15 Motivational Songs to kick A**

Are you still keeping to your New Year’s resolutions? You just could not resist that slice of chocolate cake, could you? It is officially the second month of the year. The month of little chocolate shaped heart candy and other red-coated sweet things. No one blames you.

I happen to be of the opinion that each day brings with it the opportunity to make a new resolution. To start fresh. Just because you slipped up on your diet does not mean you can’t lose that weight.

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Perhaps you are struggling with a project you started. Perhaps you are meaning to start a new project, but feel that something is holding you back? Perhaps life has thrown you a curve and you really need that little extra bit of motivation to get you positive.

It may just be the time to take the bull by the horns and tackle that task. Whatever challenge you are facing, even if it is just getting up out of bed in the mornings – because even that can be hard at times – I’ve got you covered.

Here to get you going is my list of motivational songs.

We start this list with songs from the 70’s.

1.    Stayin’ Alive – Bee Gees

1977, was the year the Bee Gees graced us with the classic, ‘Stain’ Alive’.

“You know it’s all right. It’s OK.
I’ll live to see another day.”

What’s not motivational about that? This timeless tune, makes me want to get up and do something? How about you?

2.    Don’t stop me now – Queen

1978, brought us one of Rock music’s masterpieces by legendary band Queen. ‘Don’t stop me now’, is a feel good song, guaranteed to get you out and going. I guess there would be a difference between a ‘feel good song’  and a ‘motivational song’, but I think this one covers both those definitions.
From Queen’s large selection of classic rock, it’s hard choosing only one song. 1977’s ‘We are the champions’, 1990’s ‘another one bites the dust’ and 1991 ‘the show must go on’, defiantly also deserve to be in the collection of motivational songs.

3.    Always Look on the bright side of life – Eric Idle

1979 saw the release of an annoying little jingle ‘Always Look on the bright side of life’, by Eric Idle (who is part of the British comedy group – Monty Python). This ear-worm is so irritating it will get stuck in your head at an inevitable time. Which is what makes it so good. Did someone cut you off in traffic? I’m sure that part which he whistles could easily be replaced by the words ‘F**k You!’ repeated four times. It is the ideal tune to whistle while your kid is sitting on the back seat. And in case you were wondering what the bright side of being cut off in traffic is; Well firstly, if this did not cause an accident you can be thankful for that. Also, you have a car to drive to enable you to be in a situation to be cut off in traffic.
I don’t know so much about the music video, though. I guess some people would be offended by it. Oh well! Always look on the bright side of life. . .

4.    I will survive – Gloria Gaynor

There is something strangely motivating about the 1979 classic by Gloria Gaynor, ‘I will survive’. Not only is it the ideal post break up song, but it really fits many other situations too. Your boss thinks you just can’t live without him? Have you to go without chocolate for a week?
Yea, go on and sing it “I will survive”, you are feeling better already, aren’t you?

On to the age of neon colors and wild curly hair, the 80’s, which was not without its own digital flavor of music. Motivational songs of this decade included:

5.    Don’t stop believing – Journey

Yes, as unbelievable as this may be, ‘don’t stop believing’ was originally released in 1981. It was released in 2009 as digital download content, after having been covered by the movie ‘Glee’, which is why it appears to be such a current hit.

6.    Eye of the Tiger –  Survivor

‘Eye of the Tiger’ by Survivor has got to be one of the best motivational classics out there. Released in 1982, it held the number one spot on the Billboard Top 100, for six weeks. Among others, it was the theme song for the Rocky 3 movie.

The 90’s brought us:

7.  Conquest of Paradise – Vangelis

Released in 1992, the lyrics to Vangelis’ ‘Conquest of Paradise’, don’t actually mean anything. The words are from a made-up language for the movie ‘1492: Conquest of Paradise’. What makes this piece of music so inspirational is the melody. Just listen to that and not feel encouraged – I dare you. Go on! Can’t do it, can you?

8.  River of Dreams – Billy Joel

1993, Billy Joel brought us the ‘River of Dreams’.
If ever “in the middle of the night, you go walking in your sleep”, the “River of Dreams” would be the place to go. What gets me about this song, is that I think many of us are “looking for something so hard to find, it can only be seen by the eyes of the blind”. Serious! These are some lyrics.

9.  Jimmy Cliff – I can see clearly now

1993, also brought us the Jimmy Cliff classic, ‘I can see clearly now’.
Again with some seriously good lyrics:

10. Smash Mouth – All Star

Released in the year we could all officially party like it’s 1999, Smash Mouth’s, ‘All Star’ tells you that despite your shortcomings you can still achieve great things.

11.  Creed – Higher

Also from 1999, Creed’s ‘Higher’ takes us to a place “where blind men see.” While the song actually refers to lucid dreaming, the lyrics are very inspirational. They motivate you to “go there” and make this world a better place.

Other mentions of the 90’s

There are some songs of the 90’s that have just been overplayed. While R. Kelly’s 1997 hit, ‘I believe I can fly’, is defiantly the 90’s inspirational anthem of the decade – could you really listen to that again?

