a free evening to myself on Tuesday and all I wanted to do was curl up into bed with my book. Which I didn't end up doing till almost bedtime anyway tho, because I was busy sorting thru photos from the weekend (I take every opportunity to take family group shots, much to everyone's dismay in the moment ... but I'm sure they enjoy looking back at them as much as I do ;) ).

And last night I got home with a terrible headache. In fact I'm not entirely sure how I lasted the day at work. So I got home, curled up in bed with my book and fell asleep for a bit. Luckily I felt better after that :)

I have a nagging part of my brain that thinks I am wasting time and should be working on my project ... but another part of me knows that it's not to be forced and better to work on it when I'm in the right frame of mind to keep myself excited about it. Although I am, again, having seriously doubts about myself regarding it and my ability to actually make it happen. Sigh. Branching out and trying something new can definitely be scary. Especially because I don't really consider myself an entrepreneur ... and I'm a worrier (I wish that said warrior, but alas).

Anyway, I had a lovely dinner at Cranks last night catching up with Liary. And I have book club tonight. And then I'm planning on hibernating till Monday. I have lots of admin to get done ... xmas presents to buy etc. ;)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Killing Fear by Allison Brennan

Six years ago, lawyer Theodore Glenn was convicted of brutally murdering four strippers in San Diego. But as he was dragged from the courtroom, he made a vehement promise to kill all those who testified against him ...Robin McKenna, a former stripper, had shared a stage with all four of the victims. Over the last six years Robin's worked hard to turn her life around, transforming the strip joint where she once worked with her friends into an upscale bar. Self-defence courses, a good security team - and the fact that Glenn is rotting on Death Row in San Quentin have helped her to feel safe again. But not a day goes by when Robin doesn't think of her friends. Or - if she's honest - of homicide detective Will Hooper, the man who put Glenn behind bars. Their fledging relationship had not survived beyond Glenn's trial. But when a freak earthquake hits California, Theodore Glenn escapes San Quentin. Convicted of four murders, he knows he's guilty of only three and is determined to find out who framed him for the fourth, whilst systematically eradicating all those who put him in prison...

Quite enjoyed this one. Ideal for in-flight reading or holiday reading :) Not too twisty (although I suspect twisty is actually what the author was going for).

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Family Time

Urgh. Back to reality. How unfortunate.

am feeling somewhat blue since my arrival back in Joburg. I think it always happens when I have to say goodbye to my family. It takes me a few days to get back into my "real life" again. That and there's something interesting I noticed that was going on in my head after spending so much time with all the oldies. These are great aunts and uncles who've been together practically their whole lives. I dunno, there's something telling about looking at 75+ yr old lives at play. What will I be doing at that age. Will I have a partner? Will I have children? Will I have grandchildren? It seems so far away and so close all at the same time.

Anyway, enough about that. So on Friday afternoon I headed off to Lanseria. Remind me not to fly via there again please. It took me just over an hour to get there before my flight. You know, it seemed like such a blessing, having this 2nd airport, when ORT felt like miles away and the airport restoration was chaos and what a pleasure to only have one flight checking in at a time :) Well nowadays the pleasure of Lanseria only exists within it's walls. The drive there is an absolute nightmare and doesn't seem to be improving at all. Give me the Gautrain any day! Considering the cost of parking at Lanseria from Friday afternoon till Monday evening was almost R300, the Gautrain does seem preferable, if you can get a lift there. Sigh, and the roads home from Lanseria are even worse in the dark. I would recommend everyone boycott Lanseria till they fix those awful roads!!

The flight to Durbs is such a pleasure, it's like about as soon as you've taken off you're getting ready for descent. Somehow the extra hour to Cape Town feels soo much longer. I met my cousin at the airport and we set off for small-town Natal, arriving around 10pm.

We had a lovely long weekend filled with family :) It was my grandfather's 80th birthday on Sunday and on Saturday we had plenty of the family round to celebrate with a lunch. Some of whom I'm not sure I've even met before!

