Sunday, 31 May 2020

Is the grass greener on the other side?

Is the grass greener on the other side? 

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This is the question I had asked myself since relocating back to South Africa after living in the UK for almost 16 years! Life is full of its little twists and turns. For so many years I vacillated with, should I? Shouldn't I? So many times I blamed England for my 'misery' I would be so much happier back in Africa where I was born.

Then in October 2016, an opportunity presented itself. It seemed fool proof, and it was a sign. Even though I should say at this point, my instincts were not in sync with my head. My gut was trying its best to warn me, but I convinced myself it was nerves. It had been many years since I had lived in South Africa, and it was a simple case of nerves. So I decided to ignore that nagging feeling that I was heading for some serious upset.

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South Africa
I packed my life up and Finley my Australian Shepherd and I boarded the flight heading for our new life in Africa. We had been in South Africa for two and a half days and the wheels were falling off already.

By day five, our dream was shattered. What were we going to do? I had packed our life up in the UK and put all my trust into one person who had promised a new life. A new business opportunity and it had all fallen through within days of our return. Well there was only one thing for me to do. I had to get us back home. I had to get Finley and I back on a flight and go back to the UK. Simple.

Not! It was now early December and the Vet informed me that Finley needed a rabies serology test. No problem! How much? Can I book him in tomorrow please? Turned out that there is only one biological unit in the whole of Africa that does this specific test and they were now closed for Christmas and would only be opening mid January!

Not only were they closed, it was a test that needed to be sent to Europe and by all accounts it would take up to three months to return. From the date of return, I would have to wait for a further clean three months before I could book his flight out. So which ever way I looked at this, I was stuck for the next six months!

Oh the despair I felt I cannot put into words. My life was in tatters.I had believed the grass would be greener on the other side and here I was, stranded in Africa. The place I had longed to return to, and here I was crying my eyes out. Utter desperation running through my veins. Were it possible, I would have walked back to the safety of England.

I cried my heart out. What the hell was I going to do. I had no one to leave Finley with while I returned to recapture the life I had lost. Had I been able to return that first week of arriving, I could have taken back my life within hours of landing back in England. I could have moved back into my home and my job was still open. Now it was over. It was sink or swim for us in this Country that had gone to the dogs in the 16 years I had been away. I hardly recognised the place.

Finding a new home for Finley was never a consideration. Finley is my companion, best friend, his loyalty and love is unwavering. I could never do that to him. We had no option but to survive the next six months together come hell or high water. I had to stop my pity party, and put my survival head on. I had to forge a career for the next six months. There was no time to cry and blame. I had to pick myself up, dust myself down, and make this work or we were in trouble.

As it turned out, I got offered a fantastic job, bought a house, had a super car, and life settled down. Finley and I could breathe again. He was much happier even though he was taking strain with the heat in Africa. But there was an emptiness, a void. The 'dream' was not the total reality. Yes I had a beautiful home, a great job, money in the bank and the months were moving by rather swiftly. I missed the UK.

For me, South Africa had changed beyond recognition. I felt unsafe every day of my life. I would tell myself to calm down and stop all my negativity, but was it really negativity? Every house around me was being broken into and innocent families being held at gun point. There I was in a house all on my own, with 5 acres of ground and only Finley's ears for protection. There were times in all honesty, that it was down right terrifying. I literally went grey within months of arriving back to 'the dream'

AK-47 maker in talks for joint venture in India to manufacture ...The one weekend, I went to the Shopping Mall to buy groceries and as I was going up the escalator, these thugs were running down it. They pushed me out the way with an AK47. I hadn't seen one of those that close since the war in Rhodesia and that was going back some years. They had just robbed a jewelry store at gun point and I was in the way of their escape.

They got passed me only to start shooting once they had got to the bottom and came face to face with security. It was a nightmare.

But the days turned to weeks and the weeks to months and the months to one whole year. It was one morning while driving to my office and dodging bullets being fired from both sides of the road and cars in panic swerving to avoid being hit, that I said 'that is it! I am done with this.' and for the first time in all these years I said 'I am going home' referring to the UK as 'home' for the very first time. As I said those words aloud, I could feel the energy surge through me. I knew instantly, I had to get out.

