||Issue No. 318 -- 21 February 2005
Quote/s of the Week
Ad Hoc Article/s of the Week
Bits and Bobs
The Legal Beagle
Where are they now?
Club and Other News
Credits and Contact Info
Subscribing and Unsubscribing
|Send this Issue to a Friend!
We had a great braai out at K’Shane this past Saturday – introduced family and friends to our boat, the dam and the animals. Very good time was had by all!
It was my grandson Tristan’s first time in our boat – and he thoroughly enjoyed himself – to the extent that he said he is now going to water ski when his daddy does again!
It seemed fortuitous to have chosen Saturday as it only rained a bit early in the morning. Yesterday it rained most of the day and today is not much different – grey skies and rain on and off all day with thunderstorms forecast for tomorrow as well.
We decided to have a relaxing Sunday and visited our local video and DVD store – which due to the weather was packed! I wonder what today’s parents would do without DVDs and videos? Does that date me??
These from me...
I love you, not only for what you are, but for what I am when I am with you. - Roy Croft
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart. - Helen Keller
Life has taught us that love does not consist in gazing at each other, but in looking outward together in the same direction. - Antoine de Saint-Exupery
This from Daniel email@example.com
Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.
Send in any quotes you love... that have some special meaning for you... and I will use at least one every week. Usual address! firstname.lastname@example.org
|Ad Hoc Article/s of the Week
Each week we will feature a question and answer sent in to the Company for Immigration. We hope these will help answer any questions you might have regarding any part of the coming home process. If you would like to send in your own question, please feel very free to do so.
We will also be featuring a great amount of information on the SAW Website (www.saw.co.za) under the Coming Home section. You can also find out info by visiting South Africa Online (www.southafrica.co.za) and checking out the Coming to SA section.
Here is a bit more info...
Whenever and wherever South Africans meet, the surest way to start a lively discussion, is to ask someone for an opinion about emigration from or remigration back to South Africa. In 2002 we (i.e. the non-profit immigration service, Company for Immigration, and the trade-union, Solidarity) realized that the return of South African expats had become a fact and that their inputs are essential for the growth and development of the country. We are neither interested in a debate about the reasons why people leave or come back, nor about the merit of their decisions. We prefer to provide a practical service instead:
offering advice and assistance to prospective remigrants;
addressing the problems which cause people to emigrate; and informing people about the pros and cons of emigration, to help them make an informed decision before leaving.
Interested? Want to receive our monthly newsletter by email? Have questions or suggestions? If so, please visit our mirror sites www.comehome.co.za or www.komhuistoe.co.za and leave your details on the visitor's page, or contact us at email@example.com. We are looking forward to hearing from you!
Alana & Annatjie
COME HOME CAMPAIGN
This week’s Q and A:
Mary, Australia, wants to know: We are returning to SA soon and will settle somewhere at the coast. I would like to learn to speak Zulu or Xhosa upon our return. Where can I do so?
Reply: Dear Mary, once you are back you can approach the language department of your nearest technical college or university. Most of these institutions have short language courses for any interested individual, which are usually very affordable. If you would prefer individual tuition, these institutions should also be able to recommend reputable private teachers. Please contact us if they cannot assist.
Company for Immigration / Maatskappy vir Immigrasie
P.O. Box 1283, Pretoria, 0001, South Africa
The Good News - JSE uses local software company to develop world-leading online market
The JSE Securities Exchange will go live at the end of February with a new interest rate market, called Yield-X. The market, essentially a platform for trading interest rate products, with a particular focus on derivatives, is unique in that it runs on software that has a front end for both derivatives and cash. Elsewhere these two financial instruments must be traded separately.
To develop the software, the JSE chose to contract a local software company, Securities & Trading Technology (STT). The deliberate choice not to go offshore was made because the JSE needed to keep costs down and they needed flexibility on the part of a supplier with experience in the bond market, something that was more easily achieved using someone with a local presence and a rand cost base. It also helped that STT had previously developed the software to run the South African Futures Exchange (Safex), which the JSE bought out in 2001.
A further complexity is that the South African market is unique, as traders trade on yield, whereas elsewhere they trade on price. This is because the local market developed after the invention of handheld calculators, which allowed for quick yield calculations. As a result of this uniqueness, no standard software existed abroad that was suitable.
By introducing the new Yield-X market, the JSE believes that it has gone from lagging behind the developed world markets to being world leaders in this field. Apart from the combined front-end, the software also handles the entire process of the market, from trade to clearing.
For more interesting and exciting news about developments in South Africa, subscribe to the International Marketing Council's regular BrandSA newsletter by visiting www.imc.org.za/goodstuff.htm or www.imc.org.za/subscribe.asp.
This from Matthew Green to help you when you receive sp*m (unsolicited mail). You can send this message back to the address from when came the spam.
On [insert date here], I received the following message from you:
| Blah, blah, blah
Since this is a commercial message, and since I have not requested to be placed on your mailing list, this message constitutes an unsolicited communication in terms of section 45 of the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act (Act 25 of 2002).
In terms of section 45(4) of this Act, this message serves as notification that I do not wish to receive any further communications from you. Failure to comply with this request constitutes a criminal offense in terms of the ECT Act.
Additionally, I hereby request that you immediately disclose where you obtained my contact details, as per section 45(1) of the ECT Act. Failure to respond to this request also constitutes a criminal offense.
I note that your original message did not provide me with an option to cancel my subscription to your mailing list, as required by section 45(1) of the Act. This means that you may already have committed an offense in terms of section 45(3) of the Act, and may be subject to prosecution.]
Should you wish to familiarise yourself with the relevant legislation, or check my facts, a copy of the ECT Act is available on-line via the Government's web site: http://www.gov.za/gazette/acts/2002/a25-02.pdf.
Your co-operation in this matter will be appreciated,
Choice Coach – Grounded in the Earth, Reaching for the Sky
Short but sweet
My favorite prayer is also the shortest one that I know. Its wording is such that it can be addressed to whatever High Power one acknowledges, in whatever direction an individual's beliefs may choose, and it says simply, "I will to will Thy will."