We also managed to fit in a visit to the cemetery (where I got my own photo's of our old family gravestones - I think I'll have to revive my family history hobby again!) and a visit to the very small local museum (which is in the house my grandmother used to live in while her father was magistrate 1951 - 1955). I can't actually remember the last time we visited the museum.

As always, my favourite part of the weekend was hearing all sorts of old family stories from back in the day :)

Friday, November 05, 2010

Chalcot Crescent by Fay Weldon

Fay Weldon in top gear: a wickedly sharp, history-bending, cosmos-colliding novel that tells the story of Frances, Fay's never-born younger sister. Its 2013 and eighty-year-old Frances (part-time copywriter, has-been writer, one-time national treasure) is sitting on the stairs of Number 3, Chalcot Crescent, Primrose Hill, listening to the debt collectors pounding on her front door. From this house she's witnessed five decades of world history - the fall of communism, the death of capitalism - and now, with the bailiffs, world history has finally reached her doorstep. While she waits for the bailiffs to give up and leave, Frances writes (not that she has an agent any more, or that her books are still published, or even that there are any publishers left). She writes about the boyfriends she borrowed and the husband she stole from Fay, about her daughters and their children. She writes about the Shock, the Crunch, the Squeeze, the Recovery, the Fall, the Crisis and the Bite, about NUG the National Unity Government, about ration books, powercuts, National Meat Loaf (suitable for vegetarians) and the new Neighbourhood Watch. She writes about family secrets...The problem is that fact and fiction are blurring in Frances' mind. Is it her writer's imagination, or is it just old age, or plain paranoia? Are her grandchildren really plotting a terrorist coup upstairs? Are faceless assassins trying to kill her younger daughter? Should she worry that her son in law is an incipient megalomaniac being groomed for NUG's highest office? What on earth can NUG have against vegetarians? And just what makes National Meat Loaf so tasty?

Yeah, I dunno. There was something I quite liked about this book, but it certainly isn't for everyone. It is far from your usual sort of story. Maybe that's what I like about it? I won't lie tho, there's a bit in the middle where the author tells you she doesn't mind if you quite reading now ... and I was tempted. It wasn't an easy book to read, it was fairly disjointed. I guess like having a conversation with an old person who forgets what they were saying and drifts off down another story for a while.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

The Big Fake - a Movie

Sigh, it is hard to sleep when your mind is racing with ideas and what-ifs and how-tos. And mine is. The cynical and realistic part of my brain has definitely kicked in, coming up with all sorts of potential problems. But I refuse to deal with them yet. I haven't the time to dedicate to sitting down and working thru it. I plan to spend some time this weekend doing just that and I can't imagine a better weekend for it with my family around to ask questions to and the peace and quiet of the small town in Natal that my grandfather lives in.

So aside from all that, I went to Sandton with Arkwife yesterday evening to have some dinner and then watch The Social Network. We ended up eating at Wangthai, which I used to frequent more than 10 years ago with my folks in Cape Town. It wasn't the same (of course). But the food was good, just not quite what I was in the mood for (unfortunately it was one of those nights when I just couldn't figure out what I wanted) but it turned out just fine :)

And then we went to watch the movie. Which I *loved*. It was brilliantly funny and quirky in parts and I loved how the regatta scene was filmed. Yes, I'd definitely recommend you watch this one. I felt it was especially pertinent to watch as I embark on making my own "big idea" a reality (finger's crossed). And seriously, the lead actor sounds *exactly* like Michael Cera ... it's freakish. What I also thought was interesting was that although we all use facebook every day (no doubt), we (or is it just me?) never think about the name behind it. I mean sure I knew Mark Zuckerberg owned / created facebook, but more than that I'd never given him a second thought (gawd, and I've just discovered he's 4yrs younger than me!! I feel a little ill.). The real life story behind something so familiar is definitely interesting tho, makes me go and look more info up on the internet :) Imagine being 26 and having a movie made about your story?!? Kinda mind-blowing honestly.

