Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Parkrun # 8

On Saturday I left my camera behind when I did my 5km Parkrun. It was quite strange and twice on the walk (between the 3rd and 4th kilometer marker) I tripped over a pebble. I put this down to not being balanced...


I also had a couple of men, who passed me after the 2nd kilometer, ask where my camera is...

Nevertheless, before the event I had my camera ready and took several photos. 
Yip, I photographed a cat

The resident cat was intent on making friends with this young lady
The volunteers who had done a full 5km circuit already, chatted together
A young family waiting for the start
Diane, head-honcho of the local Parkrun and Chereen set up the banners
Grant arrives chatting to one of the volunteers, Pieter
Pieter, Chereen and Naomi were volunteers this week. Pieter's wife, Pamela - in front of him - took part in the race. Some weeks she volunteers and he does the event  
A group of visitors arrive to join the run

Now, because I didn't time myself ON the run, I won't give you a blow-by-blow account. On the dam wall, on the way to the 3km marker, I looked down and called to Anthony and Jenny. They were coming up with a great speed. 

On the last 800m stretch, a lady overtook me. As she passed, she said: Thank you! You have been my inspiration all the way! 

Just after this,  I heard footsteps pounding behind me. As the runner passed, I thought I recognized her. Sure enough, although we didn't speak, I saw it was Jessica, my beauty therapist here in the Valley. 

As I handed my card to Chereen, Pieter clocked me in. He was already clicking the person behind me so when I asked what my time was, he said 47 minutes and 04 seconds.

Oh dang! 
At the finish, Jessica and Anthony replenish their water intake

I stood and chatted with Jessica and Anthony. She said, from the beginning she had her eye on me: my blonde hair sticking out above my peak and my neon yellow top beckoning her. Her main aim was to catch up and pass me: which she did. Anthony laughed and said: he always keeps me in sight and is still aiming to pass me. 
Jessica's son, Matthew and daughter Mica, walked with their dad, (grey T-shirt)

Anthony had another appointment (where his brother John already was) and asked me to excuse him to Grant and Alan who were still coming.  

I walked back about 1km and saw Grant and Alan (our 86 year old hiking partner), coming along already. They were making much better time than Grant and John normally make.
Grant and Alan solving the problems of the world as they walk!
Alan left his stick at home and still managed to walk strongly
Hard to believe that in November, Grant was unable to walk 80 (eighty) meters without collapsing. Here he enters the home stretch of the 5km Parkrun walk 

Grant finished NINE minutes quicker than last week - 1 hour 9 minutes. While Alan had his first personal best at 1 hour 10 minutes. 

When we arrived home, Grant checked our results which had arrived in my e-mail: 

My time? 

46 min 53 sec ! 


A new personal best, according to the Parkrun chart. 

A whole three seconds shaved off my previous best time of 4 February! 

I'm linking to Our World Tuesday here

Monday, February 27, 2017

Photo phun with Lunapic

Aaah, what it is to visit blogs and be so mesmerized by the artistic bent of the blogger that you come straight home and try to emulate them. 

Hooting Anni and Madsnapper - Sandra are both so good at making the most mundane image into the most beautiful artwork imaginable. All with Lunapic. 

On Saturday I posted wildflowers that I'd snapped on our mountain hike two weeks ago. Today I'm posting the same flowers again and how I managed to make them real purdy!  
Lilac-edged flower

Purple bloom

Yellow cluster

Daffodil-shaped blooms


Close-up of above daisy - it's so beautiful I didn't want to change it drastically - hence...

and my piece de resistance...

I hope you all enjoyed my artistic post today. 

Note from blogger: No sooner had I mastered this technique and posted it, than I opened Sandra's post and she's playing with ANOTHER program. 


Watch this space

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Mountain moggies happy and well

Hi Bozo, this is Ambrose with the news from the past week. All's well and we kitties are happy as usual. I found some photos our Mum took of us in the rondawel while our yoomen dad was asleep. And also some photos of three kitties enjoying the cut grass after Namusa had mowed it this week.
I, Ambrose and my dad, Ginger
Mum says she loves Auntie Chappie's blue eyes! 
Unca Shadow dozing on Mum's bed
Dad Ginger enjoying the spongy feel of the mowed grass
I watched from my place on the grass
Auntie Chappie dozing in the horse's trough

Unca Shadow was sleeping on Mum's bed in the rondawel.

For more cute pet posts please click here

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Critters with a difference

When we drive in and out of John and Debbie's property, we have to pass the Meadowsweet Primary and Secondary School. Last week we noticed that a pile of papers were scattered on the grass. At home I placed a plastic shopping bag and a pair of disposable gloves in the car. 

Returning from a trip to town, Grant stopped and I got out to collect the litter. I was surprised to see that the papers weren't actually schoolwork; they were notes from a meeting held by the committee and teachers of the school. 

Mmm. Makes you think, doesn't it?
Cleaning up the environment

This week with all the rain, our normal hike on Tuesday was cancelled. During our walk last week, I stopped to snap wildflowers along the way.

Do you stop to smell/photograph the roses wildflowers?
Back at the hotel, I photographed one of the resident dogs - a rather old bull mastif 
It fascinates me how our cats love to be near the horses! 
The horses, in turn, are most gentle when the cats wander in between their hooves

I'm linking to Saturday Critters with Eileen here


Friday, February 24, 2017

Sun - at last

When you live in South Africa where severe drought and dry conditions have been the order of the day for the past decade, you don't complain about rain. 

I don't; especially seasonal rains which are improving the water table. 

The past week we've had lots and lots of rain all over the country. Especially here in the mountains. The low-level bridges became impassable and the gravel roads slippery and treacherous.

 The above photos are of the first low-level bridge which we cross to get to the main road - on Wednesday we were able to cross them quite easily
Approaching the second low-level bridge 

 Also easily forded on Wednesday

Yesterday the stars were out at 4am for the first time in a week. And when the dogs and I went out for our early morning walk, I turned around on the road and saw the sun breaking through the misty clouds. 

The dogs and I were enveloped in mist ...

 ...with the sun breaking through above

I'm linking to Skywatch Friday here