Monthly Archives: February 2009

South Africa Day 29 – Last Full Day

Today we just packed and had another braai. That was it. Just conversation talking African politics and a little about American History.

I was online looking at the weather and Columbus looks like it’s going to get cold and snow the day I arrive, nice, thanks Columbus for the welcome home.

My next post will be from the states!

South Africa Day 28 – Capetown Tour

Today we were up early and went to visit Cape Town. Our trip began at a small shop for breakfast where I had eggs florentine. I noticed this little shop had a lot of private labeled food, which was really neat because it had the name of the coffee shop and were all gourmet kinds of food.

After this we went to the market, with lots of traditional South African crafts/art. Can you say TOURIST TRAP? Emily and Magda were chatting so they did not bother us too much because we were “local”. After more shopping I got this awesome mechanical robot, vintage 1950′s, very cool. I will update this on my site.

We walked over the the gardens for a beer and a rest then to the Hop-On-Hop-Off bus. This gave us a short tour of Cape Town before we went to Table Mountain.

The weather was awesome today because there was near 100% visibility with very little wind.

South Africa Day 27 – Reading & Afternoon Braai

Today I am certain that I am completely caught up on my reading and about ready to get home since I am running out of things to do. Today we had an afternoon Braai (BBQ/Cookout) and then I read some more. Right now we are looking at old photos and slides of years past in South Africa, very cool to see Emm as a kid on the farm here… I think tonight we are having pies (English style).

South Africa Day 26 – Chinese Food Day

Today was our once a year spoil. A 5 course Chinese dinner spread out over 3-4 hours. It was very, very nice. It started with spring rolls. Then we had a chicken soup, not sure of the recipe, but it was alike a chicken egg drop or something like that. Then we had sweet & sour pork. To end the food part we concluded with beef chow mien. For desert we had fortune cookies and fruit.

South Africa Day 25 – Reading & Massage

Today I just read and after a nap went to get a sweedish massage at one of the local spas. It’s nice, get a 60 minute massage for $35. Can’t beat it. For dinner we had a traditional south african dish called vetkoek, pronounced “fet-cook”. The closest example in the states would be a deep fried sloppy joe. Yes heartburn was involved!

Things I Miss and Things I Don't

After being gone for three weeks I was thinking of what do I miss and what will I avoid? Besides my family, friends and dog here’s a few list.

Things I miss:

  • When I get an idea for a robot tinker but no robots to tinker with
  • Fast Internet, not that I miss being online all the time, but I do like getting on doing stuff and getting off vs. waiting for things
  • My Books & Large Book Stores
  • Driving
  • Fun little projects I can start, stop and have fun with

Things I don’t miss:

  • Always checking my email and being online
  • Being Needlessly Busy
  • 24/7 News and the constant DOOM & GLOOM
  • Cold Weather & Gray Skies
  • Selfish / Rude People

What I find most interesting about these list is what’s not in them. We spend our lives aquiring enough stuff so that we think we are happy, and when you don’t have it, you find you really don’t miss much… Funny…

South Africa Day 24 – 5 Things

Five Short Notes:

  1. On our way to get some shoes I notices some fires on mountain the way to Stellenbosch. The entire valley and all of False Bay was covered in this smokey haze.
  2. We visited a shoe store in Wellington. I was able to get myself a really nice pair of hand made shoes for $28.
  3. After shoes we went to Backsburg Estate Cellars, we purchased no wine, but I remember visiting this place a few years ago tasting some brandy. Nice lunch.
  4. But once again after a tasting and a great lunch, I could not resist an afternoon nap.
  5. Once up from the nap a little reading, then to a local restaurant for some dinner.

South Africa Day 23 – Just Reading…

Today I pretty much did nothing. Emm went to Cape Town to shop with Karen. Frikkie caught up on some work. I sat around and read. I read inside on the couch, out by the pool, then inside on the couch, then out by the pool with a beer. I read some Clive Cussler and some productivity related non-fiction.

The 80/20 Principle and The Recession

I’ve been reading The 80/20 Principle and could not help to see the link between this old rule and the current economic conditions.

The principle states generally that 20% of inputs are responsible for 80% of outputs. In the case of the current economy, 20% of the causes, are responsible for 80% of the problems. So let’s look at two things.

  • The number of employed people is over 92%, yet the perception of jobs is that there are not any.
  • The number of foreclosures is under 5%, yet the perception is that everyone is having to loose their homes.

It also seems that fear and uncertainty is driven by even lower percentages than 20%. The doom and gloom seems to creep in at about 5% to 8%.