Now I had to figure out a way to return and not let my boss down. The man who had given me such a wonderful break, who had believed in me and given Finley and I a life line. How was I going to sort this lot out? I walked mine, and Finleys legs off thinking. I always go for long walks when I need to problem solve. It's just my thing. I decided, I had enough money, I would simply resign, explaining my reasons why, be honest, and head back. No more vacillating. Procrastination was my thief of time. My mind was made up, I need to get this ball rolling.

I booked Finley in for all his injections and international checks and I was silently preparing myself without anyone but my PA who is now my dear friend, knowing. Levashni knew about all my secret plans and helped me so much. I adore that woman and will be ever grateful for our deep friendship that developed over the year I was there and that still holds firm today. When the time was right, and I had packed up and had my house in order, I would hand my notice in. I figured at the time, with it being Christmas season, I will hand my notice in at the end of January 2018, and leave early March.

As luck would have it, and God on my side, my boss called me to a meeting on the 2nd December 2017 and said 'Anita, how quickly would you be able to relocate back to the UK? I need you at our offices in the UK. I know you happy here but would you consider going back?' Christ are you kidding! I of course didn't say that. I had to pretend to be disappointed and doing him a huge favour! 'Three months and I will be ready' I answered. To which he replied 'Thank you Anita,you have 6 weeks!'

Holy shit! I had planned it all already and I definitely needed more than 6 weeks to pack my whole life up. The man was insane, but I was not about to look this gift horse in the mouth. I would make it happen in 6 weeks come hell or high water. Those 6 weeks were the most chaotic of my life! I not only had to sell up my new life, pack and sort Finley out, I had to somehow squeeze a return trip to the UK and spend a few days there with my Mom who was booked for heart surgery and terrified she would die without seeing me again. 

But, I did it! We, Finley and I, did it. We both arrived back in the UK on the 9th of January 2018 and I started work on the 12th January at our UK office.

I have never been so happy to be back in the UK in my life. 

However, I will say this, I have learned through life, that everything happens for a reason. You may think its a complete waste of time, or not understand why things go so horribly wrong, or why things happen that are unpleasant, but there is always a reason. A lesson to be learnt. Keep your eyes open and be objective. Look for the reason behind what is going wrong in your life. Take some time out. Go for long walks, and the answers will come to you.

The little story I have shared, is half a story. Were I to share my whole experience, it would be a book.

Looking back, I was meant to return. I had lessons to learn about myself, my ability. I had people to meet and befriend. People I would never have otherwise met, had I not returned and gone through what I did. I had an appreciation of myself to discover and respect. I had loose ends untied from over 16 years ago. A past life that I needed to close once and for all.

Summer solstice 2020: when is the longest day of the year and best ...And I needed to return to the UK when I did, because I met the most wonderful human being. After being on my own for many years and despairing on ever meeting anyone decent to share my life with, it all happened on my return. In record time, we built a home together.

Richard had his dog Tia, I had Finley, and we have subsequently rescued from death row and brought on board another three dogs, Stryder a male Scotch Collie and two girls Khaleesi and Torvi who are Carpathian Shepherd X. So we one big happy family, living our little dream.

So as dodgy as that South African trip was, the many, many tears I cried through fear and despair, It was all for a reason, it was all character building, and taught me so much about myself and gave me an appreciation for the Country I now call 'home'

In conclusion, allow me to give you my answer - Is the grass greener on the other side? Well, for me the answer is no. It was not greener. But I had to walk barefoot for a long time to realise that.

Sunday, 29 July 2018

Mr Markle, understand who your daughter is married to!

Image result for images of thomas markle srSomeone please sit this man down and explain to him in laymen terms who and what his daughter has married into! Dear God, the man is an utter embarrassment to that poor girl.

He just keeps opening his mouth to change feet! His comments are honestly cringe worthy. Poor Megan. She must want to find a rock and crawl under it and never come out!

Mr Markle, threatening, and running down your 'in laws' is not going to help matters. They simply ostracize you even further. You will remain on the 'shunned list' until this penny drops! Clearly, you are not up to speed with Royal Protocol which is sad in itself because this is the result. This is a family that not only have specific diets, but forbidden board games. They have the weirdest and strictest traditions. You need to remember this is probably the most watched family globally!