I will to will Thy will. I want to want what You want. I want us to be totally in synch.
This is, at least in my interpretation, different from "Thy will be done." In the latter there is an implication of reluctance, an implication that "thy will be done even if it's something I don't want," of "I guess I have to let your will override mine." It is still obedience, but it is not necessarily the joyous compliance that I believe our Creator would wish.
But "I will to will Thy will" asks that our will not just surrender, but be transformed so that it is totally congruent with the will of the Higher Power. That would enable us to be one with the will of the Higher Power, to flow with it joyously because it IS exactly what we want.
I will to will Thy will.
It is a powerful prayer, a transforming mantra. Perhaps you might care to try it?
Special times this month
Dates and descriptions obtained from www.interfaithcalendar.org/ unless marked with ##.
Do not be confused by the fact that some celebrations occur on different days according to different religions. For example, celebrations for those of the Orthodox Christian faith, some of whom adhere to the Julian calendar and some to the Gregorian calendar, often differ from those of most western Christian faiths. For more information about the history behind this confusion, see www.goarch.org/en/ourfaith/articles/article7070.asp.
Celebrations marked with one asterisk actually begin at sundown the previous day. Those marked with two asterisks may vary by date according to location. Also, because the Islamic calendar is moon-based, some dates may be off by one day, depending upon location.
19 - Ashura - An Islamic optional one day fast recognizing the Creation, Noah's departure from the ark, and the saving of Moses from Pharaoh. Prophet Muhammad's Grandson, Hussain, was martyred on this date in 683/684 AD.
20 - Triodion begins - Orthodox Christian time period leading up to Lent. The liturgy involves hymns, odes and scriptures.
1 - St David of Wales - Celtic Christian saint known for his wisdom and missionary work.
6 - Meatfare (Judgment) Sunday - Orthodox Christian observance, two weeks before the start of the Great Lent, preparing the faithful for the celebration of the resurrection of Christ. This is the last day for eating of meat before the Great Lent.
8 - Maha Shivaratri **- A Hindu festival in honor of Lord Shiva and his marriage to Goddess Parvati. Ceremonies involving prayers and hymns take place mostly at night. Special foods are not used.
13 - Cheesefare or "Forgiveness Sunday" - Orthodox Christian custom at Vespers of asking each other's forgiveness for discourtesy and disrespect. ##
14 - Lent begins (Clean Monday) - Orthodox Christian -a time of cleaning up or cleaning out in our spiritual lives ##
17 - St Patrick's Day - Christian celebration of Patrick who brought Christianity to Ireland in early days of the faith.
20 - Palm Sunday - Christian celebration of the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. The day begins Holy Week. It is observed by worship celebrations and parades using palm branches.
20 - Orthodox Christian first Sunday of Lent. Restoration of icons to the church is celebrated.
21 - Norooz - Zoroastrian New Year.
21 - Nau-Roz (New Year's Day) -Baha'i observance of the vernal equinox symbolizing spiritual growth and renewal.
21 - Ostara * - Wicca welcoming of spring and the goddess-as-maiden.
23 - Mahavir Jayanti - Jain festival honoring Lord Mahavira on the founder's birthday. Shrines are visited.
24 - Maundy Thursday - Christian observance of the first Lord's Supper during Holy Week.
24 - Lord's Evening Meal - Jehovah's Witness (Christian) primary annual celebration taking place in the evening.
25 - Purim * - Jewish celebration of the deliverance of the Jewish minority in Persia from genocide. Charity to the poor, sharing food with friends, and vigorous merrymaking mark the observance.
25 - Good Friday - Christian remembrance of the crucifixion of Jesus and related events.
26 - Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary - Orthodox Christian celebration of Gabriel announcing to the Virgin Mary the coming birth of Jesus.
25 - Magha Puja Day ** - Buddhist celebration of the presentation of teachings by Lord Buddha to an assembly of holy men.
25 - Holi ** - Hindu spring festival dedicated to the god of pleasure. It is observed in a colorful and boisterous manner.
26 - Khordad Sal - Zoroastrian remembrance of the birth of Prophet Zarathushtra.
26 - Holy Saturday - Christian observance of the Saturday before Easter - a time meditation on the mystery of Jesus Christ.
27 - The most holy of Christian sacred days. The day commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ from his death by crucifixion. Observances include worship services beginning at sunrise, special music, feasting, and parades.
Copyright Diana Robinson 2004. For more information visit Diana's web
site http://ChoiceCoach.com or contact her at Diana@ChoiceCoach.com.
Copyright 2004 Diana Robinson, PhD., PCC. Work in Progress may be reproduced in its entirety only, including this copyright line. Disclaimer -The contents herein are solely the opinions of Work in Progress owner, and should not be considered as a form of therapy nor advice. There is no guarantee of validity or accuracy. If expert assistance or counseling is needed, the services of a competent professional should be sought.
2604 Elmwood Avenue #230
Rochester, NY 14618
We're continuing with our February focus on the heart. So, why am I talking about pain?
Well, it's personal. I have a common heart condition called mitral valve prolapse, which means I sometimes experience cardiac symptoms (sharp squeezing pain in my heart and left arm) even though there is no danger of having a heart attack.
In other words, my heart hurts, and I've learned to deal with the pain by using mindfulness.
Here's a look at why mindfulness helps and how you can use it the next time something hurts.
Mindfulness and Pain: Just Say Ouch
What's the best way to manage pain?
Just say ouch.
That's a simplified description of the role of mindfulness in reducing the experience of pain. The secret isn't in focusing on the painful sensation itself. No, the power is in recognizing our tendency to say way more than ouch.
Here's the basic math: Suffering = Pain + Resistance. Can mindfulness reduce the sensation of pain? Not exactly, but it can markedly reduce the total suffering we experience by illuminating--and even eliminating--our resistance.
Pain is a warning. It informs and motivates us. If you're resting your hand on a hot stovetop, it's important to feel that pain in order to remove your hand quickly and avoid burns. We need the sensation of pain to protect our bodies from further injury.
