Oscar’s Version

Read Oscar Pistorius’s version by clicking here:

http://www.biznews.com/Oscar-pistorius-trial/

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The Merry Month of May

7 years 8 months on …
Physical: Advantage CBD / Mental Advantage: Ed

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I remember …

We left Kimberley last Wednesday at three in the afternoon. I navigated the bus through places that I have never seen before: Phillopolis, Phillipstown and the Boerestaat enclave of Orania. Sunset over Hanover was spectacular, and we arrived back in PE at 11pm.

I remember …

Since getting back, it’s been a whirlwind of activity. Braai at Kerry Botha, then off to St Francis for the weekend with Jenny and Mike Rishworth.

I remember …

Our trip to Patensie was fun. We stayed at the Ferreiras, braaied there on Tuesday night, I addressed the Gamtoos Tourism Bureau on Wednesday morning and broadcast via phone and Skype ED is in wED on AlgoaFM. later in the day we returned to PE and had lunch with the Southwoods. Then we voted.

I remember …

Election Days. This one and the ones before and the one in 1994 – the first democratic election in our country. It was a time of happiness and fear. We were concerned that things would go wrong, and yet it all turned out fine. We have had twenty years of democracy, and our elections are an example to the world. And then there was our Old/New South Africa party … a time to celebrate, indeed!

I remember …

Friday I spoke to Global Business Solutions.

I remember …

Sunday was Mother’s Day. Sean took us out for supper at Angelo’s on Saturday. Family time! Sunday, the Southwoods visited us.

I remember …

My mother, Doris. She and Dad married on 3 May 1952 and Mom passed away 28 years ago at the age of 55!

I remember …

It was back to a normal five day work week this week, after all the holidays. Everyone returned to their normal things, and I returned to The Oscar Pistorius Trial Channel – Days 29, 30 and 31!

I remember …

Physically, these days are becoming more difficult for me. Mentally, I’m ahead of the game. It’s an effort! On top of it all, the roof is being repaired. I’m stressed by all this activity!

I Remember … (1)

7 years 7 months ill …

Physical: Advantage CBD / Mental Deuce

I remember …

The Motor Neurone Disease Association of SA meeting at Old Grey Club.

We had a very touching and different meeting. Kasturi Pillay and her children came down to PE from Durban. Her matriculant daughter gave a talk on “Living with dad and MND.” Kasturi spoke afterwards and shared much insight on her journey and her young husband’s acceptance of his condition, and what he taught them as he journeyed with MND until his death at age 44.

I remember …

Being doubled booked for therapy on Wednesday and getting a free session on Thursday, and forgetting to go for my weekly beard trim at Grant’s …

I remember …

Watching Grey play rugby against Michaelhouse, narrowly winning by 10 – 7,  getting caught up in the beer tent and just beating the rain downpour on the way home

I remember …

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Heading off to the Bathurst Agricultural Show, staying at the Settlers Cottage circa 1821, eating at the Pig and Whistle, the Earthen, Lara’s Eatery, the Bathurst Arms, the nurseries, craft shops, and thanks to Tanya for the hospitality. It was great meeting up with so many familiar faces again!

I  must remember …

The ABC, A Bathurst Country Affair is to follow in August over the Women’s Day weekend. More fun to come!

I remember …

As a kid, 6 April, a public holiday, was celebrated as Van Riebeeck Day – the day that Europeans under the leadership of Jan van Riebeeck from Holland first came to settle at the southern point of Africa. Bringing Christendom to Africa, some would say, and the beginning of our problems, others would say …

I remember …

Rushing home for the 10th Iron Man from Barry’s house at Villas Marinas on Marine Drive. I watched the first one back in 2005 when I was still well … how things have changed since then. And it got quite cool in the evening – watch the video:

I remember …

Oscar Pistorius taking the witness stand in his murder trial in Pretoria and  Shrien Diwani arriving at the  Cape Town High Court after fghting extradition in London for three and a half years now. I was in London in November 2010 when his wife was killed in Cape Town and the British press made South Africa look like a banana republic because of the murder!

