Last week, my car had issues. It died and while it was being resurrected, I had to find other means of transport… Being the dreaded January month and all, metre cabs were out of the question. So, I braved 4 days of “Taxi diaries”
The novelty wore off pretty quickly
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One day, one horrible day, I took the wrong taxi home
Realised too late, when going on William nicol from Bryanston and the driver didn’t turn onto Main Road towards Randburg – and ultimately Blairgowrie (Where I live).
In any case, the reason it was already too late is that I would have been charged full fee for the less than kilometre long ride and I figured, let’s go with the flow, might as well get my money’s worth.
Initially, I thought we would at least go to the less manic, less scary, safer feeling rank – The Bree street Taxi Rank.
No such luck.
Ended up in Noord taxi rank that goes through hillbrow.  The same one where the girl in a mini skirt was harassed and molested some time ago. Yep, the ver same messy scary place.
Being there, trying to figure out which taxi would take me back to Bram Fischer, I’m told that I actually have to go the Bree street rank to get home.
From there had to walk out of rank, into the filled busy street to catch a ‘local’ taxi to bree.
Finally found the one. At the top of Plein street in Joburg CBD.On the interesting side, I now know where The summit strip joint is.Pre nightfall Joburg CBD and surrounds isn’t really my thing – It’s busy, messy, possibly one the scariest things to experience in Johazardous

I can drive in and around the city just fine, it’s the walking that bothers me. All those people.
With the stories of people getting raped and robbed in full view of others. Panicked and worried that my knee length dress might be too ‘short’. Dealing with the cat-calling, the way men on the street act entitled to women, their time, their bodies is disgusting!. Argh.

Did I mention I had my laptop on me.
I have never mean mugged, clutched my belongings so tight,  avoided eye contact and concentrate on not looking like I didn’t know where I was going like that in my life.

So 3 taxis later, some bag clutching, mean mugging, R26 and an hour and a half of my life later, I was grateful to be alright. My mind and heart at ease, my feet sore – I made it home relieved.

Althrough my post fear and post self annoyance thoughts I realise a few things.

It’s possible to get around this city in a taxi, with some walking and absolutely sans valuables. The amenities that are on main roads are pretty easy to get to. My trip we went via Rosebank, 44 Stanley, Greenside etc.

Other thing. This traipse through a forgotten world reignited my idea of doing a Cbd shoping walkabout.

Another thing.  It’s not fucking cool to feel so unsafe in this town. Even country.  It is not fucking cool that we do not have more accessible and affordable public transport. It is not fucking cool that there aren’t enough pedestrian paths or safe places to cross the street. Yes, even when the little green man flashes for pedestrians,  there is some inconsiderate maniac on a mission to mow you down. And, It is not fucking cool the conditions black people are still forced to live in and navigate – the poor really are on their own.
Anyway, I’m going to plan on a bargain hunting CBD shopping day / walkabout / eatabout town. Could actually be a lovely Saturday afternoon date

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One of the books I’m reading is The Housemaids Daughter and I’m rattled.

…’privileged’ white woman writing from perspective of a black maid’s daughter.

I’m angry at myself for even buying the book. I was attracted by the colour and the kind of warmth it exuded. And I needed words to swirl in my head.  Should have known when I saw the title.

Yes, it would have made a difference if author weren’t white because I believe people write from what they know; even if imagination is conjured to create.

However, there are things one cannot know, or fully understand, comprehend or feel the full spectrum of emotion they involve because of race. Seems simple but it is also complex.

Now am I really meant to believe someone who probably had a maid would understand being one? How can the author fully comprehend the life of a black maid in apartheid South Africa. One who lives having the inequality shoved in their face, their suffering being a way of life, or something as belittling as living in ‘maids quarters’ that are probably tinier than the garage. I cannot believe I’m going to give this book a chance.

But hey, The Help was a big hit. Maybe it’ll get better, or I’ll not feel the way I do, 7 pages in…

I wonder if I’m being racist.


oooh, looky looky…

The folks at Nokia South Africa were kind enough to send me this phone to try out – seeing as I’m in the market for a new one and haven’t quite decided where I’d like my fingers to play…

 

Coincidentally, Nokia are currently running a campaign to launch the new Nokia Lumia touchscreen superstar smart phone and asked me to be a part of it as I play with my new toy.

 

So I’ve been trying this little baby out for a few days – and so far so good. Look, it’s very different from what I’m used, and took a little to wrap my mind around all the features and futuristic goodies. So far though – I have a highlight that I’m loving about the Lumia – MUSIC! yayness

 

Aamzingly, one of the awesome features is the wealth of music that you can download on the Lumia through the largest online music library The Nokia Music Store There are soooo many songs and so easy to download! You can also stream music and listen on your phone.
To save on data costs – you know how our providers are – I have been doing I need through WIFI. Slow, but great!

 

Now, Nokia is giving away a free phone and would like me to share the joy some lucky music lover… plus other cool prizes.

