Sunday, November 14, 2010

At home- at last

Living in the Land of Promise

Yes, we have moved into our home - above is the view from our porch...
..... but to backtrack a bit

While still in the rented house, we were visited by a group of hikers, syping out our freedom in the promised land. Yes, that's Shirley Swart on the right.

Our house being finalised, Trevor & Gerald Richter starting the porch screed.

Tiles being laid

Our bathroom during tiling

and after...

When it was all nearly over, we made a braai for the team, sirloin steaks for all!

Kitchen, with granite tops just completed:

And the view from above just a day or two before moving in:

The colt is in it's stable.

The MAERSK in the background of the kitchen window is the builders' toolshed, which will shortly be removed, just in case you thought we were packing up again.

Living room towards kitchen:

Living room towards porch/patio/stoep:

The guest bathroom :

Our bedroom:

View in from front, with stacking/folding doors open

For those who may want to see a few video clips of the house - you can take a peek at the wall of my facebook site (the one I seldom visit, so don't know how to point you there)

Yah, now we're in, it's back to mundane jobs like washing the beast, after Sharon got it stuck in mud.

Other mundane activities, like surfing with mates....

But, thank goodness, this blog post is not just about our fancy schmancy house, in case you were getting bored.
After 3 years of drought in this area, and much prayer by farmers and churches, we had plenty of good rains. So much so that the Buluga river, which is in front of our Glen Eden church building, was almost flooded. Being in the service last Sunday felt like being on Noah's Ark.

The river mouth opened just in time, maybe with just a little help from locals..

Later on Wednesday afternoon, it was flowing a little stronger, but has now settled to it's 'normal' level after 3 years of shrinkage.

Parting shot: An ad-hoc stone sculpture spotted at Queensberry Bay a few days ago. The wind toppled it overnight.
Cheers for now ... !

Monday, October 4, 2010

Whales, windows & waves

Whales, daily we watch them splash around in groups of 2 or 3. At any time in the past 2 weeks, if you looked out of a window from our rented house for 3 minutes or so, you would be sure to see a splash, tail flapping or some other whalish misbehaviour.

Hey, he's waving hello to you! Photo, from the abovementioned window, overlooking our new home's braai chimney.

Kelvin, a surfing buddy in Glen Eden church is involved with Sonsurf, and they ran a contest at East London's Eastern Beach on Saturday. He was on my case to enter, as they had a shortage of entrants. After much arm-twisting I entered - as it was a fun event.

The 2-man first heat, Phil Malherbe praying that I would show him some mercy.

The event was not looking for my (above) fluid and graceful style of surfing :) - you had to do a rad aerial, snappy re-entry or something, then claim your move.

Conditions were nice & glassy in the early morning.

Roy Harley - Sonsurf director, showing how to bash the lip!

The judges - I think they are biased against ballies. I was the only older gentleman and they showed me no respek!
I think I should appeal to the CCMA or MMWC (Main Manne What Counts)
Joking tho - it was good fun and an amazing good vibe, in and out the water.

Scorecard - see first heat H1 - I came 2nd in that heat!! - and third in the 4-man losers round. (Contestant 4 didn't pitch for that heat)

My buddy Kelvin Zhemke throwing some spray

Prizegiving. 1st place won a big Bar One, runner up a small Bar One. There were lucky draw prizes too: a new surfboard, weekend away, restaurant vouchers - I won a Lizzard 'hamper'. Leash, towel etc.

So that was whales & waves. What about the windows in this post's title?
Well, our house is going well, and we would probably be moving in now, but there was a 3-week delay in the windows being delivered, holding up tiling, painting & cupboards. Our builders - the Richter brothers have been fantastic though, using the spare time to do some landscaping and other tidying up.

The paving bricks arrived today & I got involved heping today the first few sq metres of paving.
As you may see, weather is overcast, and we had about 20mm of rain on Sat eve/Sun am, to the delight of locals - drought here has been long and many farm dams/tanks etc are dry
Our solar hot water system is installed, and cooks!!!
Amazingly effecient.
all for now.
love from the woods

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

House nearly done

Hello Dear Friends & Family,

Wed 15 Sept. Theresa & Ted leave for Auzzie this morning for a month or two.

