Jy blaai in die argief vir 2010 Augustus.

Death, dying and writing

Augustus 25, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Just checking in to say hi. Deadline for book fast approaching. Tuesday, to be exact. Some good news, some bad news. Good news? Will be almost double the amount of words the publishers wanted (which is not a problem on non-fiction). Bad news? I must still write about half of that.

My friend Elsie is dying of cancer. She wasn’t really my friend until she got cancer (she was my daughter’s maths teacher) but when she was diagnosed with cancer, I started visiting her. Why? Because people tend to run for the hills once they hear the word cancer, and, since I have a lot of friends who survived cancer, I’m used to sitting with them through chemo. I don’t even notice bald heads anymore.

Anyhow, popped in to see Elsie on an impulse on Monday morning. Just to find her extremely short of breath and in great pain. The breath-problem I immediately assumed to be her lungs filling up with fluid. Which it was. Convinced her husband that it’s time for hospital, and an hour later she was on morphine and oxygen. By this morning, it was evident that it is now only a matter of hours.

So, please pray for Elsie and her family – I know she will go straight to heaven, but dying is always hard on those staying behind.

And now I must get on with the book. Have fun while I’m absent from blogland.

Dawie-die-geboertevlek-man

Augustus 19, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Toe ek my twee oë vanoggend oopmaak, weet ek: hierdie hoofpyn gaan nie wyk nie. Nee, niks gedrink of gerook wat kon lei tot die ysterband wat ek nou al weet my hoof heeldaglank gaan knel nie. Die twee geel generiese pynpille wat ek saam met my eerste koppie tee afsluk, maak nie ‘n duik nie. Inteendeel. Elfuur weer twee. Zip. Zilch. Nada. Niks. Die belt word vaster getrek, maar ek het niks sterker pille in die huis nie..

 

Om op deadline te wees vir ‘n boek en ‘n klomp artikels help nie. Ek skryf, maar die pyn bly klop agter my oë. In my slape. Agter my kop. Vir afwisseling voel ek af en toe ‘n skietpyn deur my regterkantste slaap.

 

Oudste klim kla-kla in die kar toe ek hulle by die skool kry. Gister geval oor haar bruidegom. Laaaaaang storie, maar nee, sy is nie ‘n kinderbruid nie. Wel ‘n aspirant-aktrise/regisseur/diktator wat haar drie groeplede dril asof vir ‘n Oscar. Maar eintlik is dit net vir ‘n kuns-en-kultuur-mondeling. Wat toe lei tot ‘n onseremoniële val oor haar medester se voet.

 

Ewentwel, aangesien sy gister ook oor die seer pols gekla het, en die pyn nou na die res van die arm geskuif het, gaan ons maar dokter toe. Sit lank genoeg in die wagkamer dat ek my hele koerant kan lees. Nog steeds met die kop wat klop.

 

Vra toe sommer die arts of daar nie iets is wat beter sal help as die no name geel pille van die apteek nie. Alteseker, seg hy. So sit ons af apteek met voorskrifte. (Kind se pols nie gebreek nie, net bietjie verstuit. My migraine nie weens hoë bloeddruk of sinus nie, net gewone ou stres.)

 

Ek is min lus vir die praterige apteker. Veral omdat hy die irriterende gewoonte het om vir my te sê “gee vir my ‘n ou glimlaggie, toe”. F! (Vul jou eie ontbrekende letters in.)

 

So stuur ek toe vir oudste in met die voorskrifte. Slegte ma, ja ek weet, maar die laaste ding waarvoor ek en my kloppende hoof nou krag het, is ‘n getroude man wat dink hy is God’s gift to single mothers.

 

Dis toe ek en die jongste in die kar sit, minding my own business en alles, dat Dawie my suutjies bekruip. Behalwe dat ek toe nog nie weet dis Dawie nie.

 

Ewe skielik staan die verrimpelde Boesmantjie langs my kar met, van alle dinge, ‘n pienk-en-blou babakappie op sy kop. Die paar krullerige snorhaartjies is ewe grys as wat dit rooi is. Op sy wange, op sy slape en bokant die yl kenbaardjie wat lyk soos die kleure van ‘n tortoisseshell-kat, is daar verrimpelde tatoeërmerke. Groenblou teen die kleur van sy koperbruin vel. Op die een oorlel is ‘n parmantige blou inkster.

 

“Hallo mê,” sê hy met ‘n skoorvoetende noot in sy stem. Byvoorbaat gereed om stert tussen die bene weg te stap as die wit vrou hom wil wegjaag. Sotho, dink ek toe ek die mê hoor. “Het mê dan nie vir my ‘n ou tweerandjie vir ‘n bietjie pap nie?” Ek meet onwillekeurig die afstand na die kafee regs en die drankwinkel links agter. Ewe ver van altwee af, maar iets sê vir my Dawie mik vir laasgenoemde.

