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Tuesday, 20 March 2018

How to spend a third consecutive month in Hondeklipbaai (& Koiingnaas) - a survivors guide Part 3

Is it the rugged beauty of the coastline? Is it the vastness of the open sky as it unfolds above you in a never-ending vista of splendour? Or is it perhaps the overwhelming silence that seems to settle on you like a worn and comfy jersey? I suspect the answer lies in the sum total of the above, and so much more. Whatever it is, Hondeklipbaai seems to have the enchanting allure of a temptress that begs you to stay a little longer. I have now spent two whole months in this tiny town and am still enjoying myself as much as I did in the first week of arriving here. In this blog I share some more ideas of how to have a wonderful time in a small town.

The wild waters of the West Coast opposing the wind on a race to the shores

I should start this discussion by stating that this is the third blog in a series of blogs on my stay in Hondeklipbaai. The first of these appeared rather late in September when it suddenly dawned on me that this could be an interesting story to tell, giving my readers an overview of all that has been happening, rather than the tidbits of scattered information spread throughout the various sister blogs of A Pretty Tourist. The first blog was called How to spend a month in Hondeklipbaai - a survivors guide Part 1. I then published a second blog, titled How to spend a second consecutive month in Hondeklipbaai - a survivor's guide Part 2.This blog follows on that.

Ever-enchanting sunsets

To say that I am taken with Namaqualand could very seriously be considered an understatement. I am quite smitten. And who wouldn't be. From its brisk sunrises to golden sunsets, crushing waves, beautiful wildflowers, rampant wildlife, wide horizons and deafening silence, there is little that does not enchant. In today's blog I take you on yet another photo journey of my stay in Namaqualand. This time, we start in Hondeklipbaai, visit Springbok via the Wildeperdehoekpas, and end up in Koiingnaas. Prepare to be dazzled! The preceding blogs in this series were called Hondeklipbaai & Koiingnaas - A Photographic Journey Part 6 (days 62-76), and was the sixth in a series of similar blogs. Of course, half a month later, it was followed up with the seventh blog in the series, titled Koiingnaas - A Photographic Journey Part 7 (days 77-90). Links to the blogs that preceded these, can be found in the blogs themselves.


I promised a friend I would get her some homemade cookies from the local bazaar, but ended up not going. I dislike going back on my word, and felt obliged to make up for it. There was nothing left to do, but to quickly whip up a batch of cookies myself. My grandmother used to make the most delicious old-fashioned custard cookies, and they are still a firm favourite with the whole family. In today's blog I show you how to make these cookies in no time at all. I published the recipe in a blog called Baking Custard Cookies.

Custard Cookies

I went for a long walk, along with Luke and Fudge, the dogs. We set out in bright sunlight, but returned in bitter cold weather that had all three of us dashing for the heater. Such is the weather here in Hondeklipbaai on the West Coast. Anyway, all the way home, as I was freezing, I kept thinking how nice it would be to have something sweet. And all this time I had Fudge, the dog, in my sight. It was a small leap to decide to make fudge as soon as I got home. But this is not the time to do it on the stove top. No! It was time for the quick and easy microwave recipe that everyone is making these days. I added a little twist by adding some almond flakes. If you do not have this recipe yet, then this blog is for you. I published it under the heading Making Almond Fudge In The Microwave.

Microwave Almond Fudge

The days were turning warm and all of a sudden we wanted to have salads again. I then shared a recipe with you that was packed with goodness, and brimming with vitamins and minerals. It is healthy, delicious and it looks good too. Best of all is that none of the veggies that go into the salad, are cooked, saving you loads of time on the prepping. The blog on this was called Making A Beetroot & Pear Salad.

