Of Coffee With Hayley

Coffee with Hayley

If you were having coffee with me on a Wednesday Midweekend Fiesta, I would be glad to introduce to you a friend of mine Hayley Ann Carstens… we managed (read that as I ran around like a headless chicken to catch up with her) to have a lovely chat:

hayley carstens plus size model

**Confession I am not really having coffee I am having rooibos herbal** And Hayley:

A cappuccino has to be it – its her go-to drink

~B: If you could describe yourself as a beverage which one would you best describe yourself as?

Most probably coffee actually [she laughs] uhm, I have a very strong and overpowering side but at the same I can be weak, venerable and subtle

~B: I am dying to ask you the question, “tell us about yourself” but I always  get stuck when I get asked that same question, so how about this “tell me what would you like me to ask you first and I will ask it next.

uhm I think a good question to ask people and one I love being asked would be what my end goal and passion is and why [she smirks at me].

~B: Okay okay, fair enough those are good questions. So what would you end goal and passion be and why? 

Well I’m currently at iStudy a college in Harare doing full component A-levels in English, psychology and business studies which will be my stepping stone to University. I have been offered over 30 scholarships so far and that is what will lead me to become a journalist and a creative writer. I guess one answer leads to the next [she laughs] my passion is the English language and writing. I fell in love with the English language about 6 years ago and its always been my dream. I love writing and English because you get given a topic and you can create the perception you want you readers to read, be it literal or metaphorical. There are so many boundaries and so many “you cant do this and you cant do that’s”, that it seems tough but you have no boundaries in another sense and you create you boundaries to extend to.

~B: Whenever I hear the word Model in my head I imagine someone tall and and and well you know the stereotypical model who looks like unlike a girl in the street… And here you are looking like you could live to next door to me…. Where do you get the confidence, are you on a mission? 

[Hayley laughs] That’s because I’m humble and because I don’t have that “I’m better than everybody else” attitude. I feel like we are all fair and we all have our strengths and weaknesses. I have a crazy attitude and when the 2016 Zimbabwe Models Awards came up I was nervous but I also had that “I got this, I’m the best choice” attitude and I wanted to win and I did win, I got Best Plus Size Model. [she looks down and smiles]. Now it starts again for 2017 [she grins nervously].

hayley ann carstens

~B: Outside of just being there and looking like a breath of fresh fair, what are your other interests?

Funny enough, modelling isn’t something I ever thought I’d do or even consider but when the agency reached out to me and said that they wanted me – that is how it happened [She looks surprised]. I absolutely love reading, I love writing, I love binge watching my favourite series on a Friday evening while I write notes for my classes or just being with my friends in general, doing anything, as long as I’m with the people I love – I’m happy. I’m really easy to please actually, anything makes me happy and it’s the little things that matter. If there’s an adventure I can go – I will definitely be there [she laughs], I’m an adventure junkie.

~B: please, please, please, please do share what you read, then I can get to caption the next photo not just a pretty face, I have never used that cliché before… I am a storyteller and I have a soft spot for people who read, I might write something you like, right?

I absolutely love reading and I love learning different writing styles how different writers create the perceptions they want you to envision. My favourite author is Paula Hawkins and my last book was ‘I am Pilgrim’ which is authored by Terry Hayes. It’s a fictional thriller which is definitely worth the read.

~B: I adore Paula Hawkins and she is Zim born too!!!

hayley Carstens model

Not Just A Pretty Face

Where do you see yourself in the future? How supportive is your family in your dreams?

I see myself as a writer, I have a story I’m to write as soon as I’m out of University and it’s definitely going to be a bestseller. [she smiles confidently]. My family is remarkable, they support me till the end of time and we all support each other like that. We are always on call for one another and our relationships are better than good, the support is definitely above normal.

~B: What are your thoughts on the modelling industry in Zimbabwe? Any changes you wish to see?

Definitely. The modelling industry is so different from any other country. We are diverse and accepting which often leads to rude remarks about models. I recently saw a post on Facebook that states “Anyone can be a model in Zim, all you have to do is post a picture and claim yourself as a model and boom, you’re a model in Zimbabwe”. As shocked as I was by this and outraged, it made me little happy.[she smiles warily] 

Haylehann carsten plus size model

I mean, our country is known for being accepting and supporting no matter your gender, race, shape or size and that is something to be proud of. One thing I would change is the use of child models below certain ages being showcased because that could stir up a whole lot of problems and I think they should be a part of an agency but not advertised unless they are over sixteen per say.

