Saturday, June 28, 2008

Adapted Stadsjapies/ City dwellers?

When an image has a 1000 words... { caught by my beloved 'househusband' }

After some kind of confrontational chit chat with the seagulls the African black oystercatcher ( Haematopus moquini), Tobie, turned around and showed them what he thought of this, but the seagulls, well they seem unfazed, unhurried and not worried; {that's one possible version}. Talking of worried; the black African oystercatcher is in DANGER of EXTINCTION. You see, it's breeding season from November to March, the height of our summer holidays when zillions of other recreational coastal users flock to these very shores. We're still at surfer's corner in Muizenberg and here is the start of the boardwalk to St. James. These birds make their nests in the sand with 2 camouflaged eggs which would be impossible to do here. So are they here just for the food ? We have to bring in the experts on this...

(permission of Wicus Leeuwner)

Talking of which, our dear friend Wicus Leeuwner, became an overnight celebrity on our local lifestyle television show pasella .

Now here is definitely an expert. The most captivating images of some of our endangered and iconic birds in the De Hoop Nature Reserve." Nice one, Wicus, Baie mooi."And not to mention the 'tandem in flight' oystercatcher / Tobie photo, the gracefulness and the ahhh moment with that split second of knowledge and patience, all while a camera-crew is pointing at you.

So do yourself a very big favour and go and investigate more on some really truly, inspiring photos on Local is lekker.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

So in my retreat to the professionals I found a certain 'pridal' joy in harvesting my own cape gooseberries and enjoying the colour and mostly, delicately munching them away like a delicatessen, you mean I had to share ? Oh dear. It seems to me we have a pull to the blue versus orange colours...

Today I cheekily retreated and declared myself a 'happy snapper' because beach activities have definitely become dare I say, competitive. When I downloaded this I realized gender equality also placed itself neatly in this frame. In the background already in the shade, main road to all the other coastal villages and interesting historical buildings. By the way this is part of surfers corner at Muizenberg.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

I must confess I got to the sea too late today. The surfers corner was already in very dark shade and to me that did not look inviting to do justice for the surfers. Yes, there are all the adjustments etc. but sun is my light; so patience... Another angle of the iconic bathing boxes and mountains going towards Stellenbosch, up towards Rooi Els at the tip of False Bay.

Blue sea as background for aloes, works quite well.

Indigenous , water wise plants.( No, don't even think of asking me their names. In my books the one is sputnik and the other one bells, or gloeckchen). I'll check with Kirstenbosch... The amazement lies in this true, warm and juicy colour for this time of the year. The reds and orange seem to be just so much more there, if you know what I mean.

Finally, I thought I was going to start joining all those kuck kuck (cuckoo) clocks. Everything can get dry, until the next spell, yes there is always a next one, but for now, we press 'play'.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Open the gate, to the left the water of Zandvlei then to my right the mountain. You didn't believe me, its grim. Non stop rain... This is still the nice version, its just busy getting worse as we speak; I think now it's time for that 'pause button' for the rainwater. My thoughts go out to the people in Kwa-Zulu Natal that are experiencing floods, not normal for them to have rain now. Well, it's full moon and the coming of a solstice, I think, better call in the experts, to explain all these things.

We are grateful to have this very handy item as part of the household. I swapped some of my own ceramic work to acquire this beauty.

A cast iron 'firing machine' (mein Feuerofen?). If I stoke this oven a 'welcome dover' any longer it will become a locomotive and find the railway tracks up the road. Here is just some detail of the tile work we have done, of which some are my own designs.

copyright retained by abf

Another aloe design, that I've put together some time ago. Small one stem vase.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Mein hubby, or househusband, also has those sweet moments, { side effects of western vudu flu medicine, I think} to cheer me up. Yes, I'm going to whine again {ah, gluehwein}, no outdoor day, those different shades of greys and cold and rain just dont do it for me. This is getting very 'cooped up' but we have positively found some sort of 'Ablenkung'.

An 'Iconic' (aloe) sturdy,recycled shopping bag caught his attention today. He loves to get all the "other" groceries that are not so wholesome,they call this 'alternate' shopping. (kidding)

Sorry, to all the people that sew those big stunning bags but I would never put the heavy groceries in those beauties anyway. But here is what I like, one of our icons, the aloe, (which happen to be flowering right now) put to everyday good use and making you feel local, which is 'mos lekker'.(good) Our way of saying and encouraging more locally produced goods. Checkers gets a star. Pick & Pay and Woolworths where are you? I must say what strange names for supermarkets. Anyway, when possible the journey will continue.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