Beetroot & Pear Salad

My time in Hondeklipbaai was running out fast, but I still had a little time left to help the local charity shop, Die Rooi Container, with an awareness project. The lady in charge of the shop approached me with the idea of running a coloring competition for the adult women of the community, with make-up as prize. The whole idea behind this was to make the community aware of the charity shop, to get both patrons, as well as donors through the doors. I thought the idea was brilliant and quickly set about drawing up a short list of coloring techniques that could get the creative juices flowing. I then helped with drawing up the entry forms and posters that would go up around town. Lastly, I suggested they use the designs from my book, Designs By Miekie 1, to ensure no copyright was infringed upon. I share the short list of coloring techniques with in a blog as I find it is quite handy to have such a short list available. This blog was called Coloring In Techniques.

Rooi Container Awareness Project

My friend returned early from her trip to Greece and it was no longer necessary for me to take care of her dogs. However, some new friends were getting ready to leave for Cape Town and their dogs needed looking after. It was a simple shift of mindsets to decide to stop by Koiingnaas for this second dog-sitting job, which would allow me to become acquainted with yet another remote Namaqua town. I found myself sauntering off alone on the first of many exploratory walks in and around Koiingnaas. Striking off onto one of the dirt roads, I came across this sign lying on the ground. Obviously my route would take me past the municipal dumps, whichever way I turned. I decided then and there that I would make this a symbolic walk. I would let the landscape direct my thoughts, and I invite you to walk with me. We all need to take these kinds of walk every so often to help us take stock of our lives. And once you have walked with me, perhaps you'll take a walk through your own surroundings and allow yourself the luxury of taking stock as well. I decided to tackle the heavy stuff and head for the bou afval (building rubble). I wanted to inspect the health of the blocks my life was built with. The blog I wrote about this was called Taking stock in Koiingnaas.

Taking Stock in Koiingnaas

If there is one thing that is great about spending time in Namaqualand, it is the plethora of new and strange things I encounter. The other day I was walking through the veld when I came upon a number of turtle shells upon my route. Not all of them were in good condition, but I managed to find two that were near perfect. I brought these home with me and today I share some ideas on painting these as garden ornaments. I published this blog in A Pretty Talent under the title Painting Two Turtle Shells, and left the shells in my new friend's garden.

Painting Turtle Shells

I was approached by someone to capture the essence of Hondeklipbaai in a painting. This would mean incorporating individual ideas and concepts into a single painting, rather than simply painting an existing natural landscape composition. This can be slightly tricky, as it incorporates both elements of design as well as art. The instruction was to use loose cartoon-like lines, moving well away from realism. I took my time getting to know the town, its people, and its character before finally settling down to plan the painting. In today's blog, I share some ideas of how I went about doing this. This blog was titled Capturing the essence of Hondeklipbaai in a painting.

Hart se punt

Kyk of jy dan nog my hart kan vind
Ek het hom nie lank terug hier opgehang
My hart het netnou nog na jou verlang
Hy was met 'n dun draad aan jou vasgebind

My hart lê skerwend op die grond
al was dit so mooi opgepas
My hart wat so getroetel was
lê nou in duisend stukke rond

Stadig kruip die stukke terug
My hart vind weer sy vorm
begin weer klop na hierdie storm
So bou my hart sy eie brug

Kyk of jy dan nog my hart kan vind
Ek het hom nie lank terug hier opgehang
My hart wou netnou nog na jou verlang,
maar my hart sweer liefde is nie blind.

Cost assessment

There was an endless summer on a beach,
where you and I became as one,
where you were never out of reach.

There was a long walk down an aisle,
where fates were sealed under the sun,
where we began to walk different mile.

There was a great dividing line,
where the two of us were torn apart,
where I knew you were no more mine.

There was a ripple in the universe,
where you recaptured my faithful heart,
where you reimbursed your loveless purse.

The beach at Somnaas, outside of Koiingnaas


Time for an update?
I would say!
What’s the current tech debate?
Will the app go, or will it stay?
Do you want to have some space
on my hard drive and my desktop,
on which to give your ads a base,
from you’ll flash them at me non-stop?
It’s freeware, shareware, malware
and please read the license, but I do not.
No more wondering what I should wear,
the marketers have already schemed the plot.
It pokes and waves, tweets and pings
all around my empty house,
reminding me I have the latest thing
with which to let in every global louse.