~B: its almost Christmas this year I promised myself to dress up like Santa and call myself the Rasta Santa and help spread the Christmas cheer do you have a wishlist you would like to share (not that I will get you anything ha! But who knows who is reading this chat……

[she laughs] Definitely. I can’t say there is anything I would particularly ask for, I have traditions of things I buy myself each year and usually if there is something I want – I just go buy it in general. I would say that I crave adventure and to live through new experiences. So, readers,  if you can bring me the guy I like or pay for ten people to go somewhere new – I’ll thank you. [Laughs].

~B: What’s the one thing you never leave home without?

I cannot live without water. I can’t leave my house or even my bedroom for the living room without water. I don’t really drink anything besides water, coffee and the occasional wine [laughing]. I mean, I don’t drink fizzy drinks, things which are too sweet or, well, I’m a fussy person when it comes to drinking and I drink water more than anything but I also drink a lot of coffee.

~B: Thank you for the time, oh yeah just something quick for research purposes; (lets see your hands) we  just want to know before we start drawing googly hearts on your name single, taken or its complicated?

It’s complicated [she laughs]. I have someone but it is isn’t official as of yet. We are waiting for the best time to make it official but so far, it is what I would consider the perfect person for me and the perfect situation. [She’s smiling uncontrollably and blushing].

~B: Ooooh final question, absolutely the last one; if Aliens came and took over the world why should they make you their queen?????????

I am a very strong willed individual and I like to win. I’m motivated, I’m determined and I can be ruthless as well as very caring and supportive. When it comes to my job, my family, or my friends – I am a born leader. [Grins confidently]

~B: Yes we have a runaway imagination, thank you very much; ok last one; if you were an emoji which one would you be.

I’d be that one with its that ‘Yeah you know what’s up’ face

yeah you know what's up emoji

~B: Pretend we are on camera wave at the camera and do a few shout outs.

[Laughs and does Queens wave] Well, my only shout outs would be my family, my friends and my agency for the support and encouragement.

We thought you should us out too!!!!!!

If you were having coffee with Hayley and myself  we would tell you that she is a nominee in the Zimbabwe Models Awards and if you like what you see, what are you waiting for go vote, like her  Facebook page : Hayley Ann Carstens

Zimbabwe Models Awards Hayley Ann Carstens
~B

 

Photo credit Nyamie Photography

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Of The Solidarity March Zimbabwe

If you were having coffee with me I would ask you to picture this a stadium filled with jubilant people and the legendary Bob Marley belting  out the lyrics to Zimbabwe:

Every man gotta right to decide his own destiny

The year was 1980, the occasion was independence day 18 April

That was then…. this is now 37 years later and a 93 year old president who has been around from then.

If you were having coffee with me I would ask you, if you know when a coup is not a coup?

A coup is not a coup when the citizens rally behind their defence forces when military helicopters fly overhead and people cheer, shake hands with soldiers on their armoured personnel carriers and take selfies with them.

Fist pump military man in tank

Sando

 

meet the army zDf

Zimbabwe ZDF

ZDF military

Moyo Buhle Solidaritymarch zimbabwe

18 November 2017 history was made in Zimbabwe as Zimbabweans took the streets to march to the State House and protest an end to the Mugabe Dynasty. Zimbabweans throughout the world joined marching to Zimbwean Embassies in their respective countries.

SADC AU Mugabe

A message to SADC and the AU

 

Zimbabwe Solidarity Military

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that the euphoria is contagious, its hard not to feel a certain elation when suddenly you can say something you have always wanted to say but did not want to be charged with treason….

Our dear president why don’t you rest?

Mugabe must rest now

I will confess once upon a time he was my hero he came to our school with Prince Charles and Princess Diana, he told us he drank tea with the queen, our class recited a welcome poem…..

but you know the cliche:

“You either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain.

