Wednesday, 27 April 2011

I made it!

I'm on the N1, a few more minutes and I'm at my destination: Touwsrivier.
Last night I slept over once again at strangers in Montagu, but soon
they were friends. Sandra and Deetlef. Deetlef told me I am not going
to make it to Touwsriver today. With great drama he told me how steep
the 2 mountain passes are - gesturing with a flat vertical hand
infront of his nose - and that I won't do it in a day.
Mmm...I think I'll phone him just now to tell him I have conquered the trip!
The day was of course the highlight of my journey - especially because
I have ridden through isolated stretches of country. Karoo and Koo
landscapes at its best! And to top it - snow on the mountains!!
Don't tell me I am not going to make it!
Over kilometres I have gathered strength surpassing my expectations!
Don't tell me I am not going to make it
I have gathered the rock solidness of the road in the marrow of my bones
I have the harmonies (and disharmonies) of the wind in my calves
I have the eternal warmth of the sun in my thighs
I have sweet air right in the pit of my lungs
I have the pulsing hills in my ass
I have the irrepressible power and beauty of the journey in every fold
of my spirit
Do not tell me I am not going to make it.
I have arrived and it feels so gorgeously good!
Thanks to ALL that have given me love, food, a bed, good company,
inspiring music, laughter and encouragement! (I think Deetlef's
discouraging words were in itself encouragin! Thanks to him as well!).
You all have been a big part in this cycle.
Xxx signing off

Stopping in the Koo to look on the snow mountains!!

I left Montagu early this morning. What beautiful cliffs and crevices of stone.
Today is hellish cold. My fingers and toes are afreeze. As I crossed
the Burgerspas leaving the verdant valley of Montagu, a snowladen
landscape awed the very breath out of my mouth. Now I know why I've
been freezing ! I have peddled from tropic country straight into the
heart of merciless cold!
I am not geared for this kind of weather. I thought if I keep on
cycling, I'll warm up.. Mm no way, it didn't work.
Just now I have stopped at a quaint cafe in the middle of nowhere. I
had to get out of the sleet and wind. The kind owner poured the most
delicious coffee for me. Ah how it made the rest of my way and day
possible!
The little coloured boys are playing pool next door, and every so
often hang out on the stoep to come have a look at this frozen crazy
chick typing on her blackberry! Haha., what a picture!
Ha, the sun doing its magic... Let me continue the way to Afrikaburn.
The fervent heart will melt off the edge of this cold. Arrrrrgh.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Going offline soon

Tomorrow I arrive at Afrikaburn. I hear it's gonna be moer cold. So
perhaps no nudist pranks or poetry (-;
There is no cyber or cellular reception.
Please don't miss me.
I'll be in my element.
Will be returning round about 3 May
Xxx

Monday, 25 April 2011

Klei

Hier die eerste deel van Klei verewig (wat ek by Afrikaburn Kunsfees
in klei-bedekte lyf gaan voordra) :
Voordat ek die dans en spel met stof en klei gaan vertolk, is ek in
die grond "begrawe". Uit die grond begin ek kruip, krioel, krap om dan
geboorte te gee aan my lyf en my tong wat dan die "toneel" verder gaan
uitle:
Uit modder, klei en grond trek ek hierdie lyf
Vorm, knie en druk my tong
Dat dit tot beeldskone vorm deur die gallery van my mond kan storm
Gee my klei waarmee ek oor die valleie en dale van my lyf kan wy
Om te eet aan die vrugbare grond wat so verleidelik deur my kieste gly
Sodat die woorde in goud uitslaan
En onbeskaamd op die vlaktes van my tong sal bly staan
Op die pottebakkerswiel draai ek my tong
Laat dit spin
En met perfek konsentriese lyne my sinne oorwin
Gee my klei en ek word god in een oomblik
Met een druk van duim
In een rol van handpalm
So bepaal ek my eie lot
Laat geen vel of deel van my gaan afvrot
Hervorm ek my lyf tot die beeld van my eie god
Ja, my eie god is ek
Knie, druk, skaaf en beitel ek myself
Om by my diepere wese deur te dring
Om sodoende in vloeiende vorm te kan ontpring
Dit is met die wonder van klei waarmee ek toor om lyf te gee, lyf te neem
Uit modderige vrugbaarheid
Lyf wat kan buig en skarnier, lag en loop, juig en huil,
So bitter kan huil oor die ryke skoonheid
Van lyn en vorm, kontoer en tekstuur
Wat klei in so tasbare rigting instuur
Uit premordiale modder sif ek ledemate, boude en dye
Brei die spiere van my lyf met die klei van die aarde
Dat wanneer ek tot niet gaan
Die grond-aarde my lyf makliker kan herken en verstaan
En sonder moeite my selle kan verteer
En my siel tot in die harts-aarde kan assimileer
Soos appels en koringkorrels voed
Die klei-grond my bloed
Bring ek my lyf aarde toe elke dag
Ruik ek die stof
Ruik ek die diep, nat fertiliteit van modder en grond wat by die ryk
slik en slym poele van die aarde uitmond
Wees versigitg waar jy trap
Want elke dag gee grond geboorte aan menigte wesens waardeur die lewensbloed tap
Wees versigtig want jy trap dalk op iets nuut en kaal,
Iets wat nou net begin asem haal.