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I remember …

The Australians detecting the pings from the black boxes of the mystery disappearing Malaysia flight 370

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I Put it to You …

Tuesday 18 March 2014

7 years 6 months on …

Advantage CBD

The stories are happening at an alarming rate. World news that is, and with the benefit of modern technology, it all unfolds right in front of you in your living room.

One needs lots of time to follow it all. And I have lots of time. As the CBD progresses, I am spending more and more time at home. The TV and the internet has become my window on the world.

Its been civil war in Syria, the take-over of Crimea by Russia, the disappearance of the Malayan Boeing 777  and the Oscar Pistorius murder trial. Theories and more theories abound.

But another story for us is the ongoing fight with our medical aid. It’s not a unique fight.

Because of a change in Pera’s employment status, we have moved from one medical aid to another. Despite assurances that my medication would be covered, we have now for two months being fighting to get my Carbilev and my Lyrica tablets paid for by the medical aid. These meds are my life-savers and after seven years, we have got the dosage, timing and frequency down to a fine art. Now the new medical aid says NO, we won’t pay for those, you need to take generics.

We haven’t even got to the physio, bio, massaging, exercising etc etc yet!

The fact that degenerative brain diseases are not included as PMB’s (Prescribed minimum benefit illnesses) does not help at all.

So I put it to you, those of us with these illnesses are being discriminated against, and so we have another fight on our hands.

It’s easy dealing with CBD. It’s hard dealing with beaurocracy.

The Ides of March

Tues 11 March 2014

7 years 6 months on …

Advantage CBD

Physically, the CBD appears to be racing on   …   left arm, left leg, right arm, memory, mind … and mentally it’s taking its toll too …

I’m not getting anything done and that frustrates me. My arms are becoming just too heavy to lift.

There’s pain, discomfort, twitching, spasms, weakness all rolled into one.

That one being me and my body (or should I say my body and I!).

I must admit I’m an avid Channel 199 follower and I’ve even taken to Twitter! It’s become clear to me just how important language is; the right word, the wrong place, the wrong word, the right place, and once uttered it’s out and can’t be retracted!

I must admit I’m spending more and more time in front of the TV – it’s my eye on the world and keeps me sane. Right now there’s so much on the go, besides Ch 199.

A missing Boeing, a War waiting to happen, wet coal and load shedding, cricket that rains out …when is the Nkandla report out?

So I put it to you, and I’ll come back to that later, but what interests me, who ratted on the bullet in the restaurant and through the sunroof?

Wednesday is my 200th ED IS IN WED interview on AlgoaFM. My thanks to the radio station and especially to Lance du Plessis for indulging me for four years now and in so doing raising the awareness of people living with illness. My thanks to all the listeners for tuning in, writing and calling. You are the wind beneath my wings!

Lifting Our Spirits

©2013 Edward C. Lunnon

Tuesday 26 February 2013: 6 years 5 months on …

Physical: Advantage CBD / Mental: Advantage ED

It’s the end of February 2013 and there’s not even a leap year day to make it one day longer.

Two months of the twelve – two twelfths, or as a mathematician would say: the fraction reduced to its simplest form of one sixth of the year – gone! And, most probably with it, all the good intentions and New Year resolutions have also gone.

Gone but definitely not forgotten.

Health wise these have been two difficult months for me. I have more tremors and spasms, more loss of use of three of my four limbs, headaches and problems with my eyes, weak neck muscles, loss of memory, tiredness and increasing speech problems.

On the domestic front, we lost my car in the October floods, property in the November St Francis fire, the dishwasher on Christmas Day, the oven, the blocked drains, the flood of water through the roof in the cloudburst three weeks ago, Sean’s pocked hail-damaged car (now in for a month’s repairs) in the Graaff-Reinet storm … and the list continues.