So we marched

 

R. Mugabe Road

R. Mugabe Road Street Sign trashed

Of course there are the analysts and the woke crowd who will rain on our parade, tell me that we are being used to make the army look good, tell me how the same army has kept  Mugabe in power, tell me that the ruling party will still be in power tell me, how its unconstitutional, how we need to push for democracy, how to think, how to act, what to stand for……

Well I dont know what tomorrow will bring but today I will enjoy my participation I will tell my story I was there when history was being made.

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that I dont think anyone has ever seen what we witnessed here what a time to be alive.

not coup but cool Zimbabwe solidarity march

not COUP but COOL

This is not a coup its cool party let me have my moment in the sun

 

~B

PS throughout this no one was forced, no one was harmed (as far as I know) and it could easily have been mistaken for the biggest street party ever themed flags and uniforms….

 

Credits for the images Doug Coltart,  Buhle, The Guardian, Reuters

Of Unwitnessed Moments

 

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that its nice of you to come visit, sometimes I need witnesses to witness what I get upto at times….

For starters:

Is it written anywhere that man cannot fry lettuce and must only nibble at it like a rabbit. Well I didn’t read that unwritten memo because witness:

wilted lettuce or kilt lettuce

Yes I did!!! I fried lettuce lightly with a hint of olive oil….

By the way do  not over do it or it will end up looking like this…….

kilt lettuce killed lettuce

If you were having coffee with me, we would not be having coffee but trying out a beetroot beverage. Just cut up the beetroot and boil …..

 

boiling beetroot

It tastes ….. interesting….. you can drink it to wash down the fried lettuce then chew a carrot and ask “Whats up Doc?”

What's up Doc?

If you were sipping on some beetroot juice with me, I would share with you an anecdote a friend mentioned about beetroot. Beetroot they mused, is a vegetable grown in the fiery gardens of hell and the Devil waters it himself by …erm relieving himself in it… and the redness is from the blood of all the sinners soul languishing there…… I don’t think they like beetroot much and I didn’t want to be the only with that imagery stuck in my head… tag it’s in your head now…

While you are trying to shake that visual out of your head I would tell you that next weekend (Saturday 4 November) is the Harare WordCamp. Guess what, I am writing this post while taking a break from working on my presentation… I am on the line up of speakers (pamamonya ipapo… Loosely translated sharing a stage with experts) As I mentioned earlier sometimes we need to be witnessed….. Here is  Everything You Need To Know About WordCamp Harare.

If you were sipping beetroot with me I would tell you that I am more than a pretty mind, I have just completed a pet project to refurbish the kitchen chairs and

spray painting chairs

black frame kitchen chairs

kitchen chairs

fixing kitchen chairs

kitchen chairs

They turned out ok for someone with a pencil for fingers.

The rest of  the renovations are slowly resolving:

From here

installing kitchen sink

Kitchen sink

Kitchen sink

To here:

Kitchen Sink

and the man who is doing the tiles he was standing behind me and said Rasta give us a shout out…. So if you need your place tiled (reasonable amount too details at bottom of this post)

And since I have started on the shoutouts here are a few people whom I would like to thank for their support, especially for having read each and everyone of my September Posts you guys are the real MVPs

Donald starting with you since you so graciously pointed out that I should do a shout out roll

Mable you seconded this idea and see me about that guest thingie after next weekend yeah?

Shuvai for reading each and every one of my posts and the typos you discretely point out

D Abboh From that very first Typo you DMd me about, thank you for all the support and encouragement Happy Holidays.

Josh I don’t remember how I found your blog but here we are several posts and adventures later

Rachel Time flies, you are a welcome guest, and if you have any more posts to share, just let me know

Carrol Carrol Carrol what can I say, read my mind….

Laura Always A Pleasure

Team Afrobloggers Bubblez, Obuasinii, DorelMel

Team #BlogIndaba Makupsy, The Quarter Wife, Beauty’s Daughter, Keith

And if I forgot to mention you, introduce yourself and I will update the list….. it might also be because you never tell me when you visit you are this weird Guest… Don’t be that guest.

 

And Tariro for this tweet which made my day

Love and Laughter

~B

PS This post should contain links and images but my internet is being petty will update   soon as I  can

 

 

Of Coffee Excuses and DIY

 

If you were having coffee with me I would welcome you like a long lost friend, you know the one, the one you have been friends with from way, way way back; the one who always has your back……

i got your back clip art

And for some reason time, space and distance same to mutually agree to keep you apart, every time you chat, the conversation begins:

Hey you…. It’s been a long time.”