Stof - The primal mud

I am going to perform a poetry movement piece at the Afrikaburn
festival - Clay vitrified / Klei verewig. I originally wrote it to
feature within a sculpture exhibition with works by sculptor Coenie
Strydom. I adapted the piece slightly for Afrikaburn - I am literally
going to be buried in the earth, with appropriate breathing space, and
then do a quasi-paganistic/anamistic dance from the bowels of the
earth, accompanied by the poetic text. The piece is cast in 3 parts -
clay, fire and stone.
The theme of this year's Afrikaburn's fest is Stof - the primal mud.
Thus came the decision to perform this piece, seeing that it feeds
straight from the fabric of the earth.
That is what I have been doing today - rehearsing the piece, in a
secluded woody spot in Swellendam, 5 horses being my audience!
My only concern at the moment is that the soil of the Tankwa Karoo
where Afrikaburn is to be hosted will have a good consistency to be
turned into mud - for my costume need to be clay and mud. I have a
suspicion that the Tankwa soil is more of a dusty, sandy nature..mmm
that might also work, added some water?
One day off the bike is good. My character has grown quite a bit
through my sitting bones in these few days of cyclin' hours. But
enough is enough for now.
Tomorrow I resume the peddling journey again.
The cycle of life knows no rest!

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Wild

Uit hierdie wilde wind wil ek ontvlug
en myself in jou arms toedig
Die verwarreling in die woesteny
van 'n hart wat enige oomblik
my kan laat staan of laat vlieg...
en tog kies dit meer kere die vlieg
want wie wil die vlerke toevou as
die soete lug aan die skouers gaan bly klou?

Blow wind blow

Cycled from Heidelberg to Swellendam today. 50 km's of struggling
against a head-on wind. Toughest day so far. The downhills felt like
uphills, the uphills felt like..mm..like not moving at all. At times I
was going slower than walking speed, thus forcing me off the bike to
actually walk.
What I discovered to help the spirit - play on my hohner melodica
piano. This was a gift last week from Plettenbergbay's beautiful
barefooted guitarist, Johan Rautenbach. What a perfect gift for me!
When the climbs get too rough I take out my melodica piano and treat
myself to some soothing playing. It has 26 tiny keys and it "runs"
with air that you blow into a mouthpiece. It makes the most
melancholic bandoneon/accordeon sound. It delights mine ears and mine
heart. It fits ever so compactly into my pannier bag. The only problem
- I get so caught up by playing it that I lose track of space and
time, forgetting that the road is still long and inclement.
Something interesting I read in the Sunday paper - etv started airing
Naked News. During the late night bulletin the news readers start
undressing till they end up nude. Now I don't know if this is still
April fooling, but I think it's very cool. The world is shaping up!

Die bliksemse wind

Die bliksemse wind hy waai en hy ruk
Wil my sommer van die fiets en die pad af pluk
Hy kom van voor, ja direk van voor
Wil 'n bitter gat in my gemoed deur boor

Ek trap en ek trap, probeer die fokus behou
Maar Jirremia hy hou aan om my spiere te kou
Die N2 verkeer wonder wat gaan aan
Hoekom sal sy nou van haar pedale af opstaan?

Die bliksemse wind maak alles in my los
Wil sommer die muesli van vanoggend uit my tande flos!
Ek swenk die kant toe, dan daai
Hy wil net nie ophou waai

Die bliksemse wind hy waai en hy ruk
Wil my sommer van die weemoed laat stik
Toue, straps, hare en irritasie klap verwoed teen my aan
Maak my lankmoedigheid sommer gedaan

Die bliksemse wind hy kom van doer
Stuur my wilskrag in sy moer
As jy gille van wraak en wrewel oor die vlaktes hoor
Moet jy weet dis 'n girl wat haar composure verloor!
Prof Tim Noakes:
Jou lyf sal jou wil oortuig dat daar geen regverdiging is om aan te
gaan nie. Jou enigste hoop is dan om op jou geestelike krag staat te
maak. En die funksioneer gelukkig onafhanklik van logika"

Wise words

I met a Belgium cyclist, Marc Frey, a few years ago as he was pitching
his tent in the Fynbos just above Nature's Valley. His travels
fascinated me; we exchanged details and we kept contact over the
years. I even visited him and his sister at their home in Jalhay,
Belgium.
So far he has cycled 32 000km's by bicycle all over the globe.
I let him know I'm peddling this journey. He replied to me and wrote
of his own experience and this he put so simple and straight:
"Going cycling speed gives country a real size. You can really feel
where you are."
I agree !