Bon Jovi’s 1997 song, ‘It’s my life’, seems to be on every other list of inspirational songs. While I can’t dispute the motivational aspect of this particular piece of music, I just really don’t like it. Maybe 1997 was  not my year for music.

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Beyond 2000, a new millennium inspired songwriters to write even more inspirational songs. Well, way beyond 2000 – because I’m skipping an entire decade here. It’s not that 2000 to 2009 did not have any inspirational songs, to me none of them really stick out.

12. Pink – Perfect

In a world where so many of us (especially us women) have so much self-doubt, suffer from depression and body image issues – this song, this song, ‘Perfect’ by Pink released in 2010. Honestly this song! It is very inspirational. When I’m feeling a bit over emotional this song can even bring tears to my eyes – that’s how good it is.
I fell in love with the song after reading THIS poem. Awesome poem – everyone should read. Great song.

13. Kelly Clarkson – Stronger

What is it about breakups that make songwriters write such inspirational lyrics? Like the Gloria Gaynor song (above), Kelly Clarkson’s 2011 hit, ‘Stronger’ hits a home run in the inspirational department.

“What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, Doesn’t mean that I’m lonely when I’m alone”

14.  Rachel Platten – Fight Song

The lyrics may be filled with clichés, but, clichés are clichés for a reason. I love this song. Rachel Platten’s 2014 hit, ‘Fight Song‘, defiantly tops the charts of ultimate inspirational songs.

“I might only have one match, but I can make an explosion”

This song also happens to be the reason I was inspired to create this list in the first place.

15. Katy Perry – Rise

With all the inspirational Katy Perry songs released to date, I simply had to choose the latest number ‘Rise’. It was released last year (2016) in the spirit of the summer Olympics – or so Katy Perry claimed. Now, if you listen to the Christian Conspiracy Theorists, it’s another story. If you see this as being sung from the point of view of Lucifer, then the song takes on a completely different and scary meaning.
However, if the Devil has his Fate to fulfill, we, each one of us also has our Destiny. (There is an argument between the difference of Fate and Destiny, which I’m not going to go into now, but …)
Other inspirational Katy Perry songs include the 2013 hit ‘Roar’ and the 2010 Song ‘Firework’.

The longer I contemplate the list the longer it is likely to get. Inspirational songs have been topping the charts for decades.

What inspirational song do you think needs to be added to the list? What music from the period 2000 to 2009 should I have included? Talk to me I’m listening.

p.s. This post is the second day of, it does not need to be perfect, a blog series I’m currently running on this here blog.

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

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#Book Review: Memoirs of a Dilettante Volume One by @HHBasquiat

When it comes to sarcasm, there is a fine line between rude and witty. That line is even harder to walk when it comes to writing. Helena Hann – Basquiat and her co-conspirator Penny seem to have it down to a fine art. This is what I enjoy most about the writings of this author. She seems to be able to take everyday situations and turn them into enlightened forms of sarcastic humor.

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Her memoirs have a sense of ‘je ne se qua’. Sophisticated and artistic pop culture commentary. Relatable stories, which seem to be inspired by real life. The blurb on the back of the book explains it well:

“Most – okay, some – of what follows is true.”

It was really hard to believe that a man (since the Author uses a female pen name) wrote some of the more painful stories, stories which seem too feminine of an experience. Perhaps men and women are really not very different after all.

Among my favorite in the collection of memoirs is the one titled:

Gotta catch ‘em all! (the modern young woman’s guide to choosing friends)

Sincerely, if you were to buy the book to only read that particular chapter it would have been money well spent. It is an excellent piece of sarcastic commentary on how shallow our society seems to have become. How labels have replaced human beings and us as a society seem to take offense with everything.

I recommend this book for anyone and everyone. It’s something a little bit different. Most likely it is not like anything you have ever read before. Defiantly something that will make you think about the world we live in. It’s charming, it’s painful, it’s fiction, it’s fact.

I give this a five out of five stars.

You can read my review of Memoirs of a Dilettante Volume Two here, which I would also recommend to everyone.

Find it on Amazon.

Find it on Goodreads.

Author links:

Author Blog:

 About the reviewer

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

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African Me and Satellite TV by @jorobinson176 #BookReview

African Me and Satellite TV is a novel by South African born author Jo Robinson. The story line is a prime example of Robinson’s love of writing about human frailty.

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The story takes place in modern-day Zimbabwe (after Morgan Tvangirai’s party merged government with ruling party led by Robert Mugabe 2009 – 2013).

After years of depression, the heroine, Suzette Herzog is faced with two very dangerous racists. After a series of events, this married couple makes it their life’s mission to destroy Suzette.

It is unfortunate, but true that such people do still very much exist in the region today. As someone who lives in Southern Africa, I find the plot and characters to be very realistic.

Other characters in the book were also very entertaining and well thought-out.