Thanks to Ster Kinekor for using Social Media to spread the word that they were giving away free tickets to the premiere, I think that was a stoke of genius and completely appropriate :)

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Much Excitement Brewing

So, I may seem distracted lately, I am. I have turned a little wish into and actual idea into a potential business plan. I'm very excited and working on a sort of proof-of-concept for it before I take the idea to the company it's for (although it'd almost run on top of their existing system and still be entirely mine).

The wish has been circling in my head for a couple of weeks now, it's a service I want! But only yesterday did I realise that *I* could make the wish come true and implement the idea myself. I've spoken to a handful of people about it (no point in the idea if I'm the only person who thinks there's a market for it, right?) and they all agree with me :) Last night I got started on it for real ... Suddenly I'm a little disappointed that I have a full 2 weeks of social engagements.

Monday night was SCM as usual, last night I was supposed to be meeting one of my cousins, who is up on business, for dinner ... but he had to cancel. Which I was both disappointed about (not to see him) but also quite relieved (a night at home to myself to immerse myself in my new idea). Tonight I'm off to watch The Social Network with Arkwife (got free tickets, woot!) and then I'm having dinner with DJMike and his new girlfriend on Thursday. On Friday I am off for a long weekend to celebrate Daddio's Dad's 80th birthday. Can't wait to see Daddio, The Peeb and the rest of the fandamily! Next week is filled with more dinner plans and book club.

And all I want to do is spend time thinking about my new plan. It could be amazing, and I really do not want to lose momentum with it. I want to really push myself on this and do everything I can to make it happen. It'll be awesome, if it works :)

ps. Sadly, my new distraction is doing no good for my #365 ... ah well, priorities, right?

Monday, November 01, 2010

Such Potential

Wow, last week seems ages away. And for no good reason, really. The weekend was busy, but nothing spectacular. It had potential, but somehow didn't turn out to be anything unusual.

It started on Friday with a dress-up in the office for Halloween. The theme was masks and after having a browse around at The Flower Spot last Saturday and going home to have a think about it, I decided on something a little more literal. I didn't like the full masks than go over your head and I couldn't work out what I would "be" using some of their other (although gorgeous!!) masks than just cover your eyes.

So I came to work in my sarong and bikini top, with a shirt over and a mask & snorkel. Hahahaha. Was a more comfortable way to spend the day than some outfits!

And we finished up early and had a braai in our office park gardens which was a lovely way to spend the afternoon.

After that it was off to another braai, this time from one of the SCM crowd's birthday. See, this was potential one to meet new people but didn't deliver.

On Saturday I sorted out the fish. I bought a new air pump and 2 new fish buddies and some netting and the pond seems to be a much happier place now :) I went and watched t he Rugby at Cesco's with Loulou. What a boring game ... but I'll concede that the Sharks definitely deserved to win. And potential two to meet new people but since it was people Loulou went to high school with, I got bored rather quickly of the reminiscing conversation that I couldn't join into.

I quickly dashed home after we had dinner there (I had a Chicken Trinchado which will g o on my average list - I definitely think it's time to visit Xai Xai again for some Trinchado and Darwa's!) and got dressed up for the Red Room Halloween Party.

Which sadly was also not as spectacular as I was hoping. There weren't too many of our crowd there. And the 2 other girls who were have both become single in the last week so are not yet in the right state of mind. They had bands playing, taking up the entire dance floor. And then the power went out. Which was actually quite amusing to me. So the bands cleared out and they hooked the generator up to the music and things got pretty much back to normal. Except that the dance floor was sweltering with no fans ... So I didn't stick around too late at all.

On Sunday I met up with two friends from work and went for afternoon tea at Beechwood, one of the Gardens of the Golden City. It was quite lovely.

