SWEAT!!! WHAT???

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1 December 2017

It was a week before my 50th birthday on the 24th of July that this sweat lodge experience came to me.

I am always joking about my birthdate 24/7… because, this is exactly like I used to work…

March 2016 I became very sick and needed to get to grips with it. (read more about sickness clicking on the blue sick)

So, on my healing conquest I became more aware of how emotional and physical health are linked. This made so much sense after not dealing with challenges for a long time. By not dealing with emotional challenges, it will manifest into sickness.

The fact that I would be 50 and have hormones out of whack, also encouraged the disease of course.

After so much time has passed, I now believe firmly that being sick guided me to get to the root of the challenges…

So…on such a note, speaking of this guidance, brings me to Pachamama retreat.

It was Saturday the 8th of July on my Mother in law’s birthday. My son Juan, his girlfriend Katja and I were celebrating with Mom for her birthday with a breakfast at our world famous Saturday Market.

A friend of Juan and Katja, Chris, walked by and we were introduced.  He proceeded to tell us about the Sweat lodge happening the next day. I have always been intriqued with the idea of doing something like this, but have never before felt such an urgency to participate as I did then.  I do believe this was the moment I made my mind up to do it…

Katja and Juan also felt like going the next day and it was settled.

As it turned out, it started to rain lightly in the night which was truly a blessing as this was the first rain after the terrible raging fires in Knysna and surrounds.

The next day found me enjoying lying in bed as it was cold and raining.

Everyone cancelled the trip as it was an apparent 35 minute drive into the forest to get to Pachamama. This does not sound too far, but my vehicle to travel there was a tiny Chevy Spark, left to us by my Mother who died December. Also I have never been there and did not have the faintest idea how to get there.

So, I stayed in bed enjoying watching the light misty rain fall and toying with the abandonement of an idea to get up and go SWEAT…

Once again, I felt an inexplicable urge to do the sweat and made the decision to get up and go.

I had to visit the petrol station before such a drive, as the Chevy these days wanted more oil (5th litre for the week) than petrol. At the petrol station, Petrus, who have been working there since I can remember, was surprised to find me at the wheel. He only found out then that my Mother had died in December.

I do believe that the way in which my Mom died had a huge impact on me and probably this had to do with the urge I felt of going to the sweat.

In her last days, my Mother’s body was in an unceasing spasm. She could not move and had to be turned every two hours. She also had to be changed regularly as she had to wear nappies.

I was blessed to find space with The Living Cornerstone just around the corner from me, a 24 hour care facility. We were super blessed that this state of being lasted only three weeks before she left us. If you knew my Mom, you would know that she was very independent. She would not have wanted this state of being one bit. I was thankful for those last three weeks as I am an only child and we did not have the best relationship. It was healing to be at her side for most of the time.

Here I want to add that just last night, I found the note that came with two handkerchiefs gifted to me, during this time by my Mom’s side. It was gifted by Annemarie and Johan. These are the parents of our friends, Fanie, Christo and Joe Moller. We can always be sure of parental guidance from these two wise humans as they love reading and researching and thus share a wealth of knowledge. I am filled with gratitude to have them on our life journey.

As I believe that I was in perfect flow, the message for directions from Chris came through on my phone…at least now I knew kinda where I had to go.

It was an adventurous drive for sure, driving into the forrest passing farms with cows grazing in the fields. Just that morning, I saw a video about cows and it felt as if everything happening was connecting dots on my journey. At one point I stopped next to the cows and walked over to the fence, locking eyes with them. It was an awesome feeling of connectivity…

It felt as if I was in a foreign country going to a sweat lodge, but here it was offered to me right in my backyard, so to speak…

…superblessed indeed…

Onwards I drove and got there just on time.

There was no time for me to change as it started raining. I stripped down to my lingerie in a dorm and luckily had my scarf to cover up with until we were inside the darkness of the very low hut.  Nothing mattered at all as I felt as if I was absolutely at the right place and at the right time.

We walked pass a fire filled with big glaring red stones which were obviously readied for us for a while.

The hut was small and we had to crawl in through a tiny opening. I counted nine people. We were told to sit in a circle and settled in.

Then the fire glaring red stones were brought and carefully placed in the middle of our circle. As each stone were brought in, a chant was heard …”Welcome Grandmother”…and this chant continued after every fiery hot stone…”Welcome Grandmother”

Nixiwaka said that he wanted nine stones, but only seven were able to fit the small firespace and then…the flap of the hut were closed and we sat in pitch darkness with only the glaring of the fire…water was added and a lot of steam were forming in the small space…

It was the strangest feeling and totally out of my comfort zone as I am claustrophobic.