Die skoenmaker se storie

Ek het gister se draad vandag opgetel
en daarmee wil ek gou 'n storie vertel
wat hom nie deur ruimte of tyd laat knel,
alhoewel dit jou dalkies mag ontstel.

My storie begin by 'n ander ou,
'n skoenmaker wat sy kinders afknou,
en as hy dronk is, dan slaan hy sy vrou
en beskuldig haar dan dat sy is ontrou.

Op 'n dag kom hy nie terug na die huis,
en as iemand vra, sê hul hy’s nie tuis,
maar iewers was iets geheel glad nie pluis,
met die dronk man en sy vinnige vuis.

Die ding met drank is dat dit jou weerloos laat,
uitgelewer aan genade van die wat jou haat,
en soms broei daar 'n monster uit in die kwaad
wat jou heel moontlik vir dood agterlaat.

Die vrou en kinders het in die skoen aangebly
en in rympies en stories sal jy hul nog daar kry,
maar met die skoenmaker self was dit neusie verby,
jy hoor hom nou net as die kinders stry kry.

 A Klipspringer, spotted on the Wildeperdehoekpas

For the parents of the unborn

When I heard your news I wept
I wept for every child unborn
for every promise that went unkept
for this deep loss that you still mourn

When I heard your news I cried
lifting my voice towards our Lord
not to find out why they died
but to make sure He’d got the report

When I heard the news, He already knew
and He bent down to comfort you
His love was large, His words were few
but I was at peace for He’d know what to do


Nee, die hitte pla ons nie,
dis 'n warm wêreld die
Vra maar rond vir die wat weet,
dis net toeriste wat hier sweet.

Wat is kilos as 'n man wil vry?
Hy sal maklik honderd kilos ry,
net om vars goed te kan koop,
dalk 'n bekende raak te loop.

Die ding wat die Namakwalanner pla,
is as 'n toeris stop om iets te vra
en daardie man se moedertaal
is uit Engeland gehaal!

The road leading into Koiingnaas

God’s goodness
Originally published in Bybel Legkaart as God's goodness

My heart is filled with joy today,
there is so much that I must say,
I’ll start off then by thanking You
for all the wondrous things You do.

You give me rest, and light and food,
and every breath I breathe is good,
but more than that, You give me peace,
and joy and love that will not cease.

My thoughts and words and actions too
testify of the goodness found in You,
for what else is there for me to say
when You walk with me throughout the day?

Soos die wind bepaal

So kom die hitte met die wind se draai
en hy stuur die koue in sy maai,
hy maak die branders ongedurig
en gemoedere word vurig.

Dis die Oosweer wat so maak,
hy gryp ons almal aan die kaak,
soos Simson slaan hy ons dan plat
voor 'n ander wind oorvat.

Maar waai die winde uit die weste,
dan is dinge op hul beste,
want westewinde bring mos reën
om die dorre aarde mee te seën.

Uit die Suide kry ons koud,
en soek ons naarstig na braaihout
want vuurtjie-warm wil ons wees
as die Suidewind ons kneus.

Laat ons nie die Noordewind vergeet,
want dis die een waaruit ons eet,
dis hy wat mos die snoek laat loop
wat ons op die kaai verkoop.

Die Weskuswind se waai bepaal
die trant van elke dag’s verhaal,
mens en dier skik hom daarna
eerder as om windstil dae te ja.

A bird keeps a watchful eye on the peaceful little town


Ek soek wat ek nie kan kry nie,
ek wil hê wat ek nie kan vashou nie,
en ek treur oor ek dit verloor het wat ek nooit gehad het nie.
My droom was 'n gedagte,
'n realiteit sonder vorm of mate,
maar die waarheid was eg en die realiteit onontkenbaar daar.
My droom is dalk my eie,
my droom mag dalk nooit wees,
maar hierdie droom se waarheid sal altyd by my wees.

Morning joy

When I contemplate the morning
and the beauty that it brings,
it’s small wonder that I marvel
and my heart lifts as with wings.

