I have not posted a comment since I don't know when - my computer wouldn't allow me Internet access so I had to get my IT guy (thanks, Len - u r a star!) to sort it out. In between that I have been to East London and have caught a horrid cold and .... okay, okay .... let me backtrack ....
A couple of days after my last post, I noticed that I could not access the Internet - at first I blamed Telkom (who else would stop me from getting my fix?) but by the middle of the next week I was almost hysterical because I had been on the phone to them and, bless-the-technical-assistant's-heart (he tried everything) could still not access my Internet. To cut a verrrrry long story short, I then went off to East London (school hockey and rugby tour) so didn't get anything done for another week.
The tour to East London was GREAT - very cold and rainly but good! Drama never stays too far away ... we arrived at the Bus Station at about 6am from where all the kids would be leaving. It was pretty emotional when all the kids got on the bus (after Carol and Gaynor quizzed the driver about his sobriety, years of experience, underwear size, etc. - way to go, moms). The bus started and idled for a while and then @!* - something about compression and brakes and stuff - all I understood was that the bus was broken!!! The bus company had no other bus available and told us that a mechanic was on his way - yeah, right - like my child was getting on a faulty bus ...
The Head Coach called a private bus company and Plan B (or was this already Plan J?) was set in motion ... Off we all trooped back to school to await the bus - by now we had been awake for about 6 hours and it wasn't even midday yet! The bus arrived to a standing ovation by relieved parents and learners. After another quick sobriety test by Gaynor and Carol, our kids boarded the bus and in no time at all we were saying a second tearful goodbye. I didn't feel as sad as some of the other moms as I was travelling to East London the very next day but my heart went out to Carol, Gaynor and Vashi, who were crying BIG tears as I felt anxious about the bus trip never mind sending my child into the unknown jungles of East London all by themselves ... a little melodramatic of course!!
Lo and behold at just after 5 on Monday evening we got a message from the Head Coach to say that the bus had broken down just outside of Umtata - Enough was enough -I burst into tears and wanted to get into my car and fetch all the children. Some moms even arranged (from Durban mind you) for the police from Kokstad and Umtata to travel to our children and keep them safe. As it turned out, the coaches (we love you Noleen, Ryan and Ann) had already arranged for the children to be picked up and transported back to Umtata where they stayed overnight. The new bus (well a bus that was working) arrived in East London at about lunch time on Tuesday with our children and coaches safe and sound and the girls went straight to a hockey match after check in at the Hotel. It was cold and miz and they played on Astroturf for the first time but they did us proud - well done hockey girls!!
The rest of the week was pretty uneventful considering the bus dramas at the start of the week and, although it was cold and rainy for most of the matches, the kids had loads of fun and I think learnt alot about the games of rugby and hockey. I am so very proud of each boy and girl who participated in this tour - you guys were so well behaved and I have a special place in my heart for each one of you.
FYI - Did you know (I sound like a Chappies wrapper) that KZN is the only province in SA where rugby is played with boots at junior level?
The schools in East London were divine - Hudson Park, Stirling and Stutterheim - and the parents very welcoming - thank you!!
Our coaches were absolutely amazing - they are truly born to be teachers and I saw a side of these special people that will endear them to me forever - it is a special moment when a big, tough Rugby Coach (that's you, Ryan) can draw a 12-year old into his arms for an affectionate hug after a match. Ann, your patience is enviable and Noleen, your committment and dedication is truly special - Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
We made some new friends (well, we got to know these great families even better) - Nadia's mom and dad (Faye and Logan) and Rudy's mom and dad (Sharon and Rajan "THE RAJ") also went to East London to support their children - thanks for the laughs - it wouldn't have been the same without you!!
We travelled with Belma and Stuart (Cam's parents) and had loads of fun. Stuart drives like a maniac - safely, but he reckons "the other guy has brakes" (he says he learnt this in the early days of the police force when he travelled around with Willie - J, your dad must have been a scary driver if this was the lesson he taught Stuart). Bel you are a mental case, girl and such good fun to be around - Thanks guys for a wonderful week.
I did find time to pop into a scrapbooking shop in EL - Spargs in Beacon Bay - divine!! Just not enough time to shop and too many husbands around for us to blow too much cash!!! Boo hoo - next time we leave the handbrakes ... er ... husbands ...at home.
This post is turning into a novel ....
Belma and Stuart treated us to a divine dinner on Friday evening at a place called Smoky Swallows in EL - wow, what a posh place - one of the top 100 restaurants in SA! And the food - mmmmmmmm - best curry I have ever had!
We arrived back in Durban on Saturday and I am pleased to say that our children and coaches arrived safely a while later without any bus trouble - hallelujah - there is not enough medication in KZN to have kept me calm if they had broken down again ....
I came back from EL with a sore throat which turned into a nasty cold but I am starting to see a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel. I guess I should stay in bed and rest - does sitting at the computer updating my blog constitute rest????
Whilst we were in EL, we got reports from friends and family in KZN to say that an aeroplane had skidded off of the runway at Durban Int'l Airport - no wonder I don't trust planes!! As it turned out, only one wheel left the runway but "skidded off the runway" sounds so much better - go figure! Scary stuff anyhow.
I was really sad to hear about the floods along the South Coast and the damage that these floods have caused to people's homes and belongings. Please remember to keep these people in your hearts and in your prayers.
On a happier note, my computer is fixed and as you can see I have had loads of news to share. My head is throbbing but I figure I owe it to myself to finish this post before I down yet another MedLemon and go to bed.
P.S. I still haven't figured out how to upload my scrapbooking pages - any tips on the best way to do this besides photographing the page and loading the photo??? Can anybody recommend a good (read EASY) photo stitching program?