But there but for the grace of God en al daai dinge, en in elk geval wil ek en my hoofpyn net vrede hê. Ek gee hom R5, want as mens se gesig so lyk van die plooie en die tatoeërmerke is die kans goed dat jy ‘n paar dinge het wat jy wil vergeet. En wat hy uiteindelik met my gawe maak is seker sy saak.

 

Hy vat die geld dankbaar – en gee dit skaars twee minute later vir ‘n ander (netjiese) man met ‘n selfoon. “Dê, hiesa, hie’s vi’ jou tien sent,” hoor ek hom sê.

 

“Hei,” wil ek weet, net so effens verontwaardig. “Hoekom gee jy jou R5 vir daai man?”

Issie, seg hy. “Issie R5 gewies nie, is tien sent. Kyk, hier is die R5,” sê hy, en haal ‘n 5c uit sy sak.”

 

“Daai is ‘n 5c, nie ‘n R5 nie. Hoekom gee jy vir daai man jou geld?” dring ek aan. Vyf rand is darem vyf rand.

 

“Ag, lat hy ma’ ka’ hys toe gaan. Mê wiet mos nou wat kos ‘n taxi.”

 

Is dit dalk sy seun, wonder ek. Hardop.

 

Nee, seg tattoeman. “Dis my niefietjie.”

 

Die oudste staan steeds in die praterige apteker se ry, en ek kan netsowel luister terwyl Dawie familie uitlê.

 

“Nou waar kom jy vandaan?” wil ek weet.

 

“Vannie Baai af,” antwoord hy, hand voor die mond. Sy hand skiet elke kort-kort na sy mond, let ek op. Elke keer as hy praat of lag, om presies te wees. (Of hy tande het, weet ek nou nog nie.)

 

“Nou wat maak jy hier?”

 

Toe vertel Dawie die gewone sad storie. Van ‘n werk wat was en nou nie meer is nie. Hoe lank terug die werk was, sal g’n mens kan sê nie, want ek sien hom al jare hier in die straat voor die apteek karre rangeer.

 

Toe kan ek nie meer my nuuskierigheid hou nie. Want, vermoed ek, die lewe het hom waarskynlik al met ‘n ompad deur die tronk geneem, vandaar die amateuragtige tatoeërmerke. “En daai tatoeërmerke?”

 

“Nie, dis mos nou geboertevlekke,” seg hy, hand voor die mond. En lag gie-gie-gie vir homself.

 

Ek kan nie help om te begin lag nie. “Maar jy lieg mos nou,” skater ek. Want vir een of ander vreemde rede kan ek my nie vererg vir die nonsensprater nie. (Dalk daai vier geel pille…)

 

Toe hy sien hy het ‘n audience, skrik die standup komediant in die verrimpelde mannetjie skielik helder wakker.

 

“Nei, ek is nou nog kwat vi’ my ma hie’oor,” gie-gie-gie hy weer agter sy hand, die geplooide oë toe soos hy lag.

 

“Nou hoe lank na geboorte het jy daai merke gekry?”

 

“Nie, soe kort na geboorte. Toe ek mar eendag in ‘n spieël kyk, sit die merke daa’. En ek vra my ma nou hoeko’ het sy dit gedoen, ma’ sy antwoord niks.”

 

Gie-gie-gie, lag hy.

 

Bwahahaha. Lag ek. Vir die tenger lyfie wat telkens amper voor ‘n kar beland soos hy vir sy eie grappies lag, hand voor die mond. En ook vir die komieklike pienk-en-blou babakappie waarvan die toue langs die tortoiseshell-kroesies op sy slape afhang.

 

En die kappie?

“Nie, die kappiekie kom oek mos van geboerte af sam met my. Ek en die kappiekie. Ons loep saam.” Gie-gie-gie.

 

Uiteindelik stel hy homself voor. Dawie. Dawie Adams. Of Eddems, nes mê wil.

 

Dawie-met-die-vreemde-geboertevlekke.

 

Ek besluit so performance mag nog geld kry, en maak my motor se asbakkie in sy hand leeg.

 

Vir pap sê ek. En, moedswillig, seker vir ‘n bier ook.

 

“Nie, mê, ek drink mossie.”

 

Ja, jy drink, sê ek. Maar nie kwaai nie, want alle lus om ‘n toespraak af te steek oor hoe hy nie moet drink nie, het my verlaat.

 

Nee regtig, verseker hy my, hy drink nie juis nie. “Net oor naweke.”

 

“Maar elke dag is mos naweek,” terg ek.

 

Gie-gie-gie, lag Dawie Adams/Eddems, hand oor die mond. Gie-gie-gie.