You always agree to meet up, play catch up and promise to be in touch more henceforth… The conversation always ends in the same way:

Promise I’ll be in touch

Sometimes you might actually meet a couple of times and chat over the phone a night or two then time flies, life dies and its suddenly a long time later:

Hey you…. Been a long time.

It’s been 22 days since my last post, initially I was simply taking a break after completing my blog everyday challenge…. Now it’s been weeks, after you have been doing a post every day for a month; 3 weeks feels like ages….

Why have I been away? Grab a cuppa and listen up.

First of all my laptop crashed taking with it my drafts; that is not as bad as it could have been because fortunately all my works in progress are synced to my phone, onto  DropBox (provided I have internet access) and a backup hard drive.

My lil niece decided the phone was dirty and needed a bath then got distracted during the process and left the phone at the bottom of a bucket full of water. Goodnight phone.

 

My current phone is the most basic one you ever did see so couldnt access all those “clever” apps and drives.

Then my back up hard-drive started making that ticking sound of death… When I plug it in I am greeted by that “unrecognized device” notificationUSB device not recognized

I am trying to fix it….

Opening an external HDD

But everything I know about hard-drives I learnt from You-Tube so wish me luck. I have always been curious to see what’s inside them.

And I love trying out my screw driver set.

screw-driver.gif

Whats having a set of screwdrivers like these for than an excuse to screw things up….. (It sounded punnier in my head)

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that when things are going wrong don’t ask yourself if they could possibly get any worse, because they will…..

My ADSL Wifi Router decided to mysteriously stop working. I called my Internet Service Provider to come have a “look-see” at it because over the phone they kept telling me to switch it off for five minutes and then switch it on again, and I tried to explain that I have been doing that. That’s the default hack to fixing a tech gadget that’s not doing what its supposed to be doing. Switch it off and then switch it on again but of course you call this process Reboot to sound like you are doing a fancy procedure….

The technician came over and fiddled with it and pronounced

Something is wrong with it

I know something is wrong with it. What I want to know is what is wrong with it?” I asked again.

The technician pondered on that then said

“It’s not working”

So I have to get a replacement Wi-Fi Router unless if anyone knows how to or someone who can fix the ZTE ZXHN H108N Home gateway.

Oh yeah and they don’t have a guarantee for their products, its barely been 3 months and router is dead and the only explanation I could get is “it not working.” I really, really, want to know whats wrong with it, what if the next one does me up like that?

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that our government had a cabinet reshuffle and also got a few new ministries. We now have a Ministry Of Cyber Security, Threat Detection and Mitigation. I understand how the cyber security is important but a whole ministry dedicated to it, especially when we already have a Ministry Of ICT seems like overkill and speculation on the streets is that its just a tool police the cyberspace and social media …elections are coming.

If you were having coffee with me I would ask you “Whats been happening in your neck of the woods?”

The youngest president elected is 31 Macron’s record has been broken.

Our President got selected to be a WHO Goodwill Ambassador………

**Update seems they have reversed their decision

Its been ten years since the death of South African reggae legend Lucky Dube and we still remember. My next post is a tribute post to this icon.

Temperatures have been exceedingly hot this past week if you were having coffee with, we wouldn’t be having coffee because when you open the tap the water comes out hot enough to make a cuppa without need to boil. I bet if we had hens they would lay boiled eggs… (ok maybe not that extreme…. But still its hot….)

Hey its been awhile; thanks for dropping by, promise I’ll keep in touch…..

~B

PS me teaching my niece how to make jelly because I am the fun like that.

Making Jelly

It was fun until after we were waiting for it to set she kept asking is it done yet over and over again…

“Wait an hour no make that 2 hours” I said hoping to buy time but nooooo now every five minutes she kept asking if two hours were up yet…..

 

Of Anniversary Coffee With A Writing Challenge

If you were having coffee with me……

coffee mug next to fire

I would tell you that if you haven’t figured me out by now you really should know that I am is a story teller….. I tell stories. Life happens and I tell stories.