But alas, it was not my own urgent voice which rang out; it was two of the men that pleaded to leave the hut immediately.

They were told that if they left, they would not be able to join in again. This made my decision clear to suck it up and stick it out.

I have come this far with the adventure…and again I felt an overwhelming sense of being at the right place at the right time.  I had to smile nervously, as I sensed a confirmation because of the two people leaving, as now we were seven and seven has always been a profound number for me. Not only is it widely considered to be the perfect number, but my first relationship as a teenager lasted until it’s seventh year, my first marriage lasted seven years, my first business…yes, seven years when I sold it…my second business exactly the same…

Now I fully believed that I was at the right place…at the right time…

Nixiwaka started a guided meditation with his melodious voice… chackra number one (red) was confronted, cleansed, cleared of any bad energy, surrounding it in soft healing light and then only moving on to the next chackra.

This felt so amazing and I could feel my body and mind responding well…the next chackra (orange) was addressed and lovingly cleansed and healed… all the while the water was poured on the stones…and steam was enveloping us…

I was sweating profusely by this time, but it did not matter at all…I felt giddy with expectation…

Chackra number three (yellow) was up and here was a different story. This is the chackra that has to do with nurturing…
…while writing this article, I figured out that this is probably why I love giving foot treatments… while nurturing others, I am giving out what I most need…

I wrote a book and published it in 2010 – Bury the Past, Unlock the future. I thought that I have dealt with all my issues relating to nurturing.

My Dad was an alcoholic when I was born and because of this I had a very angry Mom. My Mom had also had a few miscarriages before me as well as carrying a baby boy full term who died when he was born and this was two years prior to myself.  So as can be expected…a lot of hurt and anger. To add drama to chaos, I was born with asthma and remained a daily asthmatic until my late teenage years when I “outgrew” it.  So just imagine how much trouble I was to try and keep alive…

Well, clearly chackra no three was communicating to me that it was still out of whack as I started hyperventilating.  I have been battling with panic attacks on a regular basis for the last year and I knew exactly how it felt when it was revealing itself…and it was definitely revealing itself…

I started feeling pins and needles on the sides of my hands…I tried to take big gulps of air and was relieved that it was so dark that no one could see me.  The pins and needles started spreading and my hands began to spasm.  I took some more air and tried to calm my mind, but when the pins and needles reached my face, I knew I had to get out… or I would probably land face down onto the glaring Grandmother stones.

I had calming pills prescribed by my doctor in my bag which was in the car and it worked with immediate effect if I could only get to it fast enough…

Everyone was in deep meditation and a young lady was sitting entranced next to me.  I felt so awful to bother her, but I had to get out as I was seeing grey and knew that I was about to faint.

I motioned that I wanted to get out, but she reprimanded me to stay for awhile longer.  I think I conveyed to her in some more urgent tones as she gave me a little space to meander around her…then I still had to get pass Nixiwaka, our most peaceful guide…

He must have sensed how urgent it was as he opened the flap for me, but as I passed him, he whispered that I would be welcomed back when they open the flap for some more stones, which will happen another three times.

Crawling to get outside, I stood up in a downpour of rain with my bare feet sinking into thick mud.

What now?…

…my car was about a kilometre away, but my carkeys were in the dorm about a kilometre in the opposite direction…and I was contorted in spasm and in no condition to walk anywhere by this time…

This was the point when I knew with certainty that there was nothing I could do and no one to help me… I simply had to let go…

I saw a bench next to the dam and somehow made my way there…

I stumbled onto it and let my head fall back. The downpour of rain felt very cool and cleansing.

My face and mouth were totally scew by now (it looks like you are having a stroke) and I began embracing the fact that I would die here…

It felt as if I could just drink more and more of the pure life-giving water, the more I let go and let the rainwater run into my mouth.  It felt as if the pins and needles and even my sore right kidney were being flushed.

The rain poured over me and I kept drinking, feeling strangely soothed.

I started thinking about my life and a feeling of complete and utter calm began spreading through my body.  It dawned on me that we all knew that we are going to die one day;  in fact this is the only certainty of our life.

I also thought about the recent raging fires and the people who died horrifically in those fires and all the others who lost everything.  This was the first downpour of rain after the raging fires and I felt somehow refreshed and as if all my aches and pains were being exorcised…even my sore neck felt better.

Feeling more calmness and absolutely superblessed with my peaceful setting, I prayed then, giving gratitude for the perfectly serene space and beauty all around for my last breath.

I was extremely grateful that I ended up going alone as I would not have wanted my loved ones to see me like this.

