Everyone knows an ant can’t

move a rubber tree plant. Whoever wrote that song didn’t ever see the ants that sprouted here after the rain. Lordy, they’re as long as a quarter is across and thick bodied, and look as if they could take a real chunk out of you.

The whole world was buzzing when I got up the morning after the rain. You couldn’t hear yourself think for the noise of insects. It was totally gross!! Thank heaven it’s cooled off and they’re settling down. Birds were in avian heaven though, especially the resident bou-bous.

And I forgot to tell you about the rain spiders! I read up on them as it seemed that from what I could see on-line that I’d seen two rain spiders. Well, the SA newspaper I saw an article in said that when you see rain spiders it will rain within two days – and it did! How do they know that far ahead of time, eh?

Didn’t get to Moz on the weekend. Ernest went without me and today he said that after the behaviour of a certain British volunteer that went on the last trip, they asked him not to bring any more volunteers. What a drag.

Oh, well – I got more shopping done. That should be it for this trip. Hope I can ship the stuff home from Durban so that I don’t have to lug it around SA with me. Yikes!! What a thought. Found a woman who does the Zulu bead work though, so that made it worth while. It was her brother who was doing the driving for me. He also gave me some fresh spinach and lettuce from his garden. First really fresh veg I’ve had here. Stuff in the supermarket here is even older than the stuff in Cdn stores.

And the big time hog has been these essays I got the kids to write in English about conservation. I think I told you about that. Well, I started looking them over to score them since I have to give the results tomorrow. Oh, my aching head!

Not only do they not understand conservation – most of them seem to think it only means closing up all the animals inside a reserve – but the English for most part is incomprehensible.

Some of them put periods between every word. Someone has told them, it seems that paragraph structure means easier reading or something, so though there is no paragraph structure they skip a line every 10 lines. Even if it’s in the middle of a sentence! They write up to the end of the lines that I’d made for them, and no matter where they are in a word at that point, the rest goes on the next line. And I’d told them that it had to be at least one page, so no matter where they were at the end of the last line on the first page, even the middle of a word, they just stopped. Trying to pick the 5 best from each class out of this mess has had me tearing my hair out!! The conservation guy looked them over and refused to even try.

I’m going to have to put a package together on conservation for the school if I can manage it at some point and mail it over. Another interesting thing was that the perception is that it’s only white people that want to come to see the animals. And that the reason that you shouldn’t kill insects is that white people haven’t ever seen them. Oh, my!!

The elephant has been rampaging around the perimeter fence again tonight. He spent a lot of time out front and the vigour with which he was stomping and tearing made me think that he was not a happy camper. He sounded so close it was amazing. I was sure glad that the kitchen building was made of solid concrete with doors too small for an elephant.

Wanted to do wildlife stuff all week, but looks as if school stuff is shaping up to take up a lot of time. Got to deliver the results of the contest tomorrow, then Wed is the trip, and Thursday I’m going over to play the music for the kids that I promised, so have to make a disc for that too, and get to town to shop for the treats. Oh, well . . .

Forgot to say that I saw a huge lizard today – that’s what made the tracks I had the pic of earlier. He’s almost 3 ft long and again, disappeared before I could get my camera. Runs sort of on tippy-toe and the central mark between the footprints was made with the low base of his tail. Interesting looking guy – wish I was bionic and had a camera implant so could just wink and get a picture.

KFC (Kozi Fried Chicken) with Bongani at Jozini Dam

Entrance to the gas station at Jozini

Jozini’s main street on a Saturday afternoon

New style rondavel made of stone and concrete

ROUND blockwork? Could anyone afford that in NA, even if they could find anyone who could do it??

Craft ’shop’ between jozini and Bhambanana

How do they get the grouting to stand out like this one the stone facing?

Bongani and Preston show off Preston’s sister’s beadwork

More beadwork on the lovely tile porch

Preston, his granny, sister, various nieces and nephews

Picking spinach in Preston’s garden



  1. Sandra said

    You are such a white lily after so many months in the sun. I would be burned toast by now. See yah soon.

    *** Hey now – I’ve got some tan. You’re just comparing my skin to Bongani and Preston’s sister I’ve spent a lot of time inside, either teaching or else preparing lessons, and the time I usually have free, it’s often just too hot for me to go outside. And somehow, I just don’t tan like I used to – takes forever now. but I’m trying . . . :-((

  2. RBC said

    Hey, we can use some fresh spinach here! Apparently one of Dole’s packaged salad mixes was found to have E.coli. This isn’t the first time greens had this problem. Last summer it was spinach.

    ** Well, they will try and convince us that using human waste in fertilizer is safe, won’t they? **

    I sent my girlfriend one of the pictures of a hut you included in one of your posts. Asked if she wanted a summer cottage .

    Don’t think I’d tolerate insects too well. Creepy crawly things just aren’t up to my liking. Bet they’re a lot bigger too than our garden variety. EEEeeewwwwwww!!!!

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