Thursday, June 27, 2013

And I'm off!

So the time has finally arrived for me to pack my bags, jump on a bus with 50 other equally deluded human beings and never return -or at least we'll never want to (grins). 
Enough round-about-edness
Tomorrow morning at approximately 5:30 a.m, I will be leaving with my orchestra to go and perform at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival! After an 11 hour drive (eish), we will arrive in the student town of Grahamstown, groggy and claustrophobic from the bus drive, but we will have a spring in our step. 

It's the Arts Festival!

For two days, we will be furiously rehearsing -and furiously attending every concert/play/performance possible. Then for three days we will be performing in the main cathedral, in all our orchestral glory. I might add that we are not merely a classical orchestra. We play many contemporary pieces and modern songs -James Bond theme, Pirates of the Caribbean and Fields of Gold by Sting among others.

The festival has a predominantly jazzy atmosphere, but classic and rock musos make their standing brilliantly too. I think this is going to be incredible. I can feel it. 

I promise to tell all when I arrive back! (wink)


Friday, June 21, 2013

Free Writing: A Journey to a Misty Mountain Village

My feet want to walk up the mildewy steps of a Chinese village, high up in the mountains. The sweet melody of a mandolin plays lightly. Young and old perform tai chi in the damp stone square 
of the village. Two men walk down stairs from higher places with roots hung up on a wooden pole. I see an old woman –old to some, but a baby to the oldest - washing and dunking modest clothes into a flat bucket on her lap. Rinse, a chime of water disturbed. 

I hear the moving of the mist and the quiet flow of wind through the village. Little children are laughing somewhere in a room with no furniture.

A sage of the old looks out his window and observes the hushed village high, high up, so removed from the buzz of cell phones, dishwashing agent ads, millions of tourists snapping photo after photo after photo and the arguing of political agendas with the aftertaste of corruption, bitter on the backs of their tongues. 
I see in his eyes, possibly not the understanding of Facebook, Whatsapp, cars and electricity, but the understanding of the wisdom of silence. Remain in silence. Silence transcends all.


Sunday, June 9, 2013

Coral Spawning : World Oceans Day Blog-A-Thon

Finding Nemo, though the childhood movie of millions, was never my favourite film. I found the barracuda in the beginning really scary and creepy and Dory, sorry Ellen, meh. Funny thing about children, even though we realise years later that we actually hated Ed, Edd, and Eddy, we seem to watch the bloody shows over and over again anyway! Finding Nemo was such for my brother and I, but, not liking the movie didn't prevent us from navigating around the special features menu, thus coming across a short featured documentary on The Great Barrier Reef. In all its awe, the Great Barrier Reef is the single largest concentration of pure life on this earth. The documentary was very well put together and I loved watching light-up squid, angler fish in the depths and angelfish schools, but the most enchanting of all was the segment on coral spawning.

In short, coral spawning is coral reproduction. Coral -unknown to many- is actually a living creature. There are male and female coral and some are asexual. When the time is right, the male coral let out what appears to be smoke -a very spermy smoke. The females then release tens of millions of eggs into the water to be fertilized and then they are carried by the current to surrounding waters. This aids biodiversity and expands areas of settlement for coral species. The releasing of the eggs is also amazingly timed to the rising of the full moon of late summer. Incredible! Here is a video showing you this wonder.

P.S This is the link back to the World Oceans Day website for their Blog-A-Thon: