Saturday, October 28, 2006

Taxi Protests In Our Neighborhood

Well, things are much calmer since Thursday and Friday and everyone is fine. Only the mamas had difficulty getting to work because there was no transportation. Volunteers with cars drove them home after work. I actually had no idea anything was going on because we often here police sirens and think nothing of it. We are very well protected here and this kind of stuff sadly is pretty regular, so no one was very suprised. But here is an excerpt from one of the newspapers just so you can get an idea of what goes on here in our neighborhood.

"Today's action comes in the wake of chaos erupting on the roads around Cape Town on Thursday when protests by taxi drivers turned violent.Thousands of Cape taxi drivers demonstrated on the N2 near the airport. As tempers flared, they began stoning cars and buses. Police reinforcements were brought in and tried to keep the swelling crowd back with rubber bullets, stun-grenades and teargas while a helicopter monitored the scene from above.
At the centre of the operators' discontent is the national taxi recapitalisation programme, which seeks to regulate the industry and to bring in new and better vehicles.

The Cape Town drivers claimed they were being harassed by the South African Police Service and metro police, who were clamping down on illegal drivers and unroadworthy vehicles. Metro police officers were deployed to the N2 Borcherds Quarry intersection from as early as 6am on Thursday, where taxi drivers blockaded the road and threw stones, said metro spokesperson Novellen Petersen."

This article was originally published on page 1 of Pretoria News on October 27, 2006

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Facing Giants

One of our students has made the courageous decision to go home early because of some real struggles she's facing. She leaves tomorrow and it is just a strange feeling to see her go. In a lot of ways it reminds me of the decision I made to come home early when I was here last. It isn't about giving up or failing. It's about realizing our limits and taking care of ourselves so we can take care of others and do the things we love to do, well.

Please pray for her as she faces her "giants."

Saturday, October 21, 2006


Ugh! Sorry for the disgusting picture. But it so accurately depicts how I feel most days here. Mostly in the mornings as I wait for my allergy medicine to kick in. Oh! It just dawned on me. Here at Beautiful Gate we are enjoying new landscaping, new grass, new plants, new flowers, all inundating me with their glorious pollens as they grow! It's a much more aesthetically pleasing base with a much more lethal effect! Sigh...pass me the kleenex...

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Canadian Thanksgiving in South Africa

I made the pumpkin spice cookies. Dylan made everything else! His momma taught him well! He even made the stuffing himself! Since having Thanksgiving dinner just the two of us seemed a bit sad and pathetic (we can't help being the only Canucks on the base), we invited some of our friends to join in. It was a very international Thanksgiving, but Dylan was sure to play some Gordon Lightfoot (look, he's from Red Deer the poor boy, so let's not be too hard on him), and we sang the national anthem for them, though not very well... It was cool to watch Angeline and Loy eat pumpkin pie for the first time, a vital part of Thanksgiving for us Northerners. They seemed to like it... And to end off the evening, Dylan even bought some Kilkenny which we savoured while dreaming of the Great White North.

The oh-so-important carving the turkey picture. I'm holding the cranberry sauce. Mmmmm Posted by Picasa

The Thanksgiving Bounty! Posted by Picasa

Dylan (Canada), Gretchen (Alaska, so pretty close), and the cowboy hat had to make an appearance for an occasion such as this! Posted by Picasa

Pretty close to PERFECT! Posted by Picasa

Dylan's luscious pumpkin pie! Posted by Picasa

My pumpkin spice cookies...made from scratch, as in no canned pumpkin to be found anywhere in Cape Town! Posted by Picasa

Loy, from Angola. Also a pumpkin pie eating newbie Posted by Picasa

Angeline, from Germany enjoying her first bite of pumpkin pie Posted by Picasa