Charlie's Bird

living the dream with Charlie and Thandi and chirping all the way back to the nest.

Archive for August, 2009

Weekend Round up

Well, it’s sunday night, and I have that typical sunday feeling, slightly nauseous because I have eaten far too much, slightly down because the weekend is over and the growing sensation of impending doom with regards another week ahead, knowing I am on call next weekend…

So lets run through the weekend, friday night, dinner at C&A’s, creamy pasta carbonara, washed down with Diemersfontein Pinotage, delish! The company was great too, littleC was super cutester, and at the late, late hour of 20h30, with us all starting to doze over our wine, Charlie and I headed home, and for the first time since we got back from Moz, I slept! Hallelujah!

Saturday we started slowly, did some shopping, and then headed to an 80th birthday luncheon. Dr U,a retired OBGYN, is the greatest octogenarian I know. There he and his 81 year old wife were waiting on their friends hand and foot (and they’re mostly younger than them!) No frailties, no fragile memories, the U’s are a remarkable couple, If Charlie and I are doing that well, wow! (Dr U even comes and assists me at all hours of the night and morning, without a moan or a groan)

Then we headed out to my parents beach house, half an hour from town, to catch up with my brother from the Western Cape. He and his wife had come down for a church conference, and the bonus was that we got to see them, They were looking well, and happy, which was great. We had a little braai with them, some lamb chops, always brilliant on the braai, and I made some salads, a fatoush (a lebanese salad of peppers, tomatoes, onion, radish and a cinnamony yoghurt dressing, very unusual and tasty) and a creamy spinach and mushroom salad – yum! A splash of Simonsberg Redhill Pinotage rounded it all off – a really special wine if you can get your hands on it.

Today we hosted the family at our home. Charlie helped out with Nelson’s Fillet (an awesome marinade- monkey gland sort of) on the Hibachi (a hippie weber) Pud was a chocolate cake served with ice cream and strawbs, I am so glad summer fruit is starting to appear! Wine at lunch was the Dormershire Cab Sav, matched the meat well.

After a day like today, when we all got on well, with no underlying tensions, and no preconceived stress, I wish my brothers lived close by. It really was a wonderful day. Sadly though, I am usually so wound up with stress and offense (mostly imagined in my brain) when I see them that I seldom enjoy their visits, but both my brotherly encounters of late have been fantastic, making me really chuffed to be their sister. The boys are both much older than me (11 and 13 when I was born) and its only really as adults that we have gotten to know each other, and that hasn’t been easy. Anyway, the last 2 weeks have healed a lot of rifts, and I am quite excited about seeing them again!Brothers and sister

Rest Quietly G

G, my cousin, will be buried today, after he commited suicide last week. He’s the same age as me, a policeman, and has 2 children (aged 8 and 4), an ex-wife and a broken into a million pieces mom. Tragic.

G, I get it, I know why it seems easier to just not be alive anymore, but I’m so so sad for your littlies, and the Gmom. I trust that you will find the peace and calm that evaded you here, say howzit to Gran and aunty T, we miss you all.cousins

Bookclub Reflections

So last night was Bookclub, L, thanks for the supper, it was great, we got Spag Bol and Spag Carbonara, delish, with garlic bread and salad with super creamy avo. And as usual, after a lot of wine, (Whalehaven Merlot,  since you ask), I got thinking…

I am the only member without children. Between the other 7, they have 15 children, with 1 baby on its way. we have had couples who battled a bit to get pregnant, some who battled a whole lot, and others for whom it happened in the usual fashion. And I wonder where Charlie and I will fit in. He and I have discussed it, and I wish I could have his casual atitude to the whole thing, and I guess its the atitude of most couples who try, who believe they have the world at their feet, I just got that screwed up version of reality I see in my office very regularly. I think I know too much, and I am scared that it will take all my emotional and physical resources to get there. We’re still quite some time from that point of even beginning to try, but hey, the ol’ brain plays lots of games…