 

In die volgende paar minute hoor ek die res van sy verhaal. (Die tou in die apteek was lank…) Hy’t kinders, maar hulle bly in die Baai. Nee, hy gaan nie gereeld nie. Was twee jaar laas daar. Ja, hy het ‘n huis, hy hoef nie op die straat te slaap nie. Maar nee, dis nie eintlik ‘n huis nie, dis mos nou ‘n shack. Daar in ‘n lokasie by Kliprivier. En hy’s 54 (al lyk hy 154).

 

Nou waar gaan hy taxigeld kry om nou-nou huis toe te gaan?

Nie, seg Dawie, ek sal maar nog ‘n ander merrim gaan vra vir ‘n geldjie vir pap.”

 

“Is jy ‘n Boesman?” wil ek weet.

 

“Nie, ek’s ‘n Kleurling, ma’ mense noem ons mos Boesmans.”

“Nee,” verduidelik ek, “is jy ‘n Khoi-San?”

 

O. Gie-gie-gie. ‘n Regte Boesman.

 

Ja nee, hy’s ‘n Khoi-San. “Van my ma se hand se kant af. En as sy mos nou kwat geraak het, praat sy so kwe kwa kwe in haar eie taal.”

 

Net toe klim die oudste in die kar, en Dawie-die-geboertevlek-man en ek moet groet.

 

Maar die kans is baie goed dat my dogter van nou af in die apteektou sal staan terwyl ek eerder op die sypaadjie met Dawie ginnegaap…

A quick hallo

Augustus 17, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Working on a zillion things at once. And that is today only…

Want to know something about nanotechnology? Ask me. I wrote a lengthy, difficult press release on a breakthrough in the use of nanotechnology, had it cleared by the powers that be, and then set about translating it. Easier said than done, let you tell me. I mean, let me tell you! See the state my mind is in?

In between handled the umpteenth crisis with the Youngest One – the result of their ever-not-present alcholic dad. A crisis that started last week Wednesday and, amongst other things, prevented me from writing one single new word of my manuscript, that is due in by the end of August. The long and the short of it is that I now have no choice but to approach the court (via the Family Advocate), as I see no point in this man messing up their lives anymore with his drinking and drugging. A bitter thing to decide, but I think my kids will be better off without this man in their lives at all. Tomorrow morning I see a clinical psychologist to start the process.

After that, and after completing the magazine article I’m working on now, I can hopefully start work on the book again. Time is running out. I have exactly two weeks to put everything together for the publishers. I have all the research, but must now apply bum to chair and WORK without any more interuptions and crises.

Will pop in again as soon as I can afford to take a break! Miss reading everybody’s daily blogs, but a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do for her bread and butter! Hugs!

Adam and Eve continued

Augustus 11, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Tired of writing, so thought I’ll just pop over and share this joke with you, in the spirit of my earlier post on Adam and Eve:

My 8-year old comes home the other day from school. Says he heard a joke on Adam and Eve. Guess what Adam said to Eve, he asks. I get a bit uncomfortable, as I know one that starts like that that a 8-year old shouldn’t know.
But luckily I keep a straight face, and listens attentively (but nervously).
Adam said to Eve, he continues. “Woman, you used my pants for the salad AGAIN!!!”
In the joke I know, Adam said to Eve: “Stand back, we have no idea how big this thing can get!”

Some good news on Ebenezer

Augustus 5, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

For a change things are going brilliantly for Shirley Merime, the founder of Ebenezer. Not only did we raise R10 000 for them after my request for financial aid to, amongst others, bury four of their people, but Shirley won one of two cars donated to the Clover Mama Africa-project.

The lucky draw, in which all Mama Africa’s names were entered, took place last week on kykNet’s Ontbytsake, en Shirley was one of the lucky two ladies.

It couldn’t have gone to a more deserving, nicer person.

Rest in peace, Frieda!

Augustus 4, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Two years ago LAPA publishers approached me with a manuscript, and asked me to develop it into a book. After reading the manuscript, I just knew this had to become a book. And then I met the author, Frieda Bernard, and I had absolutely no doubt that people need to be inspired by this remarkable woman who fought cancer for a whopping ten years. The last eight years she valiantly fought an aggresive type of liver cancer.

The book was written and went through all the motions, and last year, in September I think, we had a launch party for her at Die Boekehuis. Just to hear that she had a massive stroke that morning. From then on it was another massive battle for Frieda, but true to her faith and positive attitude she managed to hang on for almost another year. 

Frieda, may you rest in peace. May God spoil you rotten, and thanks for leaving Die Engele om my bed as a legacy for all those who still have to fight the demon called cancer. You were an inspiration, my friend.

