AlgoaFM Broadcast: wED 27 March 2013

 

Broadcasts 2013 No 153 :   

 
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The ABC of Life

 
 

Ask for what you want.

Be who you say you are.

Care about others.

Dare to live your dreams.

Ease through the day.

Find the best fit.

Give to another.

Hug a friend.

Inspire someone.

Jump over a boundary.

Kick a bad habit.

Leap across a fear.

Mention something uplifting.

Never say never.

Open your mind and heart.

Pursue your innermost passions.

Quit complaining.

Restore your smile.

Set your sights high.

Trust yourself.

Use all the day.

Value everything.

Wait until it feels right.

Xpress yourself.

Yank weeds from your mental garden.

Zoom into the now.

Rest for the Wicket

©2013 Edward C. Lunnon

Monday 25 March 2013: 6 years 6 months on …

Physical: Deuce / Mental: Advantage ED

ED is in week EnDing wED 27 March 2013

Wed 20 Mar:        AlgoaFM; Gym; Sean Old Grey Rugby vs Crusaders

Thu 21 Mar:          Human Rights Day; Grey 1st bt Westville in Grahamstown; lunch at Rat

Fri 22 Mar:            Braai at home with Clarkes and Stapletons

Sat 23 Mar:           Kings vs Crusaders; Michaela’s 21st birthday party at Dexter’s Den

Sun 24 Mar:          Lunch at Bluewaters café; Proteas bt Pakistan; Rest …

Mon 25 Mar:        Meeting with Melanie (Hospice); Physio; Visit Ackermanns; Rugby Madibaz vs Maties

Tue 26 Mar:          Visit Sr Gill (Hospice); Rest …

It was diarised as a quiet week! A week of rest …

But, this has been a busy week and Human Rights Day long weekend. By Saturday, I was exhausted and had to leave Michaela Botha’s 21st birthday party early. Thank goodness for Sean driving me home at ten. They got home at two am, I was told! This has become the 21st birthday party season!

Friday and Saturday were especially difficult for me – I think it’s partly due to the heat (36 degrees in Grahamstown on Thursday!) and partly due to the busy schedule. I’m just not up to all the travelling, late nights, and occasional beers anymore!

Anyway, I woke up late on Sunday morning feeling much better and, after lunch at Bluewaters café, just lazed on the couch – watching the Proteas beat Pakistan in the last of the One Day Internationals. It was also a cool day and hopefully the start of autumn and the approaching winter weather. I thrive on the colder weather!

The long weekend was special.

It has become a lonely world for me. No work to go to in the morning, no daily interaction with other people, no work functions, few and fewer visitors – as the months go by my world becomes a smaller place and it becomes more difficult to understand what my contribution is to this world.

Even when I have company it becomes difficult to share my world with them. They are so busy with their worlds that no longer have relevance for me and so we live in two different worlds. We live past each other.

Charlie

The daily programme involves Charlie, our Jack Russell, who is my company when I get up in the morning and for the rest of the day. Barbara, our domestic, is there … with the vacuum cleaner! For the rest, I am kept busy by all my medical appointments, hospice visits and whatever other projects that I have found to keep me busy.

 I am not good at keeping my own company!

However, there’s my desktop, my laptop, my IPad and my Blackberry that I couldn’t live without.

They are so challenging but so exciting, and when they go on the blink like this weekend (because of the Seacom cable problem in the Mediterranean Sea somewhere between Egypt and France, MWEB tells me) then I have withdrawal symptoms. Thank goodness for DSTV and Discovery and BBC and SKY and CNN and Richard Attenborough’s AFRICA and Great Britain! We live in an exciting and wonderful world!

So, yes, the long weekend was special to have everyone home – Pera from her work, Sean from his work and Phillip from the boarding house at school.  Suddenly, there is chatter and laughter and banter and talk in the house again. It makes a huge difference and is even more noticeable when I get up on Monday morning in an empty house again!

This weekend is Easter long weekend and then school holidays – I look forward to having everyone at home once more!

And a huge congratulations to Phillip who was awarded his academic half-colours at school on Monday!

What started out as a possible 24-hour internet problem is now being touted as possibly a two week problem! How did we work in the years BG (before Google)?

 

Ed is in week EnDing wED 20 March 2013

Physical: Deuce / Mental: Advantage ED

  • Wed 13:  Pope Francis announced
  • Thu 14:   Isaac / Rock Concert @ Boardwalk with Ced Vandenschrik
  • Fri 15:     Rugby @ NMB Stadium Kings vs Chiefs
  • Sat 16:    Bachelor’s Party @ Noordhoek Deep Sea Angling Club
  • Sun 17:   Paragliding @ Lady’s Slipper
  • Mon 18:  Opthalmologist / Physio and stretching
  • Tue 19:   Hospice visit – Sr Janice / Sean – car / Pope Francis inducted

IMG-20130317-00160

The Kings of Rock

©2013 Edward C. Lunnon

Saturday 16 March 2013: 6 years 6 months on …

Physical: Advantage ED / Mental: Advantage ED

During the last three weeks rugby fever has been raised to an all-time high here in Port Elizabeth and the Eastern Cape thanks to the efforts of the minnow Southern Kings in the Super 15 competition.