For the splendour of the daylight
as it turns the night away,
casts the earth in peaceful brilliance,
keeps the night’s fears all at bay.

There is a song that springs up in me,
makes my heart feel overjoyed,
it is one that gives God glory
for the love by Him deployed.

A cloudy sunset

Because You’re You
Originally published in Bybel Legkaart as Because You're You

When I think about Your love for me,
of how it sets me free to be
more than I could ever hope -
Your knowledge have enlarged my scope.

If I think of all that You have done,
how carefully You made us, everyone,
then I need to sing Your praise some more,
You’ve made life better than it was before.

Your words and actions are so kind
that it brings a fondness to my mind
Yet, I love You not for what You do,
but simply because my Lord, You’re You.


Ek hoor die voëls se oggendlied
en wonder wat die dag my bied.
Sal ek opspring met 'n vaart
of lê en twyfel of dit baat?
Miskien sal ek 'n bietjie draal
en kyk of slaap my nie kom haal
om nog 'n wyle deur te bring
in 'n droom sonder herinnering.
Maar dan spring denke in my op
en begin te woel hier in my kop
sodat ek helaas my op moet beur,
die gedink het al my rus versteur.

A Hammerhead visits the abandoned play park

Knowing God, and being known by God
Originally published in Bybel Legkaart as Knowing God and being known by God

I have a Father and a Friend
Who will love me to the very end,
a God Whose mercy does not cease,
my Source of happiness and peace.

At my birth He knew me well,
and oh, what stories He could tell
of the person I’d grow up to be,
for He knew what He’d vested in me.

He watched me grow and stood at hand
to help me where I struggled to stand,
though I typically would blame Him there,
accusing Him of being unfair.

When time had passed and I looked back,
I had to admit to a more personal lack,
for my Father had never been to blame,
recalling my words brought me to shame.

The years passed by and my faith matured
as I learned that I could trust His word,
and as I learned to trust God more,
I got to know Him like never before.

God gee rigting
Originally published in Bybel Legkaart as God gee rigting

Vandag se dag bring ek na U,
want ek ken nie die plek nie,
ek’t 'n nuwe pad wat ek moet loop
wat my so effe van my moed stroop.

Dus gee ek dit maar aan U oor,
wetend dat U my altyd hoor,
nog nooit het U my ooit gefaal,
of uit ellende my nie uitgehaal.

Solank U weet waarheen ons gaan,
gee ek nie om hoe loop die baan,
U’s in beheer en U moet lei,
want in U wil is waar ek wil bly.

Dus, Vader, gebruik dan hierdie ook
solank dit met U eie wil strook
en wys my wat U wil hê van my,
dan sal ek my selfs in my vrees verbly.

A broken and discarded tortoise shell at the side of the road


Vandag voel ek so bietjie mense-moeg;
moeg van almal se geswoeg,
almal klink so desperaat
wanneer hulle met my praat.

Dis krisis hier en paniek daar,
wat hul in die gesig moet staar,
maar as mens bietjie nader kyk
vind jy dit maklik om uit te stryk.

Die ding wat my die meeste pla
is dat mense hul so histeries kan gedra,
pleks van net rustig te ontleed
wat dit is wat hulle laat bloedsweet.

En dan kom laai hul dit op my
sodat ek ook bietjie stres moet kry.
Nee dankie, sê ek dan beslis -
jy soek op droë grond na 'n vis.

The question
Originally published in Bybel Legkaart as The question

There seems to be no time to dwell
on whether there’s a heaven or a hell,
we simply rush from here to there,
with no time left for God to spare.

The problem with this rushing is,
that when we do not bend our knees,
we seem to reach the end too quickly,
because we make our own selves sickly.

When in that bed we finally lie,
lucky to have respite before we die,
the question we’d avoided all the while
needs to be retrieved from its buried file.

It’s not if you are ready to die, my friend,
this is not the question at the end,
but now that you have so little left to give
are you finally ready to truly live?