Saturday, 23 April 2011

I am not alone, I am together

Sent via my BlackBerry from Vodacom - let your email find you!

Heidelberg pub

I'm sitting in the Strafskop pub in Heidelberg. I arrived once again
after dark. Not a very comforting last stretch. A bit of stress to get
to a place of rest.
But now I am here in the pub and I feel so at home. 2 young guys
playing pool, 2 locals drinking one beer after the other and the Lions
and Chiefs running and pushing on a big screen. My first night of not
knowing anyone in town and not having an idea of where I'll lay down
my head for the night..
But soon a hippie-looking chap, Nick left in halftime organising with
an old lady, Joke, for a space for me. Chopchop my restlessness ebbs
away. Nick walks with me to her house, passionately talking about
bio-dynamic farming, his diving days, the gift of the Now, ubuntu and
synchronicity.
I have to say this as sweet and corny it might sound like, but each
time I stand infront of friends or strangers sharing a word or
emotion, I feel incredibly gifted.
Even telephone conversations, sms's and facebook messages are beams of
light. Just a I became quite comfy in the Strafskop pub 2 friends I
made at Afrikaburn 2010 phoned me and wanted to know how my trip is
going.
To all out there forming a web of support THANK YOU, you have no idea
how much your interest in what I do and your kind wishes mean to me.
I am a stranger in a strange town, yet I feel like no stranger. Home
is where love is - and I've been enveloped with it from my journey
began.

The frequent questions

The 2 most frequent questions I hear along my solo bicycle journey is
why? and are you not afraid?
Many people ask if I cycle for a cause or a fundraiser. No, I don't
cycle for any organisation or money. I cycle because of the sheer
living will inside me. It is a form of celebration after I had an
accident with my bike a year ago and fractured my arm. The arm is
shipshape and strong now, and I feel the best way to reconcile
completely with that trauma is to climb on my bike and celebrate the
healing power of the body and mind.

The route I am following , the N2 and along the coast direction West
is one of the safest parts I have cycled in, so No, I am not afraid of
tsotsis jumping from behind corners and bushes. The route is
frequented by a lot of travellers and it being a holiday season, the
flow of traffic is abundant. There have been so many people offering
me things from curiosity, help, lifts and food. With every day passing
shared with friends' and strangers' good gestures is a day added to
the optimism and hopefulness that can lead this country to a better
place. Still I am cautious and aware. Even more so of silly and mindless
drivers. So far I have kept to my side of the road and believe the
other vehicles will do the same. It would seem that this belief is
naïve, but hey, if one is part of a varied society, one wastes one's
time by fearing other people's skills and motives. Stand up for your
own power of being without always asking if you'll be undermined,
threatened, robbed or intimidated.

I do what I do to meet people and places on another kind of level.
They inspire me and I inspire them.
I do what I do because of a deep faith in my own powers and spirit. I
have had long periods of disillusionment about my being and my career
as an artist. I am stepping on sturdier ground now, and this I
celebrate with every kilometre.

I do what I do because I like moving and challenging boundaries within
myself and within my fellow beings.

I do what I do because I crave the veld, sand and sky around me to
feed me with their life and poetry.

I do what I do because I am a bit of an activist - having strong
feelings against the pollution and destruction of our environment.
Cycling is a small way to support the lowering of the carbon
footprint. And yes, I'm cycling because paying R10 a liter for petrol
is simply CRAZY. And the possible and eco-harming fracking (gas
exploration&mining by SHELL in parts of our Karoo) being hot on the
debate table, I thought why not simply stop using fuel-driven
transport and go for the au naturel way of pumping them peddles(-;

I do what I do because of th einfluence of books that I have read - Cervantes' "Don
Quixote", Kazantsakis' "Zorba the Greek", Kerouac's "On the road" and
"The Dharma Bums". All stories of simple yet richly lived lives. The
protagonists steer away from an established conventionality to follow
a deeper yearning in their souls. Money, status, mindless and
unquestioning living is not the way. The way is the passion, the
heart, the suffering, the joy of this one earthtly life granted.