The other thing that happens when I am around the childed ups, is that I realise that there is a bit of exclusionary thing that happens, it probably exists more in my brain than anywhere else, but I get the impression that there is this parent club that I am obviously not a member of. When they talk knowingly about their children, any contributions I might make are generally brushed over, and I’m not offended by it, I talk from that position of ignorance, and I will probably one day also gloss over comments from non-kidded women, but as I said, I get there is another club at work, one whose membership I will one day earn with a child of my own. I stand at the outside looking in, it looks great inside, but I’m really comfortable out here too. I know the outside, and I don’t generally cope well with changes, so its with trepidation that I even consider opening that door, not knowing if its locked or if it will just get slammed in my face.  

Enough serious philosophising… I’m really looking forward to getting stuck into the books that I chose last night, think I will start with Jann Turner’s Southern Cross. However tonight won’t be when I get stuck in, I have a OBGYN meeting tonight, this whole continuing medical education thing does erode my personal time… And its cold and miserable, and the couch is calling my name…

All work…

All work and no play makes Charlie’s Bird dull… Its been really rough getting back into work, and that means there has been little time for anything else. Off to the Secret Seven Bookclub tonight, so will surely have news about that; Charlie is off to Poker club. His friends cheat terribly, and Charlie has only won once in 18 months, at least I have an honest husband!

Sjoe!

Sjoe! It’s been hectic since I got back, you know, it feels a little as though you are punished for going away, there is catching up to do before and after, at least this was only a short break. Only 2 of my patients delivered while I was away, and 1 was a month early, so at least I didn’t feel as though I had abandoned too many of my girls. And then, as I got back, saw one of girls in late pregnancy for a check up, and she was already 4 cm dilated, so her babe had decided to wait for me, and we sang Happy Birthday yesterday afternoon.

Tomorrow will be another busy one, 8 theatre cases booked, eek! But looking forward to the challenge.

So much of news!

There is so much to tell after the 6 days out of communication, I don’t quite know where to start. Jhb on tuesday for Charlie’s Birthday was lovely, did I mention that I have a saint of a husband? For his birthday, he took me shopping, ’till I almost dropped; well, I did manage to alert the fraud squad at FNB and they stopped my credit card because they were worried about the sudden and rapid excessive usage (oops – note to self, shop slower next time…) Anyway, that took one phone call to sort out! It was great catching up with our families, we had a great dinner with them at a great little indian restuarant in Greenside, Karma. Lots of laughs, many memories, sadly though my sis-in-law was sick and stuck in bed.  To start we shared some poppadoms and some samoosa’s – delicious, who would have thought cheese and sweetcorn in pastry could taste so good! Mains were a selection of curries, I have a fabulous prawn vindaloo, with basmati and naan bread, serious curry, serious flavour, seriously recommended. Pud was Kheer, indian rice pudding – heavenly. Wine, we had an old faithful, some Beyerskloof Pinotage. So, next time you’re in Jhb and need somewhere good to eat, Korma scores my recommendation.

Then it was off to bed, since wednesday, just past the crack of dawn we needed to be at the airport. Checked in, went through passport control, etc with no hassles, and settled down for coffee and breakfast before the flight, managed too, to get a smidgen of duty free shopping in… (had to check the credit card was really working again!) and before we knew it, we were off, Inhambane was in our sights. Little did I know that the customs at Inhambane airport, which is about the size of an average garage, was about to test what little patience I had to the nth degree. 1 little man, 1 little stamp, and 40 passengers to get checked in, took way longer than it should have, as a SADEC passport holder I was so annoyed to be stuck behind all those Europeans, who couldn’t speak english, and who took forever to fill in their forms… Anyway, after enduring an annoying talk on swine flu and its dangers, we were on our way to Flamingo Bay, and what a resort it was, those pictures are real! Magic spot…

We unpacked, found a cocktail and a lounger next to the pool, and let the holiday begin. They make this fantastic thing called a R&R, raspberry sparletta and rum, aka naughty juice, serious cooldrink, and L, their rum is much tastier than ours.

