iizinja zasemaMpondweni

Ever since my first visit emaMpondweni in 2012, I have loved the dogs I met. This year, I turned 60. In lieu of the usual sort of celebratory gifts, I asked friends to contribute towards a sterilisation clinic for Mngcambeni village, Khutwini.   I have visited there a few times and got to know the…

Morsels of Morning

After a long fallow period when poems did not come easily to me, I decided I was over thinking things. On my morning walks, I am often inspired by something I see – the colour of the sky, shape of a tree, a creature that crosses my path, and the moon, always the moon. Occasionally…

Grazing

Recently, I was asked to write a book review for the African Journal of Range & Forage Science. I know, it is a bit odd. I am not a sciencey person and although I am a writey person, I have never actually written a book review. I had also never read an entire book as…

59 Walks

Since I dreamed up the idea that I’d like to celebrate turning 60 by walking with women friends, much has changed in the world. However, walking and women friends are still as wonderful as ever, so not everything has changed. One could say that the important things have not changed at all. This is the…

Karoo Kos

When my Instagram pal Karen McEwan of True Karoo Trading (and festival organiser supreme) invited me to come to the Karoo Food Festival to talk about weeds, I hesitated.  It is so far, I thought. That’s true, it is far, but also a fabulous opportunity for a little foodie road trip.  What if there are…

Privilege

I have a fabulous car named Lupa. She is undeserved. Unearned. She epitomizes privilege. Purchased with generational income, not even earned in my arm of our family. I love her. While I can absolutely never, ever, make up the carbon footprint of the construction of a new car (ok, I have not done any breeding…

49 Walks

Progress through my 59 Walks is steady, despite small challenges imposed by lockdown and distancing.  Of course, they are all out of doors, groups are small and often, masks are worn anyway.  This post features walks 41 to 49. If you missed them, you can enjoy the first 19, or the next 20 up to…

In a Pickle

It is easy to get flustered at this time of year when radishes go to seed so fast, courgettes double in size each day and there are more beans on the vine than you know what to do with. One way to use up the abundance, is to pickle things. I’m not big on food…

Squeaky Nights

‘tis the season when the doors don’t close when windows stick and drawers jam when jam is fresh as fruit falls freely and days are drenched in cuckoo calls but the nights! oh the nights dusk settles as silent bats swoop but deep in the dark the big bats squeak frogs creak and click and…

39 Walks

There have been a few months recently when walking, beyond our garden, was not encouraged and I began to despair that I would ever manage 59 different walks before next June. However, despite lockdown challenges, I have found lots of lovely local spots to explore, and have kept walking each day in my usual places….