Thursday, March 20, 2008


For the past week, we have been getting a taste of the upcoming winter months, and they taste like soggy lunch meat: cold and damp. Ugh. Since Sunday it has been raining pretty consistently, and the temperatures have dropped significantly (at least 15 degrees, often more at night). Weird to go from running a fan to running a heater in the span of two days. Apparently it is a little early for all of this mess since we are just moving into fall now. The worst of the cold is apparently in July and August, but I have seen my future, and it is not very warm. But oh well! It is back to being sunny this morning, with that delicious, almost vibrating blue sky, and we may get up into the mid 20s again temperature wise. So I shall take what I can get for now. But all of my gloating to friends and family about the awesome weather here... well... it may be coming back to karmically bite me in the butt.

I leave for the other side of South Africa tomorrow with friends, to Cape Town first, where I hope it wil be warmer and sunnier, and then renting a car to travel along the southern coast until next sunday (March 30), when we will flyback to Joburg and resume normal life. Will post again upon our return (hopefully not with stories of rain-soaked days and teeth-chattering nights). Happy Easter!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

March Madness

I am getting tired.


But things continue to be good. I am happy and healthy, but busy. Work is stressful, and i find i arrive home most nights pooped and catching my breath, even thought i have been doing nothing but working at my comp, talking to people and going to meetings.

And i know that everyone reading this is like "Whatever Amy. I do this everyday!" And i have to agree with you. This is not unique in and of itself, and sometimes i am embarassed by my tuckeredness. But i find thissuper-hectic work environment, coupled with the low level stress of Joburg, and at the same time just generally making an effort to get out and enjoy the city and life--- well, it is about as much as my poor 30 year old body can take.

Now you say to me, "Amy, you are a wuss. What is this about low level stress. Whatever!" But seriously!! I can feel it taking its toll. And while i am of course referring to the daily security stuff one has to deal with in the city, i am also referring to other little things that contribute to an over all big effect.

For example, power outages. Apparently despite a bunch of people telling the government that there would not be enough power for the country come 2008, they didn't listen, and guess what?! There is not enough power, and it is 2008. Duh! Governments are so short-sighted sometimes, they trip over their eyelashes. So we have these rolling blackouts throughout the city, and they are supposed to go on indefinitely. They are on a bit of a schedule, of a sort, but sometimes they happen and sometimes they don't. Or they happen late. Or early. And then the electricity is off for 2 to 4 hours and it is the middle of the working day and you have no computer or lights or anything and everyone is freaked out and frustrated. Or it is when you get home from work, or in the morning, and you have no stove to cook on or music or lights or anything. It kinda drives me crazy when it happens, but you just have to deal with it.

Or i can give another low-level stress example: rats. Monday we were late starting work in my small office because we spent a good half hour ridding the room of a giant rat. Seriously. It came running towards me, this giant creature with the tail (the tail!! That is what struck me-- this monster had the longest tail!) and i almost peed my pants. Sigh. Gross. (the rat is gross, not my peeing--- i didn't pee, okay?) And speaking of rats, in the past week, a family of rats has taken up residence on the roof of my cottage. At first i was trying to pretend like it was a cat or something making noise above my head. But after the squeals and squeaks and hearing multiple pairs of scurrying feet, i had to face facts and stop deluding myself. So i have to keep my windows closed, which makes things very stuffy on warm joburg nights, and am kept awake some nights by the squeaking and shuffling of monster joburg rats. Ugh.

These are just two examples of the overall picture of things. And so that is what i am talking about when i say low level stress. I am not as wussy as i sound. (maybe)

On a positive note, the trip next week to Cape Town is coming together, and we have booked our flights, the rental car and our first three nights in Cape Town. We will book some stuff for along the garden route this weekend, but things seem to be coming together and we are all getting excited for the break. Woo hoo!

Otherwise have been keeping myself busy with dinners (went to a great greek place on saturday night with friends), went to the Joburg Art Gallery on Sunday, going to a dance show tomorrow night, etc... Lots to do--- i am thoroughly enjoying the variety of things one can get up to around here. This weekend a few of us might go to the cradle of humanity outside of the city (where apparently human's came from), and then there is a jazz and blues music fest in the park by my house for the afternoon/evening. Not too shabby.

So that is my update du semaine. I may write again before the trip to Cape Town, but if not, i shall write when i get back, in early April. Am anticipating a great time, with lots of nice pics (which i shall post on facebook). Cheers to all, and keep in touch!