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Archive for October, 2008

for Angry African…

Nothing restores the soul quite like nature in African. We all need to take time out every now and then. Holidays are great, and having itchy feet, I’m not really fussy about the destination. I just love to travel. BUT…. when I’m feeling what a co-blogger, Angry African, calls The Heavy, there is only one place that takes the world away.

It’s a little farm near the Lesotho border called Hoekfontein. Cuddled into the foothills of the Lesotho Mountains, Hoekfontein has no electricity and no cell phone reception. Oh, and you stay in Ox-wagons – yep, real ones, restored lovingly by the farm owner, Gerrit, and fitted with bunk beds.

What, you may ask, is the attraction? Well, it depends on who you are. For me it’s the one place in the world that I can really escape, everything. My kids love it. In fact, four years ago we were on holiday, an incentive trip that we’d won, in Disneyworld no less, my youngest chirped up in one of the lines to one of the rides “When can we go to the ox wagons again?”. He was 5yrs old.


I digress. What’s the attraction? Well, it’s the epitome of Africa. The smells, the sounds, the people. I don’t know what you hear about South Africa, those of you from the USA, UK, Australia, Europe. But nothing you hear can really describe it. For those of us who are truly African, and there are many, black, white, green, blue, it is something in your soul. Yes, we’ve had a checkered past. There are those who battle with the concept of “the New South Africa” and harbour resentment and animosity, however these people are in the minority. For us true Africans, we are truly Madiba’s “rainbow nation”. We are people of the earth, we are connected through Ubuntu to the land that we call home, and to each another. We stand for and by one another.

Africa has a jarring, all encompassing beauty. Africa is a land that is harsh and abundant in equal measures, a land of contradictions. Africa is a mother who does not coddle her children, for she knows that the world is cruel and they need to learn strength. The people of South Africa are anything but mediocre. We are an opinionated nation, holding strong beliefs whether they are right or wrong – we don’t sit on the fence.
As an African, when you need a place of rest, somewhere to slake the thirsting of your soul, to ease the heat of your brow, there is nowhere on God’s earth that can ease the pain but Africa. And for me, that place in Africa is found in the foothills of Lesotho, where the stillness speaks and the smells and tastes and sights fill my soul… and I know that I am home.

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“It’s astounding, time is fleeting, madness takes it’s toll.” Riff Raff in the Rocky Horror Picture Show

The photo on the right is courtesy of my very talented son, Kinmond Robertson


It’s astounding how far off course we can get without cognitive realisation. One day, you wake up and wonder “Where in the world am I, and just how the f*&ck did I get here?” (those of you offended by my colloquial language, please click on the X in the top right corner of your screen)

Life is four dimensional, while our plans, goals, dreams and aspirations tend to remain in the realm of the two dimensional. I haven’t shared here in a while. I’ve been bogged down with so many different responsibilities and completely underestimated my ability to cope with any degree of panache. My plans for this blog were most certainly stuck in two dimensions and ended up way down on my list of priorities when life threw me a curve ball (well, yeah, more than one).

I dropped it. The ball that is; and, in dropping this thing that I had so many plans around, realised that sometimes it’s necessary to drop the ball and take a step back so that you can refocus, and realign yourself.

The truth is that life will throw you a curve at least twice a year. At least, that’s been my experience, every six months or so I find myself in a situation or circumstance that has knocked me off course. There’s nothing to be done about it. We cannot predict the future. That’s just life. But if we are not setting our goals with these unforeseen ‘bumps in the road’ in mind, we will only become discouraged. When setting your goals, be aware of this. Be prepared to set things aside for a time, deal with the crises and then refocus your efforts.

As time slips by it is important to open your eyes and take an honest look at your life. Have you allowed the “bumps in the road” to alter your direction? Are you happy with your current course. If not, take the time to refocus. Be kind to yourself. It’s not too late to re-centre your heart and your mind.

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