IMG00115-20110421-1724.jpg

Testing to see if I can mail photos to my blog ~~~
The photo was taken at my good friend Carike's home in George. She has 2 year-old twins, Leo an Levi. It is incredible to see how strong each of their personalities are already so defined. I am also part of a twin, so the relationship between these 2 little ones intrigue me a lot. Ah, how I miss my brother Leo now...
Sent via my BlackBerry from Vodacom - let your email find you!

Friday, 22 April 2011

The day was long and joyous!

I have arrived after dark at tonight's destination: Stilbaai.
110 km's fed straight into every fibre of my leg muscles today. The
only other times I have cycled so far in a single day was during the
Cape Argus cycle tour and the 94.7 Jhb race in 2005, the difference
today being I did it without 35 000 other enduro junkies and peddling
a load of 15 kg's with me on the bike!
It was quite an experience to push myself today. The first 40 km
stretch from George to Mosselbay was exhilarating, mainly because I
was bypassing the N2 and cycled on the more scenic R102, better known
as the old Mosselbay rd. Expansive farmlands luring one to stop
awhile... Over lunchtime I spent time on the Mosselbay beach,
indulging in chocolate ice cream, suntanning, taking photos and being
swept away by the newfound joys and enticements of facebook.
I started the next 70 km's waaaay after lunch. I lost track of time as
the blackberry was competing with the breathtaking view of the
Outeniqua mountains peering over the Bay.
As dusk was spreading over land and sea the road from Albertinia to
the turnoff to Stilbaai was quite unexpected! I thought Stilbaai's
junction is right outside Albertinia. But no, the garage owner in
Albertinia informed me that it's still 25 km's to go, but don't worry,
the road is level, no hills and dales. I didn't believe him at first,
but as soon as I headed forth my weary legs rejoiced at this flat
stretch. After 5 days of falling and rising roads through the
mountainous garden route, this flatness was quite welcome!
My hostess for tonight, Marina from Stilbaai, was worried about me
cycling in the dark and jumped in her car and picked me up as I was
riding into the 111th km(-;
This Good Friday was really a good one. I am getting strong in the
body and the mind. I am fully living from inside and from out. An
all-rounded consciousness is surfacing and making my spirit and body
talk to each other like good old friends. As I fall asleep they are
still reminiscing about this willful woman and how she drives them
wild!!

Becoming one

What an amazing feeling to feel the wind, the road, the bicycle ,the
breathing and the body becoming one. This cycle journey is starting to
feel very real. The muscles have been warming up in the last 5 days of
cycling. Now I can fully enjoy. It is a good place to be. Full
immersion in the moment.

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Ek verkies die Afrikaanse weergawe van Afrika Burns

Afrika Brand

Afrika brand weens die vuur in haar lendene
Afrika brand weens die goue velde van haar borste
Afrika brand weens die suurstofryke woude van haar inheemse hart
Afrika brand weens die genadelose droogte op haar tong
Afrika brand weens die herhalende driftigheid van haar liedere

Afrika brand weens die vrugbare oorvloed tussen haar heupe
Afrika brand weens die skugter kyk in die oë van haar koedoes
Afrika brand weens die stille eensaamheid van haar woestyne
Afrika brand weens die onskuld van die energieke polsing in haar are
Afrika brand weens die warmer, stadiger en dieper bewussyn in haar siel

Afrika brand weens die onuitwisbare gees van haar mense


Afrika Burns

My mascot/flag I cycle with on my backpack is a red cloth with my poem
Afrika Burns written onto it - I wrote the poem for last year's Afrika
Burn festival
The "burning" implies both the life-challenge and life-passion
inherent to this incredible continent:

Afrika burns

Afrika burns because of the fire in her loins
Afrika burns because of the golden fields of her breasts
Afrika burns because of the oxygen-rich forests of her indigenous heart
Afrika burns because of the merciless drought on her tongue
Afrika burns because of the persistent driving force of her songs

Afrika burns because of the fertile abundance between her hips
Afrika burns because of the shy look in the eyes of her kudus
Afrika burns because of the silent solitariness of her deserts
Afrika burns because of the innocence of the incessant pulsing in her veins
Afrika burns because of the warmer, slower and deeper awareness in her soul

Afrika burns because of the inextinguishable spirit of her people

Some handy/leggy tips for long distance cycling along the Garden Route

 - When someone offers you lift on an ascent, graciously wipe away the
sweat on your brow and say NO thank you