I finished the weekend off by watching The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I haven't read the book (yet, now I definitely want to). I think it's often better to watch the movie before reading the book so that you can actually enjoy both. In most cases, if you've read the book first, the movie will just disappoint and frustrate you.

I enjoyed this movie, although there were some really hectic parts. And it's been ages since I saw a sub-titled movie (I quite enjoy them).

I went to watch at Ster Kinekor for a change (usually I go to Monte Casino). It's a price balance. At Nu Metro (on a Wednesday), parking will be R10, the movie is R20 and a medium popcorn & coke is R30 (how they justify that is beyond me!). After looking online (and why do you have to go thru the whole process of pretending to buy a ticket to find out how much it'll cost you?), I realised that movies at Nu Metro any other day of the week are about R42. But any other day of the week I can go to a Ster Kinekor (although there aren't many I like nearby). Last night, parking was R6, the movie was R22.50 and a regular popcorn & coke was R36.

I definitely prefer going to Monte Casino, but that's because I usually go to weekday 5-6pm shows, so there are less people around but plenty of people staffing the popcorn counters. Not so at Ster Kinekor on a Sunday afternoon, jees what a hassle! I'm also amazed at people. I went and used one of the 6 self-service screens to buy my ticket. Yet there was a queue about 5 people long to buy tickets from the single staff member at the counter. Are people really that stupid? Unless you don't actually own a credit card, I can't understand why anyone would book from a person at a counter? Ah well, guess that's their problem.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

And Stuff ...

Yawn. Am tired this morning between the *giant* thunder storm above our house at almost 3am and barely being able to breathe, I didn't get much sleep last night.

But lots has been happening. Tuesday was interesting, full of new people. I *finally* met my first Internet Dating boy (no one I've mentioned here before). And yeah, it was fine. I still think I find it a bit weird ... I think you find you like people over time and doing things together (which is why I'm sure you more often than not meet someone thru friends because you end up seeing each other on a semi-regular basis, if that makes sense). It's strange to me to sit down and try and fill someone in on exactly who I am and what makes me tick in a conversation (as opposed to just picking it up as you get to know someone). Yeah, I'd probably see the guy again, if he made the effort ... but I'm not practicing a new signature or anything. Lately I've been feeling very "Reciprocal at best" about these things.

And then on Tuesday evening Loulou, Bert and I tried another round of Speed Dating. Which was pretty pathetic. 5 boys and 6 girls. It was over in under and hour. And I didn't meet anyone I'd want to "match" with either. I dunno, I'm starting to lose interest in this whole trying to meet someone thing. I think I need a mindset change and not to look at it as "Could I date this guy?" but more as "Could I enjoy hanging out and chatting with this guy ... as friends?". I dunno. I refuse to think any further about it for now ...

Yesterday I took the day off to get my annual doctors visits out the way. Oh my, I may have had to wait a whole month to find a day when I could get them all on one day, but it is so the way forward. The stress of sitting and waiting in the doctors rooms for 45minutes because when you arrived at your appointed time, there were still 2 patients who had to go in ahead of you, is gone. It doesn't matter. You're not in a mad rush to get back to work or work in the hours lost or anything. I will definitely be scheduling it like this in future. Obviously this only works for annual check-up appointments tho ... but those tend to be mostly all I need.

Oh, and I managed to take Rex for his nail-clipping too. I was not impressed. 4ways Vet charged *double* the price of my regular vet (Boskruin) ... and the only reason I went there was convenience, since I figured for something so simple there was no reason to drive half an hour there & then back again. Sigh.

And in the evening I went to see The Joneses with CollegeInstructor. I enjoyed it. It's a pretty interesting concept, really. I mean it did get all Hollywood about the ending but hey. I generally enjoyed it :)

Oh, and here are a few things I forgot to mention:
Had a very nice Grilled Vegetable & Cous Cous Salad for dinner at The Metro Lounge on Tuesday night. No mushrooms - score! Seriously, I'd go back to have it again.

