Archive | December, 2012

2012 in review

31 Dec

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The new Boeing 787 Dreamliner can carry about 250 passengers. This blog was viewed about 1,200 times in 2012. If it were a Dreamliner, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

The Goodbye

17 Dec

They sat there in the middle of the dark room weeping, clinging to each other for the temporary comfort that they both knew only they could give.
The quite sobs and the occasional gasp came from a dark place buried deep in their souls; a place of longing, desperation, hopelessness and anguish.
They both willed time to stand still as the world around them ceased to exist.
Over and over they had declared their love for each other in pained but loud silence, for the other knew how the other felt.
Theirs was a lost cause doomed from inception, and they knew it.
For a moment they broke the embrace and looked into each other’s eyes. It was too much. The pain he saw in his eyes, the pleas from his eyes….the love was tangible. As tangible as all the challenges that led to their parting of ways. Once fate had decided for them there was no going back. This was it, the universe had conspired.
The silence was building to an ear splitting crescendo.

He finally found the courage to speak, a trembling whisper which one had to strain to hear over the drum that was his beating heart. In that dark room they were one; he and him. He for him and him for him.

His lips almost touching his ear, throat dry and cracking,”It’s not right. It’s just not right but I understand.” The hopelessness in his voice hit him like a vicious punch in his gut and he doubled in pain but his voice had left him and so had the courage and will to find it.
“I love you too much to hold on in the face of our situation. I’m thankful for knowing you, for laughing with you and for crying with you. I’m glad we met. Please tell me that you love me just one more time and we can go our separate ways. It’s not an oxymoron it’s just an insane and unstable heart and mind on it’s own mission. I want to squeeze you. I want to weep with you. It flatters me in no small measure that you’re fond of me. I don’t know how this will help but promise never to forget me. I wish you love, health and happiness. I love you. I do not know if I will always love you this way but I will always love and care for you. It’s ok, it’s not our fault.”
As he whispered in his ear, caressing his back he felt an eerie calm over him, the same calm he felt as his father’s casket had been lowered to the ground. A bitter acceptance almost.
At last he found his voice. “I have always loved you. I have always cared for you. I have always tried to protect your heart. If I stay you WILL get hurt and I could never forgive or live with myself. I WILL love you from a distance, a safe distance. Forgive me please. My peace will come with your forgiveness”
“There’s nothing to forgive but for peace sake I forgive you wholeheartedly”
He stood up, picked his car keys and without looking back vanished into the night.

With All My Love From Narnia: As Captured By My Camera Phone

5 Dec

Oh what a beautiful morning

Oh what a beautiful morning

One of the classroom wings made of corrugated iron. It's freezing in winter and scorching in summer. For a school that was built in 1987 such structures are a disappointment...to put it mildly.

One of the classroom wings made of corrugated iron. It’s freezing in winter and scorching in summer. For a school that was built in 1987 such structures are a disappointment…to put it mildly.

That"s the admin block at Bodweni Senior Secondary School- the staffroom and the pricipal's office.

That”s the admin block at Bodweni Senior Secondary School- the staffroom and the pricipal’s office.

I went through a better half of 2012 without a salary like many temporarily employed teachers and this is what my grocery shopping was reduced to this. Oh by the way the temps will be terminated from service at the end of this year and the whole cycle repeats itself.

I went through a better half of 2012 without a salary like many temporarily employed teachers and this is what my grocery shopping was reduced to this. Oh by the way the temps will be terminated from service at the end of this year and the whole cycle repeats itself.

Yours trully looking very busy in the staffroom.

Yours trully looking very busy in the staffroom.

At this particular school learners have to fetch water from the river if the water tank runs dry. This water is used to cook food and clean the school.

At this particular school learners have to fetch water from the river if the water tank runs dry. This water is used to cook food and clean the school.

Vulindlela(meaning Pathfinder) Senior Secondary School- I spent many a cold morning here during the winter school programme. Had a ball though.

Vulindlela(meaning Pathfinder) Senior Secondary School- I spent many a cold morning here during the winter school programme. Had a ball though.

I was hijacked on my very first night in Lusikisiki. I was taken for a "joy" ride much against my will and the car overturned about five minutes later. My would be murderers(I'm convinced I would have been toast) crawled out of the wreck and headed for the hills.

I was hijacked on my very first night in Lusikisiki. I was taken for a “joy” ride much against my will and the car overturned about five minutes later. My would be murderers(I’m convinced I would have been toast) crawled out of the wreck and headed for the hills.

I am happy to report that the portable chalkboard has since been replaced by one those wall mounted thingamajigies

I am happy to report that the portable chalkboard has since been replaced by one those wall mounted thingamajigies

A big bone of contention; the promotion schedule which is usually done collaboratively by class teachers of a particular grade.  I have gained notoriety in both schools I have worked in Lusiki because I refuse to help. My arguement is that the department of education has provided all the schools with software to do all this and I refuse to do it on those grounds, heeeell no! Not in the digital era.

A big bone of contention; the promotion schedule which is usually done collaboratively by class teachers of a particular grade. I have gained notoriety in both schools I have worked in Lusiki because I refuse to help. My arguement is that the department of education has provided all the schools with software to do all this and I refuse to do it on those grounds, heeeell no! Not in the digital era.

Ok I really need to shave

Ok I really need to shave

The uniform clad ladies were also moved by the spirit to come and pray at Botha Sigcau Senior Secondary School(my current posting). It was more like a dream actually as one of them had visions of smoke comng out of the staff room and snakes coiled around teachers. This necessitated urgent petitions to the ancinet of days apperantly so they just rocked up during the morning assembly.