Pain also teaches us new ways to move. If you are consistently hurting your back on the weekend, your pain is letting you know that 1) you need to rest and 2) you need to learn a healthier way to work or play.
Chronic pain is more difficult. It is hard to find any redeeming value in long-term pain. We've learned our lessons already, but it persists, and there's not much that can be done about it.
Mindfulness is extremely valuable in alleviating the experience of all kinds of pain but it is especially effective for those likely to hurt on a daily basis.
We feel pain. We say ouch--mentally or verbally. Then what happens? We get wrapped up in ways to resist the pain. We start a mental dialogue about how we're going to deal with it (medication, ice, heat, rest, acupuncture, massage, magnetic therapy, etc.). Then, we get caught in thoughts and emotions:
Disappointment ("Now I can't go hiking.")
Worry ("I hope it's nothing serious.")
Fear ("What if it gets worse?")
Anger ("Why is it hurting now? I already had surgery!")
Depression ("What if I have to stop playing tennis?")
Excitement ("I'm going into labor!")
Our resistance stirs up a lot more tension, resulting in a much more pronounced experience of the pain. Worrying about pain really does make it worse.
This is where mindfulness comes in. By paying attention to the thoughts and emotions that accompany pain, you can learn to separate these from the sensation. Once you've done that, you can actually eliminate the tension and see the pain for what it is--and no more.
By seeing the internal dialogue that comes with pain, you can learn to handle it skillfully and reduce your suffering.
The next time you feel pain, take a moment to focus on it. Watch your thoughts and emotions as they come up. Breathe. And go back to ouch.
Simple pain never felt so good.
Maya Talisman Frost is a mind masseuse offering specialized mindfulness training to individuals and groups in Portland, Oregon. Her work has inspired thinkers in over 100 countries. To subscribe to her free ezine, the Friday Mind Massage, please visit http://www.massageyourmind.com.
©Copyright 2004, Maya Talisman Frost
52 Best Stories – This Old Barn
A stranger came by the other day with an offer that set me to thinking. He wanted to buy the old barn that sits out by the highway. I told him right off he was crazy. He was a city type, you could tell by his clothes, his car, his hands, and the way he talked. He said he was driving by and saw that beautiful barn sitting out in the tall grass and wanted to know if it was for sale.
I told him he had a funny idea of beauty. Sure, it was a handsome building in its day. But then, there's been a lot of winters pass with their snow and ice and howling wind. The summer sun's beat down on that old barn till all the paint's gone, and the wood has turned silver gray. Now the old building leans a good deal, looking kind of tired. Yet, that fellow called it beautiful.
That set me to thinking. I walked out to the field and just stood there, gazing at that old barn. The stranger said he planned to use the lumber to line the walls of his den in a new country home he's building down the road. He said you couldn't get paint that beautiful. Only years of standing in the weather, bearing the storms and scorching sun, only that can produce beautiful barn wood.
It came to me then. We're a lot like that, you and I. Only it's on the inside that the beauty grows with us. Sure we turn silver gray too... and lean a bit more than we did when we were young and full of sap. But the Good Lord knows what He's doing. And as the years pass He's busy using the hard wealth of our lives, the dry spells and the stormy seasons, to do a job of beautifying our souls that nothing else can produce. And to think how often folks holler because they want life easy!
They took the old barn down yesterday and hauled it away to beautify a rich man's house. And I reckon someday you and I'll be hauled off to Heaven to take on whatever chores the Good Lord has for us. And I suspect we'll be more beautiful then for the seasons we've been through here... and just maybe even add a bit of beauty to our Father's house.
~ Author Unknown ~
One Man’s Australia
Watershed of the early 1980s
I have read a Reuters report this week that states that the death rate in South Africa rose 57% between 1997 and 2002. While the reported causes of death are varied Australian public education is that essentially no-one dies of AIDS itself. The proximate cause of death is something else which has been facilitated by the disease.
Such a stunning increase is utterly at odds with Antipodean data.
And I have to contrast the responses of Governments.
When AIDS was first diagnosed in Australia in 1982 the Government's medical advice was that:
1) there was no cure and no cure was in sight for the foreseeable future
2) the mechanisms of spread were limited so prevention would be relatively easy.
3) there was a window of opportunity for gaining control of AIDS that would be closed by around 1986. Speed was of the essence. After that it would be an ongoing struggle to catch up.
It was in the 1983-1985 period that the Australian and New Zealand Governments ran a massive campaign on prevention. It included detailed sex education in the schools and in the mass media (we were scared shitless by some of the TV material), condoms freely available to high school students, free needle exchanges for intravenous drug users etc etc.
As it happened that was just the period of our son's first three years at high school so we were in decisions up to our necks as members of the parents' body. The consensus among the parents for some radical re-thinking re sex education, condoms etc was that if it saved just one life it would be worth it.
The approach worked as predicted by the epidemiologists. The per-capita AIDS infection rate in Australia and New Zealand is 1/10 the per capita infection rate in the United States.
And all AIDS infected people have free treatment available with ARV's, home nursing care, hospitalisation and hospice care as their condition warrants.
But the catch is that it costs the taxpayer around $200,000 per year per patient.
It is staggering to realise that if Australia had South Africa's reported infection rates and attempted to supply treatment on the Australian model the cost of treating patients would buckle the economy, which is the 12th largest in the world.
The South African Government's response appears to have been very different. Looking at data from
appears to give a timeline based on ante natal testing of women
1982 as in Australia - the first cases of HIV were diagnosed in South Africa,
1990 the first antenatal surveys to test for HIV were carried out. 0.8% of women were found to be HIV positive.
1991 the prevalence rate was 1.4% based on antenatal testing.
1992 the prevalence rate was 2.4% based on antenatal testing.
1993 the prevalence rate was 4.3% based on antenatal testing.
1994 the prevalence rate was 7.6 % based on antenatal testing.
1995 the prevalence rate was 10.4% based on antenatal testing. Much of the collection of AIDS data stopped in South Africa.