Last night they put in yet another sterling performance against the defending champions, the Chiefs, from New Zealand.

kings

We do not know what the future holds for The Kings and it will be interesting to see, if I am still here this time next here, what I shall be writing about the team and the competition then.

What I do know is that in this short time that The Kings have been around there have been so many lessons that we can learn from their performance:

Never under-estimate an underdog

Take one challenge at a time

Face a challenge, no matter how big it is

Never say no

Never lie down

Never give up

You CAN do it

Your attitude impacts on those around you

You CAN make a difference to those around you and in society as a whole

(You can add to this list by making a comment at the bottom of this blog.)

There is a traditional proclamation made following the accession of a new monarch in various countries, such as the United Kingdom:

The King is dead. Long live the King. (French: Le Roi est mort, vive le Roi!)

The original phrase was translated from the French Le Roi est mort, vive le Roi!, which was first declared upon the accession to the French throne of Charles VII  after the death of his father Charles VI  in 1422.

At the time, French was the primary language of the nobility in England, and the proclamation was quickly taken up as ideally representing the same tradition — which in England dates back to 1272, when Henry III died while his son, Edward I was fighting in the Crusades*.

The phrase arose from the law of le mort saisit le vif—that the transfer of sovereignty occurs instantaneously upon the moment of death of the previous monarch. “The King is dead” is the announcement of a monarch who has just died. “Long live the King!” refers to the heir who immediately succeeds to a throne upon the death of the preceding monarch.

Because the throne shall never be empty and the country shall never be without a monarch, another interpretation of the phrase is that the King is dead, but his good work will be remembered forever. It therefore means that the monarchy never dies even when the King does and even if a soul has moved on.

So, whatever the future of The Southern Kings (and we can only hope that LONG LIVE THE KINGS), one can trust that these lessons that have been displayed will continue forever.

Talking about things French:

On Thursday evening I attended the Centrestage Production of Legends of Rock. It was a fundraiser for St Francis Hospice that provides holistic palliative care to some 620 people in Port Elizabeth (including me) who live with life-limiting illnesses such as cancer, HIV/AIDS and motor-neurone disease.

In front of the Centrestage All-Star Band was featured guest artist and amazing talented Cedric Vandenschrik and together they re-animated Freddy Mercury, David Bowie, John Lennon and Jim Morrison with salutes to The Police and Led Zepplin in the mix.

We also heard the music of Rodriguez, Aerosmith’s Steve Tyler, Mick Jagger and Jimmi Hendrix and Twisted Sister.

freddy

But back to Cedric:

In 1984, both Ced and ED (that’s me!) arrived at Grey High as new-comers. He was a pupil in Std 6 and I was a teacher. He was from Congo and I was from Cape Town. He spoke French and I spoke Afrikaans and English, and was learning French at the Alliance Francaise.

Je parle francais un petit peu. So I practised my limited French on Ced!

We both left Grey in 1988.

On Thursday evening, after an excellent show, we briefly filled in the years from then to now over a drink at Barneys.

Ced was born in Mogadishu of an Italian mother and a Belgian father and has become a true citizen of the world, speaking fluent French, Italian and English.

After school, he did his national service in the Belgian army, returned to graduate from UPE cum laude in philosophy and political science and then went into music and theatre professionally in 1993 when he collaborated with Gary Hemmings, owner of Centrestage and another ex-pupil of mine, to produce a Pink Floyd tribute The Wall at the Grahamstown Festival.

He has since played the characters mentioned above in front of many hit Barnyard shows such as Roll over Beethoven, Rock me Amadeus and Forever Young throughout our country.

His internationally acclaimed tribute to Jaques Brel entitled Brel – Rough Diamond toured the world, where he performed as far afield as Belgium, Ireland, Italy, USA, China, Mauritius, Reunion and the Edinburgh festival.

Dubai is yet another favourite venue where has fronted their Symphony Orchestra singing various gendres of music. He regularly does performances in Cape Town and Rome, where he lives for half the year.

In recent years, he has bought a house at nearby Cannon Rocks where he not only has a music studio but also indulges himself in kite-boarding. Recently, he has become involved in organising a very successful public kite-boarding festival and competition there – an event that continues to grow.

Gary Hemmings describes Ced as “a seasoned pro and a gentleman”!

He truly lives his dream. He has not shirked away from the opportunities that Life has offered him.