The uniform clad ladies were also moved by the spirit to come and pray at Botha Sigcau Senior Secondary School(my current posting). It was more like a dream actually as one of them had visions of smoke comng out of the staff room and snakes coiled around teachers. This necessitated urgent petitions to the ancinet of days apperantly so they just rocked up during the morning assembly.

Grade 12 Life Orientation class, Botha Sigcau Senior Secondary School

Grade 12 Life Orientation class, Botha Sigcau Senior Secondary School

Dance your cares away- Life Orientation class

Dance your cares away- Life Orientation class

Class time. Notice the condition of the roof. These grade 10 learners from Bodweni Senior Secondary have to make do with these conditions. Rural children are kinda forgotten in practice.

Class time. Notice the condition of the roof. These grade 10 learners from Bodweni Senior Secondary have to make do with these conditions. Rural children are kinda forgotten in practice.

One of the many mass meetings called by the South African Democratic Teachers Union. Effectively this means education in the district grinds to a halt as teachers flock to the district office hall to listen to usually senseless propaganda. Word has it that Junior Secondary Schools looove these events.

One of the many mass meetings called by the South African Democratic Teachers Union. Effectively this means education in the district grinds to a halt as teachers flock to the district office hall to listen to usually senseless propaganda. Word has it that Junior Secondary Schools looove these events.

Class disrruptions are not uncommon when some random happy clappy feels moved by the spirit to come pray at school. The elaborately dressed couple in blue and white also felt the divine urge to come spread the word of the lord to the lost flock. These events are a wonder to watch with all marner of demonic outburst and fervent prayers in "tounges"

Class disrruptions are not uncommon when some random happy clappy feels moved by the spirit to come pray at school. The elaborately dressed couple in blue and white also felt the divine urge to come spread the word of the lord to the lost flock. These events are a wonder to watch with all marner of demonic outburst and fervent prayers in “tounges”

Some of the passengers you can expect in the taxi read back of a bakkie.

Some of the passengers you can expect in the taxi read back of a bakkie.

One of Lusikisiki's landmarks lies in ruins and is curently occupied by a variety of car mechanics, This is one of the wings of the famous Khotso house which i am neighbours with. Khotso rose to fame in the 80's as one of South Africa's most powerful and equally rich medicine men. The tales of the goings on at the Khotso's residence is the stuff of legends.

One of Lusikisiki’s landmarks lies in ruins and is curently occupied by a variety of car mechanics, This is one of the wings of the famous Khotso house which i am neighbours with. Khotso rose to fame in the 80’s as one of South Africa’s most powerful and equally rich medicine men. The tales of the goings on at the Khotso’s residence is the stuff of legends.

This is a group of street vendors who were protesting against being rezoned. Street vendors occupy every available inch of spce in Lusiki. On this day they looted shops with impunity while the police somehow managed to miss the action.

This is a group of street vendors who were protesting against being rezoned. Street vendors occupy every available inch of spce in Lusiki. On this day they looted shops with impunity while the police somehow managed to miss the action.

Flamboyant and eccentric, fine artist Mcebisi Gabula is proving popular with western tourists in the region.

Flamboyant and eccentric, fine artist Mcebisi Gabula is proving popular with western tourists in the region.

This is Mcebisi Gabula's lounge with some of his works on the wall

This is Mcebisi Gabula’s lounge with some of his works on the wall

When the lights go out- a common incovenience

When the lights go out- a common incovenience

Sunset from my not so clean window

Sunset from my not so clean window

The view from my classroom at Bodweni Senior Secondary School- priceless

The view from my classroom at Bodweni Senior Secondary School- priceless

The sprawling hills of Lusiki

The sprawling hills of Lusiki

From inside the bakkie taxi

From inside the bakkie taxi

A summer morning in Lusikisiki

A summer morning in Lusikisiki

My not so reliable jalopy is battered daily on this unforgiving terrain.

My not so reliable jalopy is battered daily on this unforgiving terrain.

Lusikisiki
is one of those “towns” that are small enough to be called “quaint” and
surrounded by enough green to be called “charming”, what with being about 40km
from Port St Johns and all. It lies precariously on the Third World Slams Twenty
First Century  fault line, a combination
of rural South Africa with all the trappings of the modern world ills.Lusiki, as it is affectionately known is an interesting society. There is a considerably large coloured population(they go to pains expalining their Scottish origins from shipwrecked sailors along the Wild Coast). Lusiki coloureds run the bars, taverns and car repairs, the black people rule over the taxi ranks and make the total patronage to said bars and taverns and the one odd oce bohemian white folk have dominion over the rubbish bins.Traffic
is impossible in this corner of Narnia and the lack of police presence means we
are all sitting ducks of criminals who are becoming more daring. As recently as about a month ago the town was literally undder siege from robbers; there was at least one armed robbery  week. The robbers have become so brazen that they burn the place down after robbing it as they did in November, with one of the workers tied to a pole. I’m not sure if he made it alive. What I found bewildering is that while the Chinese owned business was still smoldering the citezenry was already looting the stock with careless abandon, once agin no poice at this crime scene. After all the appliences were looted people started stripping the building down to sell all the mtal thingies to a recycler.

Lusikisi i is a beautiful country with dramatic sprawling hills and a genrally friendly and accommodating people. Poverty this place is rather obvious with teachers making up the bulk of the educated workforce.

I hope you enjoy some of the snpshots I take on a daily basis. I’m always snapping away that nobody flinches anymore at work.