1996 the prevalence rate was 14.2% based on antenatal testing.
1997 the prevalence rate was 17.0% based on antenatal testing.
1998 the prevalence rate was 22.8% based on antenatal testing.
2001 the prevalence rate was 24.8% based on antenatal testing.
2002 the prevalence rate was 26.5% based on antenatal testing.
Looking at it as an exercise in the management of a stochastic process the epidemic in South Africa now appears to be far beyond the capacity of the economy to supply first world model treatment.
That appears to leave only one practical course of action with two arms:
2) Palliative care only for patients (keep them calm and out of pain) so that they can die with dignity.
Looking at it from the outside that appears to be the course that is being followed - either deliberately or by default.
Ramblings Of A Francophobe
Reflections on my last trip to South Africa.
Just minutes after stepping off a flight from Johannesburg to Zurich, I was in trouble with the Swiss authorities at the airport. A woman had boarded the shuttle train to the main terminal, momentarily leaving her suitcase on the platform as the doors began to close. I held the door open to recover her suitcase and within seconds two burly whistle blowing guards were shouting and waving their fingers at me for delaying their precious train by three milliseconds. The look on their faces indicated that they thought I was a nutter. It could only happen in Switzerland, and was a total contrast to the relaxed and casual attitude back home in SA where I’d just enjoyed three weeks. I sometimes wonder whether I prefer the strict and consistent adherence to the spirit and letter of even the pettiest regulations in Switzerland to the rather opposite attitude of South Africa. I don’t have an answer to that – I love both.
I spent a few days working in Johannesburg, with a parastatal organisation which despite the times we live in, is still, at management level, 80% white and of those whites, 90% are Afrikaans speaking. Things are slowly changing, and it is encouraging to see many upwardly mobile young and educated black folk taking their rightful places in business and society, but sad to see many black faces at senior management, in other words figurehead, level, when they are only there as political appointees, the result of window dressing. The same old racism as before, with the colours reversed.
Traffic in Johannesburg gets worse each time I visit, and journeys which a few years ago would have taken 20 minutes can now take 90 – and peak time is more or less the entire working day. Traffic and the atrocious driving, especially of the minibus taxis, are gradually replacing crime as a main topic for complaint. Cape Town also suffers from horrendous traffic in some areas, with a morning commute between Table View and town taking well over an hour in the peak times, forcing people to leave home earlier and earlier.
Leaving the traffic behind me, I spent a day being a tourist (or a Kadar, as in ‘kyk dar), and drove to Cape Point via Simonstown, where I spent a pleasant hour at the fascinating Tibetan Tea House after a stroll down the quaint High Street, before continuing to Cape Point. Not having been down to the Point for some 10 years, it reminded me how stunningly beautiful the coastline and scenery are and how excellent the infrastructure is. On this extremely windy weekday afternoon, I also had the pleasure of being, for a few minutes, the most southerly person on the Cape Peninsula, as the place was almost deserted. It was tempting to imagine that I was the most southerly person on the continent for those moments, but in reality Cape Agulhas has the honour of being the most southerly point of Africa (and yes I’ve got the T-shirt!)
I drove back via Chapmans Peak, re-opened last year after being closed for a while due to rock falls. It now has a very reasonable R20 toll for cars. Unfortunately cyclists are allowed to use it free, and selfish creatures that many of them are, they hog the middle of the road on the uphill stretches. On the positive side, this gives more time to admire the scenery, although I’d prefer not to have a cyclist’s sweaty buttocks in the way of the view.
Unsurprisingly, Cape Town has become on one of the world’s major tourist destinations, and the prices in many places reflect this, as well as, it must be admitted, some greed. I went for dinner one evening in the Waterfront with some friends who complained about the prices, until I pointed out to them that they, as local residents, were overlooking being in one of the world’s prime tourist areas, and taking for granted the justifiable popularity of the place. They want to eat in the best places, but they resent the high prices of which, in many ways, they are the beneficiaries as tourism brings benefits to the country. A very similar situation exists in the South of France, where the local grasping peasants became the victims of their own rapacious greed as they screwed the wealthier arrivals for the last cent, and became caught up in the vicious spiral, complaining that the ‘foreigners’ have made the place unaffordable. My heart bleeds for the rapacious swine – not!
In South Africa, I used Kulula.com for the first time for my domestic flights. They were several hundred rand cheaper than the competition, and whilst I found the silly in flight announcements which were meant to be funny but weren’t, because the cabin crew just couldn’t crack it, a little tiresome, especially when I heard the same ‘jokey’ phrases trotted out on the return flight, the flights weren’t bad. They use MD-80 aircraft, a little long in the tooth now but still safe, reliable and very quiet aircraft. My international flights were on SAA, southbound in their very good business class, not on the new flat beds, which have been voted the best in the world, but the old style ‘almost-flat’ seats, and I was able to get a reasonable night’s rest. On arrival, I went straight to my hotel and had a full on South African breakfast in the sun by the swimming pool, enjoying the clear highveld air and the blue skies that I miss so much. Somehow, a blue sky in the South of France is not as blue as in South Africa. Perhaps it’s my imagination, or perhaps it’s because South Africa is so much closer to heaven, but the bluest blue I have even seen is the blue of a Karoo sky.
It was wonderful to work with South Africans again and to enjoy the politically and sexually incorrect banter which goes on and about which no-one bats an eyelid, whereas in Europe it’s all hushed up, creating racism and resentment. I was once told in a cafeteria in UK that ‘you can’t ask for black coffee, it’s coffee without milk’. Along the same lines, when I made a written complaint about an extremely rude woman in a Kentucky Fried Chicken shop also in UK, who’d verbally abused a small boy who was a few pence short of the price of his order, I was told that they were not prepared to consider my complaint because they felt it was ‘racially motivated’. This because, as the woman had refused to give me her name, I’d referred to her as ‘the black lady’, which, given that she was the only black out of four other people, seemed reasonable to me. I could of course have referred to a ‘blonde lady’ and that would have been fine, and probably so would have been describing her as ‘white’ if she’d been the only white amongst several blacks. We live in a crazy world.
