Saturday, October 31, 2015

Marching and flying critters

During the week I spotted a buzzer on the ceiling near the fan. I thought it had been pinned there by the wind caused by the blades, but although I stopped the fan, it remained there for quite a while. I decided to photograph it and let it fly off when it wanted to.
It looked like a type of wasp
I loved the gossamer wings and the shadow it threw on the ceiling

I've featured the Spathyphillum several times on this meme. This plant is the MALE and the first time it's flowered. We were thrilled!

On Wednesday evening Angus popped his head over the wall and asked to borrow my camera. He and the children were watching an army of ants marching across the lawn to their hole.
Nothing remains once these ants march across it

Last year in Tanzania I featured a post with very similar ants

These ants are rather large, with plastic-looking bodies and heads. It's not wise to get one in your shoes! 

I'm linking my post to Saturday Critters with Eileen here

Happy Saturday to you all! 

Friday, October 30, 2015

Full moon October 2015

Earlier this week we traveled to the city - Grant had business with the traffic bureau in Bloemfontein. I had captured the moon -  verging on full - the night before over our home. But the next morning it was full and I managed a couple of shots taken from a fast-moving vehicle! 

And then the moon setting to the west as the sun rose behind us in the east! 
The rising sun's rays causing the rosy glow on the setting moon
A typical scene of the Eastern Free State - the moon setting over the horizon, the sun rising behind me and the iconic windmill in the middle distance
By the time we'd glided onto the N1, we were greeted with this beautiful sunrise
Taken from a fast-moving vehicle, I was thrilled to capture these images
Awesome way to greet the day, isn't it?

I'm linking to Skywatch Friday here

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Good fences, good neighborhood

Driving through an old established suburb of Bloemfontein on Tuesday, I - of course - took photos of the properties and their boundary fencing.
It's also an affluent neighborhood: two luxury vehicles and a new Harley Davidson parked outside a sumptuous home 

The huge established trees and lush gardens portray stability and permanence
A neat bungalow-style home with palisade fencing and white pillar offsets

A geometric shaped house and fencing with striking shapes and textured foliage in the garden

An expensive and very uninviting boundary wall

This fence and motor gate is secure yet permits a peek into the wide open garden beyond

Another well-established home and garden behind a neat white-pillared and palisade fence

I'm linking to Good Fences Thursday here

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Spotted Eagle-Owl

Yesterday I had the most incredible surprise photo opportunity in a least expected place. We were in the city (this time Grant had business to attend to) and our last shopping stop was at a chain drugstore, Dischem. While I paid for the items (I was using points and e-bucks), Rina went outside for a smoke. When I walked out, she told me to look up above the door frame. 

There was a Spotted Eagle-Owl catching its nap. You can see this is this bird's regular spot because of the white splashed on the steel girders. I dashed to the car, grabbed my camera and came back to take photos, many of them! 
The owl opened a beady eye when it saw a lady snapping away below

Shoppers were entering and leaving the shop, yet the owl continued to sleep above

I'm linking my post to Wild Bird Wednesday here

Happy Wednesday to you all!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Eye cataract procedure finalized

After five weeks of traveling from our home to the city for MIL's eye cataract procedure, I have now had enough! 

The hospital staff were wonderful; the setting was clean and clinical. The check ups and subsequent instructions on how to care for your eye after the procedure, were short and to the point. 

Last Wednesday it was time to have MIL's eye patch removed. We left home at 4.30 am and arrived at the hospital at 6.35 am. We sat and chatted to the other patients and their helpers; after five weeks in such close proximity you get to know each other.

By 7.15 am the sisters arrived carrying a pack of files. Soon MIL and I (Rina had to wait in the hall) were shown to the large room where we'd started off on 29th September. Here the patients were told to close the non-operated eye and read the eye chart. MIL was second in line and I tried to explain to her (without giving away too much) that the largest letter is the same as all the others below it. Only the first letter was upright, the next one turned to the left, next to the right, also downwards. She said she knows; it's an E. So I said yes, but you need to say which way up or down it is. She was next in the chair and to the sister's upheld hand, he asked her how many fingers she could see. She replied correctly: five! Then he pointed the chart on the wall and she first hesitated. Then she said, E. Next he pointed to the letter below which was facing to the left. And she said it was showing downwards! Luckily, he wrote on her file and told me to seat her at the optometrist's table. 