A discarded wreck in Koiingnaas

Life is too grand to live in a pale house

If I were to paint the world anew
my palette would be scarce and few.
Compared to that which has been used,
I’d be of stinginess accused.
A myriad of colours meet the eye,
from grand flowers to the common fly,
the sky, the soil, it’s everywhere,
those hues that capture my enchanted stare.

Ek tolerate jou

jy met jou opinies onvanpas
jy met jou intolerances
vir jou wil ek sê
ek tolerate jou

jy wat kleur bo mense verkies
jy wat taal soos 'n mes gebruik
jy wat godsdiens langs fairy tales pak
vir jou wil ek sê
ek tolerate jou

die hele lewe is nie water en olie nie
soms meng swart en wit en gee my pienk
soos 'n surprise packet
soos wanneer ek wysheid vind in jou
wie sou dit ooit verwag

en daarom tolerate ek jou
want daar is hoop

A brilliant sunset over the rooftops of the houses in Koiingnaas

Where the world ends

I wonder where the world would end
It might be just around the bend
It could be on another day
It could be very far away.
But end it must and surely will
when breath is lost and I grow still
And on that day when my world fails,
I’ll spread my wings and set my sails,
for then my journey’s just begun
and only my known world here is done.
I shall enter yet another day
where I may settle for a longer stay.


Met jou menswees oopgebreek
oopgespalk en opgeneuk
staan jy sonder skand of skroom
staan jy sonder voorgee-vroom.

Daar is 'n kind in jou wat vra
wat moeder, oupa wil aankla
wat toe-oog wens dit was nie waar
maar te veel weet want sy was daar.

Maar daardie mens met al haar pyn
het nie in die niet verdwyn
sy’t haar vere een-een reg geruk
bou stuk vir stuk aan haar geluk.

The waving grasslands of Koiingnaas

I held your shape

Yesterday I held your shape
when you painted it in words
the darks were dark
the brights were bright
and you offered no excuse

You took me to your origin
and showed me who you were
how you got to be this shape;
the tools they used to make you so
the ones you chose to alter it

There’s a child in there
so badly bruised
by years of neglect and callous abuse
and yet your shape turned out perfect
cause you chose to live without regret

Make no mistake
I heard your cry

and how it turned into a victory chant
of God’s saving grace

Vind jou rede

Wanneer mense deur jou lewe ploeg
sonder ag vir jou geswoeg,
geen gedagte aan jou saad
of aan dit wat hul agterlaat,
is dit tyd om op te staan
en hul jou kant te laat verstaan.

Vind jou rede, vind dit nou
sê jou sê heel snel en gou

Wanneer mense jou omwoel
soos 'n storm deur jou spoel
jou menswees in hul gang wegsleur
jou lewe uitmekaar kom skeur,
dan is dit tyd om woord te vind
om hulle magsdaad mee te bind.

Vind jou rede, vind dit nou
sê jou sê heel snel en gou

A rare sighting of the Fisk's House Snake

Reach for the moon

Last night I reached to touch the moon
but it quickly hid its face
playing peek-a- boo behind a cloud
while I basked in its embrace

This morn I want to touch that cloud
with the very tip of my tongue
to see if it be sweet or not
where the drops gathered and hung

Then on that drop I wish to ride
mounting it like a steer
and glide across the lighted moon
to arms that hold me dear

Die droom

Die droom het nie wakker geruk nie
net stadig en sag ontwaak
sy tyd gevat om op te staan
en toe eers begin om saak te maak.

Die droom het in my kop geoefen
om sy kragte op te bou
en toe die droom sy vorm kry
toe weet ek dis vir nou

Toe die droom my daar kom kry
waar ek wegkruip tussen goed
toe maak die droom my denke los
van die dinge wat om my woed

Die droom trek skoene aan en stap
na 'n plek waar hy vlerke kan strek
en toe klim ek op die droom se rug
en vertrek na 'n nuwe plek

The beauty of Somnaas

A garden of time

I wish that I could grow some time,
water it and make it mine,
I wish that I could keep it fresh
for when the calender would give me less.

I wish that I could grow a day
on which no one needed to go away,
I wish that when the end drew near
I could hitch time into a higher gear.

