still in kommetjie

That’s ‘caw-ma-key’ in case that Afrikaans ‘tj’ boggles your mind + twists your tongue!

DSC_0824I’m back in the saddle again! I rode two days last week + have more lessons lined up at the Sleepy Hallows Riding Center. Mulan is the horse I’ve been riding, but that’s not a picture of her. That’s from Imhoff’s Farm where we’ve had dinner + breakfast while the kids play in a big tree with a slide. There are five white camals there for riding, peacocks, + a petting zoo. Chickens wander around while I eat their eggs. Amazing view. It’s nice to be around horses, dogs, cats…tame animals. A baboon chased the boys around the pool outside our house! They weren’t quite as freaked out as they were when the pack of dogs chased them in Turkey.

We went to Bird World in Hout Bay yesterday. Not just limited to birds, this place seems to specialize in freakish creatures. God doesn’t just have a sense of humor but a cruel streak of madness. The boys loved the place + want to go back. Aidan really wants a pet squirrel monkey.

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They are pretty cute + curious + check out your pockets while they climb on you. Willem now really wants a pet turtle. He did all the research + is excited that they eat clover + dandelions, two ‘plants’ we can grow really well! I didn’t tell Willem that I was irrationally afraid of the turtles in our backyard in Venice. One of them kept tiring to climb up my leg + I had the uneasy feeling it was desperate to tell me something, something like, “I too was just hanging up the laundry when suddenly I just turned into a turtle. Help me!” I tired not to laugh when one of them tried to eat a jubube fruit but it was pretty entertaining to watch it keep trying to get some purchase on the elusive olive-like fruit. I actually picked a fresh one + bit into before giving it to the turtle so it would have a better chance of being able to get a good bite.

Anyway, so we’re still here + starting to feel a bit mossy like it’s time to get rolling again. I went to a volunteer orientation this morning for tutoring at the township Masiphumelele. The school year just started here in mid-January + the tutoring program is just starting for the year. I’ll go Monday afternoon to see if there’s anything I can do that will be of any help to anyone, but it at least will be educational for me.

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The package with the boys’ new math books arrived today (thank you, Janet!) They are actually very excited to be doing math again! A few weeks ago, they completed the books we brought with us + haven’t really done anything since. We’ve been watching movies that with my low standards I count as educational. Last night we watched Juno, a good movie for sex education. We watched Little Miss Sunshine + learned about winners + losers. We watched Outsourced, an excellent way to experience India without going to India. (Is John Jeffcoat going to make a ZA movie?) We learned about HIV + poverty in ZA when we watched Themba: A Boy Called Hope, a beautifully filmed movie set in the Eastern Cape + Masiphumelele.

I’ve enjoyed reading Cape Town: A City Imagined and the Meanings of a Place. The boys are rounding out their education by rereading Calvin + Hobbes books from the library. We saw the hilarious Potted Potter – The Unauthorized Harry Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff. Aidan had a role on stage as a Seeker. He + another (very cute) girl from the audience leapt around on stage while chanting “Where’s the Snitch?”…of course, we have captured this on video + really should share it.

We finally went back to Silvermine Nature Reserve + hiked up to Elephant’s Eye Cave.

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