Well technically I write them, but in my head, as I write, I tell the story, and I imagine, you really are here, listening, my imaginary audience, I even imagine how you will react the way you are shaking your head right now and then reading this paragraph again from the start…. Its freaky isn’t it

I know right.

…..and there is a fire, there’s always a fire, the Story Gods are appeased by the flames, as it has always been. Fire is my spirit animal.

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that you are a voice in my head, correction, one of the voices in my head. Don’t be alarmed I am not a crazy person, and stop It!!! Stop trying to imagine what goes on in my head.

My head for your own information is quite fine, I had it examined today even. I looked in the mirror and I thought to myself I look fine right? And my hair is quite long!!

beaton.jpg

 

My brothers agree with you too.

me and them.jpg

 

If all the people who thought exactly what you are thinking right now (yes I read minds sometimes besides you are a figment of my imagination remember) if all those people were doctors I would be telling you this story from the comfort of an asylum and I would be asking you why straitjackets don’t come in any fun colours…. A rainbow coloured strait jacket Id rock that.

rainbow.jpg

also dont believe my brothers they are no better, they just dont write

20170820_125720.jpg

If you were coffee with me I would tell you that if my blog had gone to High School it would be matriculating or writing its General Certificate of Secondary Education O levels just about now.

anniversary.JPG

As an anniversary gift to my blog I shall present it with a blogging challenge to write a blog post everyday for the month of September. The general theme of the posts will be #MyAfricaMyWords and you will get an insight into who I am, why I blog and the place I call home.

Brace yourself  and do drop by to read, hang out and encourage me…. If you would like to take part in this challenge, consider yourself tagged… You Are In. Bring a friend.

MyAfrica.jpg

Look out for the following hashtags on social media #30DayAfriwriter #BlogTemberChallenge #MyAfricaMyWords

~B

Ps I have been day dreaming on the future of storytelling I wont be impressed until someone invents (you know how some phones have that speech-to-text function) a thought-to-text function you simply think out the words and they are plucked out of your head to magically appear on the screen including the relevant images ……

You should come visit my head.

Have an awesome week.

Of A Book Tour: The Curse Of Time

GuestPost:

The Curse of Time M. J. Mallon

If you were having coffee with me, we would have a quick chat with MJ (whom is neither Michael Jackson nor from Spiderman)  and a sneak insight into the characters from her up coming book Bloodstone Book 1 The Curse of Time……….

Bloodstone Book 1

Book 1 – Bloodstone

Thank you to Beaton for inviting me to guest post on his blog today.

It’s a delight to be here, I have enjoyed following Beaton for a good old while and I think we seem to share a similar sense of wacky humour.

I’m delighted to share with you my novel The Curse of Time – Book 1 – Bloodstone a YA/middle grade fantasy set in Cambridge, UK.

If I was to pick a character or two that Beaton would enjoy I’d guess I’d start with Ryder my male protagonist, a narcissistic fellow who prefers to hang about in the shadows. He’s charismatic, beguiling, a curious young man with a mysterious side.

There are several young ladies in the story who might engage his interest too: Amelina, the main character is artsy, and magical, the mirror girl Esme will pull at his heart strings. Super confident Jade, jokey Ilaria, or serious, thoughtful Joselyn could capture his heart. Don’t forget gossipy Aunt Karissa who will undoubtedly make him laugh, as will her daft dog Toby.

Surely he will love the sleek black cat character: Shadow?

I expect he will be intrigued by The Grasshopper of the Chronopage?

If he’s a family man he will be curious to find out more about the terrible fate that has befallen Amelina’s  mum and dad…

There are a whole bunch of characters in The Curse of Time – I love them all and hope you will too.

Bio:

I am a debut author who has been blogging for three years: mjmallon.com. My interests include writing, photography, poetry, and alternative therapies. I write Fantasy YA, middle grade fiction and micro poetry – haiku and tanka. I love to read and have written over 100 reviews: A-Z of my book reviews

My alter ego is MJ – Mary Jane from Spiderman. I love superheros! I was born on the 17th of November in Lion City: Singapore, (a passionate Scorpio, with the Chinese Zodiac sign a lucky rabbit,) second child and only daughter to my proud parents Paula and Ronald. I grew up in a mountainous court in the Peak District in Hong Kong with my elder brother Donald. My parents dragged me away from my exotic childhood and my much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. In Bonnie Edinburgh I mastered Scottish country dancing, and a whole new Och Aye lingo.