In my prayers, I expressed gratitude for each of my loved ones, my husband, my children and all my amazing friends…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

…and the most awesome experiences I have had during my lifetime.

Gratitude for having been at the hospital to meet my most beautiful granddaughter, Alexia when she was born…I remember first standing behind the glass window and watching her proud Dad with his newborn. Then he came to us and handed her over to me. As I looked at her, she tried her best to focus and look into my eyes and I could not have imagined that it would happen, but it did…our eyes locked for just a brief encounter, but an eternity…

Yes, I have surely lived a rewarding life!

 

Feeling absolutely relaxed now with feelings of utmost peace, I heard something and when I turned my head, I saw the flap of the hut opening and more stones being fetched.

I realized then that I was actually able to get up and making my way slowly through the mud once again I felt determined to go back in…

Inside I went to sit on the opposite side where the two men that left had sit for more breathing space.

Again the glaring red stones were welcomed as grandmothers and this is when it dawned on me that I too, was a grandmother…

I felt honoured by this realization, as if I was meant to feel welcome and then the flap closed again.

Again the water were poured on the glaring stones…again I started hyperventilating…

…but this time I was determined to stay as now I knew for a fact that I would live to tell this tale. (And this is exactly why I decided to share.)

I was here for a reason, to clear the imbalances which had my Mom in a paralised spasm when she died…and myselfas I was in a spasm and ready to go just now.

Not only was my Mom caught up in this spasm state, but she kept asking me for her daughter.  I tried to comfort her by staying with her and reminding her that I was her only child (as far as I know), but she just said, ‘not you, my other daughter’…

Yes, my nurtering chackra was definitely out of whack…and this I probably handed down through my cell memory to my children and onto my granddaughter.

I was here to do everything possible to stop this downward spiral. To give the gift of forgiveness…This was my quest…I was here to let go for me and my loved ones…

I would be eternally grateful to know for sure that my children never have to wonder if they were good enough for me…I have the most beautiful children and I would be superblessed to get to a point where I know that they definitely know this…that they would know that I love them unconditionally, they do not need to prove themselves, they have already proved themselves by showing up in my life…by bringing me to this point of knowing…and doing…

There were a bottle of water being sent around with the utmost reverance and gratitude and now, (because of the experience on the bench), I could better sense just how important life giving water is and how easy it becomes for us to take it for granted.  Not only water, but how often do we just gulp down our food because we are in a hurry and then we wonder where all our health problems stems from.

When last have you enjoyed the actual taste of a banana or avocado or name it…how do we taste better?

By using all our senses…
seeing – (wanting it because it looks good),
taking it (touch) and then smelling the flavours first and having our brain help by thinking (enticing) how it should taste.  This is conscious/mindful eating and I definitely want to do more of it from now on…which brings us back to gratitude once again.

After these mind blowing revelations, it became tough for me to breathe again and as it was dark and I had so much space around me, I laid down on my tummy.

There was a glimmer of light coming through the bottom of the hut and I put my nose closer for some more oxygen. This actually helped a lot and I could listen once again to the melodious voice of  Nixiwaka.

He proceeded to tell a story which I am not going to share details of, but it was exactly what I needed to hear.  As he told it, I felt my sore kidney being warmed by the fireside.  It also felt like little droplets of water was being sprinkled on it.  I felt completely at ease with being there prostate on the ground.

My message for the longest time and also the strongest to come through at the SWEAT, is to be more still and present.  I have always been a doer (always working or doing something to feel validated).  I had a tough time to relax.

This again, yes, stems from my Mother, as I always had to perform to perfection, to make her happy. I am not saying this as a judgement, but it is just what it is…took me a long time to figure this out as well.  We can use abusive behaviour as an excuse or an opportunity…

When the flap was opened again, I sat upright and ready to receive some more profound messages…which I did…and completed the sweat!

Afterwards I had a shower and we shared a meal together in Nixiwaka’s home.  His son, Adam, were there and I surprised him by knowing his name, before he could say it. (I read up on Pachamama the day before and he was on the website.) Even the cats welcomed me while I ate mindfully.

I had to rush home as it was late afternoon and getting dark fast. With the downfall of rain it was no easy road for the Chevy.

Instead of turning right, I turned left and when I suspected I was on the wrong road, it luckily became too narrow for me to continue driving.  I immediately turned around and hightailed out of there.  It was getting dark super fast and I was still in the forest.

I whizzed past the cows who strangely enough came to the fence when they saw me coming as if they wanted to enhance our earlier experience.

Unfortunately I was in too much of a hurry to get home at this stage. It was cold, wet and dark by now and on I speeded.

