Sunday, August 24, 2014

The other side

It gets scary when you pass the 5s on your birthday because you are now getting to the larger side of the decade.. so 56 it is which means galloping towards 60.. and here I am trapped in this 20s head!! ha ha. 2015 will be my matric 1975 40th reunion so all of my past school buddies will know what I mean.. I was one of the youngest in the class at 16, turning 17 on the 24th August 1975, so most of them are already 56!!

I woke up to a beautiful Durban Skyye again.. the view from the bedroom (see below) and some useful spoils... I actually make up a birthday list of the things I need ha ha. The circular saw I have always wanted.. my grandfather was a carpenter and I used to spend many hours in his workshop with the biggest and best saw tables, drill presses, planes, chisels, clamps and tools making all sorts of things from go-carts, to school house play sets. I don't have much to saw right now, but I will find something to make and have always wanted a saw to complete my toolset; a trusty parker pen.. I lose about 4 a year, so they are welcome and I can't also believe how they have doubled in price twice in the last short while, so will try and be more careful. The stop-watch I need for my pilot students so they can be timed doing rate-1 (360 deg in 2 minutes) or rate-2 turns (360 deg in 1 minute) and for those who know my margaritas are famous, a margarita glass salt rimmer and new cocktail shaker!!

I missed my kids though, but will be seeing them both in a week when Mark and I meet up in Dubai and continue to Busan where we will stay with Kate a few days. Thanks for the wishes from afar, brats and to the beautiful video from Kate in Nepal.

Dave, Llewellyn, Mom and South Korea flag in the background

My mom hasn't lost here touch with a yummy birthday cake - 1 today!
Kate improvised and sent a birthday video from Nepal. Click here for short YouTube video clip.

I was spoiled rotten, and also a new mini-toolbox for my car so that I have some basic tools on hand at the airfield for my plane.

I treated my car to a valet whilst I sat and thanked my text wellwishers. Wow, can you believe with cellphones and Facebook that one can get so many good wishes. Thanks to one and all for taking the trouble to wish me. I had a fabulous day, was spoiled rotten and preferred to cook at home than go out for Sunday lunch.

Best cake!

I made a roast pork, with yummy sweetcorn fritters, my mom hasn't made in years.. thanks mom!

Even Carte Blanche remembered my birth date ha ha

Durban Skyye and Stadium from my bedroom on my birthday wake-up

Mark and Lisa

Stunnings pics of my handsome son Mark and his girlfriend Lisa in Stellenbosch.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Kate riding elephants in Nepal

I've ridden a camel but not an elephant so my daughter is getting ahead on some things as she tries out this one in Nepal. However I don;t think Indian elephants look as nice as African ones so I will have to visit Addo Elephant Park or somewhere locally to try this. And as long as the keepers look after their elephants and don't mistreat them. Nothing worse than poor abused animals.

Kate and her mates in Nepal

It's a kid leading this elephant while the others "horse around" on the back

Kate says she got a splashing
Meanwhile I got some airtime today and took these gorgeous pics of our Durban coastline from my plane, a Sling ZDL. More pics on my aviation blog: Do Eagles Dare

Durban's Moses Mabhida Stadium shortly after take-off from Virginia Airport

Durban City centre and the Harbour

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Yay !!

Yay, it's raining and my grass is growing. We did a revamp of the front garden recently raising the ground level after it was slowing eroding and sloping away. I planted some new grass and today we are having our first storm and the welcome rain is lashing down now.

Yay, I will be seeing my son and daughter in the next two weeks. Kate-Lynn is presently in Nepal on a hiking trip, but will be returning to Busan in South Korea where my son, flying in from Cape Town, will be going to visit her with me.

We are stopping off in Shanghai, via Dubai, first and will spend an action-packed 2 days seeing the lights of Shanghai before meeting up with Kate.

Prayer flags on the buildings in Nepal where Kate is touring

Kate's hostel/guesthouse in Nepal

Kate on her hike in Nepal
Yay, I passed my flight test today for my National Flight Instructor Rating so will now be able to train my own pilots at the flight school I started with my aviation partner Brad, operating from Virginia Airport in Durban. We handle fixed wing and microlight pilot training. Check our Flight School website here -

Airline Pilot Johnny (right) takes Dave for his Instructor's Flight Test

Dave's plane, a Sling ZU-ZDL

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Weekend fun

I completed my last day of training for my National Flight Instructor Rating today in my plane, a Sling ZU-ZDL with the Chief Flying Instructor of our Flight School Brad.

And in other news, my daughter made it to Nepal today on her 10 days adventure to the Himalayas, landing at Katmandu.

Kate-Lynn in Katmandu

Selfie from the Instructor's seat in my plane ZDL with Brad

A bit of cloud to the right that we were avoiding

The coast around Amanzimtoti seen from the General Flying Area

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Winter in Durban

Winter in Durban is amazing.. here are some of the beautiful trees in full bloom.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Mark heading for SACS

Mark and dad Dave

Whilst completing his Masters degree in Engineering, my son Mark has been accepted as a HouseMaster at the Western Cape's top government school, South African College High School (SACS), for 2015. SACS' matric results were 4th overall in the Western Cape last year and top of the government schools. The school is situated in Newlands at the foot of Table Mountain and within walking distance of the rail station so that Mark can get to varsity in Stellenbosch as well as to the location where he is doing research for his Masters in Cape Town. Well done savage!

SACS in Newlands where Mark will act as HouseMaster next year

Earthquake 5.5 Richter scale rocks us

The strange thing is the night before South Africa's earthquake I dreamed we had an earthquake and that the house I was in turned upside down. Here's the text of an sms I sent in the morning before the earthquake.. "Just woke up after a weird dream that we had an earthquake and the house turned upside down. I really thought it was real so I took some awesome pics showing the sky and the next door houses and this one with the roof on the grass". Isn't that crazy!

I was at The Airplane Factory in Johannesburg and the whole hangar building and office was rumbling and shaking. Very weird feeling and it took a while to realise what it was as I have never experienced a quake or tremor of that magnitude before.
The tremors were measured as far afield as Mozambique

The epicentre of the small quake was at Orkney in Northwest Province