As a teenager I travelled to many far-flung destinations to visit my abacus wielding wayfarer dad. It’s rumoured that I now live in the Venice of Cambridge, with my six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and my two enchanted daughters. After such an upbringing my author’s mind has taken total leave of its senses! When I’m not writing, I eat exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surf to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out, I practise Tai Chi. If the mood takes me I snorkel with mermaids, or sign up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes.

MJ.JPG

You can find MJ on various pages of the interweb

Amazon Author Page

Website mjmallon.com

Facebook Group to help support traditional and indie writers. #ABRSC: Authors/Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook

Instagram: mjmallonauthor

Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and Twitter: @curseof_time

Facebook: M J Mallon author

Tumblr: MJMallonauthor

She has devoted the past few years to writing over 100 reviews on Goodreads Review Account

~B

PS I must confess to being super curious and cant wait to read this…. its like being regular curious but I wear a cape

 

 

Of A Lady’s Handbag

If you were having coffee with me; I would tell you how as a guy, I am always; let’s call it “in awe of the things women carry in their handbags….

It’s a whole dimension in itself in there; reminds me of Felix The Cat’s bag….

Felix the cat magic back with universe inside

If I was to ever re-invent a handbag, I would probably include a built in light, similar to the one you find on a fridge that goes on when you open it…. (I have seen ladies struggling to find something they are sure they put in their handbag and I would almost make the suggestion to them; that they should carry a torch, for such moments…. but on account of me rather liking my head firmly attached to my neck and breathing and stuff I just silently watch and make no comment…..)

Vanity light inside handbag

A vanity light inside a handbag how about that….

If you were having coffee with me; I would tell you that my mom’s handbag holds something you can see without ever opening it….

She carries a sermon in her handbag…….

Mum.jpg

How does one carry a sermon in handbag you ask? Well, good question and I am glad you asked it, because today is your lucky Sunday….

One side of her handbag is completely scarlet and

scarlet.jpgthe other side has a scarlet part and a white.

Red & whiteA message of His infinite forgiveness:

Isaiah 1:18Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the LORD.Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.”They say He works in mysterious ways and if something as simple as handbag can carry a message what about His wonderful creation……..

 

Isaiah 53:5 “….By his stripes we are healed…

They say He works in mysterious ways and if something as simple as handbag can carry a message what about His wonderful creation……..

If you were having coffee with me I would ask you if you saw the lunar eclipse a few nights ago and if you stayed up to watch the meteor shower…..

partial lunar eclipse Southern hemisphere

I watched the partial lunar eclipse but on this side of the hemisphere the Perseid Meteor Shower was mostly disapponting maybe because I was somewhat misled by a hoax message that claimed this would be the brightest meteor shower in 96 years (Thanks to Google I knew the message was claim was fake) but still I expected something like a New year’s fire works display….

New Year Fireworks; Harare, Zimbabwe

New Year Fireworks; Harare, Zimbabwe

And all I saw was only one shooting star…

The Perseid Meteor Shower happens every year peaking around July/August …who knew …maybe next year I will have a friend with telescope and an observation deck and we can count the stars….

A starry night is the salt of the universe revealing mysteries the sun hides

Have an awesome week

~B

 

 

Of Coffee And Shiny New Lessons

If you were having coffee with me we would be trying out my shiny new kettle……

Shiny Africa .jpg

I would thank you for visiting and let you know that you are like my shiny new kettle, with the wonky instructions manual, hard to understand but absolutely worth it……

instructions

if you can make sense of this…..

In case you are curious and wondering what happened to the old kettle…. I tried to fix it and I failed… I also learnt a few things too…

old kettle.jpg

You know when an appliance comes with the warning tag No User Serviceable Parts, what they mean is Do Not Attempt To Fix This by Yourself unless you are trained professional but I still insist on taking it as a personal challenge……

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that there are lots of things I have learnt, which is my fancy way of telling you that I may or may not have made some mistakes in life….

Things I learned not to do in life……..