It’s apartheid’s fault! (Why am I not surprised?)

Augustus 4, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

So, Jackie Selebie got 15 years in jail. Fifteen years too little, if you ask me. Simply because there is a belief that the chief of police, be it in a town, city, province and, lo and behold, a country, should lead by example when it comes to crime. By not doing it. Yep, extra-ordinary expectations, but hey, I’m an optimist.

But then, apparently all of this can be blamed on apartheid. No, not Selebi’s greed. Not his lying and cheating and bribing.

His jail sentence, of course. His brother, one Sulaiman Selebi, yesterday called Judge Meyer Joffe “an apartheid judge” who found his brother guilty in “an apartheids court” according to the “Roman Dutch judicial system of the imperialistic West” that (wait for it!!) “should never have been allowed in this country.”

Ironic, especially in the light of the fact that Selebi clearly loves the Western lifestyle and credo of “more is better”.

Spesifikasies vir pype

Augustus 3, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

So tussendeur my navorsing vir my boek kom ek op snaakse goed af. Soos hierdie een, wat ek gevind het op een van Ons Dorp (die webwerf) se nuusbriewe. Geniet! (Terloops, ek het nog 26 500 woorde om te skryf. Minstens…)

1. Alle pype moet in die vervolg gemaak word van ’n lang gat en omring word met metaal, koper of plastiek, gesentreer rondom die gat.

 

 

2. Alle pype moet oor hul hele lengte hol wees – moenie gate gebruik wat verskil van die lengte van die pyp nie.

 

 

3. Die binnemaat van die pyp moet nie die buitemaat oorskry nie, anders gaan die gat aan die buitekant van die pyp sit.

 

4.  Die pyp word met die gat leeg verskaf sodat water, stoom en ander goed later daarin gesit kan word.

 

 

5. Alle pype word gewoonlik sonder roes verskaf, dit kan altyd maklik op die werksterrein bygevoeg word.

 

Nota: Party verskaffers lewer nou geroeste pype af. Indien beskikbaar in jou area,word die produk aanbeveel aangesien dit baie tyd spaar op die werksplek.

 

 6. Alle pype langer as 1,5 m moet duidelik die woorde LANG PYP opgeverf he op elke sy en aan elke punt sodat die kontrakteur kan weet dis ’n lang pyp.

 

7. Pype langer as 3 m moet die ook die woorde LANG PYP in die middel geverf he sodat die kontrakteur nie die hele lengte van die pyp hoef af te tree om te sien of dit’n lang pyp of ’n kort pyp is nie.

 

 

8.Alle pype met ’n deursnee van meer as 1,8 m moet die woorde GROOT PYP daarop he sodat die kontrakteur dit nie met ’n klein pypie kan verwar nie.

 

 

9. Wanneer daar 90 of 30 grade buigings in pype benodig word, onthou om spesiaal daarop te let om linkerhand- of regterhand-pype te spesifiseer – anders kan jy dalkpype in die verkeerde rigting aanle.

 

10. Met die aankoop van pype, maak seker jy spesifiseer gelyk-, opdraand- of afdraandpype. As jy ’n afdraandpyp in plaas van ’n opdraandpyp bestel, gaan diewater in die verkeerde rigting vloei.

 

11. Verskillende lengtes pype kan aanmekaar gesweis word. Dit word egter nie aanbeveel vir sement- of asbespype nie.

 

12. Pype wat korter as 13 mm is word nie as ekonomies beskou nie weens die baie laste benodig. Sulke kort pype staan ook bekend as wasters.

The 8-year old’s latest gem

Augustus 2, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Luc wanted to bake muffins tonight. As it was his first attempt, I offered (read: insisted) to help. First, I told him, he should get all the ingredients and equipment together. Which wasn’t a lot. Basically the packet of muffin mix, a cup, a mixing bowl, an egg, some cooking oil.

When I walked into the kitchen, he proudly announced (in Afrikaans, of course): “Mum, the packet says 2 extra large eggs. Is it okay if I take one DUBBELDOOS egg?”

He, of course, meant DUBBELDOOR, which means an egg with a double yolk.

Now I must write a chapter of my book! Thanks for all the good wishes, Blogville!

No turning back now

Augustus 2, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

G’day dear Bloggers. Sorry for the absence. Had a bit of a fluey week, and lots of work. And from midnight on Saturday another clock is ticking for me, apart from the normal magazine deadlines. Yes, it is the month of August, and all the copy for my book must be submitted by the end of August!

Yes, I still have my nails, but for how long is anybody’s guess. It’s not that I procrastinated on this one, it’s just that there are so many parties involved and that I must wait for them.

So, hold thumbs! And send hot meals and flowers and chocolates, but NO books, please. Otherwise I start reading them instead of writing my own one!