Coming around a bend, I saw a huge white horse in the road. I am a card reader and this means huge opportunity…

Upon arriving home safely, drenched as it was raining hard, I made myself not just a cup, but a pot of chamomile and rooibos tea with honey and even took the cinamon spice bottle with as I went up to my room for some ‘well deserved’ relaxation. Even the way this sentence was written, is new to me as it took me a long time to feel like I ‘deserve’ if I did not put in hard work first… I proceeded to spoil myself even more with a candle lit bubble bath to feel absolutely unconditionally superblessed.

I basked in this newfound insight.

It was truly an amazing experience which I felt I could not fully comprehend, so I decided to immediately record my feelings so as to make sense of it all. (and now I am able to write about it)

I shall embrace anything that comes…

In the week after the sweat, my son gifted me a Dorn therapy session with Lisa, which confirmed everything that I found out at the sweat and could be even more released.

…superblessed with gratitude…

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TsiTsa falls/Mozamboogie/Ponto do Oira

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by Queen of Hearts                                                                 September 2017


So…this exciting trip started on Sunday the 30th of July. I was planning on writing about this holiday trip in one article, but alas, I realize that it would be much too long, because we were superblessed to extend this trip for more than a month.

So here goes ‘Part 1’ with so much gratitude.

…the weather was slightly overcast, which makes for perfect road tripping, I find.

We left our home in Sedgefield travelled to Southern Comfort, situated in Harkerville where we fetched our friends Martin and Chi-Chi from his home which Martin build himself on their family farm.

Our lovely travel companions, would prove to be absolutely perfect for this amazing journey…

We travelled for eleven hours and arrived very tired at Tsi tsa falls for a welcomed overnight stay. It was dark, windy and very cold and we were so thankful to our hosts, Adrian and Angela Badenhorst, for the warm fire awaiting our arrival.

We created a quick feast of a dinner with leftover ‘padkos’ and Chi-Chi’s very own delicious brand of foods, ‘Raw Chi’ (for orders 083 4194658). Chi-Chi Love is a vegan. We felt superblessed on this trip to have learned so much from both Martin and Chi-Chi about good nutrition.

(Just some quick info on our friend, Martin… he is the fire chief at Afrika Burn)

With our bellies satisfied, we were quite pleased to enjoy a cup of tea by the welcoming fireside…

We talked a bit about our travel for the day. We travelled scenic, winding roads through Ugie and Maclear which was a first for us.
Bethesda, my husband, really is the best driver I know. He commented that he had a much easier than usual drive, as there were far less cattle on this road which we had never travelled before. He observed that this might be because the towns were further apart and we observed more fences to keep cattle off the roads.

Tsitsa falls is an “off the grid farm” which boasts with its own waterfall. The Badenhorst family bought the property 12 years ago. It was barren land, but they fell in love and started plotting their own livelihood.

It is just a 5 min walk from the house to the view of the waterfall, but after a good night’s rest, we opted for an extended guided tour of about one and a half hours.

 

 

 

 

We had the best volunteer as our tour guide, Mieke (7 years old), who confidently shared so much more than her wealth of knowledge with us. Her whole being radiated with an energetic zest for life. I do believe the fact that she could get away from her books (home school) early in the morning just added to her enthusiasm.

 

 

She guided us along rocky pathways into the unknown. We could not believe our eyes as we were superblessed to be surrounded with the most splendid views all the way until we arrived right at the back of the waterfall. Mieke showed us historical ‘Bushman paintings’ (left)…left from long bygone days. She even showed us most interesting fossils that she found.
We were also trusted with information on treasures she had found and left…

The homestead has more than enough water because of the river as they use a ram pump. It was awesome to experience rain water tanks used for inside the home overflowing when we visited.

After an amazingly informative guided morning walk, we said our fond farewells and excitedly took to the road for day 2 of our journey to Mozamboogie.

We decided to stop for lunch in a stunning forested area close to Kokstad at Ingeli Forest and Spa . After perusing the menu and not finding the good nutrition that we were looking for, we had a brainwave to ask for a vegetarian option. Low and behold, another menu were brought for our viewing. We found exactly what we were looking for and proceeded to order some fantastic vegetarian curries. I opted for an amazing lentil cottage pie.

Martin’s face were sweating profusely after indulging in an amazing chilli sauce. He loved it so much, that he made a special request for a take away of some chilli sauce.
(On hindsight, this proved to be totally unnecessary as we were going to “Chilli Country” and could negotiate good prices for the best ever chilli…even I had chilli with every meal we had…so delicious!)