On the national stage we have seen more and more corruption and potholes, theft, lies, poor health and education facilities and general “service delivery” issues. There have been the mine strikes and the farm labour unrest and riots. The murders, the rapes, the car accidents and manslaughter on the roads continue unabated.

As various Days of Remembrance and Activism have been called, we have worn black clothes and red and yellow and pink and blue and green and … nothing seems to make a difference.

Who even remembers the name of the young girl raped and murdered in Bredasdorp any more?

Then, of course, we have endured the Reeva Steenkamp / Oscar Pistorius saga of the last two weeks, and long, I know, will that continue.

However, there have been the Lifting our Spirits “feel good” stories too.

The last few months have seen the “Searching for Sugarman” – the documentary telling the story and playing the music of Rodriguez who, despite being a non-entity in the USA, was in the eighties, and is today again, a great music phenomenon in this country.

There are so many Life Lessons to learn from this human story (see my blog SEARCHING FOR SUGARMAN).

The cherry on the cake, of course, was the crowning of the movie on Sunday night with an Oscar as the best Documentary of 2012!  

After the storms, there has been sublime weather hosting  the trip into The Bay on The Jester, the Concert in the Park with the EP Philharmonic Orchestra, the annual Redhouse River Mile (ironically now moved to the Sundays River – which in itself tells us the story that if Life hand us lemons turn it into lemonade!)

Sean spent the weekend doing what he does best – on duty at the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI).  At no cost to himself, other than a few hours of his own personal time, he jumps from roofs and helicopters into the sea, gets to swim and be hoisted back out of the water and gets to save lives when duty calls.

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Phillip was lifting his spirits by throwing a javelin at a school athletics meeting at the Westbourne Oval – a sport in which he has only recently become involved.

Pera is painting, and her first attempt is on exhibition at this time! So her spirits are also lifted and will be even more so when she makes her first sale!

It was good to go out on Saturday evening to that wonderful Shrine of Togetherness that has been left to our Port Elizabethan citizens as part of the 2011 FIFA World Cup ® legacy. It surely lives up to its name as the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium!

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All in all, as one compares the various stadia around the country built for the football spectacular, it would appear that ours is the best used now. It really is an asset to our City and hopefully will be maintained and utilised even more for many years to come.

It has been built in just the right spot.  A spectacular building by any means, access is so easy and quick, and getting home a dream (even without a single traffic cop on duty!)  The view is stunning from which ever seat you sit in the house. And it brings the people of the City – all of us – together in a place where we can forget all the problems of the day and for a brief few hours celebrate our togetherness as human beings.

So the excitement on Saturday was palpable. For the first time, our Eastern Province Southern Kings were playing in the South African conference against the teams of the Australian and New Zealand conferences of the Super 15 rugby competition.

Our fledgling minnows, written off by most, supposedly didn’t stand a chance against the Western Force of Australia. No side has gone into Super Rugby and won its opening game!

Yet, with pride, passion, guts and determination we beat them 22-10. (And underlining the Southern King’s winning status was two try scorer eighteen- year-old Sergeal Petersen, who just three months ago was a pupil at Grey High playing with our own sons!)

Like Life, his are the first steps of a long competition – sometimes up; sometimes down!  

And Life is the Art of Drawing – without an eraser!  Unlike Phil’s six javelin throws, we only get one attempt at Life. We all have experiences where we wished now that we could turn back the clock. But our experiences, and how we handle them, determine our destiny.

What’s important to remember is that life will continue to throw the bad at us… and the good! We have to get up … and there is so much to lift our spirits – to help us to get up – be it music or meals or movies; sea or sports or swimming; art or athletics or Academy Awards.  

Queen Victoria said “As long as there’s tea, there’s hope”!

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And the Oscar goes to … Mankind

“And because he cannot be with us tonight, we all accept the Award on his behalf.”
 
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I am only a human.
A human being – just a human being;
Nothing more than just a mere mortal.
I am just human.
 
I have flaws and warts – some are visible to all and some are visible only to me.
I am not the perfect person I may sometimes appear to be.
 
