Charlie's Bird

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

Archive for friendship

I owe

…you all an explanation for my absence, but I don’t really have one… The break was divine; the time was refreshing, I have enjoyed my break from reality; but reality never really leaves you alone, does it? So, lots has happened, and at the same time, everything is the same.

The Wild Women experience was so different for me. I went from being an active participant to a logistics manager. I have realised that as an athlete, despite being the physically active role, its actually quite a passive position – you get up and run every day, and your only worry is, really, to get to the end of the day in one piece. As the logistics person I had to be sure that we had packed everyone’s things, get them, via the safest possible route, to the next destination, and then get them safely into their rooms; and do it all again the next day. I also was their team doctor – this year, the girls were quite fit and healthy, and I wasn’t needed quite as much; and I have come back with most of my drugs! My back is a bit broken after carting all those bags and boxes around though. And it was weird, I was with the girls, but I wasn’t part of the group. I wasn’t included in all the fun and games, but I had a memory of those days; and an expectation of it all, which wasn’t met. Nevertheless, I love the Transkei, I love a road trip… (and I love our Land Rover)

I returned from Wild Women to the news that our neighbour’s daughter had passed away overnight. She was 11 years old, and had a lisencephaly ( a brain condition, where the brain does not develop after birth – she was developmentally stunted at a neonatal level – couldn’t talk, walk, sit, interact, communicate, interact with family), and quietly, in the darkness of the night, she flew heavenward. I’m heartbroken for my friends – they were the most amazing parents to her, but at the same time, it feels like I have exhaled, after holding my breath for years. it’s a strange feeling – deep sadness, deep loss, but a freedom too – they can go on a holiday again, they can fly on a plane again, they can travel lightly, they can get a smaller car, they can bid wheelchairs and assistance devices farewell…. Sweet Sarah – fly high with the angels, and I know my Dawny will keep an eye on you – she’s an awesome granny!


3 sunrises to share my beautiful Transkei with you. More pictures to follow…

The Chaos

…before you go on leave is astounding; and yes, that is why it gets a capital letter. I am almost through a jam-packed morning, and I actually have backache from all the scans I have done already! This afternoon things calm down, as I prepare for our departure to the Mother City tomorrow morning. I have packing to do, and then we are off!

I am going to line up on Saturday and I believe I can do this ultra marathon. My training has been solid, except for the last month subsequent to the marathon I ran; so I am hoping that everything I have done is going to carry me through. My injuries seem better, I am due for a last tweak with the chiropractor this afternoon, hopefully I will be pain free! I am quite excited to see the Cape again through my runner’s eyes. The 2 Oceans is a gorgeous marathon. Wish me luck!

I am really looking forward to seeing my family and friends again. It will be, albeit too short a time, a great chance to catch up, and hopefully make some plans for the coming year. I really want to try to incorporate some travel with friends this year. I am also looking forward to a bloggy meet up with RM and Deblet! Yay for internet buddies!

I wish you all a great weekend! I will share my experiences here, with you all! Oh, and Happy Easter!

Fun Times

…the weekend was quite a full one, well, except for yesterday, when I had a bout if gastro, but the less said about that the better.

Friday night saw friends of ours bring us supper – what a treat, to be able to kick back, make sure wine glasses were filled and eat a delicious curry prepared for us. I think this may become my go to gift for friends in the future. A treat of note. I was tired, so I was really appreciative of the spoil. Shortly after they left I had to shoot back to work to do a delivery. Yes, I wasn’t on call, but this patient was labouring before the end of the day, so I had to head back in and see her labor through… A sweet little girl was born around 10pm!

Saturday was one of those chokka block days – but it was all so good! It started with me doing my regular run, with Thandi on her bike with me – she is really starting to enjoy this cycling thing with me while I run, and I am loving it too. We didn’t this week, but we finish our run/ride, dabble our toes in the sea, and then get a cappuccino/milkshake at the local beach cafe. So nice to spend some good time with my girl. This week we didn’t stick around, because we were heading off to a friend’s farm – we arrived around 9, indulged in coffee and rusks, then headed out to the lands to feed their prize bulls, and admire them – they are really gorgeous, although grumpy, Brahmans. Thandi had so much fun with her buddies – after a cool down swim, it was off for a quick lunchtime picnic, before we headed back into town for Thandi to attend a birthday party. (I did say it was busy!) As that ended, the wether started to turn, and we headed home and all collapsed in a heap!  All our energy all used up! A great day

My trouble started here with a dodgy tummy – ugh, it did put paid to my planned long run on Sunday, and left me rather grumpy and miserable. By last night, my body was super sore, which made me think this was a little tummy virus. I’m feeling better this morning, long may it last!