 - When you are still on the bike by nightfall on the hectic N2 and a
Dutch couple from Plett offers you a lift, graciously say YES thank
you

 - When two fit and beautiful cyclists from Kareedouw offer to cycle with
you to the Tsitsikamma graciously say YES! The one might give you a
handy push up the neck of the Langkloof

 - When cycling along stretches of fynbos, breathe in the bittersweet
aromas deeply, for it might just be your last breath the way some of
the cars drive on the road

 - When passing through the Tsitsikamma go along the R102 and do not bypass
Fynboshoek - stop for njummy home-produced cheese, bread and other
tastefully grown and prepared food. The Provencal style of eating,
drinking and laughing will pacify all undesired anxieties and the good
company will make your soul celebrate this warm-hearted living

 - When entering Knysna, stop over at the bike shop at the side of the
waterfront where the handsome French Belgian shop assistant/salesman
will give you good advice on bike saddles and wish you in an oh so charming way good luck

 - When pulling away with your bike after tweeting/smsing/other
blackberry actions make sure you are focused and steady - avoid
pulling away with a wobble and a swerve - this is hard with a 15kg
load, but try nonetheless. You don't want to cause an accident or let the other road users to think
you are drunk/unsteady/inexperienced (-;

 - When spitting mucus or any undesired fluid from your mouth make sure
you aim hard and fast. You don't want phlegmy attachments on your arm
- it might affect your aerodynamics

 - When cycling past Wildernis, think twice about cycling up Kaaimans
pass, especially at peak hour and at the onset of a brewing storm.
There is no shoulder, the climb is hell, and if wind is coming from up
front, you are going to be beaten even by a snail(-: Rather throw a
thumb, two begging hands or a sweaty, sexy leg to get a lift through
to George.

 - When you think this is it, my lower parts are all frazzled, raw,
overcycled, I do not see the end of this long and winding road, have a
good night's rest, and thank your lucky stars, angels and human
supporters for keeping an eye and a wing over you

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Ride respectfully

I have been travelling on the N2 today - rather nerve wrecking! (I'm
cycling from PE to Cape for the Afrikaburn art festival, for those not
in the know yet)
I'm not a fearful rider, yet it freaks me out how drivers use the
road. I know the tarred roads are first and foremost built for
vehicles with 4 and more wheels. Yet cyclists do use these roads.
Please be aware when driving over yellow lines that there's a
possibility that a cyclist, pedestrian or broken down cars might be
utilising that space on the left of a yellow line.
Today I was cursing and waving the middle finger ferociously at those
vehicles driving over the yellow line justjust slipping behind my back
wheel - at an incredible speed.
I know we use that emergency lane to let faster vehicles pass by. That
is common courtesy. Yet one must use it when utmost necessary and with
caution.
Be circumspect and be aware of ALL road users. Respect.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Who wants to know

Who wants to know that I have cycled a 140km's the last 2 days?
Who wants to know that I have had a most glorious time in the
tsitikamma in the company of a cheesemaker and witnessing his
juggleresque making of mozzarella cheese ?
Who wants to know that I am in plett reciting poetry to the strumming
sounds of a beautiful guitar with the full moon glistening on the
indian ocean ?
Who wants to know all this?
Maybe only a handful of you.
For those few and myself I will keep on writing.
This open diary might be taken off facebook. I will have to think of
it, Maggie. Thanks for linking everything, but maybe I should consider
having the blog as a seperate entity, where people who are really
interested can dive in. Mm what do you think?
I've heard Facebookers and tweeters are Generation C - connected, well
versed in current technological trends and gadgets, and wizzy 30
second communication span.
Facebook and twitter is after all a short message channel.. How
vacuous or profound it really is must be determined by the eye of the
beholder.