We have been kept quite busy keeping up with these energetic builders, & running in to town to sort out bathroom fittings, pipe for our greywater system, light fittings etc...
A week ago, the roof tiles arrived:

Me (the one with the beautiful head, no need to hide it with a cap) chatting to Garth, the electrician. (why are so many electicians called Garth?)

Roof still going on...

Yesterday was a splendid day weather wise, with a break from a lot of beasterly easterlies. It was hot, went for a wave and was joined by Nathan Gernetzky, who is visiting his dad. Waves were cooking, Nathan got two cracker barrels, I got tired.

Me showing Nathan how it should be done (when you are a ballie)

Nathan in the green room. - Photos courteousy Sharon Woods (on the rocks)

Last night, went to the 'nearby' church - Ministries Alive, where we doing some training on worship leading, sound desk & projection.

A pre-dawn shot of our house this morning, with roof, gutters etc completed.

I think our next posting will prolly be of a completed house - In 2-3 weeks time!

Parting shot! Cheers for now.

As Jack Johnson would say, "Thanks for reading"

Monday, September 6, 2010

Visited by Jen & Dane

So you all thought that we had given up on our blog, but, surprise, surprise we are back. This time around it is me, Sharon giving you an update. Maybe Les is running a bit dry on writing which I don't think is the problem at all but he is having a break and giving me a chance to chat to you all.

Jen and Dane came for a visit and here we are all taking a hike across to Glen Eden beach, just to show them the sights of the area.

Enjoying the view from the deck of Michaela's resturant. (I know I look bored but- 'hey let me know when you are taking a picture'). Michaela's is set on a high sand dune overlooking Chintsa West and East beaches. From here you can see the surfers, dolphins in the surf and whales blowing in the distance. You have to take a funicular to get to the top. We had a great lunch, each one having something different and of course sharing to taste it all. What a taste sensation.

One of the views from Michaela's.

Jen in our growing house

Dane at Michaela's

Dane fishing at the mouth of the Kwelera River (pronounced kwelega) after a day of surfing and canoeing up the river.

Les trying his hand a fishing. I tried and lost one of his favourite spoons (this is a lure that you use to fish with when not using bait).

A night on the rocks fishing. We had great fun, some bites, but no fish that night. Later, we had another night when we caught 4 small sharks, 2 Karanteen (strepies) and Jen took home a shad which we shared for breakfast.

Me giving it a go........

Jen on a hike from our house to Chintsa East. God gave them some really good summer days to enjoy.

We went for a few days to show Jen a bit of the Transkei. We stayed at a backpackers called Mdumbi. It has it's roots as a mission station and has made great inroads into the community. They have a pre-school run by the locals with input from a missionary couple who are on a 2 year assignment from New Zealand. The locals are trained up in many other areas of litracy, computer skills, small business development. The locals also run the backpackers, the little restuarant there and one of the ladies gives massages just for that extra need to relax. What to do other than just blobbing there.... Kayaking up the river (run by a local), hiking, swimming, surfing (one of the best spots in the 'Kei), snorkeling and of course fishing.

Dane at Mdumbi

Jen and Dane on the way back from a hike up the river.

Can't go to the Transkei without a visit to Hole in the Wall, just south of Coffee Bay.

Dane holding up the world - or is he just hanging from it?

Dane at Hole in the Wall.

This is Paulie who we know from Cape Town, who we ran into at Mdumbi. He and Les were surfing at Whale Rock - very shallow over the rocks. Sorry folk this was the only picture I got of the surf session.

Just had to put this one in to let those who surf see what we have on our door step. This is a picture from the house that we are renting. No that is not Les in the surf...........
As far as the building is going.....

We just wanted to bless the guys building as they work so hard and diligently and it was just a small thanks to the guys. That day we ended up braaing for 18 guys on site.
Les at work, even tho retired?

The walls to window height and the garage being built.

From the front of the house to our braai being built.

The roof trusses are on!

What the builders do on their lunch break. Yes we can see them all the time...

Anyone for a head shave....... the barber shop is open, from the temporary power to the site.
So you see it's not all work for them.

The beginning of laying the sheeting under the roof tiles.

Taken today.
Plumber doing all the pipes in the right hand corner. House roof waiting for the tiles which arrive hopefully tomorrow and the garage roof being prepared for the undertile lining. Today we arranged for a solar water heating system to be installed later this week.
As they say in the movies "that's all folks"
Until next time.
Love - Les and Sharon