The week ahead is also going to be busy – school starts again tomorrow, and I am now 3 short weeks away from 2 Oceans – eek! (I am seriously tempted to find someone to run the relay they’re launching this year with me, but as a friend mentioned, we’d kick ourselves for not trying anyway!)

Fake Sunday

…. am I the only one, or did everyone feel like yesterday felt like a Sunday? From a long run to cooking a comfort meal for supper, I totally had Sunday vibes.

A member of our club offered a trail run out on her farm yesterday, followed by a slap up breakfast and coffee at the farm. It sounded like a great idea, so I loaded Thandi up, with her bike and off we went. The day was cool and overcast for which I was super grateful, I had visions of heat tantrums running inland in summer! The farm was just gorgeous, after some rain ( never really enough though for the average farmer), everything was green and looked lush. We climbed hills, scouted dans, ran through some virgin forest, chased sheep and avoided bulls. It was awesome. And somewhere around km number 9, I found my mojo. The joy in my heart grew, as did the smile on my face. I loved it! I also really relished the opportunity to get to know some of the other members of my club, which, because we were a small group and were going at a slower pace than regular training tins was totally doable. (I was also exceedingly pleased that my body held up. Yes, I was strapped, and yes, there had been drugs. I’m still not totally throwing myself at the road/trail, but it’s better.)

Isn’t it just gorgeous scenery? Wow!

We did it!

… thanks to RM who literally dragged me up the final hill, I made it home in 38 seconds short of 5 hours, and with that I have qualified to run 2 Oceans again.

Words cannot describe the debt of gratitude I owe my friend. To even just come and run with me, and then we threw the wettest weather at her, and she smiled and chatted and kept me going further than I believed I could!

We started well, chatting, moving along in the most torrential rain. Things got tough in the second quarter of the run. Wind picked up, we both knew this was not the best fun; and then in the next bit, from about 25-35km we moved well! Then crunch time came – with 6km to go there is the worst hill – but we slogged up it, even using a flight of stairs just to ease those joints, and then with lots of coaxing, cajoling and an eventual pull, we made it into the grass for a sprint to the line!

RM – you are a rock star! Thank you!


… so I hosted my annual Valentine’s dinner on Saturday night. I do love it all – thinking up a theme, designing a menu and then bringing it all together on the day. This year was no exception!

Introducing the Royal Affair – a meal fit for a king and queen.

On that menu…

  • Canap√© – fish and chips, with a pea sorbet
  • Starter – bangers and truffle mash with a yorkshire pud and caramelized onions
  • Palate cleanser – a G&T sorbet
  • Mains – a lamb crown roast, with steamed green veggies and fondant potatoes
  • Dessert – sticky toffee pudding with vanilla ice cream
  • Petit four platter – miniature toffee apples, port and Stilton truffles, elderflower jellies and tiara biscuits.

It seemed to all go down well, and I think my friends may want to come again next year!


…no, not out there with rave music! Last night was “bookclub” – although I am not sure that we can call it that anymore. We are more of a stokvel. We all read, but mostly on our kindles now, so we don’t buy books as a group anymore; instead, we save our money for a really nice end of year weekend away with our families.

I was the hostess lat night. I was quite pleased that a theatre case which I suspect may be a complicated one postponed because she had developed ‘flu; so after watching Thandi swim in the local city wide trials*, I got home to cook and prep.

On the menu

  • roasted garlic and goats cheese tart
  • Mushroom and tender stem broccoli pasta, with gremolata
  • brown butter ice cream sandwiches (with florentines)


*Thandi swam well, I missed Tuesday’s trials (where she swam 2nd in her backstroke heat and 4th in her freestyle heat) so I was pleased to make yesterdays. She took 3rd place in the breaststroke heat and won the (only) butterfly heat. that’s my little fish!