Tweestryd

Wat moet ek maak? Eks op reis op grond met my eie twee bene EN in
woord in klank EN in die kuberruimte.
Ek weet nie so mooi of hierdie manier van kommunikeer van blog en
facebook my helemal oortuig nie. Daar is 'n banaliteit van die
alledaagse daaraan geheg. En dis tog die alledaagse wat my so kan
inspireer.
Ek dink die skuif in my kop het gebeur toe ek sondag meeste van die
friend requests op facebook ge "confirm" het.. Toe moes jy sien hoe
die boodskappe van heinde en verre ingestroom kom.
Wil ek dit alles lees? Wil julle al my verbaliteite lees?
Is leef en asem en vel tot vel aangesig tot aangesig nie die beter weg
om te volg.
Verstaan my reg - daar is 'n aanloklikheid om in hierdie netwerk ou
vriende en kenisse se spore raak te loop.
Maar hoe natuurlik is hierdie verbintenis? Is dit 'n verbintenis?
Hulle se networking is key, maar hoe diepgaande en waarde-toevoegend
is dit werklik?
Vergewe my julle almal daar aan die punte gekleef van my cyber
tentakels; ek trek nie julle intensies in twyfel nie, maar tog doen ek
ook.
Die vrees dat die blacberi my sal infesteer met undesired radiation
kom nie uit airy fairy fear and paranoia nie. Dis 'n eenvoudige
bevraagtekening van die effek van keuses wat ons as mense uitoefen.
Dis hoekom ek reis soos ek reis, leef soos el leef, dig soos ek dig -
ek eet nie alles vir soetkoek op nie. Ek moet bly bevraagteken, ek kan
nie net halsoorkop opgesweep raak met 'n "craze" as ek nie ten volle
die raamwerk en konsekwensies begryp nie.
I do not want to take any living being for granted.
I do not take social networking for granted.
I do not take any commodity for granted.
Thus I will keep on weighing the effect of choices and lifestyle.
You may say, shut up Lara and live the moment, live this social media
thing completely; don't question too much.
Mmm, unfortunately I can not do that. I will challenge customs,
beliefs, "crazes" simply because I want to interact mindfully with the
world AND with myself.
Awareness, wakefulness should not fall to the wayside.

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Why

Why must I write anymore from this blakberi if I've just heard that
its "radiation"levels are dangerously high?
For now the phone will be distanced from me. Let each of us stand in
our corner and meditate over our influence on the world...
Till time and info is enough to write again..
Let me rather keep focused on the journey and the quality of it.
Goodbye

Saturday, 16 April 2011

The First Day

the first day on the bike..
Got 50 km's of the 150 planned in. Just after the infamous suicide
gorge at the Vanstadens bridge I started getting one puncture after
the other. It seems to be the rim of the wheel slicing the tube - due
to overload. I think I have packed average weight - about 12 kg's on
the pannier of the bike and 12 kg's in my backpack. And I am not THAT
heavy, about 55 kg's.. So if anyone have an inkling of why I get these
rim cuts do let me know. Inferior quality tubes ?? Or bad cycling
technique? Mmm. The folks in Kareedouw , my stopover for tonight
salvaged me and my "wreck". Oh kind people to drive all that way to
save a damsel in distress. I must say no distress at all - another
cyclist came past and sat chatting with me till Marten , me host ,
picked me up.
The plan now: to lighten my load and hope for the best.
All in all I think the day turned out ok.. I'm giving a piano and
poetry recital in kareedouw tonight. Would have loved to feel how
150km's of cycling and then performing later the very same day feels
like. 50 is just so little!!
Lara pace yourself!

Tomorrow is D day

Posted one day later.. My mind was not on me blog.
I'm standing aflustered outside a bustling restaurant in PE, peering
on the cosiness around the tables and beerbottles.
I have taken my bicycle for test ride just to check if all systems run
smoothly.
A man came up to me, breaking my reverie, saying how mischievous I
look. I told him tomorrow I am starting my long trek to the West by
bike. I think that's enough reason to look mischievous!!
Jah, when woman alone peddles her bike over the vlaktes of Afrika,
many people, think you either mad, irresponsible, careless, inviting
danger etc etc...I have been doing a few hundred km's of solo cycling
and people question my motives continuously. Dealing with these
inquisitions is in itself more of a challenge than being out on me
bike.
The day has been long and tiring - sitting in a vw golf from east
london to PE. That's another reason I cycle - to avoid the numbness
caused by engine transport - be it by car, bus or train.
On the bike I can not fall asleep. One is awake, aware and pumping
with life. And I think that is sufficient reason for cycling long
haul. And the in touchness with one's self and all those marvelous
empowering stuff!
But nou ja, my right hand is not all too happy with me an mr
blacberi.. Spasmic thumb syndrome creeping alongside the knuckles..
Till the next time... Toodledoo

