Life, Love, and Passports

Archive for October, 2011

Working nine to five

Being a stay at home mom used to be the easiest job in the world even though I was on duty all day and night. Since my girls are at school I’m now required to leave the house and am constantly in a race against time and being preoccupied with the weather comes with the territory. I’m no longer a stay at home mom but a run around mom too. I miss sleeping late each morning and being in no hurry to be anywhere in particular.

I try to make the most of each day but quietly long for the years gone by. Why do things have to change?

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Seven days and seven nights

So today is the official end of the British summer and the now famous clock will backtrack a whole hour. Quite honestly I do not know the exact purpose for this daylight saving because the bottom line in my humble opinion is that the winter is dark and dreary no matter what time the crack of dawn happens to be.

The last week my family have been enjoying the half term break and it has been so relaxed. I enjoyed the total lack of structure and was seriously considering homeschooling my girls just to avoid the sound of my alarm clock. My daughters are already having back to school anxiety attacks and the thought of homework and early mornings is enough to make them fake a cough. So as we prepare for the longest and coldest days of my life I can’t help but long for the summer which failed to arrive.

Here’s to the dark days ahead!


You’re making me high

I’ve been fascinated for as long as I can remember by stories of drug traffickers and mules. Being as obsessed as I am with border security and all the drama it sometimes entails. I’ve come to the conclusion that it is usually the ignorant or the brave who attempt to smuggle drugs internationally. Of course people have many different reasons for what they do and it is no excuse for participating in illegal activities but I can’t help but feel sorry for people who seem to have been groomed to take these life changing chances. My heart aches at the moment where an ill advised person takes the fall. I have no idea if it really is the first time they attempt to smuggle narcotics (the officials who seize drugs make it sound really serious when they say narcotics!) or if it’s just part of their game plan to perhaps get a lenient sentence.

I watched a movie recently which was based on a true story about a young girl from a poor family who was targeted to do a drug run. That story did not end well. Now I realise that drug lords are rather conniving and choose their targets carefully. However on the other hand surely a person should posses some kind of law abiding awareness because some things no matter how rewarding they seem are just wrong. Desperation is no excuse for breaking the law!

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Circle of life

Today we took our daughters to the movies to see The Lion King. It is one of my favourite movies and I hoped that they’d be captivated if not by the storyline then at least by the soundtrack. Sadly they were not as impressed as I thought they would be. Nevertheless I enjoyed it even though I’ve seen it several times including a show at the West End.

I like to think of Simba as a metaphor of life. Being born is the most miraculous event and having your whole life ahead of you is amazing. The promise of a fruitful future is enough to keep you intrigued. Sadly for Simba there are people in his life who don’t want him to reach his potential and are constantly working on evil schemes to see him fail. He eventually runs away and finds himself far removed from his bright future. Nala who has always believed in him finds him and he returns to claim what was rightfully his. My favourite characters are by far Timon and Pumba, they remind me of the kind of people you meet and just accept you at face value. I love not having to prove my worth when I meet people and it makes it even better when they turn out to be the people who help you to reach your full potential. That is the circle of life!


Final whistle

Today was the final game in what seemed like an eternity of rugby fixtures. The All Blacks walked away victorious after a rather unconvincing tournament. The French who were none the better throughout the tournament put on up a very good fight considering they were up against the International Rugby Board who seemed hell-bent on seeing the cup going to the hosts at any cost. That is my take on things anyway!

Today was also the day that Manchester United were taught a lesson by their noisy neighbours Manchester City. I cannot explain the wicked laughter that overcame me and the score was followed by deafening silence from their many supporters which amused me even more.

All in all it was a great sporting weekend with some highs and lows. Final congratulations go to the South African cricket team who humbled the Australians. Well done Proteas! That’s the wrap!


Perfect strangers

My day started out the same old way with me in total disbelief that the morning had come after what felt like the blink of an eye. I have a very awkward relationship with my alarm clock and it seems to be getting particularly strained as the winter approaches. So after obeying its call rather promptly this morning I knew I was well on my way to beating the morning rush.

After successfully loading my precious cargo into the car and preparing for take off it just wouldn’t start. Being frustrated that early in the morning does nothing for your peace of mind. After contemplating my next move and I must admit I didn’t have too many options. One was taking the bus and of course being late for school. The other was approaching some random construction workers and asking them to check out the problem. I opted for the latter and the result was better than I had hoped for. The kind gentlemen diagnosed the problem a flat battery! They very expertly got the car started and I was on my merry way.

