December 2013
  -  2013

Tucked into the folds of the Langeberg mountains outside of Rooiberg, sits the Saggy Stone Restaurant and micro-brewery. It's a busy spot for something that is 20km, much of it dirt, from the main road and the fierce sun no doubt contributed to the large volumes of beer being consumed, not lease by a party of gratefully hikers. Our food was generous and

The summer garden at the cottage is a mass of white and pink, with the odd shades of purple thrown into the mass of green. The brilliant yellows of the spring garden have faded and the hot days have yet to turn the lawn yellow. The fountain is finally working after a few hitches caused by me reading the volume of pump incorrectly

A minute silence at the UN Senior Management Group to respect the life of Nelson Mandela. Flags around Juba Town at half mast, a candle in the early morning. Goat kebabs on the small braai on a warm evening in Juba Town. Cooked them a tad longer than ideal on the very hot fire. Will be glad to get back to the Weber! I had

Sunset jog, the call to prayer and an owl somewhere in the bush, that is rapidly disappearing as they build more houses at Juba 3. For now, there are still only a couple of regulars out on the circuit. Bush fires, and sweltering days the indication that the rainy season is over? Aircon not only welcome, but sanity preserving, essential. News of Dads mild

Impala Lilies Oil on Canvas 50cmx40cm Or my painting of the Impala Lilies, I used a green underpaying to give added depth to the flowers. Underpaying is something I'm beginning to use more frequently, particularly as my raw linen canvases are finished. A balance between using less paint to increase the translucence of the petals and getting the intensity of the colour. As the paint

A warm 36 degrees as a welcome back to Juba Town, with not one of my three Internet options working. Dark clouds threatening rain. On the easel a painting of the Impala LIlies. After my 12 hour day of meetings and sorting the security clearances for the repatriation to Ethiopia of the bodies of two of our contract staff killed by drowning and electrocution,

Alongside the Great Ruaha River, which winds through the Southern Highlands of Tanzania, is an ancient baobab tree. It isn’t the largest baobab tree, and from its size one would think that it was only a few thousand years old, rather then the hundreds of thousands of its true age. Around it are larger trees. Spreading acacia’s with their delicate leaves much favoured

The Rose Garden House in the old city of Istanbul our base from which to explore for the next few days. The best part of which is that on the corner is a delightful supply store with local wine, water and a cork screw! We have a balcony that looks out over the courtyard, a room elaborately decorated in brocade, with hot water