I enjoyed our “catch-up”, Ced, and look forward to our next one at Cannon Rocks.

 Sir George Grey, buried in St Pauls Cathedral in London, was in his lifetime Governor and Prime Minister of New Zealand and who, as Governor of the Cape Colony, authorised and gave his name to our Grey High School. He wrote the following in 1859 when he returned at the end of his governorship to London from Cape Town, in a letter to the staff and pupils of The Grey:

Gentlemen and Students

Your letter at expressing your regret at my departure is one of the most gratifying which I have received. Every man desires to aid in blessing others, and in doing good; but it is not given to many men to see such early fruits springing from those labours in which they themselves and others have engaged. God has, in the case of the Institution from which you write, given me this pleasure, and has allowed me to hear that, from the Grey Institute, and from amongst yourselves, good and able men have come forth.

I am sure Sir George smiles with pleasure at the likes of good and able men who have come forth from his institution: people who have been in the news this week. People like Ced Vandenschrik, Gary Hemmings and from The Southern Kings:  Alan Solomon (Director), Luke Watson (captain), Sergeal Petersen (player), Gavin Cowley (TV presenter).

(You may add to this list, too, by leaving a comment at the bottom of this blog.)

(* Next week, our Kings face the Crusaders in New Zealand.)

 

 

Kings Rule, Don’t They?

©2013 Edward C. Lunnon

Monday 11 March 2013: 6 years 6 months on …

Physical: Deuce / Mental: Advantage ED

stadium

Our Super 15 rugby franchise, the Southern Kings, was born into this region in a tempestuous sea of politics. In the lifeboat they now occupy, they now meet the storms of the other 14 franchises, the rugby supporting communities of three nations and a wild political arena of lions (no puns intended!)

It’s now sink or swim time!

Two weeks ago they beat the Western Force of Australia in their opening match. Last Saturday they narrowly lost to the Sharks of KwaZulu-Natal. I was at both matches and my grateful thanks to Brendan Kelly and the EP Powerboat Association for inviting me to join them before and after the game at their wonderful facilities in the shadow of our magnificent Mandela Bay Stadium. (Parking places at R200 for the season right there at the stadium are available by contacting Brendan on 083 458 5721.)

The Kings team has engendered a new spirit in the inhabitants of this, the poorest of the nine provinces of South Africa. Whatever the future holds, the present euphoria must not be allowed to dissipate.

Mentally, they must stay on top. It’s like fighting life, illness, disappointment, disaster, financial ruin and whatever …

Life is rarely simple and straightforward and prosperous and happy. If it is, it isn’t for long.

There are ups and downs of all kinds, new innovations and the rapid discarding of obsolete items. There are economic swings and stock market crashes, wars, assassinations and elections. We live in a world of hazard and difficulty.

We have to put our heads down and plough our way through it all. We have to remember that unexpected things do happen – both good and bad!

Life unfolds, sometimes with adversity, always with hard work, and occasionally with undeserved fortune.

Life is a strange mixture of joy and sadness; hope and despair; health and sickness; and success and failure.

So, however hard things might be, it is important not to give in to despair.

Live without regret! I try to do so and some days are easier than others. I find I am so busy just trying to live life every day that I forget why I am living at all.

I do have some regrets and I wrote about some of these in my last blog. But I also need to let go of them!

Here some ways, suggested by Alex Blackwell, of ensuring that when your last day arrives, you can look back on a life that mattered:

(On your marks (1 – 10), get set (11 – 20), go (21 – 30))

  1.       Avoid the someday syndrome – tomorrow is not soon enough!
  2.       Take responsibility for your life and live every moment. YOU own it!
  3.       Take an honest look in the mirror – start now!
  4.       Acknowledge your reality. Change what needs changing and heal what needs healing.
  5.       Know your truth, listen to your inner voice and your inner wisdom.
  6.       Be thankful for what you have. Gratitude opens your heart wider to receive even more.
  7.       Be your own best friend – enjoy the person you are.
  8.       Perfection isn’t required and mistakes are welcomed.
  9.      Don’t waste time living someone else’s life.
  10.     Think differently to find what brings you the most happiness, peace and purpose.
  11.     Ask for what you want and believe that you are worthy to receive it.
  12.    Flush out all the BS – the Belief Systems that tell you that you are too old or too young, or that you are not smart enough or too          damaged!
  13.   Transform negative thoughts into positive beliefs.
  14.   Let go of negative attachments and past mistakes – including all your regrets!
  15.   Face your fears – you can’t avoid them and pretending they don’t exist won’t make them go away.
  16.   Believe you CAN be the best in yourself. You can!
  17.   Become the person you want to be. Step outside your comfort zone, claim your voice and realize your worth.
  18.   Make time to follow your desires.
  19.   Love what you do. If you don’t, begin moving in the direction of what you are passionate about.
  20.   Look forward to your journey and not just the destination. There will be potholes and digressions along the way.
  21.   But keep moving forward (even when life is hard).
  22.   Savour each moment – it’s the only one guaranteed.
  23.   Walk your path at your own speed and in your own way. It doesn’t matter how others are walking their paths.
  24.   Smile more – it’s a simple act that can help you through life’s most challenging situations.
  25.   Forgive more – yourself and others.
  26.   Love more and share your love.
  27.   Be kind to others.
  28.   Take chances – you will never know what might happen!
  29.   Pain is inevitable – suffering is optional.
  30.   Seek counsel, advice and friendship when you get stuck and can’t see where the path is taking you.

