Neighbourly Notes – 9 November 2017

YOUNG FELLOW SERENADE: Spotted at the Bathurst Art Fair on Sunday were these new Stenden students from Holland, from left, Eline Dÿkstra, Berber Dykstra, Maryka Sybrandy, Annieke Hellinga, Joëlle van Dyl, and Mirjam van der Zwan. The young man serenading them is Aradan Yazbek from Bathurst.

THIS Friday evening there will be a function held at the Port Alfred Ski-boat Club as a fundraiser for Port Alfred SPCA. There are a few special people in the world who are tasked with such a great responsibility as looking after the welfare of animals and who do it without government funding. Without a doubt, a Port Alfred hero is chief inspector Anel Slabbert who has to endure seeing animals in compromising ways and who tactfully deals with the public. Again this past week she was seen trying to find the middle ground between a bird “infe station ” issue that involved nesting herons, eggs, and business owners. The organisation she serves will host the fundraiser evening and present Corinne Willoughby ’s production Heartbreak Café. Please see our diary for more information.

CONGRATULATIONS to Sylvia and Brian Forster who have successfully completed  a 160 day around the world trip in an aircraft they built themselves! One can only admire the fearlessness of this couple and their spirit of adventure. And for Sylvia especially to have such faith in her husband’s craftsmanship, well done to you!

I WAS truly frightened on Sunday when I drove back into Port Alfred from a Sunday afternoon braai in Kleinemonde to see a big cloud of smoke over the town. Driving over the bridge it became clear it was coming from the Krantz. My first thought was that something must be wrong as the amount of smoke was not normal for a braai, or even a few braai’s put together. I was shocked to see a sizable fire blazing in the grass next to the road shooting off embers all over the place. More shockingly people just stood by and watched the fire burn. We don’t know how it started, frankly it doesn’t matter, what does matter is that people are so incredibly indifferent of what goes on around them. What if there was a bit of an easterly blowing that afternoon? It had been piping hot the whole day, mix in a bit of wind, and the fire could have burned down Port Alfred Hospital and possibly the whole town. Perhaps authorities need to better patrol the area or have a security guard on duty who look out for these “accidents”.

ON Sunday there will be a remembrance parade at the Moth Hall. The public are welcome to join the Moths to honour those who have fallen.

WELL done to retired investigative journalist Jacques Pauw who has recently launched his book The President’s Keepers: Those Keeping Zuma in Power and Out of Prison. The book is his sixth book and exposes the depths of corruption, nepotism, and cronyism alive today in South African politics. Pauw was hoping to a live a peaceful life alongside his wife enjoying his retirement from the pen and focus on his guest house and restaurant he bought in the Cape Swartland. Unfortunately, when a good tip comes calling, all journo’s feel a little flutter in the heart and a bit of adrenalin released in the veins. The reality is most journos get a bad rap nowadays and are seen as perpetuators and instigators’ of bad news, but the truth is they are there to report, expose and keep a watch and act as the mouth piece for society. Sometimes we write big pieces or stories we feel blows the lid off of some of our culprits but then the story is hardly noticed by the public or blows  over. Perhaps South Africans suffer from a bit of corruption fatigue? With all disciplines there are good and bad apples, but Pauw  is undeniably righteous in his work. Is his book possibly South Africa’s Watergate? He was the first journalist to expose the existence of South African police death squads in 1989 and produced Special Assignment. The State Security Agency and South African Revenue Service have threatened to take legal action, saying that there’s been a violation of statutory provisions. But Pauw and his publishers are not concerned about going to court over his new book. Pauw’s lawyers have responded to the State Security Agency’s cease and desist letter, saying the information in the book is credible and of undeniable public interest. Mr Pauw, to you, I take a bow!

HAPPY birthday and every good wishes to everyone celebrating such an occasion. Congratulations to Hermaine Kritzinger, Kevin Heny, Christopher Green, Mike Reed, Karen Marais, Roy Somers, Twin brothers – David and Bradley Springer, Hugh Taylor, Gordon Gill, Jenny Wallace, Johannes Roos, Paul Probert, Kerri Katz, Malcolm Slater, Clive Pearson, Nelo Stötter, Sharon Thackeray Dove, Ann Green,  Loretta Phillips, Margaret Stas, Harold Dodd, Emke Klopper, Craig Griffiths, Catherine Bakaqana, Anne Coleman, Loretta Krein, Helen Lansdell, Gordon Long, Louise Hoyle, Wilson Makeleni, Tyla Leigh Keeton.

BEST wishes and congratulations to the following businesses on their anniversaries and may these lead to even more success in the future. Good luck to Andy’s Service Centre and 24-hour Fresh Stop, Volcanik, Dr Brian Olivier (dentist), and Sunshine Juice.

WITH last year’s figures in brackets for comparison, the Rand was trading at R 14, 17 to the Dollar (R13.58), R 18.61 to the Pound (R16.87), R 16.44 to the Euro (R15.08). Commodities such as Gold were trading at $ 1 279.35 per fine ounce ($1305.56), Platinum was trading at $924.80 per ounce ($1008.80) with Brent Crude Oil at $63.69 per barrel ($45.58).

SPECIAL thoughts and prayers are with all those folk who are not well, who are having or have already had tests, operations and treatments. “Sterkte” to Roy Potter, Andrew de Vries, Dot Fetherstonhaugh, Howard Dredge.

WEDDING anniversary congratulations and best wishes to all couples celebrating this special occasion, especially Jan and Elva Niemand, Garner and Nicolene Rieger, Gunther and Nola Johannsen, Roly and Lorna Clayton, Athol and Cynthia Canny, Paul and Stacey Botha.

DIAMOND wedding anniversary wishes and our heartiest congratulations to Malcolm and Shirley Evans on this special 60th milestone occasion on November 9. Enjoy the day and may there be happy, healthy memory-making years ahead.

THOUGHT for the week: “To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring – it was peace.”

BEST regards as always,

The Team

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