I missed the snow and freezing weather which hit much of Europe. I was sitting by the pool, in 35 degree heat, with a refreshing beer, when my partner phoned to say that our cars had been snowed in... needless to say I was not popular when I told her what I was doing!
Become a Heat Seeking Missile
A successful immigrant needs to be like a heat seeking missile. The AIM-9 Sidewinder is a supersonic, heat-seeking, air-to-air missile carried by fighter aircraft. It has a high-explosive warhead and an active infrared guidance system. The Sidewinder was developed by the US Navy for fleet air defence and was adapted by the U.S. Air Force for fighter aircraft use. The missile's main components are an infrared homing guidance section, an active optical target detector, a high-explosive warhead, and a rocket motor.
The infrared guidance head enables the missile to home on target aircraft engine exhaust. An infrared unit costs less than other types of guidance systems, and can be used in day/night and electronic countermeasures conditions. The infrared seeker also permits the pilot to launch the missile, then leave the area or take evasive action while the missile guides itself to the target.
Napoleon Bonaparte said, “I see only my objective – the obstacles must give way”. In Chin Nung Chu’s amazing book about the Asian business mindset, “Thick Face, Black Heart”, she explains how and why focused business people achieve their goals, and how we can emulate that single-mindedness and determination. I’d like to suggest they’re like heat-seeking missiles.
Heat seeking missiles don’t have egos; they’re impartial, unattached and objective. They are goal-directed. They know exactly what they want and where they’re going. They don’t slow down or “stop to smell the roses”. They’re on a mission. They are not concerned about the political, economic or social climate, trends or fads or what’s popular or acceptable. Heat seeking missiles have one thing and one thing only, in mind – the accomplishment of their goals. They are not distracted or sidetracked. They don’t harbor fear or doubt. There is no hesitation, procrastination or rumination – there is only intense, undiluted, laser-beam focus on the objective. No second-guessing – no faltering.
What would happen if we had the same “attitude” as a heat seeking missile? Unshakable faith, unrelenting grit, unrestrained purpose, unrivalled commitment. How soon would we realize our goals with that kind of motivation? How many people would get in our way? And, more importantly, how many strong people would line up to follow and support someone with that kind of intent and vision? Would leaders and winners not want to align themselves with that kind of person, knowing that nothing would stop them from arriving at their destination?
Self confidence, certainty of purpose and goal-oriented action increase our chances of success exponentially. Paul J. Meyer said, “Determine what specific goal you want to achieve. Then dedicate yourself to its attainment with unswerving singleness of purpose, the trenchant zeal of a crusader.” Think about that: what would hinder you if you chose that mindset? Perhaps it’s time to stop playing games and decide what we want, and then to fearlessly make it happen. William Shakespeare said, “Do not, for one repulse, forego the purpose that you resolved to effect.” Manage your mind and become a heat seeking missile. Robin J. Elliott www.dollarmakers.com
Robin J. Elliott www.DollarMakers.com
The smell of things
Somewhere in his “Cahiers” Albert Camus made a comment about life being an olfactory experience. Of all our senses, our sense of smell is what succeeds best in evoking memories. Just a whiff of a smell can take us back years in an instant, as I was reminded the other day while hanging out the washing and the fragrance of the freshly washed clothes instantly took me back to another place where I lived in a cottage right next to the sea.
My earliest memory is of standing in a cemetery on a wet and cold day, the air heavy with the musty smell of wet soil and cypress trees. It was my younger brother’s funeral and I was about three years old. Little Daneel had contracted severe gastro-enteritis and died at the age of eighteen months. I have never been back to that graveyard outside Ladysmith in the Cape, but every time I smell wet cypress trees the impressions of that day come rushing in again. To this day I have very ambivalent feelings about cypresses. To experience death at such an early age had obviously left a mark in my psyche that is so deep and strong that this memory sticks with me, and that from an age when we do not normally carry any memories at all.
Another smell that harks back to my early childhood is the smell of the Karoo veld, of the earth baking on a hot summer’s day when the sun flares down out of a cloudless sky. It is a smell that is compounded of many elements: the fragrance of Karoo scrub, the aroma of thorn trees and their gum, the almost metallic tang of what we knew as “ysterklip”, those dark boulders that dot the Karoo landscape and on which one actually CAN fry eggs (I know, because we did it one day!) and the smell of hot earth. It is a mélange of fragrances I have not come across anywhere else on my travels. In southern Namaqualand, in the vicinity of Vredendal, Klawer, Lutzville and Vanrhynsdorp, the same kind of day smells completely different. Then one’s nose is filled with the smells of the red sandy soil, of bitterboela (a kind of wild melon) and of bushes that have a scent so subtle one can hardly pin it down.
But the strongest veld fragrance, and of which I have in various places at various times had poignant hints, is that which I experienced in the interior of the Eastern Cape, around Alicedale. Here the air on a summer’s day is heady with the aroma of botterboom, aloe, prickly pear and those little bushes that exude a spicy fragrance which is indescribable, elusive, and yet so pervading. Sometimes I walked past gardens in other parts of South Africa, in the Azores and even here in Australia and caught just a faint whiff of a scent very similar; just near enough to the real thing to make my heart yearn for that which I have lost forever. The tragedy is that I never bothered to identify those bushes, never even noticed what they look like!
The day I went to hanging Rock, north of Melbourne, I stopped in the village of Woodend to have a cup of coffee. The moment I stepped out off the car, I realised that this was a place where I could live quite happily – well, at least where my nose would be quite content! The air was so clean and fresh it had that distinct smell I first came across on São Miguel when I stepped out onto the veranda of the cottage we rented on the shore of Lagoa Azul in Sete Cidades. It is a smell that hints at damp humus; clear, cold water; crisp leaves still wet with dew, and shadowy forests where the trees wear mossy coats on their trunks. It is the fragrance of a place that knows no pollution, where even the smell of wood smoke merely adds to the perfume of place. In Japan such places are rare, but there were days when, deep in some bamboo grove, a momentary gap in the pervasive urban reek would let through the same earthy smell: the aroma of paradise on earth. It is an aroma that has many subtle variants; sometimes there’s the added fragrance of pine needles, of cryptomeria, of heather or tree ferns, but the base aroma is the same. It is the scent of cool, green and serene pieces of heaven.