With our palates well pleased, we took to the road again, excited to spend a night at our friends, Geoffrey and Ashleigh’s backpackers.
Sensayuma is situated on and have uninterrupted views of the Tugela Mouth. We highly recommend a visit to Sensayuma whenever in the area, but alas, for us it did not happen as planned.

Plans changed, as they so often do, when we decided to have coffee with our friend, Nadia van der Merwe in Ballito Bay.

We were enroute to buy our AA stickers needed for the border, at Midas in Ballito Bay, when we were held up by traffic because of an accident.

We whatsapped Nadia, who offered to purchase our stickers for us as the business would be closed at our eta.

We were super excited to see her after a long time as she moved away from Plettenberg Bay after completion of her studies. Nadia studied at “Equi-librium” to be an Animal Vetenary Therapist.  Horses and dogs being her main focus. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1HMAsVtP0A6cFgJ9FeN9_BPnpZPJMCcS6dcmVbrWMBx4/edit?usp=sharing

Beautiful Ballito Bay…

It was early evening when we arrived. We were super pleased when Nadia invited us for an overnight stay at her home.

We spend an awesome evening of catching up…quality time with her… while preparing a simple, but absolutely delicious meal of roasted vegetables.

We had a lovely evening of good wine, delicious food and amazing conversation.

Next morning we felt refreshed and ready to drive to the border of Mozambique.

First we did some last minute shopping at Ballito Lifestyle Centre. This proved to take some time as there is definitely more than you bargained for.  As we had another 5 hours drive to the Border, B impelled us to hurry and off we went excited to get through the border.

Our border experience were exceptionally friendly and easy, in my opinion, because our paperwork were in good order. We were very well received and fairly quickly we were on our way to the boogie…

In the capable hands of our experienced driver, the loose, sandy roads to Ponta Malongane proved to be fairly easy for our Ford Ranger 4×2. Our eyes widened quite a number of times in anxious anticipation as we all focused on the treacherous road. It is not advisable to take on these roads with just any ordinary vehicle. You definitely need good ground clearance to avoid the unusually high “middelmannetjie”.

After an exhilarating drive which felt a little like an extreme sport of sorts, we arrived unharmed in the exotic town of Ponto Malongane. The town consists of small shops, a liquor store, curios stalls, but mostly restaurants and bars. The friendly locals are very tourist orientated as they know this is their main income.

Driving through the town, awakened the feeling of being on holiday. As we just wanted to get settled first, we drove through the town to our overnight spot which would be at Ponto Malongane rest camp.

Our friends, Ruan and Bridgette, would be camping already and we arrived at their stunning campsite under an umbrella of majestic green trees. They invited us to share their spot and this proved to be the best decision we would make. We had booked a chalet, but at closer inspection, we found this to be literally on the dancefloor. So we opted to stay under the majestic trees at the best campsite with amazing neighbours all round. We even had our own secret pathway directly onto the beach.

Luckily we made a last minute decision to take our tents on this trip just for in case…now we had our own adobe at least.

We did not however have much else for a camping expedition, but we have great friends and I must say that our friend Ruan definitely has camping down. He had anything and everything and there were no lack. Bridgette worked her magic decorating with beautiful cloths and lanterns. We had the best camping experience.

We had an abundance of fresh produce we had purchased from the farm stalls along the road. We fabricated an ‘evaporation fridge’ from a big box container by taking off the lid and stretching a wet cloth over it. We tried to always keep this cloth wet. It is amazing to see how well this works keeping produce fresh.

The next day found us very excited, waking up very early. We obviously wanted to start with a good cuppa of Java. Out came the Barista…

We were not ready for what happened next. Everyone warned us about the mosquitos in Mozambique, but we are pleased to report that this is definitely bee country. We take our Barundi (organic) coffee black and with honey.

The bees were so attracted to our honey, that we had so much difficulty drinking our coffee. There were so many of them. We had fun and games dodging them with each sip, eventually running with our coffee cups through the secret pathway and onto the beach. They followed us and we had to run upwind to get away from them, changing direction often as they were not deterred easily. We were fighting to drink our coffee which resulted in so much laughing.

Afterwards I could not resist the water and went in for my first swim in Mozambique. We were excited to explore and went for a beach walk. There are resorts all along the coast and we saw a wooden walkway behind a dune which we promptly took. We ended up inside the resort next to ours. It was absolutely beautiful with many wooden walkways to different homes. We had an awesome experience with Loerie birds flying around green tree top canopies. There were so many birds, chatting excitedly. Massive Hornbills were everywhere. They are huge and have a look about them of prehistoric times. It felt like we were on a different planet.