Never Ever:

  • Check the temperature of water in a kettle by dipping hand into the kettle….
  • Touch hot stove tops……..
  • Kick at snakes venomous or otherwise, in fact, snakes should just stay away from me please and thank you …….
  • Poke wasps nests with a stick……..
  • Play in traffic……..
  • Look for shoes under the bed with a candle…
  • Super glue fingers together…
  • Lick the inside metal of the freezer…
  • Put metal objects in electricity outlets….
  • Lick electric wires to taste check if there is power….
  • Look under a lawnmower to see why it’s making so much noise……….
  • NOT Check the ceiling height and clearance for low hanging chandeliers and any other ornaments before tossing a toddler into the air over your head….
  • And when I write a book to check for errors extensively before I have it published
  • and lastly……
    never……
    ever …….. look inside a lady’s handbag….

If you were having coffee with me I won’t tell you what I saw, but I have learnt my lesson, curiosity kills nine lived cats and I have only one.

How has your week been? I hope your weekend is going great.

If you were coffee with me, I would tell you that I have been following social media commentary on a book titled From A to B written by South African TV personality Bonang.

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Her book has been making a buzz because of typos and grammar problems. It is kind of weird to note most of the people who have suddenly become book critics well havent read the book but have just seen the same screenshot(s) from the book circulating on the interweb and have formed opinions and made remarks of not only the book, but the author as well, as if one wakes up and decides what typos should I make in my book today. Ironically enough I spotted a tweet or two with grammar atrocities busy making fun of Bonang’s typos……

While I am not excusing the author, I mean one owes it to the people who are going to spend their hard earned money on you to create something worth their time and the publishing companies ought to do their due diligence instead of damage control

What do you think?

~B

 

 

photocredit Bonang Instagram

 

Of Coffee And The Untimely Visitor

If you were having coffee with me, I would say it is a pleasure having you here. I may not tell you enough or at all that when you drop by for a visit and we chat; sometimes you say a word or two sometimes I do all the talking; I appreciate you.

g0agdOne must always let people know how much they are appreciated because…. Life has a funny way of unravelling even the best laid out plans. That’s life, It Happens and it goes on……

fragile things

Fragile things

God’s a connoisseur of fragile things and decorates His cloudy outlook with ornaments of finest glass

Dr Sleep, Stephen King

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that I have just come back from my friend’s funeral. It is hard to bury a friend, but even harder to watch a parent bury their child. A parent’s grief is heartbreaking.

My friend was one of those outgoing people who easily made friends with people and so the funeral was well-attended; considering burial was at an out of the way farm they recently resettled to. Getting there was quite the adventure, since we didn’t know the directions and the driver and conductor of the bus we took; had never heard of the bus stop we would get off….

By a stroke of luck strangers also in the bus, going somewhere else, happened to overhear our conversation and knew my late friend’s family; they weren’t going to the funeral, hadn’t even heard of the death. They gave us directions, of where to and how we would walk when we got off the bus. We left them quite distraught that they couldn’t come with us and asked us to pay respect on their behalf.

If I learnt anything, it’s that things have a way of working out, our life is littered with many coincidences, maybe its fate, destiny, karma or simply The Lord’s mysterious ways.

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that my friend used to joke that they would rather have a party at their funeral and liquor to poured on their graves than have tears shed for them. So we had a colourful send off as we paid our last respects. If it wasn’t for the coffin sticking out as a stark reminder of the untimely visitor who waits for each of us at the end of our path….one would not have been faulted for thinking people were singing and dancing at a party. A few feathers might have been ruffled as the older generation felt the younger generation was hijacking tradition and turning what’s supposed to be a somber affair, into a circus and that the liquor might have been flowing a little too freely, but all in all I think everything worked out; it usually does.

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you that I was shocked to learn of the death of Chester Bennington from the Linkin Park Band. I heard the news in a car I got a lift from; coming from my friend’s burial, death never takes a vacation….

I have been a huge Linkin Park from when I listened to their debut album Hybrid Theory almost 17 years ago; and it was an escape and an outlet for all the words inside I had never said, and now, now I write.

Chester Bennington’s death was a suicidal hanging after battling addiction and depression. Mental health awareness is something that must be spread people, are out there fighting a darkness within and no one ever realises it; not until its too late.