Mountains, of course, have a very different range of smells, harder to pin down and elusive even on the nose. Walking through the drizzle on the Bainskloof mountains brought the aroma of wet limestone, heather and grass, whereas the slopes of the Langeberg above Swellendam have a perfume more dominated by the countless varieties of erica. The night I spent on top of the Koue Bokkeveld mountain was one pervaded by the scents of the grass and reed fringed pool in the hollow below the cave shelter in which we slept, by the smell of the ages accumulated in the dusty soil inside the cave shelter, wood smoke from our fire and the faint, yet noticeable smell of sandstone wet with dew that would be a thin layer of ice at dawn. On top of Pico do Barrosa in the Serra da Agua de Pao, the mountain on top of which lies the mystical Lagoa do Fogo, in the centre of São Miguel, the air even on a summer’s day is crisp and the smell of the short turf is tanged with a hint of sea and rain – very much the fragrance of an island mountain. Aasvoëlkop, the high hill overlooking Graaff-Reinet in the Cape Midlands, on the other hand, smelled dry and hot; the smell of summer skies and sun-baked rock and scrub ruled here all year round. And when rain came, the nose was overwhelmed by the aroma of wet earth and bushes and rocks steaming under the first drops.
Anyone who has ever smelled the sea on a wet and wild winter’s morning will never forget the aroma, so different from those summer nights redolent of the tangy smell of seaweed and sand and the milkwood trees, of what used to be called hotnotsvye, so quaintly called “fico dei ottentotti” in Italian, and that indefinable aroma of salt-sprayed rock. What I noticed both in the Azores and Japan, places where there is no kelp or very little seaweed, is that the sea does not smell like sea at all, inasmuch as that distinct ozone tang is missing. The beach at Omaezaki, though, came close, because there the surf was a bit wilder on the days we were there.
I haven’t even touched on man-made smells! Hot croissants in the morning, strong black coffee brewing in the pot, rooibos tea, the smell of a canvas tent when the sun bakes down on it, that new car smell that makes one want to say “Ahhh!”, these are all smells that stick in our memories, that prod old memories every time we smell them. To this day the fragrance of Chivas Regal whisky transports me to long wintry evenings in front of the open fire in the bar of the Lanzerac Hotel in Stellenbosch; Dubonnet brings back potent memories of my first camping holiday alone with my first love, and so the list goes on and on.
What I have learnt over the years is that I need to savour every new smell I come across, because in years to come I will no doubt be pulled back to this moment, just like the smell of navy blue marine paint and yacht varnish instantly takes me back to when I was four years old and we lived on the grounds of the Zeekoevlei Yacht Club outside Cape Town. We make memories as we go along life’s olfactory paths… let us enjoy the moment as much as we will enjoy the bittersweet memory later on in life.
raytheron at iprimus.com.au
African Despatch - The History of the Earth is Written in a Book And that Book is Rock
Dispatch no. 78 – Part One
Editor’s note: This article is too long for complete publication in one issue of SAWmail. Part two will be published next week.
Friend around the world,
When I was a kid, there was a commonly-believed theory which we little boys often discussed and debated. It is a well-known fact that for whatever reason, people often tend to dream that they are falling from some great height. That of course, is the fabric from which many nightmares are woven. In terms of our theory, it was believed that if you did not wake up or snap out of the dream before you hit the bottom, you would be killed. Of course, nobody in my circle of friends knew anybody who had ever dreamed so that they actually hit the bottom — and lived to tell the tale. So to this day I think our hypothesis remains largely confined to the realm of unproven speculation. That seems a pity, but maybe there are some things which we are just not supposed to know.
As for myself, I was no exception to this dreadful fantasy. As a child, I had this large portrait in a heavy golden frame above my bed. It bore the image of a little girl in a red dress with blonde hair, which was crossing an enormously deep, gaping crevasse by way of a ridiculously worn and weathered footbridge. Some of the planks were missing, and one could almost sense the wind in that high place as it threatened to blow her off to her imminent doom. At her side, however, was a large white guardian angel with folded wings like a dove, dressed in a flowing white gown. Below, you could see in the faraway distance, a deep landscape with a green river at the bottom, flowing dreamily into the hazy nothingness.
I am sure that it was this picture which had inspired the recurrent falling dream in me. Fortunately or unfortunately — whatever the case might be — we humans tend to lose the mind of a child with the passing of years, until our dreams and our thinking is confined by our perceptions of unbendable reality. In my own case, this meant coming to a point where I eventually said to myself — while falling — "you're dreaming, you idiot. Wake up!" Yet I must add that also to this day there still remains that small little voice which insists on adding: "Anyway, it is better to snap out of it before you hit the bottom. After all, you never know…" Indeed, I would hate to be the one that gets to prove our boyhood hypothesis to be a fact.
As a child I used to be what I would today call, "a sophisticated rebel." That meant that I would always rebel at authority and defy the insistence of my peers that they knew better than I did—but only inasmuch as I would have a fair assurance that I wouldn't get caught. In other words, I would be a rebel, but being found out wasn't an option. My rebellious nature — which I had to work very hard at changing later on —somehow found its way into my dreams also. One night, I vividly remember, I was falling again. My favourite falling spot, besides the crevasse in the picture, was down a deep hole in the ground, at the bottom of which a mysterious emerald green pool lay. About halfway down, I remember I snapped out of it gave myself the, "this is ridiculous — grow up!" signal.