 (Thanks to Alex Blackwell, the Bridgemaker, for the 30 Ways to Live)

Be the King in your Kingdom.  It’s hard work, but then being a King is hard work.

However, it has its rewards and ensures that your life counts for something.

In the final analysis, “thine be the kingdom” – and you get to sing “Regrets, I HAD a few, but then again, too few to mention.”

 

Watch spectator fight at S15 rugby game between Kings and Sharks by clicking on the link below:

http://www.sport24.co.za/Multimedia/Rugby/Super15/Fan-fight-20130312

Regrets, I Have a Few …

©2013 Edward C. Lunnon

Tuesday 5 March 2013: 6 years 6 months on …

Physical: Advantage CBD / Mental: Advantage ED

Aurora Hospital is raising funds by selling a recipe book with local citizens’ favourite recipes. I have been asked to contribute my recipe and a picture of me.

So I headed off to the photographer Beverley Darlow last Monday and that put into motion the need for the Lunnon family to do a family shoot – something we have been trying to do for years!

I eventually managed to organise an appointment for Wednesday afternoon at four thirty. In a major logistical arrangement for us, the four would come from different directions and meet at the studio in Walmer.

But, as luck would have it, at three I got a call from Bev to postpone the shoot as her daughter had been rushed to hospital that morning and was still waiting to be seen!

So, thanks to modern technology, Blackberry and cyber-diaries, the appointment was shifted to Saturday afternoon at one thirty.

Well, cut a long story short, we eventually managed to complete the shoot on Saturday and now await the final product to arrive.

Our home walls would be so different and bare without pictures (photos?). They are the storeroom of our memories and the depot of our past.  The work put in to getting them there is often taken for granted but they remind us of our previous generations and us in better days! Just about all the photos that I have seen on walls depict the happy things of life. Despite the circumstances, the pictures usually display smiles and laughter – maybe sometimes even a forced smile!

I would not be able to be a model! Hundreds of shots taken from one direction and then another – just in the hope of getting THAT particular shot:  the right lighting, the right smile, the right background, the right clothes, the right composure, the right angle, the right body language …

But it gave me time to think, both during Saturday afternoon, and on Sunday when I went for a long walk along Sardinia Bay Beach in the most sublime weather that we have been experiencing of late,  

I thought about the last seven years (almost) of my illness and how it has affected the family. Life, certainly for me, and especially for them, has been very different to that which most other families experience.

Pera has become a bread-winner, a housewife, a Mom and a carer – each one a very difficult job in itself but the four together, juggling between the various roles, become an incredible act to master! Not one for the feint-hearted!

Throughout their high school careers, the boys have lived with an ill father and everything that goes with that. They are preparing for life but at the same time are only too aware of preparations for my death.

I thought of how different it was all supposed to be. I thought of what it should have been like and could have been like. For once, I allowed myself to think back – to look at those old photographs of my memories.

Regrets? Yes, as the song says, “I have a few” … but these I will mention!

I regret that I haven’t been able to be a proper husband and father. I regret that I haven’t been able to fulfil an occupation. I regret that my “job” has been a “pensioner” since age 49 – after all, we as human beings are often defined by the job we do! I regret that I haven’t been able to contribute in every aspect to society. I regret that my life as a healthy and well and productive human being has been cut short. I regret that I haven’t been able to entirely support my family financially. I regret that I have now lost 84 salary cheques (and you can calculate what loss that is!)

I am not feeling sorry for myself and I don’t want anyone to have to do that for me! Because, whilst there are regrets, there are so many other things for which to be thankful. When I have spoken at public meetings, I have highlighted many of the gifts that my illness has brought.

I want especially to thank those people who remember us financially and who choose to do so anonymously. Their generosity and kindness have made that I have so much less to worry about, that we have not wanted and that the boys are receiving their education and preparation for life.

One day, when the family pictures taken this week adorn the walls of the homes of this generation of Lunnons and those to come afterwards, there will be much to unlock in the memory banks that they will create.

After all, every picture tells a story (and a story behind that story that the picture doesn’t tell )!

And regrets? There are ways of dealing with them too. I will write about that next time.