Once upon a time I wrote this: Of The Strong Silent Man

#RIPChester

#RIPChester

Linkin Park has launched a tribute website Chester.linkinpark.com with links to help you; In case you or someone you know needs support…

If you are in Zimbabwe Click here to  see a post with local places you can find free support and counselling

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that you must always be reaching out to your friends because you never know, a simple “hello; how are you doing…” could save a life.

~B

PS The first thing I did when I got home was to check my garden I have gone for a couple of days and I kept wondering how the plants in my garden were doing since I wasn’t there to  water them…. I guess they are growing on me…

onions and carrots

 

 

Photocredit: chester.linkinpark  Dj Khaled

Of Coffee & Chips in disposable packages

 

Of Coffee and chips in disposable packages

coffee and chips.jpg

If you were having coffee with me, we would be having takeaway. Coffee and Chips.

I bet you have never paid much attention to the packaging or had much of a reason to, maybe you have noticed it discarded or how it spills out of bins and is blown about easily blown away by the wind……..

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you that this is the last time we might be enjoying a snack in this type of packaging (Expanded Polystyrene EPS) because our government has with immediate effect ( The Herald 13 July) banned it.

Expanded PolyStyrene (EPS) or Kaylite as it known our streets or Styrofoam (as it is referred to as in some countries although strictly speaking Styrofoam is the Trademark name for a company which makes Extruded PolyStyrene foam (XPS) ) has many uses as packaging material in not only takeaways but even supermarkets and I have seen it packing electronic components and appliances.

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell why EPS is bad. Being an eye sore is the least of its problems to the environment but littering is still a big one, it is non-biodegradable, so it doesnt go anywhere for a long time even though it was only of use to you for just a moment over lunch, some animals will eat it, which cant be good and if it ends up in rivers, well so long fish and marine ecosystem. Recycling EPS is costly and burning seems easy enough, but you would have to incinerate it temperatures of upto 1000 degrees Celsius and with lots of oxygen otherwise you get lots of carbon soot and gases…. Global warming and climate change are real.

And if you thought simply managing the disposal and recycling was a nightmare ever wondered about the chemical processes to manufacture this stuff… A number of chemical by-products are released and although they claim to no longer use CFCs (those basically mean bye bye Ozone layer) it’s not entirely true for manufacturing of all polystyrene products.

Oh and by the way Styrene (the monomer from which PolyStyrene comes) is a Cancer Suspect Agent and studies show it may alter thyroid hormone levels and a host of other side effects none of them good, ranging from depression, fatigue  to abnormal pulmonary function.

A study by the University of Zimbabwe’s Food And Nutrition Department shows that under certain conditions Styrene can leach into the food packed within…….

And before you start to panic; between 1999 and 2002 a panel from Harvard Center for Risk Analysis conducted a review on the potential impact of exposure to Styrene. Styrene naturally occurs in some foods (although in small quantities) and if we are exposed to trace amounts our bodies rapidly metabolize and excrete it. The study concluded that the amounts of styrene that can migrate from packing materials and into food are not in quantities that should alarm us….. but still try to keep away from microwaving food in disposable plastics polmers

For these and other crimes against the environment, through implementation of Statutory Instrument 84 of 2012 the government has banned use of EPS.

kpn

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that much as I understand why this has happened I would have preferred to know it before the fact. One cant just wake up to the news that something has been banned and not know why. The Environmental Management Agency (EMA) really needs to work on its awareness campaigns, and then you cant just go around banning stuff without putting in place an alternative because no one will stop or it just makes the black market thrive…..

I researched on Polystyrene packaging because my mother asked me why they had banned use of kaylites (EPS). Without an awareness campaign you suddenly find an angry man on the street saying “it’s another government tactic to make life hard” because this was a cheap form of packaging and now we will have to change to more expensive alternatives and one can predict a rise in food prices….

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you that I never liked coffee served in styrofoam cups, it tastes so temporary…..

If you were having coffee with me; I would ask you how you like your chips?

chips plain.JPG

I would tell you that there are only two types of people in the world:

Which one are you?

~B

PS I prefer my chips drowning in tomato sauce thank you very much.

Image Credit: EMA

Sources: The Herald EMA  You Know Styrene