At that point, I rebelliously opened my arms in order to dare my dream: "Wake up if you want, or otherwise, let's hit the water and see if it's true!" To my delighted amazement I never hit the bottom. I just started to glide. My first days, weeks, or months were clumsy, but as the years rolled by, I found that I was increasingly able to control my flight to the point where — with lots of concentration — I am today able to control my pitch, and more or less rise and fall at will. I can fly a long time, meandering across the countryside with the rise and fall of the topography. It seems to be a matter of concentration and very focussed willpower, combined with a controlled motioning of the arms and legs which results in this flight. Of all my bizarre childhood dreams, this is one which seems to have endured, so that I seem to have logged a lot of flight hours over the years.
I once discussed this phenomenon with a friend who had once upon a time, in Noah's age it seems, studied psychology. He inclined his head like a bird that has to decide whether it is worth pecking at a seed on the ground or not, and then told me that this is not a good dream to have. He wouldn't tell me what it meant, but rather insisted that if I wanted to know, I should study psychology.
I, of course, do not have the time or the patience to study psychology, so I never did find out what flying dreams mean. All I know is that about a third of people are said to have flying dreams, that people with creative minds are said to have them more often, and that flying dreams have been common since the times of the ancient Egyptians and before — certainly long before aeroplanes and Superman comic books. In central Africa, I'm told, flying dreams mean good health and a long life. Personally, I think that perhaps the Japanese proverb may be more correct: "Dreams and falcons are what you make of them."
Whatever the case, it sometimes seem to me that for some country folk living in big cities, life can be like falling into a deep hole in which you never hit the bottom. For me, I have continued to fly, but it seems that city air has a vacuum or an air pocket which always sucks you down, no matter how hard you concentrate on escaping the downdraught.
There is certainly something to be said for the elegance and ease which can be found in cities. You get to dress in a civilized manner every day, you have the opportunity of personally seeing great performers and orchestras in concert — before buying the CD on your way home. You have the fantastic privilege of being close to libraries and universities, gifted people, and other fountains of knowledge. And of course, best of all, if you are working on a project and your only 5 millimetre drill bit breaks — you can drive five blocks and buy a new one, instead of sharpening a nail and trying to us that as a drill because you don't believe in driving 70 kilometres to the nearest hardware store. There are other benefits also. For example, telephone and internet works most of the time — even after lightning storms. The electricity doesn't go off when it is rainy and windy and the wet weaver birds' nests on the power cables cause them to short. You can enjoy warm summer evenings with all the doors open without being mobbed by half the moth population on this planet. And something which never ceases to amaze me — it seems that city dogs don't have fleas, so you can let them onto your bed if you want to. I don't have a dog and if I did, I wouldn't want it near my bed. But I'm saying — if you wanted to, you could. Oh, and one more thing — you don't have to worry about your foxterrier catching `n meerkat, getting rabies, and infecting you. The only things in Johannesburg that act as if they have rabies, are the people.
No questions sent in this week.
Nobody needing help this week.
If you are looking for a lost friend... if you would like old friends to contact you... If you want to find old school friends... if you just want people who used to know you to find you again for a chat...
Send in your info, the info of anyone you are looking for and let’s see if we can find them for you!
I hope to contact Ian Iveson from Vekor Planning Dept. Vanderbijlpark 1975, now possibly living at Durban. He knew me as Kathy Anderson.
USA – New York
Greetings to all in YeboLand!!
We trust all are doing well and are in good spirits (not the drinking kind) for the lekka weather. The SA Culture site is currently under construction, so if you have any suggestions, please send them ASAP.
We like to welcome new addition to the fam. Mary Adams who is our Public Relations Officer, she can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to volunteer and assist with the mountainous task we have at SA Culture Org, please e-mail us.
We need assistance with TGV The Global Village Newspaper and much more. Have skill, neead experience or want to be a social-, political- or whatever columnist with TGV? The let us know..no experience needed..just trustworthy, hardworking individuals from all cultures and countries who wish to sacrifice some time. We were thinking of making TGV in the future not just about SA, but something various comminties can relate and associate with, like sections in the paper on the American, Brazilian and Spanish communities..what do you think?
Deon & Jessica de Jongh
South African Culture in New York Social Group
Promoting the Cultural Diversity of SA
Contact: 347-531-9557 / 9610 - Office: 718 329 0010
Saturday 26th. February, 2005
– Mikanic @ Cornelia Street Cafe at 8:30 to 11:30 - Performing with the great SA pianist Katherine Tagg
Thursday 3rd. March, 2005 – the Knitting Factory 7:30
"As a two piece they are the African Simon & Garfunkel" - Cape Times 04/10/03
"...a soulful simplicity that is addictive" - Mail & Guardian 02/28/03
"Africa with a new dress" - One World online CD store
Two South Africans - Michael Rennie (violin & vocals) and Nick Turner (ac.guitar & vocals) - form the core of this band. Both musicians have risen to the top of the South African scene playing for a variety of different bands and artists over the last seven years. Forming part of Sons of Trout, one of the country's top selling bands and best live acts, they have headlined every major music festival South Africa has to offer and toured extensively releasing four albums. In 2002 the two formed Mikanic and in 2003 released "Swimmin with the Women" to great critical acclaim and popular success.
Now based in New York City, Mike and Nick have found a new voice and completely original sound with Mikanic: Traditional African sounds and melodies blended with groove, jazz and R&B. Lyrically powerful, relevant and humorous, this is hip world music at its best.
In the past month, they have been joined here at i-Shebeen Madiba by Tony Cedras (keyboardist for Paul Simon, Miriam Makeba, Hugh Masekela, and South African Allstars) and by the legendary Vusi Mahlasela.
Visit: www.mikanic.com or www.i-shebeen.com
Soweto Gospel Choir 2005 USA Tour Announcement
Soweto Gospel Choir draws from the churches and communities in and around South Africa’s most famous township. It mixes earthy rhythms with rich harmonies to uplift the soul and express the energy of South Africa. African gospel originated as a blend of traditional music rooted in song and percussion combined with the influence of 19th century missionary music. From this a new and exciting style of music evolved – African Gospel, celebrating all facets of daily life.