You are Meghan's father, and therefore you under as much scrutiny as the rest of the Royal Family. Its up to you, how you are seen. You have all the power in your hands. Instead of this constant whinging to the press about how hard done by you are, why not turn the page, and start afresh. How do you do that? By stopping with immediate effect, your talking to the press!

I know you are 74 and I respect that. However, why don't you go on a diet, lose some weight, shut your mouth, realise the privilege that is yours, as in being Meghan's father, and the Grandfather of the future Princes and Princesses and show some breeding. Earn your place back in their hearts. What an honour to be the father of a commoner who married a Prince!

Yet with that, you are making things so difficult and so incredibly embarrassing for your daughter. This is not some laid back, loaded, Yankee Doodle family Meghan married into. This is the British Royal Family for crying out loud! Every P and Q needs to be correct. They have Global eyes on them every day of their lives. Don't you understand that?

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Look at your daughter! She is magnificent. The pride that must run through you cannot be put into words, but you really are making a hash of things. Common now, its time to pull it together, if you want to play a part in your daughters future, you need to step up to the plate and show some respect for this Historical and Grand family she finds herself a part of. Make her proud, and you will get your calls returned.

Image result for images of doria raglandThis is really not the time to play the 'Martyr Card' If there is one thing Meghan's Mother has shown, it is understated class. This woman was thrown into the deep end as much as you were. She was thrust over night into the lime light. Her entire life under scrutiny and do you know what? To her credit, she has not faulted. She has never spoken to the press, she has made her daughter proud. You should take a page from her book!

The British public, The Royal Family and the world have embraced this 'simple' woman for her integrity, manners, and discretion. She was terrified at the wedding, way out of her depth. It was all over her face, but she held herself like a trooper. She stole all our hearts. We all wanted to climb through the screen and say 'Well done Doria. You did it! You made your daughter proud'

Like her or not, she has done a better job than you have up to now. But its not too late for you. Pull it together Mr Markle, and you will be given another chance. For God sake, remember who your daughter is married to and what gets discussed with you, dies with you! Personal conversations are exactly that, personal. You are not at liberty to discuss it with anyone. Learn the art of keeping your mouth shut and keeping up appearances and you will be fine!

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Six days to 'President' Donald Trump!

What a journey this has been. I have sat back silently watching this drama unfold. The lies, the fake news, the spy games, the hacking, the accusations, the insinuations, the back biting, the blaming, the manipulation, and in a word, chaos! I think its safe to say America is at risk, if she hasn't already, lost her credibility and fast becoming the laughing stock of the first world. Its been a Historical fiasco in more ways than one!

Image result for images of donald trump and barack obamaThe drama when Donald Trump won, you simply couldn't make up no matter how much of a dream weaver you may be! In fact the behaviour was shameful.

Like Brexit, the people had spoken and the world was in shock, but for the most part, elated. With the exception of your Liberalist Elites of course who appear hell bent on bringing on a war with Russia!

In my opinion the West can count their lucky stars that Putin is chewing on his back teeth and showing incredible stoicism while constantly being struck with a stock prod.

So finally Barack Obama's reign, comes to an end in six days time. I remember clearly the day he took the world stage. What a charismatic man. I was riveted! However, lets take a brief trip into what Obama has in fact achieved during his reign:

Libya: Well he successfully decimated Libya, got rid of Gadaffi while supporting the Syrian rebels. Which resulted in USA now having ops in:
and Uganda

Bin Laden: Yes Obama got rid of Bin Laden which was great, but Bin Laden has just been replaced with Isis! (which is funded in large by America)

Middle East Policy:.....Well there is now more terrorism in the Middle East than there has been in decades. Syria and Libya for the most part were peaceful countries when Obama entered the White House. In fact so was Yemen. What remains after his interference is death and utter chaos which is now spilling over into Europe.

Israel: Well I think its safe to say its been a tumultuous eight year relationship. His simple message to Israel 'have the courage of my convictions!' That was in his landmark speech in Cairo back in 2009. "I've come here to Cairo to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world that America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition" Obama said and went on to say "Instead, they overlap and share common principles. Principles of justice and progress; tolerance and the dignity of all human beings"

Great speech, and more than a little naive because today we have more than half a million dead Syrians, a region riddled with failed and failing states, not to mention a barbarous Islamic State terrorizing millions. Israel cant be blamed for not wanting to share the dream!