We continued on and onto a road. Then we saw a big gate. As we approached, the security guard must have thought that we were staying in the resort. He opened the gate for us with a huge smile and we ended up smack bang in the middle of the town. Here we did some shopping that we had to fetch later as they offered to do some engraving on our gifts. I splurged a little then, buying some wooden ‘fish bones’ for our deck back at home. Fish bones are definitely their signature emblem, I do believe, as you see these carvings everywhere as well as printed on fabric.

After our shopping expedition, we walked back, well pleased through dusty roads to our resort to see if anyone else was up yet.
When we arrived at the campsite, everyone was up and ready to do something amazing. We decided to have an exploration expedition to Ponto do Oira.

We were a little weary that we had not taken Malaria pills. Martin had told us about Vitamin B1 which is a much healthier option as it is easier on your kidneys than Malaria pills. Martin said that if we take this daily, mosquitos would be repelled by our smell. We were a little sceptical at first, but I have to admit that I do believe this worked well for us. When we were still in the city on our journey, we tried to purchase these vitamins, but it was super expensive.

Arriving in the town of Ponto do Oira, we decided to take a last chance in purchasing said tablets and we were very lucky to find them super cheap. We purchased enough for us for 10 days and it definitely pulled us through.

Back at campsite we chilled hard and saw a stunning sunset that evening.

When the sun set, we always have Ruan on the ready to entertain us with a fire show.

 

 

 

 

 

We had the best neighbours as they were the event’s paid entertainment. They had so many toys and we were superblessed to sit on our hammocks and watch while they practise right in our campsite.

We arrived at our campsite on Tuesday, but the actual event Mozamboogie only started on Friday and lasts for 5 days. Sound check started on Thursday evening though, so add another evening of electronic music.

Hats off to our friends Karen and Royston, hosts of this magical annual event. Also to our friend Frans, aptly nicknamed Legend, who was a pioneer of this event.

To everyone involved, well done, it was absolutely magical and we shall hope to be there next year. We have been trying to be there for the last 5 years and I hope that we would never miss it again.
To add to this magic, were the most splendorous supermoon eclipse. I have fond memories of dancing under the moon overlooking the soft waves ebbing and flowing…

We were superblessed as so many of our friends were there too. There were more than 500 people and we were happy to party, but also happy when we witnessed more and more beings leaving after the weekend.

When I reminisce, I think of an amazing seafood braai we had one evening which Ruan handled for us, complete by organising prawns, crayfish and everything else fishy through the locals. Ruan is also our usual braai master and we had a lipsmacking meal.

We met the most amazing new friends, Tobie and Charmaine, who we think could be family (on the Gagiano side)

…and we found out that they actually live close to us in Mosselbay

We were invited to their beautiful holiday home in Morgan’s Bay…on our way home… an invite we happily accepted. (Part 2)

The last evening of the event, it rained, and after 10 days camping, we were quite ready to leave for some more adventures.

We travelled with our friends, Nic, Jerrith and Engel to Ponto do Oira for a sleepover. We rented a house from the locals. After we got settled, we went shopping and out to dinner at a restaurant…

We left the next day and after the border, we were sad to part ways…as they were going to Pretoria and we had some more holidaying to do and headed for the Transkei…

…Superblessed with more memories…

 

 

 

Continue reading “TsiTsa falls/Mozamboogie/Ponto do Oira”

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A Tribute to Princess Dana…

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A Tribute to Princess Dana

(The  Updated Version November 2018)

(This is a true story)

Once upon a time (I do believe the year was 2012)…in a far, far away magical place, named Tankwa Town, by the colorful nomads, who traveled from afar and even further… to come together annually for just a little while and remember what life is supposed to be, to find some happiness

…This is where I met our beautiful Princess Dana…

DSCN2173Left:IMG_8697

2012

Right:

2015

Africa Burn  should be on your bucket-list as a must-do.

In life it is most important for us to get into the flow and know how superblessed we are…

…and sooner, better than later as I found out just how short life can be, (after writing a Tribute to my friend Dana)…

My granddaughter, Alexia’s daddy, Joe, found out he had cancer and my daughter, Maryna and Joe decided they were going to fight for his life.  Alexia were only two at the time, so my job was to free up Maryna’s time by looking after her.

They fought for some time, but sadly Joe died before Alexia turned three years of age.

(Pic left: Joe with Alexia as a baby)

 

 

 

 

 

Just after this, we found out my Mom had colon cancer and as it was already aggressive, subsequently she died after just three weeks of finding out.

Then my Dad were told that he should be tested as there were a growth on his back.  Luckily he had a operation to remove the growth.  He is in hospital while I am writing this as he has been battling with prostrate and bladder issues for a while now.

I think what I am trying to convey in this updated version, is that we should start living, while we are alive.