This from Peter Clinckx email@example.com
I wanted to mention the Gumboot Dancers are touring Begium. You may want to mention this in the news letter. They are fantastic. They were here about 8 years ago performing at little events when no one really new them and they performed in our back yard for my mother !!
Now they are touring again and giving shows in major concert halls.
Please look on
Future Tour Dates
December 1st 2004 - March 13th 2005
120 Rochechouart Boulevard
March 15th 2005 - March 16th 2005
Rue de l'Enseignement
91 1000 BRUSSELS
March 17th 2005 - March 18th 2005
March 19th 2005 - March 20th 2005
Graaf Van Vlaanderenplein 5
April 22nd 2005 - May 17th 2005
Czaar Peterstraat 213
1018 Pl AMSTERDAM
Carmen in Khayelitsha won the Berlin International Film Festival's top award
BY MATT SURMAN Associated Press Writer
The Associated Press
South African actress Pauline Malefane, left, and director Mark Dronford-May pose with the Golden Bear award during the awarding ceremony at the 55th Berlinale International Film Festival in Berlin on Saturday, Feb. 19, 2005. The movie 'U-Carmen e-Khayelitsha' won the Golden Bear award as best festival movie. 21 movies took part in competition for the Golden and Silver Bears awards. (AP Photo/ Jan Bauer)
BERLIN Feb 19, 2005 — The South African film "Carmen in Khayelitsha," which sets Georges Bizet's opera against the hardship of a modern-day township, won the Berlin International Film Festival's top award Saturday.
The Xhosa-language film directed by Mark Dornford-May and starring Pauline Malefane received the Golden Bear for the best film in competition for its classic story of passionate love set amid the struggles of life in a South African township.
This year's festival highlighted films from and about Africa. Besides "Carmen in Khayelitsha," other African-themed films included two about the 1994 Rwanda genocide, "Sometimes in April" and "Hotel Rwanda," both of which showed out of competition.
Copyright 2005 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
South African club of Luxembourg invites you to attend their annual carnival party
Check in, Findel
Tel: 42 35 85
On Saturday 26th February 2005, 20h30
Featuring the South African group "Fade to Gray"
Let us keep with the spirit and wear some form of fancy dress.
There will be prizes for the best, worst and funniest outfit.
Euro 10.00 per person
Profits will be donated to UNICEF for the Tsunami relief efforts.
For bookings call Pat on tel: 88 90 54 or Elaine on tel: 021 397 586
Joe the Conductor
This from Daniel Jan le Roux" firstname.lastname@example.org
There once was a guy named Joe who worked for the railroad as a conductor. One day Joe was walking through the train, collecting tickets from the passengers. He came to a beautiful woman and asked her for her ticket.
"Oh, I'm sorry; I dropped it out the window by accident," she replied.
"Sorry, ma'am; can't have any passengers without tickets." He grabbed her by the scruff of the neck and threw her out of the train. She landed on the tracks and was run over. Joe was convicted of murder before a jury of his peers and sentenced to death in the electric chair.
The day of his execution arrived, and he was asked what he would like for his last meal. He asked for a banana. They gave it to him, he ate it, received his last rites, and was escorted to the chair. The executioner strapped him in, threw the switch and NOTHING HAPPENED. He did it again and NOTHING HAPPENED. By law, Joe was legally dead, so they had to release him.
Oddly enough, he got a job on another railroad -- as a conductor! One day, he was gathering tickets, and came to a booth with a little boy.
"Young man, do you have your ticket?" Joe asked.
"I'm thorry, I ate it by mithtake," said the little boy.
So Joe threw him off the train and killed him. Again he was arrested, again he was sentenced to the electric chair and again he was asked to order his last meal. He asked for a banana again.
He was escorted to the death chamber. This time, though, they were smart. They washed his hands to get rid of any banana slime; they washed up the chair. They placed him the chair, hooked him up, pulled the switch and NOTHING HAPPENED. The executioner pulled the switch twice more, and NOTHING HAPPENED.
Amazingly, they had to let him go again. Even more amazingly, he got a job on yet another railroad. This time it was a rabbi. Same old stuff. Rabbi had no ticket, Joe threw him off the train, rabbi died, Joe was arrested, convicted and sentenced to the electric chair.
For his last meal he once again asked for a banana. He ate it, received last rites, and was escorted to the chamber.
This time they were going to get it right! They scrubbed Joe's body; they scrubbed the chair with steel wool. They tested the chair on a few other prisoners. Everything worked perfectly.
They strapped Joe in, threw the switch and NOTHING HAPPENED. They threw the switch a second time and NOTHING HAPPENED. To their consternation they realized they were going to have to let him go a third time.
But before Joe left, the executioner stomped in, ripped off his hood and yelled, "What is it with the banana?!??"
Joe replied, "I just like bananas."
The executioner screamed, "THEN HOW COME YOU WON'T DIE?!!!!!"
"I dunno," Joe shrugged. "I guess I'm just not a very good conductor.
With the rain over the weekend and today in Johannesburg, here is a tasty recipe for a nice warming and easy to make chowder!
From "Simply Vegan: Quick Vegetarian Meals" by Debra Wasserman, Reed Mangels
Corm chowder made with creamed corn (Serves 5)
1 Tablespoon oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cups water
2 stalks celery and 2 carrots, chopped
two 17-ounce cans creamed corn
1 cup soy milk (You could use nut milk instead)
1 potato, chopped
1-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste
Sauté onion in oil over medium-high heat until soft. Add water and chopped celery and carrots. Cook 10 minutes. Add creamed corn soy milk, chopped potato, and spices. Continue cooking for another 10 minutes. Serve hot.
Watson applauds ref decision [iafrica.com]
Retired top South African referee Andre Watson has lauded the Sanzar Executive Committee on its decision to scrap the requirement to appoint franchise-neutral referees for local derbies in the Vodacom Rugby Super 12 contest.
Bojé could skipper SA team [Super Cricket]
Eagles captain Nicky Bojé could captain the national side in the one-day international series against Zimbabwe.
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