USA economy: Obama was quoted saying 'We turned recession into recovery, and we have put more people back to work than all other major advanced economies combined" Really? Is that why food stamp applications are up by a 3rd which is putting an added strain on the public purse which last count owed 8 trillion dollars? Just to mention one simple example. There are others.

Racial divide and tensions: He's done bugger all to sort this out. Be honest! Dallas, Baltimore, etc. Enough said.

Crime and poverty: Well lets just say, that's been a long ride in reverse!

All said and done, in my opinion, President Obama, has done a fabulous job of causing world chaos and disruption. Is he finished yet? Not by a long shot. He is determined to leave as much mess as humanly possible for President Elect Trump to chew on.

So lets take a brief look at who Donald Trump is.

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- On the 20th June 1988 which is 28 years ago, A then child called Andrew Ten who was only 3 was in desperate need of medical treatment. This little boy was refused on all commercial airlines because he could not travel without an elaborate life-support system which included a portable oxygen tank, a suction machine, a breathing bag and an adrenaline syringe. His Orthodox, Jewish parents in sheer desperation, contacted the billionaire Donald Trump.

Little Andrews parents Judy and Harold Ten, in their own words said 'Mr. Trump did not hesitate when we called him up. He said 'Yes, I'll send my plane out'' When asked why he believed Mr Trump would even help by making his private plane available for this unknown family. Harold replied 'Because he is a good man. He has three children of his own and he knows what being a parent is all about'

In 1988 Harold Ten said he believes that Trump fulfilled the Talmudic saying that 'He who saves one person's life, is as if he saved the entire world.' In part, thanks to your President Elect, this boy of 3, some 28 years ago, had his life saved.

- Then you have Donald Trump buying Ed McMahon's house from the lender and then allowing Ed to continue living there at a reduced cost. Trump says 'When I was at the Wharton School of Business, I would watch him ever night, how could this happen?' The lender had a two week deadline on the property and Trump came to the rescue in the nick of time.

- Donald Trump is an ardent philanthropist. Actually his son Eric is no different. The Eric Trump Foundation has donated over $28 million to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in California alone! So lets just list a few of the organisations that Trump donates to and keeps a keen eye on:

  • American Cancer Society
  • American Diabetes
  • Alliance for Lupus Research 
  • Autism Speaks
  • Crohns & Colitis
  • Citymeals-on-Wheels
  • National Network to End Domestic Violence
  • New York police foundation
  • Ronald McDonald House of New York
  • New Yorkers for Parks
  • Joe Torre Safe at home Foundation
Should I go on? OK here are a few more that some of you may not know. 

- He rebuilt Central Parks Ice Rink in time for Christmas and did it from Free! Any money made was donated to charity. 

- He kept Harlem Hoops program alive after he learned that the man who ran that got killed in 9/11 attacks.

- He fought antisemitism and racism in Palm Beach over 20 years ago! 

- He put the first ever woman in charge of supervising the build of a skyscraper when he hired Barbra Res in 1980.

- He doesnt only have the golden touch where business is concerned but according to Jennifer Hudson "He has a heart of gold" When her Mother, brother and nephew were murdered, Donald Trump took her and her family in. Allowing them to stay at The Trump International Hotel free of charge. 

- What about the Buffalo bus driver who stopped a young girl from leaping to her death in 2013? Well Donald Trump gave him $10,000 reward. 

- On September 11th, the infamous 9/11, Donald Trump was at Ground Zero. He helped the search for survivors with 200 of his own people.

and it goes on and on.... 

Two days after his win, Russia and Syria had announced they wanted peace with America. Israels Prime Minister, said he wanted to repair the damaged relationship between USA and Israel. Canada and Mexico said they willing to renegotiate NAFTA. 

I hope I don't eat my words, however I believe Trump is going to bring about some needed changes to America as a whole. Look there is no question this man has some challenging times ahead and the conditions being left behind for him to sort out are not going to be easy. Obama is making damn sure that Trump does not have an easy ride. 