 

To win prizes (Nokia Music store vouchers or Nokia Slap watches) – tweet me what your favourite song of the moment is. Use #NokiaLumia #NokiaMusic – easy peasy right? (@akona1)

 

To stand a chance a brand new Nokia Lumia for yourself – SMS ‘Music’ to 41611- Up for grabs – Nokia Lumia handset & other Nokia prizes. SMS are charged at only 50c

 

You can check out more about the phone here – http://www.nokia.com/za-en/products/lumia/ – pay attention because I might do a spot quiz just for nje on twitter

 


This is a long overdue post.

Some time ago, Dove asked me to participate in a cool campaign for them to try out the Dove beauty cream bar for 7 days.

Let me begin by telling you that I am absolutely NOT the type to use a soap bar. I find them icky and awkward, but I went ahead and agreed because, well, why not? I’m a fan of bottled nature related goodies, like this rooibos face wash I’ve been using for a while. As they say, try everything once… so I did.

To go with the beauty cream bar, the lovely people at Dove also sent me some of their other products including body wash, deodorants, moisturisers, shampoo and conditioner. Before then, I’d honestly only thought of Dove as being the brand that makes soap – in a bar.

The week, that started on Monday 5 Nov, I was asked to wash my face with the soap bar and send them a picture of myself and my thoughts on the product. Washing my face with the soap, in theory, was easy enough, but in reality, a little more than a mission. My habit to reach for my usual face wash was strong and every morning, I had to tell myself to ignore the usual and try something new.

From the very first day though, I fell in love. The beauty cream bar was easy to handle, smelt nice, easy to lather my face and from the moment I rinsed, I could tell that it really wasn’t like other soaps. My skin didn’t feel dry immediately after rinsing! The days that followed, my skin felt lighter – feather light almost, cleaner, richer and loved.

I never before believed that “quarter moisturised” thing that Dove advertising has – but it’s true. It’s true in that I found myself not needing to reapply moisturiser during the course of the day for my dry skin in this highveld dryness we have. My skin felt loved and nourished. (I probably sound like an ad) I’ve even started to use the Dove beauty bar on my whole body. Same, magnificent, rich, loved results.

I’m sold. I buy the hype and I’m a new Dove customer.

You can see my Dove 7 day test journey on www.facebook.com/dove

Well worth it. 

 


The Black Power Mixtape is a beautiful, heart-wrenching documentary that showcases footage from 1967 – 1975 – the tumultuous time in the struggle in America. The story weaves through some of the key players in the Black Power Movement, the activists and the story behind why they wanted a free and fair America.
The doccie has moving commentary from people including Talib Kweli, Erykah Badu, Angela Davis, Harry Belafonte, Questlove and more. It’s a must see film of this footage that was found in a Swedish Television station cellar after 30 years, unseen. Appearances include: Stokely Carmichael (Kwame Ture), Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Eldridge Cleaver, Bobby Seale, Huey P. Newton, Emile de Antonio, Angela Davis

I attended the première at The Bioscope on Friday night. The producers and Director were in attendance and took part in a question and answer after the screening.

The documentary will be showing at The Bioscope for another week or so – YOU MUST SEE IT.

No matter how many versions of the story exist, we need to continue telling our stories. No matter how painful, no matter how long ago, no matter who thinks they are relevant or not, no matter what, we need to tell our stories.

 

 


Let’s Go!

The JOZI CRAFT BEER FEST is back! And with more to offer! The festival has grown in 6 long dry months from 14 to 21 Breweries.
We have learnt from the first one and will be introducing more beer, more taps, bigger stands, more seating, more shade, more water, more food and parking facilities on a secured field. Its no wonder we are looking to make this the best one yet.

Still all 100% locally brewed craft beer, cider & spirits. With music to fill the empty spaces and seating to make the beers slide down on a hot sunny day what better thing to do than come and spend the day with us. We will be open form 10am on Saturday the 13th of Oct and will be coming back year after year with more crafted magic!

Come enjoy the best of South African craft beer in the heart of Jozi. Come down to the second installment of the JOZI CRAFT BEER FEST!

Venue: Marks Park, Judith Street, EmmerentiaTime: 10am till 6pm

Entrance:

R100 via Webtickets includes branded mug
R120 at the door


The bad blogger has been a great reader…

Got the entire series of the game of thrones books titled ‘A Song of Ice and Fire’ by George R. R. Martin

The first TV adaptation ‘Game of Thrones’ season 1 blew my mind! When I found out the series was based on books, had to get them. Have just started the first book and it has been incredible so far. Beautifully graphic and detailed. So yeah, see you as soon as I can




While the awesome Thithi was making the rest of us super jealous during her New York trip with a group of friends she posted a competition on her blog to win a Tanqueray hamper as part of the brand’s Tonight we Tanqueray campaign that sees my husband Idris Elba as one of the ambassadors.

Unbelievably, I won. Thanks Miss Thithi and Tanqueray

Tonight we Tanqueray

My hamper: Tanqueray, Cocktail recipe book, mixer shaker thingymajik