For us, Africa Burn was an eye opener to life…a “wake-up” experience… an awakening as such…

The first time we went in 2012, when asked what Africa Burn was like?

All I could say, is that it was…“A World within a World”

…and now after going back and experiencing more and more every year…and even after our tragic loss at Africa Burn this year, I can only still give this same answer… “A World within a World”…

So…at this magical festival we were in 2012…

Photos of a wet 2012 Africa Burn (tap this blue link)

…It was raining and quite stormy, which was unusual weather for being in the desert and all…

…Our camp was set up enough for us to be quite cosy though.

Our very good friend, Johannes Moller, who was camping with us, came and told us that he found some “not so happy campers” and was trying to sort them out…

They have just arrived in the Storm, three ladies and a gentleman (Gerdus) who was feeling ill… whom we promptly took to our cosy tent for a lie-down.

And this is how we met our Princess Dana. With her acquaintance, we also became good friends with her companions, Cathy and Debra…

…So… when the ladies met with the storm in the desert,…they morosely decided that they were going home…

…but our good friend Jo, (short for Johannes), ladies man that he is, promptly came to the rescue and made them feel welcomed…

My interest were peaked from the first time I saw Princess Dana…yes, I was intriqued…she was wearing purple and a crown…yes, a tiara…which if you have been to Africa Burn before, would not seem strange at all…

So when I complimented her on the stunning crown she wore, she told me that it was not just worn for Africa Burn, but that she always wears it and always wears only puple.

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And during the next week spend together at Africa Burn, I learned why she wore the crown everyday…

…it was her daily reminder that she was a Princess. She told me that she was a recovering alcoholic and after a destructive married life, she decided that she was worthy of much more and transformed herself into the beautiful Princess that we met…

(here I would like to fill in that we can be shy/modest or whatever we want to call it, but the sooner we live the life we always wanted to, the better… for example…if you want to be a Princess, then be one.  Just maybe there will be less depression or stress related diseases)

I am all for transformation and Dana’s story impressed me so much.  I grew up with an alcoholic father and to stop drinking because you decide to and then to never drink again were most impressive. The only alcohol she would take were three sips of champagne.  When we were together at socials, we used to joke that I was her designated drinker;  and I am also not the best drinker…

When she shared more and more dark ‘before Princess’ stories with me and saw that her honesty did not freak me out, we would talk about anything, and we did…
She told me how she wanted to move toward a more lighter side of life and I do believe she got her wish 100%…

…in life, we create what we want to create… and this Princess was the perfect example. She wore the crown to remember that she was so worthy and no-one would ever bring her down.

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She taught me to honourFB_IMG_1465918922340 myself because I am worthy…and it stuck with me.

After she met us, she came to visit us in the Garden Route and after the visit she started making plans to move down from Johannesburg to Harkerville and her dream came true when she moved into the perfect space for her. A little house in the woods which she coloured and created to be just perfect.  When she completed her home makeover, she had a fairytale house complete with a purple front door and magical fairies in the garden. A proper storybook house complete with a beautiful Princess…

Princess Dana created a perfect life for herself and in so doing, showed everyone she encountered that this can be done.

She use to say that if you don’t like your life, just simply change it.  Only you have the power to change it.

Her favourite mantra was…‘I love my life’…

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garden

in Swellendam

 

 

 

Princess Dana made a living, by reading Tarot Cards and acquired enough clientele to afford a superblessed lifestyle. A few years ago she even featured on the television show Carte Blanche for her Tarot Readings.

We shared the love for reading cards, as I have been doing “Angel Card” Readings for the last four years.

I am looking into my journal now and found a tarot reading that my Princess did for me dated April 2014…

…She asked me to visualise my life as I would want it to be and to write it down (the writing down part is very important)…and as I am reading through it, my life has turned out exactly as it was written down.

I am truly superblessed.

She was also quite upset with me at that time as I did not ask for money for my readings and would do it for free, believing that I am blessing another.

She told me that my “gift” would be taken away if I did not use it correctly by charging…she said that there were a “gypsy saying” and I have applied it…

“Cross my palm with silver and I will tell you no lies”

She said I should be a human being and not a human doing. She believed in me and encouraged me at every possible opportunity that she believed that I had a ‘gift’ for Angel Card Readings.  Motivation builds creation.

Princess Dana loved to hoop and decided to make a business of this by making her own “bedazzled hoops” for sale. Another little business to bring in some income while playing at life.

She was all about new adventures and trying new things. Recently she decided she also wanted to fire-hoop and immediately got into it and there are so many photos of her hooping beautifully to her hearts delight.