Thursday, 14 April 2011

The richness of the gift

If someone has wondered why I am suddenly present in cyberspace, it is
because I received this blackberry as a gift from a friend a week ago.
It came as a big surprise to me. Initially I thought what will I ever
do with a blackberry?? I am not a blackberry "type". Haha! I have a
nokia and it is working quite fine. But no one ever told me that one
will have continuous access to this wizardry of internet-based social
and business communication.
So this blog is dedicated to this special friend. I have had many
people along my nomadic journey gifting me with varied things from new
car tyres, food, books, clothes, free rides, ideas and to faith in
what I do. Yet I must be honest that this brilliant digital machinery
has brought my world to another level.
From the beginning of the year I have started to travel quite
extensively with my bicycle. Somehow my mind AND wallet can not get
around the idea of paying R10 a liter for petrol. And me loving a
challenge and the outdoors so much, jumping on me redframed bike is
the best way to go!
The next following 11 days I will be traveling by bicycle from PE to
Touwsriver from where I'll be aiming for the Afrikaburn festival in
the Tankwa Karoo in the Northern Cape.
What better way to organise one's life than with a BB? I have my
poems, voice recorder, camera,, photos, gmail and blog tucked away in
one awesome piece de resistance fitting ever so lightly in my
backpack.
On the surface a BB is an object, a materialistic "adornment", but
using it for a wider purpose of organising and optimzing one's life,
it is a wonderful piece of engineering.
THANK YOU!!

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

My space

It's almost time to go to bed, but I find myself jumping up and down
in exuberance in my livingroom here in Hogsback.
Hogsback is home. Yet I am only here for short stretches of time. This
autumn season it is for 3 nights. The rest of the year I am sharing
the living space of generous family and friends while on tour with my
concerts and other performing and workshopping events.
So here I am dancing, prancing and speaking out aloud in this magic
space of Home. I was preparing some of my performance pieces for
Afrikaburn today and exhilarated in the feeling of this solitude.
As a nomad my body and soul craves for a bit of rooted and private
shelter - shelter where it is only I that have to look after myself.
And that is a good feeling to have at times.
I do enjoy the times I am looked after by warmhearted hosts, but hey,
there is something to say for one's own space of freedom.
And here on the last eve of my stay in Hogsback I can not get enough
of the freedom of movement and voice I have always been able to let
flow here.
That is also possibly why I have become so at home with performing
music and poetry wherever I roam - I have made my home the stage, I
have made the stage my home.
And that is possibly why I have become rather fearless in my range of
expressivity. I have performed in the nude before, and this surely
because I make my Home everywhere I go. I do it without arrogance or
disrespect. And eventually I make the world my home because I trust
that comfort, peace and freedom of expression is to be found in more
places than just between the walls of our homes.

Fierce

Another gem by Ian McCallum

Fierce

I like the word fierce -
The way it aligns itself with
Nakedness and solitude:
A fierce nakedness...
A fierce solitude...
And I like the way it holds
The word fire.

I like the word fire -
The way it ignites
the cutting edge of poetry
Refusing to be nothing less than
A fiery edge...
A fiery tongue...
And I like the way it is linked
To the word wildness.

I like the word, wild -
How it weaves its way
Between yes and no,
How it announces itself as
A wild anger...
A wild joy...
And I like the way it nurtures
The word, fierce.
I like the word fierce

- Ian McCallum

Untamed

The poet Ian McCallum wrote a powerful poem UNTAMED that featured in
an exhibition of sculptures by Dylan Lewis. It reads like an anthem
for my journey to and prepping for the Afrikaburn Art festival

Untamed
Sculpted from ancient rock and stream
there's a dream in me...untamed
Unnamed, it comes alive in my silence
and in the unframed manner of my waiting.
Awake, aware... it is there, coiled
in the folding of my arms, in the holding of my breath and in the deep
wakefulness of my sleep.
A force of fire and clay
It hunts along the edge of play
of hide and seek and turn away.
Body of sand and skin, to know this spoor
Is to know the allure of
A gravid kin -
three months here nine months there...
always expecting and always
the unexpected.

- Ian McCallum

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Poetry Reading by the Ecca Poets

Poetry reading in east london 14 april: THE ECCA POETS invite you to their poetry reading and launch of their newest publication Brood on Thursday, 14 April 2011 18:30 for 19:00 at Wendy's Book Lounge 79 Frere Road, Vincent, East London (inside the yard of Ideal Homes). There are limited space - we advise you to book with either Lara (082 325 4258) or Cornelius 082 494 9055 or email wendysbooklounge@gmail.com.

....more about brood

Brood

The 2010 publication of poetry written by the Ecca poets - Brian Walter, Norman Morrissey, Lara Kirsten, Quentin Hogge, Mariss Everitt and Cathal LaganPublished by Ecca (Hogsback) in collaboration with Seaberg
Wordcraft (Port Elizabeth) ISBN 978-0-9814286-0-4.Brood is the 14th book the Ecca poets have brought to publication (September 2010).

The Ecca poets are based in the Eastern Cape and have been publishing their poetry for 22 years and been presenting readings together for 24 years. The publication of their first book arose from the need to have a collection ready to read from at the opening of an exhibition of paintings and sculptures at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival in 1989. Many of the books have since been launched at the Hogsback Spring Festival. From 2009 a significant change in the dynamics of the group took place - Mariss Everitt and Lara Kirsten were the first female poets to join the group! Lara Kirsten is also the first Afrikaans poet to
feature.