There is going to be a lot of work ahead for Trump if he is to make good on his promise to "make America great again"  

Image result for images of donald trumpCasting my mind back since the day he won, I think its fair to say that Trump never actually did run for 'Leader of the World' but as Candidate for the American public. He has kept it simple and to the point. He is passionately in love with is Country and the people who live in it. Trump is no fool and I think more the fool you, to those who think he is. This is a shrewd business man, with a brilliant head on his shoulders. He is savvy and never takes his eye off the ball. 

I believe that for the first time in many years, there is more optimism in America which will hopefully stimulate growth and international relationships. I wish him every success in his coming Presidency.  

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Yulin Dog Meat Festival and Mans Limitless Cruelty!

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This has been thee most disturbing and awful blog I have written too date! I cannot begin to tell you how emotionally difficult it has been to look at these dreadful photos and to post these heart-rendering images. I sit here typing to you literally with a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes. As an owner of a dog who saved my life in more ways than one, a dog to whom I owe a debt of gratitude, and who shares my life as my companion and best friend, it breaks my heart.

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Front legs dislocated. Look at the terror and pain in her eyes
I am powerless to change this on my own, which is why I share this with you. Together, we can do something to put an end to this yearly suffering. Sadly, the only way we could put an end of any, and all suffering on a global basis, would be to eliminate man!

He, and he alone, is the only living creature who breathes air into its lungs, who is capable of the dreadful levels of cruelty, inflicted on humans and well as animal.

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Being skinned alive
Nothing else on the planet with a pulse, is capable of this. Only Man. The 'evolved' one. Man, who walks with a Bible, a Torah, A Quran, and whatever else he prays to, tucked under his arm. He asks his God for victory while he marches into battle slaying and maiming as he goes along. He prays for rain during drought. He turns to God in times of desperation. Yet man, and man alone, is the cause of the all earths suffering.

Every year since 2009, between the 21st June and the 30th June, China has a festival. This is no ordinary festival. Its a festival of pain and torture. All this pain, suffering and cruelty, is believed to help ward off the heat in the summer months! This is the Lychee and Dog Eating Festival in China. More commonly known as the Yulin Dog Meat Festival.

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In Guangxi Zhuang Region, more than 10 000 dogs are tortured to death in this week. Over China a grand total of 20-30 million dogs are burned alive while their mouths are tied shut.

Skinned alive, and thrown alive, into boiled pots of water. They are paraded through the town on spikes, laughed at, and photographed for trophy pics by the locals who encourage more pain to be inflicted.
This 'Festival' has to be stopped. In 2014 the local government decided to disassociate itself from the event and went so far as to forbid its employees from attending and limited the size of this festival by shutting down a few dog markets and slaughter houses. Its not enough!

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Trying to climb out of boiling water. 
Many still wearing their collars arrive at this market. These dogs are trucked up to a 1000 miles and using force, are pushed into cages big enough for one or two dogs at the most. They are in metal cages without food or water. Which means some die, and many arrive ill and diseased.

The restaurant owners claim that inducing extreme pain and fear before actually boiling the dog alive, brings a rush of adrenaline which the restaurants believe makes the meat tastier.

Dear God in heaven. Have you any idea how many times that poor animal has died psychologically and mentally before it gets thrown into a pot of boiling water after its been skinned alive?

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That dog still alive with its back legs chopped off and the skinning having begun
I am so very sad. These photos are just awful, and I am sorry to have to publish them. But these animals don't have a voice and we need to speak for them. In order to bring the seriousness home, I have to put these heart rendering pictures on. If you don't see them, you have no idea what is going on in China.

You know, some days after reading my emails and signing petitions to everything wrong in the world today, I feel such despair. I want to pack my bags, head for the hills, and never be exposed to the media again. It truly is a depressing world with the worst possible cruelty inflicted on some animal, child or adult every second.

Just when I think, It cant possibly get any worse, the next one beats it. Man, truly is an awful species. Never again, should anyone use the term 'They behave like animals' because animals in their entirety have never raped their babes, tortured their own species for fun, maimed and killed just for he hell of it, and they don't have an evil bone in their bodies. That DNA is ours, and ours alone!

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

If you have an ounce of patriotism, vote 'Brexit'

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And we back........The biggest decision anyone in the UK will make, regarding their country. Which way is this vote going to go? Are you a 'Bremain' or a 'Brexit?' 

