Monday, March 30, 2009

Fond Farewell

All my life I have been a lover of chocolate and ice-cream - and now I have to let that love die. Lent is a good time for it to happen, and an even better time for it to be a permanent death. I have officially entered the ranks of the Diabetes Type 2 community, so these sugar treats can no longer be treats for me. So the challenge is to wait and see what is resurrected from this death!! The diabetic products are, to my tastebuds, disgusting - so it is better to let go altogether and see what new thing pops up.
Fare thee well lunch-bars, smarties, top deck, bar one, and ps bars. Good-bye blueberry cheese cake, vanilla, KFC avalanche, Milky Lane, and Royal Danish Ice-Cream Parlour. Long have I loved thee, but now it is time for you to survive without me. I urge you with deep passion: continue to be faithful to your customers.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Traditional Celebration

Yesterday I attended the traditional wedding of a couple who were married about three weeks ago. What a lovely, lively, colourful celebration and blending of cultures. When you put together Sotho, Sepedi, and Irish what else can you expect but a great party!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


She chooses to live alone.

She lives with pain, and is dependent on anti-inflammatories and pain-killers.
She is dependant on crutches to walk safely.
She cannot walk on rough terrain, so does not go into the garden.
She stays locked in the house because she might fall in the garden.
She is dependant on someone to help her wash and dress.
She is dependant on someone to drive her to the shops and bank.
She is dependant on her friends to visit her.
She is dependant on someone to take her to the doctor.
Her chemist does not deliver. She is dependant on someone to take her there.
She is alone and becoming more lonely.

But she doesn't want to give up her independence!
Or maybe it's just plain selfishness?

Passing the Buck

It happens a lot in business and in government/ politics and is characterised by people not wanting to take responsibility for decisions to be made and/or not wanting to be the one in the line of fire if something should 'go wrong'. Sometimes it may be understandable as a decision may need a multidisciplinary team to come to a consensus as to action to be taken or plan A, plan B etc to be formulated. But in the end, it is one person who needs to say: this is where we will start, and proceed according to what then arises from the situation. This is more of a sharing of the 'buck' than a passing of it.

However, when it comes to an individual's life, there really is no-one else who can take responsibility for how that life is to be lived. Which is why it is so difficult for adult children when an aged parent has not made, and refuses to make, plans for what action is to be taken as they become older and more frail, and refuses to acknowledge that the time for a higher level of care has arrived. This is the situation which I and my siblings are wrestling with at present. My mother says that her domestic helper, her friends, the church who keep an eye on her 'will know' when the time has come for her to have greater care or move to a semi-frail care facility. However a description of what that 'time' looks like is avoided. Ten years ago we asked what would happen when she could no longer drive - and now that that time has come, there is no plan in place. In the meantime, ten years have passed during which her domestic help (who is capable enough) could have learned to drive and been able to drive her around in her own car. So she is at the mercy of a neighbour to drive her in her own car. It is not the responsibility of others to 'know' when the time has come for a change to be made - particularly as it will be vehemently denied.

And so we keep the matter out in the open even though it is countered by aggression and emotion, and refuse to be side-tracked by diversions. The questions cause conflict, but the conflict needs to be faced and not avoided. We look for alternatives, and pray for a change of heart on her part to stop passing the buck of responsibilty for her own life and safety.