And one of the cats must've pushed the pump into my fish pond last night because when I got home from the movie, it was under water and no longer working. I don't know if this could've electrocuted the fish or given them enough of a scare, but one of the fish is still missing (presumed dead) and the other I found using a torch last night on the driveway, barely still breathing about a metre&half away from the pond! I picked him up and threw him back in (he is missing half a tail fin too!). He was mostly floating, but this morning he seems back to normal :) Yay. Will have to get him a new pump and some new friend this weekend ... and I suspect some netting to ward off the predators!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Skin Privilege by Karin Slaughter

Lena Adams has spent her life struggling to escape her past. She has only unhappy memories of Reece, the small town which nearly destroyed her. She's made a new life for herself as a police detective in Heartsdale, a hundred miles away - but nothing could prepare her for the violence which explodes when she is forced to return. A vicious murder leaves a young woman incinerated beyond recognition. And Lena is the only suspect.When Heartsdale police chief Jeffrey Tolliver, Lena's boss, receives word that his detective has been arrested, he has no choice but to go to Lena's aid - taking with him his wife, medical examiner Sara Linton. But soon after their arrival, a second victim is found. The town closes ranks. And both Jeffrey and Sara find themselves entangled in a horrifying underground world of bigotry and rage - a violent world which shocks even them. A world which puts their own lives in jeopardy. Only Jeffrey and Sara can free Lena from the web of lies, betrayal and brutality that has trapped her. But can they discover the truth before the killer strikes again?

Another book that I'm sure I've read before ... but again, I haven't blogged a review of it so it must've been an awfully long time back. So I haven't exactly gone about her Grant County series in the right order (I've also read Blindsighted, on the plane to Peru) ... but I do really enjoy them :) And would recommend, if you can, that you do try and get them in order. I'll tell you right now, that this one has a pretty damn hectic ending.

Monday, October 25, 2010

2 Months to Xmas!

On Friday Arkwife came over after work and we hung out catching up (so novel to be speaking face-to-face instead of over msn - haha!) until it was time to head off to Ghazal's in Sunninghill to meet up with RubyLetters and Jackson's Mom.

What a lovely evening we had laughing and joking and catching up. Sigh, I really must make an effort to see this lovely group more often.

I'm trying to remember what I did on Saturday morning ... there was a lot of driving around, doing admin type stuff, I think. In fact across both weekend days. Dropping off Recycling, collecting Post. Oh My Gawd, my post is about ready to drive me mental. I started off redirecting Varen's post to his house. But noticed the same things were still always showing up in my post box again and again. Obviously he couldn't be bothered to change his postal address. So I started doing Return to Sender's on them, hoping the companies sending the post would follow up with him and get it changed. Clearly places like ABSA and Telkom just don't care (which I'll admit surprised me). I plan to phone all the people who have sent him post this month and tell them if they either stop sending me his post or it's going in the bin. I don't care anymore.

And I cleaned the bunny hutch on Sunday, they have grass in their hutch again :) Looks so lovely. I walked both days. I got the first part of ThePeeb's birthday pressie. I did some other grocery shopping. I cooked, a full egg, bacon, tomato and toast breakfast for one on Sunday morning (so much more hassle than it was worth!) and a big pasta dish in the late afternoon. And I read my book. I caught up my #365 and dabbled with my currency.

Oh, and I finally bought the bunnies a harness & lead. I have tried it once ... on Coal. The other two weren't letting me near them. It was all working fine until she freaked out a bit and almost managed to slip out of it, but luckily I caught her. Will only try every couple of days. And I really must get Rex's nails clipped this week. Sigh, he's gonna hate me :(

On Saturday evening, I went to The Greenside Cafe again for a friend's birthday. I was *very* tempted to have the nut bake again, but decided to try something new, the schnitzel. Wow, if you can get past the lack of meat and alcohol in their restaurant, they really serve some tasty dishes!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Back Online

Wow, what a weird morning. I have a 10min snooze between alarms and this morning I kept falling back into the deepest sleep in between and having the weirdest dreams.

