Love, Hope and Faith

There as been a great deal of discussion recently concerning faith. Numerous members here have expressed their scorn for those who adhere to any religious beliefs or hold some sort of faith in there being a supernatural entity and a purpose to life that extends beyond the laws of nature. I often think the critics are being too harsh in their judgements. Faith is not an object that can be selected from the shelf like a grocery item to place in a shopping trolley. You cannot choose faith; faith chooses you, just as you cannot choose to love or choose to hope. They are all as much a part of human nature as is the desire for life itself. Continue reading “Love, Hope and Faith”

For Janus

I apologise for hijacking your post about education, but it did lead elsewhere and left me wondering about your views on colonisation, especially the colonisation of Africa about which you seem to be extremely critical. I would genuinely like to know, where you think the colonisers went wrong and how things could have been better managed. This is not about mud-slinging and name-calling but a sincere attempt to understand why it is that you think that we, the colonisers and ‘white ruling class’ were so much at fault and what we could have and should have done better. That mistakes were made, I cannot disagree, but they were not all made with malice of forethought. Continue reading “For Janus”

Off to hospital this morning

Some of you may remember that last year I ventured on a motorcycle expedition through Southern Africa. I began to write about it on the other place, but when it all went pear shaped I sort of gave up the exercise.

On the 14th of August my little adventure took a turn for the worse. This is a sanitised account of what I wrote to family and friends at the time. It is quite long I am sorry to say, but that is just the way it is. Continue reading “Off to hospital this morning”

A summer holiday

I have recently returned from a trip to the UK and Europe. I was gone for 5 weeks. Although it was the depths of winter, the weather was warm (26 deg) and sunny when I left Cape Town. I flew BA into terminal 5 at Heathrow, where I was met by a friend who drove me into London for a spot of breakfast. The great thing about flying that route is that there is no jet lag. Despite the long flight, 12 hours, give or take, the time difference is only one hour and thus one is able to sleep through the night. Even though I am tall, 1.93m, (6’ 4”), I found the leg room to be adequate and though I know it is unfashionable to say so, I rather enjoy airline food. Continue reading “A summer holiday”

A sad day!

I do not know whether it is just a natural consequence of getting older or whether it is because the internet and modern communications allow us to stay in touch with people with whom we might otherwise have lost contact, but I find that an extraordinary number of my friends are dying. Today I received news that two of them lost their respective battles, bringing to six the number of friends I have lost this year. Continue reading “A sad day!”

Help requested!

Can anyone tell me why it is that I am unable to access the dialogue box on the Daily Telegraph comment section? I have a MyT account which allows me to comment and create blogs there, but on the main section, I am simply left with the notice that I need to be logged in to comment. It persists even after I have logged in. If I try to log in again, I am taken to my profile page.

Because I thought that there might be a conflict with this WordPress site and the Telegraph WordPress site, I created a new identity and tried to log on that way. Same problem.

I have, very occasionally, been able to comment, but 99% of the time I am not given access to the dialogue box. Does anybody have any ideas how to resolve this? Many thanks.

Christopher Robin and the Station of Fear

Alice was waiting on the station platform.
“Flippin’ heck, CR, you look whiter than a nun’s knickers.”
“You are not going to believe it.
“Oh yea,” said Alice, “what happened?”
“After I left you at Buckingham Palace, oh and by the way, what is it with you and those guardsmen, you were grinning like a Cheshire cat when the sergeant offered to darn your socks for you.”
“You know me,” sniggered Alice, “I like a man in uniform”.
“And out of uniform too, from what I have heard”.
“Watch it. Just because ….Hehhhey, CR, who is that?” Continue reading “Christopher Robin and the Station of Fear”

Another Zim princess.

There is obviously something about the Rhodesian/Zimbabwean girls that makes them irresistible to European Royalty. First it was Prince Harry who has been chasing Chelsy Davy for the past few years, and now Prince Albert of Monaco has announced his engagement to Charlene Wittstock.

I have to say that despite her Christian name, Charlene looks to be a classy girl; well, compared to Ms Davy anyway. Incidentally, Chelsy’s dad was at school with me, though he is a few years older.

My Alma mater is situated next to the Botanical Gardens in Harare. In the good old bad old days of Rhodesia, young courting couples would drive their cars into the gardens at night where they would ‘make out’. It was a rite of passage for the school borders to sneak out after lights out and head for the gardens. The object was to creep up on a car and then shine a torch into the startled faces of a guilty couple just when they were in the most compromising situation. On one occasion this happened, the chap happened to know that the unwelcome voyeurs were from school, he having participated in just such an activity when he was there a few years earlier. In a state of almost complete nudity, he chased them back into the dormitory where he was confronted by the member of staff on duty. That unfortunate, frustrated lover was our Chelsy’s dad!

Popocatapetl in the sunlight gleams

When I was but thirteen or so

I went into a golden land,

Chimborazo, Cotopaxi

Took me by the hand.

“It will be out secret”, said the priest. “I want you to promise not to tell anybody, not even your mother. Nobody must know?”

Antonio sat silently, on the edge of the bed looking down at his feet, brushing away a tear from his eye.

The priest placed his hand on the boy’s shoulder and gave it a squeeze.

“Promise me?”

“I promise, Father”, said the boy.

“There’s a good lad. Here, let me dry your tears away. You don’t want anybody to see you have been crying.” He reached for a handkerchief and wiped Antonio’s eyes.

“Go back to your own bed now and get some sleep. You will fee better in the morning.”

“I am not crying because of the pain,” said the boy.

“I know. Continue reading “Popocatapetl in the sunlight gleams”

Richard Dawkins loses the plot

I used to be a huge fan of Richard Dawkins. His masterpiece, The Selfish Gene, was massively significant in my life. When I read it in 1986 I recognised a man who was able to express in clear, concise and scientific terms, beliefs that I had nurtured for some years. Almost everything he wrote thereafter was eagerly consumed by me. He struck me as being a brilliant, gentle and humourous man who simply wanted to tell the truth without pushing any personal cause. So strong was my admiration for him that I would sometimes say in conversations about him, “Dawkins is wrong to say there is no God. Dawkins is God!” Childish perhaps; designed to provoke, probably; sincere, certainly. So when a friend of mine who had met him described him as a self-satisfied prick, I felt personally insulted. Continue reading “Richard Dawkins loses the plot”