A zest for life, is what she had and she dished it out. If we went to eat at a restaurant or anywhere we went, out the hoop would come and she would be entertaining the crowds with her hooping.  This would be contagious and very soon there would be eager participants and laughter in abundance.  She knew how to spread happiness

Last year a bunch of us went on a road trip together with motorbikes and a vehicle.  We had so much fun and as I went into a state of trance sitting at the back of my husband on the bike, a business idea came to me.  At a pit stop I enthusiastically told Dana about this idea…‘Rent a party crowd’

One evening, a few months later, a friend of ours, Adriaan (Psy-Pedro is his DJ name) had his first gig at a new venue and we decided to support him.

We ended up creating a party for the venue, complete with hooping by Dana and dancing and we were eagerly invited back by the owners.  We should have charged, as the above business idea were blooming fast.

Dana and I decided that with this new business idea and all our amazingly beautiful friends, “Rent a party”, we could easily create an income while playing through life…

Read all about “My Fabulous Friends”…

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And a little bit about Princess Dana’s ‘bewitching’ powers…

Not too long ago, we were at a party on a mountain in Sedgefield at our other friends (Marnus and Nastasja), a magical place in the forest.

I went to the dance floor on a mission to have a good dance.  I saw Princess Dana at a distance hooping, giving me the eye, but I wanted to dance.  I fully intended to, but I just could not relate to the music and started walking in her direction.  She had her little space set up as she usually did.  Dana never did normal camping, we would call it “glamping”.

Anyway…her little chairs were packed out and as I came closer, she stopped hooping and we sat down. She had this mysterious smile and when I asked why, she told me that she “asked” me with her mind to come on over for a chat.

I fully believed her and I was superblessed as we sat chatting and another beautiful friend (Nadia) came over, sat down at my feet and gave me a lovely foot massage.  When I said something to the effect that the music of the playing DJ at the time, were not the best, she jokingly asked…”shall I go change it for you”… we had a good laugh…  She always made me feel like a queen and I am superblessed to have known such a beautiful being.  Everything just flowed when I was blessed to be in her company…

…she just knew how to love…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Matjiesfontein on our way to Africa Burn 2015…

December 2015, we rented out our house as we do every season and now even throughout the year.  This obviously comes with a lot of cleaning to be done. I finished up cleaning and went to stay with Princess Dana in her purple cottage.

There were a few of our other girl friends as well as Arina’so son, Conrad and we had such a good time.  Dana and I slept together in the same bed and we felt like teenagers chatting till the early morning hours.

Next day all I did, were to sit on her wooden hammock outside in her beautiful garden and I didn’t even realise until late afternoon, that this was all I did for a full day…

We drank tea out of beautiful cups and had lovely treats the whole day long.  She spoiled me when I needed it most…

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In 2015, she came to stay with me for a week and we were both feeling a bit under the weather…we also stayed in bed and watched documentaries and chatted so much about everything and nothing. I mostly spoiled her, because being a Princess, Dana did not like cooking much.

At this time, as woman usually do, we chatted about our giving-birth experience.  Our daughters are of similar age and they are very similar personality wise.  I had a very rare birth experience with my daughter and when Dana told me about her experience, we were amazed at how similar it was.

Left: My granddaughter Alexia receiving some Princess training…

 

 

 

 

 

Right:  Princess Dana with her granddaughter Mikayla

When her granddaughter were born, I was superblessed to be the one next to her and share in her joy. We were in her car on our way in to Plettenberg Bay, when she received the call.

I know I have been rambling on and I do believe I needed to as I miss her so…

This morning and many mornings to come, I will put on my make-up and think of my purple princess Dana as I am using the eye pencil she bought me as a gift. It is a special one as it is dual colour and I received the first one about two years ago from her.  When it was nearly finished, I started looking for something similar, but could not find it anywhere.  Dana started looking as well and finally only about a week before Africa Burn, she brought me two more…this is how she was…always making others happy.

FB_IMG_1465829389409I use to tell her that she was my Princess and she would answer,

“yes, but you are my Queen”…

She was always esteeming others and therefore had so many fans.

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Above:  December 2014  Holiday Road trip

She grew into the beautiful being of light that we said goodbye to at the same magical place that we met.

Above pic taken just awhile before she left us…still playing…

So it has taken a phenomenal Princess of a woman like this to die…for us… to see what it is to live…and that is exactly an end to this story that Princess Dana would have loved…

…even now she has celebrity status…being an inspiration to all…

Below:  We had a sendoff (one of a few) for Princess Dana on Harkerville farm…FB_IMG_1465827844417

Rest In Peace

Superblessed to have had such a magical being on my journey!

 

 

 

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