Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Wow, it's been a while.
My last post was almost a year ago and this was supposed to be a diary? Let me catch up on myself a little.
'Forever Plaid' was successful and I think that we managed to entertain about 600 odd people during the short run and also make a tidy sum of money. We were asked to revive it, but the unavailability of a couple of cast members made that impossible. Reviving a show isn't always entirely satisfying. You've built a team spirit once you've got into the swing of rehearsals and enjoyed the fun ride right through to the last show and I'm not sure that you can recapture the same joy of the creative process the second time around. Maybe you can, but that's my theory and I'm sticking to it.
Here are the boys: Richard, John, Chris & Simon
CATA (Cape Amateur Theatre Awards) gave the show three nominations for Richard, John and myself. However the show is competing against some big musicals staged last year and I doubt we'll win anything. Nice to be nominated though.
After the show closed I committed myself to doing the costumes for the next musical, 'Honk!'. An offer I was to regret, the process took months and only finished a few weeks before Christmas. The 'brief' changed on a weekly basis. I'd hoped to finish with 3 weeks to spare. Costuming a show in the past wasn't easy - and then I'd had three rooms I could spread out in! This time, living in an apartment and having my entire living space taken over, was pretty awful. It was a huge cast and each person had 4 - 5 costumes. I've received a nomination for the comment on that. the upside was that the cast were lovely and a pleasure to deal with.
Have been asked if I'd be willing to do the costumes for the next show - guess what my answer was?
However I suppose I achieved my aim, which was to keep busy. That I did, but working alone with only a sewing machine for company leaves lots of space for the mind to wander free - not so good.
Which brings me to how I'm coping now that Chris has been gone for a year and a half. Well I've finally got past the point of expecting him to walk in the door and shout 'Is the kettle on?' - that's pretty big because it does mean that I've reached another point in the grieving process: acceptance. I still miss him of course, every day. How could you not miss someone who has been part of your life for 48 years? And I'm still finding it odd being completely alone here. I love it when friends come over, but they probably think I'm very clingy because I don't want them to leave! I'm not lonely, just miss having someone around all the time. That sounds like a contradiction, but it's true. For the most part I enjoy my own company, but I've been spoilt in knowing there was always someone there. Okay, so its hard to explain.
A couple of days after the costumes were completed, my great niece arrived from Johannesburg for a visit. Just 11 years old but Jocelyn has had to cope with more grief than any little girl should. She was extremely close to her gran (Chris' sister), who died very unexpectedly a year before Chris. And the day after she arrived here, her nanny who was with her since her birth also died. We managed to distract ourselves though and had a lot of fun together. She's one very special little girl.
On Christmas day last year, I was on a plane to Sydney. This year I was invited to spend the day with friends, and what a lovely day it was. I ate far too much of course. Ingrid and Keith are great hosts even with about 15 guests to cope with, they were totally relaxed about it  - it was fun. Got to know Ingrid & Keith some years back through Ben and found there was another connection through Geoff & Pearl.
New year's eve 2010 was spent with Mands & Scott on a deck overlooking the Sydney harbour and watching the magical firework display on the Sydney harbour bridge. In complete contrast, NYE 2011 was spent in Kenton on Sea (137 km after P.E.) watching God's own amazing display of stars, undimmed by city lights.
I'd been invited some months before by Ben's daughter, Debra & her husband Johan, to join the family for a 12 day stay with them in the house they'd rented. Ben's other daughter, Chantal kindly lent us her car for the trip - a very luxurious BMW. Along with Debra's eldest daughter, 14 year old Taylor, we started the long trip at 5 a.m. At Riviersonderend we got a flat tyre and when changing it, discovered the other tyres were pretty worn as well. After a slow trip to Swellendam to fit new tyres, it took 13 hours to reach our destination and I think Ben was taking the strain in the last two hours! But I was buggered if I was going to offer to drive that fancy car, I can wreck a toaster quicker than wink, so the poor man had to carry on.

The stay at Kenton on Sea was wonderful; I really was made to feel part of the family and not just a hanger-on. Besides Ben, Taylor, Deb & Johan, there were the three-year old twins Jaimee & Jadin - and endless source of amusement in the antics they got up to. We met some real characters in the local pub, a couple of them reminded me of the mountain men in 'Deliverence'. But Ben befriended them, seeing them more as Daryl and the other brother Daryl from the Bob Newhart Show..........
Ben (centre) & his new friends
what do you think, 'Deliverence' or 'Bob Newhart'?
and we found a monster - or at least Taylor did. A strange looking little creature that we'd never seen before. We took pics and then Taylor & Debs released it back into the sea. I contacted African Geographic who couldn't help but said they'd pass the query on to UCT. Anyway, Mandy (after only 10 minutes) had done some research - it was a Glaucus Atlanticus a sea slug. Look it up if you will, it is quite beautiful but very poisonous. Luckily it couldn't have eaten any bluebottles recently, so the 'wranglers' escaped unscathed.
Johan, Taylor, self and Ben at Kariega Game Park
We also went on a game drive at the Kariega Game Park; this was quite an adventure for Taylor and myself as we were perched high up, right at the back of the jeep. There were no roads, just tracks and the guide/driver often took little forays into the bush. T and I had to hang on for dear life as our butts lifted off the seats and we teetered in the air, coming back with a thud on the hard seats. We saw so much game, including elephants, lions, rhino & hippos. It was great and the buffet lunch in the lovely cool 'boma' dining room afterwards was delicious.
All in all a lovely holiday. It took me a while to get used to not having 'people noises' around me!
Mandy and Scott bought me an iPod and docking station for Christmas - WOW! They even sent me the adaptor - hopefully this morning Mandy will call me on Skype and talk me through setting this all up, including registration on iTunes. I will then be surrounded by music all day, bliss!
Have booked to see Michael Buble in May with Brian - can't wait. Hope its as good as his first show which I saw with Mands.
Am baby-sitting my goddaughter today - she's a small black and white beauty, cross between a peke & maltese. I've just taken her out for a walk and she's nagging for another, not yet Panda it's damned hot outside.
Yesterday, in the heatwave, took Doug & Noreen out to Blouberg (Ons Huisie) for lunch. I think I got slightly cooked in the car. In my next lifetime my car will have aircon!
So that's all the catching up. I'm going to try and be a bit more regular with this 'diary' in future. So until next time
Batty signing out..................