It’s extremely interesting to discover what literally comes out to play when the winter-sun shows it’s meek and bleak face. We decided to ‘mowzie on’ down to the sea and check things out by the artificial opening of the estuary, to let go of the wetlands and be met by waves clashing with the outgoing water and all intermingling to create a fish-haven to the birds delight, or is it diet. The idea is then to continue this journey along the sea and all the other nooks and crannies and hidden delights at my snail’s pace. Yeah, you’re a 1 month old blogger [and the crowds are going crazy]

photo copyright retained by abf

Okay, this one I’m cheating a bit, this bird, a heron, was not there that particular day. I have to mention this otherwise everyone will assume there is an abundance of ‘daily’ wildlife in this urban territory; just fits in with this story as a whole. It’s one of those fleeting moments where appearance and position are quite rare. This also reminds me of the time, when you have the humble pleasure of being part of those really classic moments: A fish eagle gliding past you, ever so gracefully, grabbing it’s fish and proudly crying out that ever so famous ‘tune’. Yes, I’m not kidding, we were in our canoe at the time and guess what, on top of all this, there was a happy, snappy camera on board, okay, it would have not been justifiable, but this precious moment is in the ‘memory bank’ [pea brain] and slowly fading and unfortunately the pair of fish eagle visit very seldom now, as it’s getting to busy and built up over Zandvlei.

So here is to all the wildlife photographer's who patiently search and wait for that precise capture that we can enjoy and be inspired to try and do similar and more so, also aspire to help the people that help preserve the fauna and flora, especially in our urban territories.

A river runs through it? No fish today, they've all gone away. Further along towards the sea, water is calmly getting out today. Sand and water ripples create a tranquil texture, this could do with some photo magic but lets enjoy it ‘raw’ for now.

This concrete structure, a real eyesore, is where you climb up to the pavilion's promenade. I must say the historical fotos indicate a romantic version of people parading all covered up in long skirts, enormous hats and umbrellas, ever so fine. But today I noticed the repetition in the arch of the bridge and the roof of the start of the icon of Muizenberg’s beach, the wooden, prime coloured bathing boxes used so often in fashion foto shoots and movies etc. Today, their main function is to stand pretty, face the erosive elements and provide shelter from the South Easter winds.

I’m on the roll, found another angle and look at this, seagulls, have sun will bask, life’s really a beach, [bum] don’t disturb us.

But wait what have we here, this is not normal.

Here is the mouth of the estuary [finally] at the sea. I asked this one to many questions so it gave me the I’ll think about it , caption. The seals don’t normally come up to the beach but he smoothly operated in the shallows and also indulged in the mix of waters of the fish-haven.
So, here is to the ‘sun-button’ that got switched on to let all the ‘earthlings’ play. Now, isn't that what it should be about…oh, you wake up and your coffee is ice cold.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Flowers for my girls, "Mom the fifth rose is for you my dear", The yesterday, today and tomorrow is for you my sister, I miss you both very much. Oh, this is getting very "schmaltzy"...I think we must create and meet at the half way marker and make it famous, it's still 750 km, oh dear. 'n Boer maak 'n plan, halt deine Ohren steif, ja, hat Mams so gesagt...This post is for you guys.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Will somebody please switch on the "sun button " again. I would not survive Winter European climate. So you guys up there in the Northern Hemisphere enjoy your Summer...Who said it does not get cold in Africa ?

For this particular image I'm putting my head out on a chopping block [sounds so dramatic, got your attention?] and I really wish I could be an ostrich today but like it or not and as much as we go by our daily lives and "pretty up" our blogs [that no one really reads or cares for, ouch the truth does hurt] and pretty up images, we are surely faced with challenges in this country, on this continent. I now also understand that environmental and humanitarian issues do not work hand in hand as the experts try to explain. This is a camping site and has been made available as a refugee camp. The plan is to look after 200 - 400 people here as things get "sorted" out. If you are up to date with the latest political climate in South Africa you will understand this but here I cannot express any further its just too emotional and this is not up for heated debates etc. but where we all would just like to be fairy godmothers with magic wands and sort out the world and really not leave chess playing to who? No, gotta stop right here. My utmost respect goes out to the people who are involved in humanitarian aid at any given level.

This image is towards the sea where the estuary runs out or in , whichever way, when its high tides with the full and new moons. The mountains in the background are barely visible. The higher peaks get snow and this mountainous lining is what creates False Bay, [the one side of it]. The other side is the running towards Cape Point. [will elaborate as we journey further] As an ex-johannesburger [Gauteng] it also took a while to understand the 3 dimension of these mountains creating these horizons as up north, it's the digging up of flat goldmines that dot the plains. I'm treading on thin ice here, no wonder the toes feel numb.

The Cape can be really grim in winter. I've been wanting to do this aerial shot for a long time of the Zandvlei wetlands but the winter rainfall has other ideas, so we will do this over on a better day and with a "manual" exposure. I also had to get out, I think Capetonians get up to all kinds of things when outdoor activities are limited. I couldn't go further up on the road as they decided to work there..This is a view towards the mountain where I normally venture to for those sunset images.