What a garden time would make
for all the hearts that sadness break,
yet time does not in my garden grow,
no matter how I wish it so.

My taal is nie altyd PC nie
My taal het hom lank uitgerek,
na ander tale uitgestrek,
met ander tale maats gemaak
asof sy egtheid hom nie traak.

My taal het op eie bene vas gestaan
en lank geleef onder die waan
dat hy in isolasie sou kon bly
wyl slegs puriste na hom vry.

Maar toe loer my taal mos oor die deur
na alles wat daar buitekant gebeur
en toe my taal sy kop uitsteek,
het hy homself heel gou verneuk.

My taal se woordeskat getuig
dat hy voor verandering moes buig;
aanneemkinders moes in vat
op sy breër lewenspad.

Restorative rain
It rained upon the arid land
sinking away into the sand;
the rain held promises of birth
as it fell upon the hardened earth.

That rain that sank down to the core
with power to feed and to restore,
filled up my soul and made it well
as with the drops it began to swell.

My lips were parched, my bones dry,
but the drops from heaven made me cry,
and so began my journey of restoration
as the rain awakened life’s sensation.

Swart Jan

Vandag moet ek my woorde tel
want idees het in my opgewel
wat ek sukkel om binne te hou,
want eintlik hou ek nie van jou.

Sleg as mens polite moet wees
as jy so bots met iemand se gees
dat jy voel dit gaan jou onderkry
as jy een oomblik langer bly.

As ek die ding ondersoek,
vind ek dis omdat jy vloek
en dan drink jou ook te veel,
met negatiwiteit wat my verveel.

Ek het vreeslik hard probeer
om dit alles te hanteer,
maar toe’s jy ook nog 'n rassis;
dit het al my goedheid uitgewis.

Ek wonder of jy enigeen respekteer,
van medemens, tot ons liewe Heer,
oor elkeen eien jy vrye sê
en het jy 'n eiertjie te lê.

Nee wat, meneer, gaan maar jou gang
met jou pikgesmeerde galgesang;
ek kies om eerder vry te leef
van hul wat wrokke nie vergeef.

Sunset - spectacular as usual

Free to be

When at death’s door we finally be
I wonder if we’d feel more free
to let all of our pretenses fall
and be true to our real selves after all.

Those things that seem so all important
may appear like a random assortment
of things that take up time and space,
but without intrinsic value base.

By then we might be free to be
who we were always meant to be;
I hope we don’t leave it till too late,
that this is not our self-made fate.


Jou woorde raap my vriendelik op,
maar hul smaak steek my in die krop,
want jou voorgee-woorde is nie waar;
dis uit 'n bitter plek gebaar.

My vriend en my vertroueling
verdink my van 'n groot onding,
maar praat nog met 'n valse mond
wat voorgee als is nog gesond.

Ons wreet mos albei dis nie waar,
dat dit wat was, is oor en klaar.
Waarom dan al die voorgee nog,
vir wie is dit bedoel, die bog?

Is dit vir hom na wie ons albei vry?
Hou jy hom so weg van my;
deur voor te gee dat ons nog praat,
al is ons vriendskap lankal kwaad?

A frequent sight in Koiingnaas

It finally came time for me to return home, but I stopped by Strand first.

On route to Strand

Marietjie Uys (Miekie) is a published author. You can buy my books here:You can purchase Designs By Miekie 1 here.
Jy kan Kom Ons Teken en Verf Tuinstories hier koop.
Jy kan Kom Ons Kleur Tuinstories In hier koop.
Jy kan Tuinstories hier koop.
You can follow Miekie's daily Bible Study blog, Bybel Legkaart, here in English & Afrikaans.
You may prefer to follow the traveling blog, A Pretty Tourist.
For more crafty ideas and great product reviews, visit A Pretty Talent on Facebook.
If you are in a literary mood, follow Miekie's musings, stories and poetry on A Pretty Author - Miekie.
Remember to keep nurturing your TALENT for making life PRETTY.
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