Today was one of those days where I really missed my dad because he would’ve been the first one I called and if he was unable to help he would’ve made sure he found somebody to help me. Living in England where it generally seems to be each man for himself I was pleased that in my time of need there were strangers willing to make a difference in this aliens life!


The gift of friendship

As I get older I realise the importance of friends. When you’re younger they seem so much easier to acquire like a new coat and of course anything will do most of the time. There is a time in all of our lives when people’s opinions and affections no matter how shallow mean so much to us. I’m so glad I’ve reached the place in my life where I can throw meaningless friendships overboard because the truth is nobody needs friends who are just takers and drain the life out of you.

I am truly blessed with some amazing friends. Some I have known most of my life and love that we’ve travelled through life enjoying many experiences and hopefully growing wise along the way. My new friends are just as amazing and make living in England so bearable. Family is the most precious gift but great friendships are just as important.

Great friendships are priceless and good friends are precious. Cherish them both!


To the beat of the rhythm

It always amazes me how music really is a language of its own. I listen to a wide selection of music mainly because I enjoy listening to appropriate music at the appropriate time. It is quite shocking how music has an effect on your mental state. So for me its got to be the right beat for the occasion.

When driving I find my skills quite erratic while listening to upbeat music and parallel parking is virtually impossible while listening to the Chipmunks soundtrack! Whilst shopping I’d prefer the sound of the saxophone or even the violin but it always seems to be Jessie J which seriously has me collecting more garments than I care to buy. I do try to remember to take my iPod that way I’m locked in a zone of my own and I choose what kind of space I want to be in. Most of the time it is a very relaxed and no hurry track that I can hum along to and perhaps annoy some shoppers along the way.

Music is a really important part of my life and can’t imagine my life without it. My only regret is that I don’t play an instrument. I know it’s been said you’re never too old to learn so I won’t write that possibility off. While all our tastes differ I guess the end result is getting pleasure from whatever it is we choose to bop or sway to. Rock on!


The hands of time

At the moment of your birth your whole life lies before you. An empty canvas waiting for you to make your mark with life’s many experiences. Sometimes the art can appear very abstract with way too many unanswered questions. I guess the trick of this life is finding a way to leave the past behind, live in the present and plan for a tomorrow that may never come. Cherishing each day because you may never meet chances and opportunities again. Moments forever lost in time.

Recently I’ve been forced to face with my own mortality. Every now and again an untimely death gets me re-evaluating the way I’m living my life. When you’re young you somehow feel you going to live forever. I’m not suggesting living in fear of death but it certainly sheds some light on the things we place importance on. Particularly the things we cannot take with us when we die. Unfortunately this world we live in requires us to make a living and support ourselves and our families. Finding the balance in giving priority to people who count as opposed to things.

Ever so often I get fed up with being a stay at home mom and I very quickly realise that my girls will be all grown up in the blink of an eye and these moments will be gone forever. So wherever you find yourself in this life just make the absolute most of good and bad situations because nothing lasts forever. Nothing in this life is certain except death.


King of the road

I’ve just started driving again after a long period of enjoying public transport. After exchanging my beloved South African licence for a British one I must admit I was rather fearful about taking on the notorious traffic circle. Now unless you’ve driven in England you have no idea how daunting that prospect can be. It seems to be a case of biggest and fastest are the king and queen of the circle. Being average finds you stranded at the yield sign.

In the process of exchanging my licence I started having nightmares of being called to redo my test. Thankfully that did not happen because quite honestly I’m not sure that I would’ve been prepared for that. Those memories of getting started are still too fresh in my mind. I was full of crazy zeal and no skill. I remember driving a car with power steering for the first time and knocking down a pedestrian sign. Needless to say that did not go down too well with my dad. He showed me no mercy and I had to pay for the damage to his car.

I do consider myself to be quite a seasoned driver but when I think back to the early days of clutch control, inclines and parallel parking I still tend to get quite panicky. However, the freedom of owning the road still outweighs that terrible fear of being caught between a truck and a bus. I’m eternally grateful to my husband who drove me to the department of transport all those years ago and refused to leave until I’d signed up. Of course it annoyed me terribly back then but what a difference the final outcome has made to my life. Bring on the daunting traffic circle!