Friday, December 26, 2008

how to increase the value of your shares with your loved one

It's not every day a girl comes home to find a Christmas present like this waiting for her in the kitchen:

After a 20-hour trip getting home to Dublin from SA I was, to say the least, quite surprised to find Santa had delivered early.

Years ago, long before I ever thought I would learn to ride, I sat on one of these - a CBR600 belonging a friend of ours. I clearly remember saying that if I ever learned to ride I would want one like this. A few weeks ago our neighbour turned up with one, and I took it for a ride and fell in love with it.
It turns out that while I was away, Hubby was busy wheeling & dealing to buy this bike from our neighbour and between them they managed to get it into my kitchen where Hubby cleaned it till it shone, then got a big red bow to stick on the windshield and a note that says:


I'm a Very Spoilt Lady!!!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

the weird and the wonderful


My week is almost up; tomorrow I head back home to Ireland. Strangely, it feels like I've been here much longer than I actually have, probably because I've done quite a lot this week - nothing constructive, mind you, just being a little social butterfly :-)

I've had a wonderful time.

I went shopping on Friday with my 2 best friends. They hadn't really spent time together before 'cos of not living in the same city and all so it was quite strange for me to have both of them with me for the afternoon. Strange, but in a very good way; I felt quite privileged.

Yesterday morning I went to the beach and had a swim in the sea (well, not so much 'swim' as get wet up to the hips then sploosh water on myself 'cos I'm a bit of a wuss when it comes to waves!)... by 10:30 am I was hiding under a giant sarong though; how is it that I used to be able to spend a whole day in the sun as a kid but now I feel like I'm being BBQ'd after 45 minutes?!

Last night I got some of my old gang of friends together at a pub. It was just like old times - except now the conversation was more about kids & families than bikes & partying, and I was home just after 11pm, ready to hit the sack. (Last of the wild party-people - Not!!!)

I miss my Hubby an awful lot though and I'm kind of ready to go back to the cold now so I can be with him. Only 2 more sleeps to go... and one of those will be on an aeroplane

When will someone invent a magic transporter that can move us from one side of the planet to the other without the discomfort of sitting in cattle-class in a giant metal tube, bashing our knees on the seat back in front of us and trying to ignore the smelly stranger next to us who is snoring in our ear? And if anyone mentions Premium Economy, Business Class or First Class I'm going to smack them on the head because paying 3 times the price for a ticket is NOT an option - and I would still have to sit on me bum for 10 hours at a stretch and end up with feet & ankles that won't fit into my shoes for 3 days afterwards!

But I digress.

And now I've forgotten where I was heading.

So I'll leave you with a second picture instead.


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

from one extreme to the other

It's mildly disturbing to board an aeroplane in a climate of an icy 0 degrees Celsius, and emerge several hours later on the other side of the planet where it's 27 degrees warmer.

Very mildly disturbing.

Mostly, though, it's fan-bloody-tastic!!!

That's right, Chickens, I packed in the Irish winter and am typing this from a brilliantly sunny and warm Port Elizabeth in South Africa.

I left poor Hubby behind this time. I hear our neighbours are taking good care of him, making sure he eats a meal occasionally and such like. It's weird being here without him - sort of like I have a limb missing. But by this time next week I'll be back in the Big Freeze that is Dublin, and safe in the arms of my other half again, because this is a short visit... no long leisurely holidays at my disposal. I wanted to be back in time to spend Christmas with Hubby and my sister-in-law in Ireland.

So for one week only I finally get to wear my strappy dresses & open sandals (the ones that have been gathering dust in my wardrobe for the past 2 years because Summer appears to have forgotten Ireland completely).

I went shopping with my mom yesterday and lunched with my friend the day before. Today I lunched again, with my other friend, in the neighbourhood I grew up in, under an awning to protect my lily-white Northern hemisphere skin from the hungry African sun.
I'm taking it easy and catching up with my Girls, refuelling my soul with the sights and sounds of the place I come from.

In fact this trip is kind of like a pit stop... I guess you could call it a service for my psyche :-)

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

A touch of frost

Let's talk about the weather for a change.

That's a joke - anyone who has spent any amount of time in Ireland will know this; talking about the weather is something of a national pastime here. Well, perhaps not so much talking as moaning about it. It's either too cold, too wet, or occasionally (once every 7 years or so) too hot.
Although it should be noted that I, personally, have never complained about this place being too hot.

But it's winter now, and last Saturday Hubby and I went out around midday to do some shopping. 30 Metres down the road I made him turn back so I could get my camera. You just don't see frost and fog like this in South Africa.

So these are for you folks who are complaining about the heat back home...

The first clue: Frozen flowers outside my front door

The not-so-green grass of home

Some of you may recognize Malahide Castle

Ducks getting themselves in a row... I'm guessing they've figured out the time has come to head South!

A cold and lonely crow

I didn't get any photos of the fog around our place; there wouldn't have been much to see in a photo except white noise, after all. But here is the midday sun:

So, which hemisphere would you rather be in right now...?