Welcome Back to the Family


Nine years 8 months Ill | Physical Advantage CBD / Mental Deuce

The very first car that I bought, in my 2nd (3rd?) year at Stellenbosch, was a secondhand (maybe third?)light yellow VW Passat. For the first time, I was a member of the VW family.

The car cost me R2500 and I purchased it thanks to a student loan from the Standard Bank.

My next car was bought in Oudtshoorn at the commencement of my military service at the Infantry School. It was a brand new burgundy red Toyota Corolla with a white stripe, and cost R7000 odd. It ended up in the car graveyard in Rawsonvillle. I wrote about that earlier in a previous blog.

Then I returned to the VW family – a white Jetta (thanks to Bruce) and then a few more Jetta’s and a bright red Kombi thanks to Pick ‘n Pay.

The big time was hit when the Merc was delivered, and the low time when it was collected, after Pick ‘n Pay paid me to resign.

Then followed the French Peugeot era, the one with the glass fishbowl top and the white  diesel one that became Pera’s wheels.

She had arrived there via a VW golf, a red Bantam Bakkie (truck), and a red CitiGolf.

When Pera got the white Peugeot from me, I replaced it with the silver Merc station wagon, and when she thought that a Merc could also be a boat, it ended up in the Markman graveyard and I bought the X-Trail.

Yesterday, thanks to our Salesman Sean and Group 1, the Peugeot was replaced with a white Polo 1.6 TDI Comfortline and so Pera returns to the VW family.

In the meantime, Sean started his vehicle life with the black Polo which has since become Phillip’s wheels. I’m too lazy to get up and look in the filing cabinet to see what the price was, but I could put a few of my first Jetta’s into that Polo! 

So Phillip’s inThe Family!

As for Sean, it’s a different car every day, but that’s the nature of his job. May he sell many more!

And my X-Trail makes me X-Family. 

I’m feeling sad that I may not drive her anymore and she’s feeling lonely locked up in the garage. So I guess we are going to have to find a new caring owner for her. Until then, she’ll come out on high days and holidays! Thats’s what happens when you are not part of The Family. It’s sometimes weddings; often funerals.

“But this is my life and I’m passing on the memories” …


 

I Remember Home in the Western Cape

7 years 7 months ill …

Physical: Advantage CBD / Mental: Deuce

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I remember …

My residence, Helshoogte, at Stellenbosch University where I lived from 1976 – 1981 and became the first English-speaking Primarius in 1981.

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I remember …

that the passages seemed longer than they are now, that the doors weren’t locked, that there was no chicken on the entrance ramp, there was definitely no swimming pool on the top floor and no pub in the res. The committee room was not so elaborate and Simonsberg is still in the same position!

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I remember …

tennis courts and parking areas where there are now new residences. And they still play rugby at Coetzenberg on a Friday afternoon at 17h00, much to the delight of all the students.

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I remember …

going home to The Strand, where my my sister Lynne (and Anton), their children Nicolette (and Morne) and Michelle (and Sebastian) and the grandchildren Nina and Hannah … the next generations … still live.

the magnificent windstill evenings over False Bay, the crowds walking along Melkbaai Beach and the sun setting over Table Mountain and the Cape Peninsula.

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I remember …

the N2 back to Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape, via Grabouw and Mossel Bay.

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Kinders van die Wind

7 years 6 months on …

Physical: Advantage CBD / Mental: Deuce

This morning I woke up to the sounds of Laurika Rauch’s song Kinders van die Wind (“Children of the Wind”). Lance du Plessis, my radio interviewer, was broadcasting from the KKNK Fees (Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees) in Oudtshoorn.

Matieland

It brought back many memories.

In 1981, my last year in Stellenbosch, and my Prim year at Helshoogte, Laurika had supper with us one Sunday evening in the res eetsaal. Against the university rules “No alchohol allowed in University residences” we went and bought red wine directly from the farm Oude Libertas for the evening meal!

libertas

After all, I was the Prim and having Laurika to supper was something special for the house. Maybe singing on Sunday nights was also against the rules – I can’t remember! Playing tennis on Sundays was definitely a No-No!

Those were 6 years of good memories from Stellenbosch.

The following year, 1982, I was the nothing, just a troepie doing my two year’s National Service at the Infantry School in Oudtshoorn.

infantry

Those were 2 years of bad memories from Oudtshoorn (and later Youngs Field Wynberg and 1 SAKK Bataljon, Eersterivier).

Tonight, Sunday night, Laurika is singing at the KKNK 20th Anniversary Celebrations in Oudtshoorn. 

Ek ken ‘n ou, ou liedjie, van lewenswel en wee

Van lank-vergane skepe in die kelders van die see.

Swerwers sonder rigting Soekers wat nooit vind

Welcome to University

7 years 4 months on …

Today, I accompanied Phillip to a welcoming session for 7000 odd first year students at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) here in Port Elizabeth.

He was in his shorts, t-shirt and slops and I in my jeans, casual shirt and track shoes.

It took me back some 38 years when I started as a first year student at Stellenbosch University in 1976.

I recall my mother driving me to Stellenbosch and joining us at a welcoming dinner for first year students and their parents. I was then wearing a jacket and tie and she was wearing a hat – such was the auspiciousness of the occassion!

I was then the first in the Lunnon lineage to attend a University – part of a select few. If I remember correctly from the speeches today, we were told that from 25 000 applicants only 7000 made the grade this year at NMMU.

So, whatever the dress and wherever the University, it remains an auspicious occasion and a tremendous privilege to be able to attend an institution of higher learning.

It carries with it tremendous responsibilities and awesome opportunities to obtain the richest possible educational experience.

Arguably, the core purpose of a university is knowledge production and its use to make a difference in society.

Good luck, Phillip, the next generation! I must admit a tinge of jealousy today and I wish it were me doing it all over again. With the knowledge I have now, I would do it differently, or would I …?

Dare I hope to be here still when you graduate in 2017 with a B.Eng degree?

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