One was more lighthearted, involving 2 people I know (let me point out it is rare that I dream let alone about people I know!). And then another one with even more people I know, where we found out that 2 people from high school died in one weekend. One in a car accident on the Friday night and one just went completely missing on the Saturday night. It feels weird. I have this odd "should I warn them, but I haven't spoken to them in years" feeling. Meh, I'm sure it's nothing, I've never had any other dreams come true.

Sigh. The week has been fairly frustrating so far. Monday was SCM Dinner as usual. On Tuesday, The Housemate got home. I've kinda liked having the place to myself for the past month ... so I'm prickling a little at having someone in my space again. And then there is the internet.

I discovered on the weekend after The Housemate left that someone was using our wireless connection. We'd tried to put on security before but because The Housemate has the oldest work laptop in existence and doesn't even have permissions to upgrade or install anything new, we couldn't get it working so had left it off. I guess we just figured the other person was always using the rest of our bandwidth, but with him away and me barely online and our internet 75% used in the first weekend, I noticed. And I think it must've been a fairly new thing because we *never* use 75% in a weekend, even with both of us there.

Anyway, so I managed to get the security switched back on and working while he was away (with a little bit of @ClaudeTschepen's help). And all was fine in the world. Until Tuesday when he got back and, obviously, now couldn't get online. After a quick catch-up dinner at Nando's, I tried to change it to a security setting his computer could use, with no luck. And then tried changing it back to no security. And pretty much screwed it up and neither of us could get online at all. I spent at least an hour on Tuesday night trying to figure it out before giving up.

Last night I went to an early show and watched The Switch. Good lighthearted entertainment. I won't go into it here about how amused I am at the move movies are making in line with society (no surprise really) ... movies about women deciding to have kids on their own. Close to home, can't help wondering if that's the new direction my life will end up going in as opposed to the fairytale we all believe in as children. Ah well.

Anyway, when I got home I decided to try tackling the internet issue yet again. But this time I had asked for help on twitter and it came in the form of @corrie206 who patiently helped me for *2 hours* yesterday evening to eventually get it working again. Such a relief, I was really starting to lose my sense of humour about the whole thing.

So yeah, I haven't done too much other than stare at my router and swear for the last 2 days ;) Haha.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Woods by Harlan Coben

Twenty years ago at summer camp, Paul Copeland's sister died in the woods, the alleged victim of a serial killer. Her body was never found. Now, Paul is the prosecutor for Essex County, New Jersey, immersed in one of the biggest cases of his career--a case that will change everything he believes about the past. . . and the truth.

I suppose it's enough to tell you that I read this 400 page book in a day (a Saturday admittedly). I started it in the morning when I was woken early by a nearby house alarm and couldn't put it down. Eventually I did tear myself away from it but spent the late afternoon and evening finishing it. I enjoyed it :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Our Tragic Universe by Scarlett Thomas

Smart, entrancing and buzzing with big ideas, Our Tragic Universe is a book about how relationships are created and destroyed, and how a story might just save your life.

If Kelsey Newman's theory about the end of time is true, we are all going to live forever. But for Meg - locked in a dead-end relationship and with a deadline long-gone for a book that she can't write - this thought fills her with dread. Meg is lost in a labyrinth of her own devising. But could there be an important connection between a wild beast living on Dartmoor, a ship in a bottle, the science of time, a knitting pattern for the shape of the universe and the Cottingley Fairies? Or is her life just one long chain of coincidences?

Sigh, I absolutely adored The End of Mr Y and have bought both PopCo (disappointing) and now this since... Admittedly, I liked this a lot more than PopCo. I still like Scarlett Thomas, I think it's her style of writing, but I'm not sure I got what was going on in this book really and neither of the most recent 2 have lived up to the expectation My Y created for me. That said, I'll probably still buy her next one :) Haha.

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