The doctor was three patients down and when he reached us, he greeted Pam effusively asking if she could see. She said yes, but very fuzzily (which is understandable for the first few days). He checked her through his phoropter/refractor - ophthalmic testing device and said the "new" eye looks good. He mentioned the beginnings of calcification behind the eye and said this normally comes with age. 
We stopped, as always at a garage outside the city and enjoyed coffee, sandwiches, meatballs and sausages 
And Grant took the ubiquitous photo afterwards!  

Back home, Grant had to be strict and take his mother's old glasses. She said she's been given them over the years when the people died in her previous home! She was very reluctant to hand them over because she said you never knew when someone in her present home may need a glasses! 

Grant explained that she has to wear readers until we have the other eye cataract procedure. This only takes place in the new year, thank goodness! After that we'll take her to be tested for prescription glasses. I only hope she wears them as she's is very vain and doesn't want to "look old"! 

On Thursday, we took her to the local store and bought a neat pair of readers and a new pair of sunglasses. 
MIL's collection of glasses which have no use at all now that her eyesight has been corrected

I'm linking to Our World Tuesday here


Monday, October 26, 2015

Scavenger Hunt Sunday # 3

After a hectic but final week of eye procedure, I'm managing to catch up on my blogging. 

The hunt for photos for this week's words was great fun.

Here goes:

Leaves of the Spathiphyllum in my office

We're full into summer here in the Southern Hemisphere, so autumn leaves are just not available to photograph. 
Instead I photographed the leaves on our mulberry tree

When my neighbor, Pienkie moved to the retirement center, she gave me two hats - these red ones! 
The black hat on the left is very popular with the African people; the larger hat in the foreground is Grant's pride and joy - a genuine Akubra all the way from Australia

A stop sign at the intersection up our street. We live in a quiet area of town and many most people don't heed this sign! 

 The main street of my town: Marquard. It's a small town in the Eastern Free State
The same main street facing downwards

Since democracy 21 years ago, South Africa's essential services like water and electricity have taken a serious dive. We now depend on this water tank to be filled from a large dam in Lesotho and then pumped to our homes. Last week "something" broke and we were without water for eight days
The highlight of our day is to see the marker half way or more down the edge of the tank . We have two water 2500 lt tanks behind  our garages and when this municipal tank pumps water, our tanks are filled. BLISS !

I'm linking to Scavenger Hunt Sunday here

Although it's Monday, I decided to hold my post over to Monday.

Wishing you all a wonderful week ahead! 

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Kitties and a pup

Hi Bozo and Mum's blog readers; this is Ambrose and this week I have a few more photos of the Hedges Kitty Hotel residents!
Unca Shadow soaking up the sun in the dining room

Unca Shadow and Dad Ginger had a terrible fight the night before. I just jumped onto Mum's bed and stayed out of the way. I think Unca Shadow had more scars than Dad Ginger; although I saw him walking S L O W L Y the next day.
And grooming himself - you can see the sore on his nose from Dad Ginger's claws! 
My Dad Ginger brooks no nonsense in his domain. He says although he's a retired mining catm he still holds the whip - paw
Unca Shadow safe on Mum's bed feigns sleep 
The pup, Skabenga is now a BEEG doggie. But doesn't try to chase us kitties from Tanzania

He likes to chase Cousin Chappie. Mum doesn't stop him as she says it's all in fun; Chappie actually enjoys the attention AND gets exercise this way

Please find other cute pet posts here

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Saturday Critters with Eileen

Wednesday this week was the last of six trips involving MIL's cataract procedure. (More about this soon)

Of course, traveling along the regional road with farmlands on either side and which meets up with the N1 National Freeway between Johannesburg and Cape Town, I had ample photos ops. 

This time we also saw a tractor albeit a smaller one which wasn't causing obstruction on the narrow road
These cattle are grazing in a large paddock near Marquard. The flat-topped mountain (which is iconic in the Free State) is called Leeukop / Lion's Head
On the golf course early on Thursday morning, the dogs really enjoyed themselves
This picture says it all!
The cattle in the adjoining field next to the golf course, always come up to the fence
I think I've always referred to these cattle as cows. This week Grant told me they're young bulls (or did he say oxen?) You wouldn't think I've grown up in the country, would you? LOL!
A large gentleman chews the cud

A common fiscal casts a beady eye on the ground below - he's hunting for breakfast!

I rescued this moth from my kitchen sink. I placed it on Abby's drinking cup and snapped!

I'm linking my post to Saturday Critters with Eileen