Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Follow Me - The Orange River (slightly bent)

We had to entertain ourselves for one day since we couldn't change our booking for our overnight accommodation for the trip back. So we went shopping - if you could call browsing in a co-op shopping. I found some seeds for yellow tomatoes for my vegetable garden. Can't wait to plant those.
And then we decided to visit the Orange river crossing where we parked our two buses and enjoyed the view.
What the Orange River really looked like.

The photographs you see here were taken as panoramas from my Samsung S3. They came out...well, a little bent. But then who needs to see the world in straight lines anyway. Enjoy!
 
The Orange River from a "bent" perspective :)

Then I decided to bend a bridge. Ha, it was a lot of fun doing it my way!

Standing on the white line - 180 degree panorama
Well, that is the end of this tour. Thank you for following me as I travelled my country and allowing me the privilege of sharing a few glimpses of it with you. Until the next time...

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Follow Me - The Guys, the Fun and the Rescue

I had mentioned before that I work with a great bunch of people and now you get to meet some of them. While I will remember the trip for the not-so-successful outcome of our tests, I will also remember it for the fun we had together.
Derek explaining something difficult as usual

Mpho bearing his kit while inside the Badger

Eric explaining to Sam what the next test is going to be about

Thato - at least I wasn't the only woman this time!














Hennie, Willem and Tienie wondering if the fishing is any good

Willem and Paul wondering what happened to their hats
Hours of laughing while just sitting around, talking nonsense and reminiscing about previous tests where people did silly things. Some of the people we talked about I knew, others I didn't. What did strike me was the camaraderie that people enjoy, even as colleagues. Many of our test facilities are fairly isolated, making it difficult to just jump into a car to go see a movie. It is either too far away, or there is such entertainment available in the nearest town.

On the last morning of our tests, we came across a group of springbuck running down the road. We frightened them and they were going all over the place, even running into the fences next to the road.
One of the group managed to get itself so tangled up that it couldn't shake itself free.
Springbuck running
Deciding that it was our fault to begin with (the fence), it was our duty to rescue the animal. 

And so three of my colleagues and one member of the SA Army who was with us in the bus, did the honours.
My attempt at a video was unsuccessful, the sun was too bright for me to see the screen of my mobile phone, but I did manage to capture a few photographs.


Springbuck stuck in the fence and the guys on their way

Job done! Back to work now :)

The heroes - all in a day's work!

Monday, 28 October 2013

Follow Me - Harnessing the Power of the Sun

While on the way towards our destination we came across two projects under construction to erect solar panels on several hundreds of hectares on land. The first was between Douglas and Prieska, fairly close to the road (all the photographs you see here). The second was right next to the old Copperton mine. Although we could see the construction work well enough, it was too far away to take good photographs with my mobile phone.



 On our way back home we came across a third such project. While I cannot remember exactly where - somewhere between Kimberley and Wolmaranstad - it too was large and set too far away from the road for a decent picture.
And the Northern Cape is the ideal place with its high number of days of sunshine per year.
What is heartening is seeing these solar farms being constructed to help with the increasing demand on the existing and future supply of power to the national grid.


Friday, 25 October 2013

Cover Reveal: Don't Call Me Sweetheart by Linzé Brandon

Excerpt
Hell had found me. I was staring at its ugly fangs and I knew if I stayed here any longer, it wasn't going to end well for me. I had to get out of here before more innocent people got hurt. Screams attacked my ears – so loud that it drowned out the pounding club music. But it didn't drown out the bullets causing the panic. Blood splattered over me as two more people fell.
"Where the hell did she go?"
I was too busy dodging bullets to pause on my way to the closest exit to find out who had said that. There. The moment I spotted the door, my feet moved faster.
My one day off from work, my time to relax, hang out, and look at me now; hiding behind a stinking crate of rotten vegetables in the middle of a very long and dark alley. Halfway between me and the safe end of the alley was a flickering yellow light above an entrance of some kind. I thought I saw something move, but it could be anything, from a vagrant getting comfortable for the night to a rat. I shuddered. Neither of those options inspired a sense of safety. I had to move. This was not a good place to be – too many opportunities to be ambushed. I edged around the crate and looked towards the exit of the club I had come from mere moments ago. No one had followed. Yet. How I made it out of the club alive, and uninjured, must have been some kind of miracle.
I glanced down at my expensive high-heeled boots. Damn, I loved those boots and now I would have run – through whatever muck, and dirt, and all kinds of other dead and dying things – in them. This was so not the night I had envisaged for myself.

Look out for this Sci-fi action thriller (with the tiniest hint of romance) on Smashwords very soon!

 

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Follow Me - Life on the Road

Since it takes us two days to reach our destination, there are lots of things to see along the way.
We often spotted impala, springbuck, a snake or two and even a tortoise who was trying its level best to cross the road.
Once our convoy of four vehicles rushed past of course.
One of the more fascinating sights is a little bird that lives in a communal colony with many other birds. It is the sociable weaver that makes its nest on the poles that carry the power lines along the road.
The nests expand as they continue to build, and care has to be taken that it does not grow too heavy and break up. Many poles have stacks of nest materials around their bases where the nests had become too heavy.

Prickly pears are another sight to make your mouth water. The luscious fruit grows wild in the Northern Cape, while it is not found only around here.

Just as we settled in for the last leg of our journey, it started to rain. While rain was not unwelcome, we were concerned about our tests that we conduct outside. The weather websites were consulted, and we relaxed as the rain was predicted to move on to the eastern parts of the country.

Stay tuned as the next installment will be about an exciting development in this part of South Africa.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Books-A-Fire: An e-Book Promotion to Fit Everyone's Pocket


The Books-a-Fire authors are back with more fabulous deals and NEW books to buy. There are no gimmicks or hoops to jump, just incredible prices on every single book.
Just point, click, and buy books in every genre for just 99 cents each.  
YES!  All books on the page are priced at 99 cents to make your shopping easy and affordable. For less than the price of a dinner out, you could buy every single book on the page.
To make it really easy, we've also created categories.  Click your favorite category at the top of the page and see all the books that are on sale in that category. 
Load your Kindle and enjoy a quiet read now that the kids are back in school. You've had a hectic summer so treat yourself to a good book today! 

►  Go to www.booksafire.com 


Monday, 21 October 2013

Follow Me - On Route Day 1

We left Pretoria on Saturday and took the route to our overnight destination in the Northern Cape province of South Africa. 

It is one of the driest parts of our country as you can see from the photographs. 

It is also one of the geographical areas that can change almost overnight from a semi-desert to a lush savannah with a single rain storm.

Unfortunately, rain is a rare commodity and very often dams are but dry patches of sand, rather than blue stretches of live providing water.






Kimberley is an interesting city with a long history of diamond mining, that I am sure you have learned about in school. It also boasts one of the oldest, if not the oldest pub in the country.
Garden of the Kalahari Lodge in Kimberley

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Follow Me - Off travelling once again

I am traveling again with my colleagues from work to do some tests again. After my last disaster - killing my poor mobile phone - I couldn't post any photographs of South Africa and the things we saw and did on the way. Well this time, I am going to do my best not to destroy my phone and then you can see the wonderful country side that is my country.
Since I still work for the same company, and the same rules still apply, you won't see any of the actual work. More about that here.

As I intended before, the posts will follow my awesome colleagues (and they truly are a great bunch of guys!) with chats and quirks, and a few quips - I promise to keep those PG!

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, there will be updates there too.