The Ecca poets read and publish together so as to harness a creative bond they have as friends and colleagues. They also wish to share the beauty and honesty of poetry with a wider audience. The poets are placed from village, town to city - Morrissey and Kirsten in Hogsback, Lagan and Hogge in King William's Town, Everitt in Grahamstown and Walter in Port Elizabeth.

Initially the publication of the Ecca poets' poems were seen as a "workshopping" of work in progress. The intent of the book has now evolved into a more solid platform to launch a well rounded-off and varied collection of poetry.

The title Brood encapsulates varied emotional and image-inspired interpretations - the poems can be regarded as offspring, the writing as a cherishing under the wings and what poets are especially skilled at - moody meditation. Brood is also the Afrikaans word for bread - nourishment and livelihood. The set of
5 Afrikaans poems entitled "Brood" (written by Lara Kirsten) was inspired by the baker, Chris Gladwin of Hogsback.


Brood is a tasty nourishment for the mind and soul and will entertain and intrigue a wide scope of readers.

(copies of "Brood" will also be available at the Hogsback's Visitor's Centre)

Nader aan myself

Ons is uur van hogsback en met elke km glip die twyfel in myself van
my af. Die moontlikhede wat ek in my gut ge envision het vir
Afrikaburn word weer lewendig.
Die kompleksiteite van die stad duisel dinge. En ekt tot gister nog
sterk gedink om net die fietsjourney op die tuinroete te doen, skole
te besoek en klavier te oefen, en vergeet van afrikaburn.
Maar nee hoe kan mens van so fees vergeet. Die fees wat direk uit
moeder afrika groei en spat en brand en skyn.
Hoe kan ek van my tong en my lyf se plig vergeet, die plig om die
grond myne te maak, daarin te rol, een te word daarmee. die
feesgangers van die lewe te herinner dat die lyf die tong die mens se
wil die greatste installasie is.
Die lyf brand helderder as wat vuur ooit kan brand.
Laat ek nie huiwer om. Regop te staan op die vlaktes van die karoo.
Die aarde sal nie omgee as ek haar met menswoorde en menslyf celebrate
nie.

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Honeymoon

A question: Will this beautiful honeymoon phase between me and
monsieur blackberi come to a tragic end? Or will we keep this bond
going strong come rain or shine? Why these fatalistic questions?
Keep the moments alive with the juice of the sweetest and blackest of berries!

Saturday, 9 April 2011

first blogpost sent from my blackberry

En so is ek op my blackberi en my eerste blogpost van die amazing swart monster..kan nie wag laat ek vlge week op die pad op die fiets gaan wees ni! Hiri tool gaat baie deure oopmaak... Eks kind vd 21st cent en tog bly hiri techno stuff *#!$ amazing--
Sent from my mobile device

Friday, 8 April 2011

my first official blog

today is the first day of the rest of my life!
 
i have decided to have a more visible cyberspace presence.. i have been very wary of facebooking and twittering and blogging.. the reasons will be stipulated in a later blog, but for now, hallo to this new networking tool!
 
x

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jy het geen fokken benul nie
het jy?

ek wil eerder stil wees

ek wil eerder stil wees
met niemand woorde aanknoop
geen woorde opskree
vanwaar gaan my woorde kom?!
geen god gaan my woorde bied
geen suurstof gaan in
‘n enkele woord alchemeer
geen lip van my gaan
in ‘n sillabe krul
stil gaan ek wees,
stil!
my verhemelte gaan op my tong neerdonder
as die koeёl van ‘n enkele woord
my mond oopruk
stil gaan ek wees,
stil!
kyk! die oppervlak wat die mond in die hele lyf beslaan
gaan kyk ‘n bietjie hoe klein die mond is in
verhouding tot die res van die lyf
loop deur die restaurante van die monde
die skole van die tonge
die toesprake van die spoeg
die hofbevele van die tande
die preke van die verhemeltes
dit is nie dat ek teen die
klank van spraak is
maar wel teen die woord van spraak –
die klein donker gat waarin jou brein val
en met bloeiende spoegspatsels
oopbreek
die gat van verderf
gee my soen gee my lek
gee my suig gee my smul
maar gee my geen woord
wat die binnewande
van my mond vandaliseer nie
gee my geen woord!
gee my eerder
spoeg gil snik spoeg
wat my mond uitkalwe
tot asemrowende spelonk