Sunset near Komani

Or Queenstown as it was known previously
The pictures were taken from the top of the Nonesis Nek Pass on the Road between Komani and Cacadu (Lady Frere)

The dam here is the Cacadu Dam
Cacadu which means “Bulrush Water” and is the Xhosa name for the White Kei River
Part of the cutting of Nonesis Nek Pass

Poem: Theewaterskloof

The Western Cape was hit by a crippling drought. The level of the main storage dam, Theewaterskloof dropped to 25% and vast tracts of it were just dust and loose sand instead of water. I had this poem rattling around in my head and it just demanded to be written.

Dust bowl dam. Sun light glitters, stark on pale
Bone white surfaces, black stark tree skeletons,
Dry shod, heat struck, sand blasted we cross
The sparkling dam that once was and is no more
Oven heat scrapes roughly across our exposed skin
Slitted eyes blink against the wind hurled dust
No breath to spare for the pointless vital question
What have we done? What have we left our children.

Theewaterskloof

Granaatsboskolk

Many years ago, I announced my intention of going to Verneuk Pan. A friend, on hearing this idea asked me to go to Granatsboskolk as it was in the same area.

“Why?” I asked.

“Because I read an article and the writer said finding Granaatsboskol was like finding the foot of the bed with your bare toe in the dark.”

How could I resist?

“Bring back pictures.” he said

In Brandvlei, I went into the pub called Die Windpomp and asked for directions to Granaatsboskolk. I was greeted with a stunned silenceand then someone asked.
“Why?”
I didnt explan and eventually someone issued directions.

Just as an aside, Die Windpomp is on the N7 and serves ice cold beer and huge slabs of very edible ribs. Stop in and enjoy!

So, join me on a trip to Granaatsboskolk and decide if finding it is like find the foot of the bed with your bare toe.

Get onto the N7 and turn left at the sign. Easy enough.

Drive 40 km along the road.

Cross the Sishen Saldhana Railway line. If you are lucky you will see the 1 km long ore trains. Breaks the monotony.

When you stop seeing a sign to Granaatsboskolk, you are there

Welcome to Granaatsboskolk

Well? Was it worth it?

Collage

I wanted to enter an art competition and decided on a photo collage. I grabbed photos from my various albums and concocted an image which I called Walking into Twilight. It did not make the grade. Oh well, better luck next time

Lunar Eclipse 2019

Early in 2019 Cape Town was blessed with a Lunar Eclipse. The only problem was that it happened around sunrise so we never saw totality. But I did get some nice shots. Even a couple of artistic shots.

Starting at 5:30 in the morning, I got there at 4:30 expecting to be crowded out. I could easily have scored and extra hour in bed. There was only one other photographer.

Some artistic shots.

Last rounds

Sunrise starts to intrude

Day light and the working day starts

Replacing the windows in Riviersonderend

The house had the original steel frame windows, the glass covered in bomb proofing plastic. As the plastic aged, it became opaque and bubbles formed. The plastic was impossible to remove, the frames were starting to disintegrate, so we decided to replace them.
First you have to remove the windows.

Nearly out

Out

 

Side Windows ready to be removed
Kitchen windows out
New windows going in.
In and plastered
From inside – the protective plastic still in place
Plastering the door in
Bathroom window going in.
Finished.

The Great Tree Planting

An old Greek proverb says that civilisation is when old men plant trees that they may never get to sit under. I am getting early so that I can sit under the trees. Seriously though, we managed to germinate 18 Kei Apple trees and 10 spek boom (Portulacaria afra) in Gardens for planting in Riviersonderend.

Ready to travel
In the nursery
Spekboom (Portulacaria afra) are excellent at carbon sequestration and are so easy to grow.