We are force fed a diet of 'The EU makes us all stronger' Try telling that to the countries that are struggling like hell since climbing aboard this sinking ship. Try telling that to Greece, who are despairing and lets face it, destitute! 

Is this our future? 
My God have those Greeks had it tough. They are suffering. They are forced to attend soup kitchens. So many have taken a bullet to their head. Athens was once a thriving financial centre. Today it is full of bric-a-brac stalls and pound shops run by Chinese and South Asian immigrants. That once proud nation has literally been brought to its knees. 

Yet the autocrats of Brussels turn a blind eye and the screw even tighter. Total refusal to cut Greece some slack. And this is what you want to stay in? Really? 

Rather than protect Europeans, the EU itself has become the greatest threat to our continent. Its a sham. Its a mess. Its corrupt, and its broken! For goodness sake, you need to face the cold harsh facts. Take your head out from under the sand and look around you. Its over! As I type this, I can tell you now, David Cameron got the last 'X' I will ever give him. Quite frankly I think he has proved to be useless and two faced. He, like most of the cabinet appear to be corrupt and the last thing they have in their minds, is what is best for Britain and her people! 

Actually, the African states are accused of feathering their own back pocket and sadly, I believe most of the cabinet are the same. Its all about them, and they don't give two hoots about the public and how Britain is suffering. 

When David Cameron hands the keys to No.10 over. do you really think he is going to fret over how Britain turns out? Do you really think he is going to feel regret for mistakes he has made? Lies he has told? No! 
He will walk away, like Tony Blair did, with millions of pounds in the bank and a passport to financial and political freedom. ' F*ck you Jack, I'm alright!' will be the attitude. He will have helped bring Britain to her knees, and disappear. The part that really makes me so angry is David Cameron knows full well that Brussels will not budge an inch. They have refused time and again to concede any ground. Even a minor change to migrants rights to claim welfare has been rejected.

Its coming and there is nothing we can do to stop it if we don't control our own borders!
British calls for change, have been dismissed. Nothing is allowed to challenge the drive towards an ever 'closer' union. Its pathetic to say the least. Knowing this, Cameron stands there as leader of this Country, and lies into our faces as does most of his cabinet, and tries to convince us we need the EU? How utterly shameful! We need to be ruled by this federal superstate because we incapable of surviving without it? Rubbish! 

The 'Bremains' need to wake up now. Seriously this vote is our last chance at getting our country back. Face the wall of reality! The EU is in desperate trouble. The edifice, the structure, of federalism is crumbling around us. Its broken by its own ruinous contradictions and lets face it, spectacular failures! All the EU has achieved is debt, despair, and slow disintegration. Where is the democracy in the EU? You tell me.... 

You think its only Greece that has defaulted? While the eyes of the world focus on poor Greece, there are several other countries in the EU that have dreadful debts. There are at least six European nations whose debts are larger than their economic output and 16 have debts larger than the 60% of GDP. Pathetic! So please with tears in my eyes, tell me why on God green earth, you would vote to keep us into this train wreck! It makes no sense at all. 

Image result for vote brexit imagesFor God sake, I am not a politician, I didn't go to an all girls equivalent of Eton, nor do I have a degree in Political Science. Yet how is it, that a simple person like me, can see the obvious, yet so many hundreds of thousands are blind? Its brain numbing! France and Italy are itching to get a vote in. Their people are fed up too. The eyes of the world are watching this fiasco. Countries are desperately unhappy in the EU. Yet the plonkers who run our Government would have us believe its the best thing for our Country? Holy Mac! what planet are these people on? How much are they being paid? I want to know what their reward for this baloney is!

If we lucky enough and there are enough intelligent people out there, and we get our 'Brexit' vote, you watch this space. The EU will be tickets. France, Italy, Poland, Sweden, Portugal, Greece, Spain, and others, will be following suit. Brussels can manipulate and govern themselves. They can keep their political correctness, human rights bosh, to themselves and crack on. Leave the rest of us to clean up our back yards, and pull our torn and bankrupt countries back together again. Each country can then protect her borders and their people can breath a sigh of relief. 
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Its over! 

In closing, if you vote remain, don't you ever utter another word about how miserable this country is, or how its falling to pieces, or how much money we pay out, how few school places there are, how the NHS is useless, etc etc. You had your chance, so belt up! You made your bed, now you lie in it!