Over and above my frail humanness, I have a physical body that is diseased by CBD and does not work properly.
 
Life is not an easy road to navigate.
 
Because of my imperfections, and like many other human beings, I look for role models.
 
I look for someone to guide me through this life – to show me the way.
It’s not an easy road to traverse by yourself.
 
I look to my parents, my teachers, my political leaders, my religious leaders, my business leaders, my entertainment stars, my sporting heroes …
 
But, too often, the more important people are in this life, the less of a role model they are.
 
The majority of the political leaders in my country leave me cold. The “stars” often flicker in life’s darkness. My religious leaders are silent. The business leaders are often unethical, my teachers fallible and my parents, or their leadership, missing.
 
So I turn to my sporting heroes. The world revolves around sport and I can revolve around its heroes.
 
Many of us turn to them and (often erroneously) idolize them:
 
They are achievers, well-marketed, in your face, on TV and sometimes in real life, wealthy, “pull” the models, drive flashy cars, have large homes, travel the world and seemingly live Life, with a capital letter L! They have it all.
 
And when they have faced the difficulties of life themselves, overcome adversity and gone from rags to riches to command the world’s stages and airwaves, then even more so, they become your role model, your guide, your leader, your wannabe, your hero!
 
They dreamed the impossible dream and made it possible.
 
If they could do it, then so can you! You aspire to what they have achieved. It is no longer impossible!
 
And so we put them on pedestals and make them our gods. And they bask in our adoration and adulation. They live the high life and reap its profits – channelled from us to them via various sponsorships, deals, endorsements and other revenues.
 
Yes, we feed them, we fund them and we fuel them!
 
We keep them there!  And they feed us …
 
They tell us and give us what we want and are looking for – often out of their true character. They start living a dual life – possibly so as not to disappoint us and possibly because they enjoy basking in the glory of their new-found fiefdoms that we helped to create.
 
All the time we forget that they are only like ourselves – just human!
 
And, one day, when we “discover” that:  they, too, are only just human and flawed like ourselves, we are devastated and disappointed and dismayed and, above all, we are lost and we are hurt.
 
Often, we are so disappointed when our heroes fall from grace, that we feel betrayed by them. We are the first to judge them –  harshly. And so we throw the stones. We choose to forget that they, too, are only just human.
 
In no manner of means do I condone their actions. Just as I don’t condone many other of our “re-actions”.
 
We conjure up and tell the jokes about them. We help to break them down and watch how they crumble, piece by agonizing piece.
 
After having fed them, funded them and fueled them, we fire them!
 
From hero to zero, the cliche says, and we are so good at assisting in order to make that statement true.
 
So, now I am sad. I am very sad.
 
I am sad that another of our heroes has fallen.
I am sad that such a dastardly deed has been committed.
I am sad that one family is in mourning and another in distress.
I am sad about all the heartache, the tears, the unhappiness, the emotion.
I am sad that we are such fragile and fair-weather supporters and followers.
I am sad that Life is such a difficult road.
 
So, now I ask you, …
 
Only too aware that I am not in, and nowhere close to, the league of previously fallen heroes,
But knowing full well (from the correspondence and feedback that I receive from around the world) about the flawed pedestal that some would place me on:
 
Please, don’t make me your role model; because I can’t and don’t and never will live up to your expectations. I am scared to let you down and to disappoint you.
 
Please, from that which I give to and share with you on radio and in print, take the best and ignore the rest.
 
Please know that despite the TV networks ad nauseum telling us “that you can only imagine what he feels like”, we will never know what he felt or feels like ( just as no-one will ever know or understand what I am going through and experience daily with CBD, and what I feel).
 
Please, remember, …
 
I am only a human.
A human being – just a human being;
Nothing more than just a mere mortal.
I am just human.
 
Remember UBUNTU and our humanness – “I am what I am because of who we all are”.
 
(c) Edward C Lunnon 2013
Sunday 17 February 2013: 6 years 5 months on …
Physical: Deuce / Mental: Deuce