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Anyway, after a nap and a shower it was time for dinner, prawns for me; chicken and prawn curry for charlie, follwed up with a creme caramel for afters, yummy!  To drink we tried some portuguese dry red, tasted a bit like rotgut, blech.. A solid 8 hours of sleep followed, heavenly…

Thursday was a little overcast, and quite breezy to start off, and it just got windier… We went out onto the water on a catamaran, and were taken to a little island in the middle of the estuary, called Pansy Island for the multitude of pansy shells to be found there. They’re not a protected thing there and we were able to collect some few of the shells to bring home, hoping to get them into a frame soon. Anyway, after lunch on the yacht, we headed back to flamingo bay (oh we did spot the birds after which the resort was named) and then the wind started pumping, and the waters rose rather dramatically. It wa amazing to watch the tidal changes in the water. You were able to stand on the sand below the cabin, and then six hours later, the water was lapping at the floor of your cabin, amazing!

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Anyway, dinnertime came round again, and it was Crab curry for me (in the shell and all), very tasty; and a steak for Charlie, looked good. Dessert was a spicy chilli chocolate fondant for me, and granadilla mousse for Charlie, very nice. To drink we shelled for a bottle of very drinkable SA wine, a fleur du cap Shiraz.

Friday and it was a glorious day for a stroll around the local village with Manuel (not A “ke?” in sight). Its amazing to see such a house proud people, very poor, but their homes are neat and tidy, the village is well kept and well organised. Manuel showed us how they monkey up those coconut palms, and picked us some to drink the milk and eat the flesh, yummy! Then it was off to the local shop/tavern for a 2M, the local beer, all before 10h30! Thank heavens for the holiday spirit. Then it was back to the resort, and onto a lounger next to the pool, reading, dozing and sipping cocktails. Friday night there was an enormous buffet dinner, seafood, salads, roasts, all the trimmings, delish! Pudding was a very non-moz black forest, oh so yummy! To drink we tackled a bottle of Zonnebloem Pinotage, very good!

Saturday was a little of a nonstarter after the resort got our booking  mixed up, so we ended up on the beach, Charlie bartering for souveniers with the locals, and I took some pictures, really beautiful scenery. Then it was back to the resort, the pool, our beds, and our books. I managed to get through Genesis by Karen Slaughter (excellent cime/medical thriller), Garden of last days by Andre Dubus (typical modern american tale of the stripper and the moslem suicide bomber), Dreams of rivers&sea by Tim Perks (strange one set in India) and I’m still busy on Daniel Silva’s The Defector  (so far, excellent spy novel). Dinner on saturday saw Charlie and I sharing a magnificent seafood platter, langoustines, prawns, crab cakes, calamari, fresh Dorado – divine, I loved it! we again had a bottle of the Zonnebloem Pinotage, and pud was bananas flambed in rum for me, and carrot cake for Charlie – yummy!

Sunday was an early start, as we hit the sea in a rubber duck, kitted out in wetsuits, flippers and snorkels, at 8hoo, to spot humpback whales (plenty), whale sharks (none), dolphins (plench) and manta rays (none). We also got to snorkel one of the reefs, wow, I saw Dory (from Nemo), and lots of other beautiful tropical fish… I was moved, and I ain’t a fishy watching kinda gal! After an energetic landing back on the beach, it was back to Flamingo to shower, change, check out and start our hurry up and wait game, leaving Flamingo at 11h30 and getting home some 10 hours later isn’t fun, when you’re in the air for 3 hours… the less said, the better.

Home again, home again, jiggety jig, home again, home again, jiggety jog.

I’m back

I’m home, in one piece, ready for the next adventure! Full update with pictures tonight.