The issues of human rights and animal cruelty form part of the main plot and large chunks of the book are dedicated to this topic as viewed from the point of view of Suzette.

Apart from a few easily overlooked typo’s the language flows effortlessly. Overall the book was an enjoyable read, which also made me think about the issues we face in the region.

I recommend the book for anyone who wants to read a genuine African story. If you enjoy stories of triumph of the human soul then this would be your book.

I give the book 3 out of 5 Stars.

Links:

Find the book on Amazon here.

Jo Robinson blog: africolonialstories.wordpress.com

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About the reviewer

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

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To the blog posts I did not write

You were there lingering

At the forefront of my mind.

Complete with opening lines,

Title names

And formatting options.

 

But before I penned  a word

Made a few bullet points

Or powered up my computer

I shot you down!

 

Not because you were not good

Or worthy of composing

But the sudden pulse of life

Needed attending.

 

A home needed cleaning

Cloths and dishes needed washing

Diapers needed changing

Hugs needed giving

Lessons needed teaching

Hygiene needed applying

Food needed eating

 

Before I knew

You flew out the door

Blissfully flung

Into the mess hall

Of my conscious thoughts

Which linger in obscurity.

 

There you are still,

Hoping I may

Once again, stumble

Across the crumpled bit of nonexistent parchment

 

A reminder that,

It all does not need to be perfect.

 

So in my unreadable script

I put you down

Into my little pink notebook.

Unorganized thought.

Not resembling any structure.

Un-edited. Impulsive. Raw.

 

Where you are allowed to be

As you are.

Un-judged.

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This post is: the first day of it does not need to be perfect. A series of blog post I’m currently writing.

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

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Thankfully coffee: The baby, the diaper and the healthy fizzy drink

If we were having coffee, I’d offer you a homemade rusk. Sorry, no Christmas cookies. I’ve not come around to baking any and most likely I won’t. It’s been a month, how doeth time fly?
How does time fly indeed? The year is almost on its back and we have one extra little human in our house.
“I can’t believe it! It seems like only yesterday you told us you were expecting”, one of my relatives said as she called to congratulate me.
“It’s been 9 months”, I said.

As you dunk your rusk, into your coffee (or possibly rooibos tea), I’d probably be showing off the little man. My heart is overflowing with gratitude. Mini-Me is just as pleased to be a big sister. Although, I think, she was expecting someone a little more playful and a little less sleepy.
“Give it some time,” I tell her.
I’d sincerely hope you don’t want to know the in-depth detail of the birth? If you asked I’d probably reply, “do you really want to listen to this particular horror story?” Natural births generally aren’t all that pretty.
I’ve written it out none the less and am wondering: if I should post it, if I should give it away as a guest post or if I should just let it be. It seems a waste to the all but five readers of this here little space on the interweb. Perhaps, this is one of the reasons you have not seen me write much of late here.
Granted I’ve been too busy breastfeeding, cleaning up the poopy baby bottom and catching up on sleep to give my lack of enthusiasm much thought. All three things for which I’m thankful. Yes, even cleaning of baby poop gets a thankful vote, since I have the diapers to throw away after they have been contaminated. Yes, I know I’m polluting the earth with all those nappies, but washing diapers . . . Maybe that is something I can try when the little man does not soil more than 10 diapers a day.

If we were having coffee, we might discuss my maternity benefits. We could possibly discuss what our Social Welfare pays out to new mothers (who are on maternity leave). My claim seems to have been handled without a hitch. Something to be sincerely thankful for. Considering that this is Africa, the benefit is really good too.

As I offer you another rusk, I’d thank you for the gift you brought for the baby. Everybody who’s been over for coffee has been very generous. I recently found out that in some of our local cultures it is a taboo to meet a new baby without offering a present first.

As per the usual discussion topics, we’d wonder over to the weather which has been hot and relentlessly dry. It’s this kind of heat which makes you thirst for something cold. I’d offer you a refreshing sip of my husband’s homemade kefir juice.
Kefir is something more I can be thankful for. We drink a glass each day of the milk variety. For those not in the know, kefir is natural milk culture. It forms grains which are used to make drinking type yogurt. It’s high in probiotics which have all kinds of health benefits. These grains can also be converted into what is called a water kefir. From this one can make the kefir juice, which is slightly fizzy.
I’m  sure as we continued chatting, we’d find many things to laugh about. Laughter is always something to be thankful for. I’ve recently started re-reading a book and have had many laugh-out-loud moments. Sometimes I’ve got to be careful not to startle my son awake.
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If we were having coffee I’d thank you for stopping by. It has been good catching up. I’d tell you to catch up with other bloggers over coffee on the #WeekendCoffeeShare. You can also catch up on what bloggers are thankful for on the #10Thankful.

 About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

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Rudolf the rednosed reindeer

I was in the shop the other day, when low and behold the theme song to my work in progress played on the radio. Now, I have read one should keep songs out of your books. One should also avoid having your characters talk with a heavy accent. In addition, one’s blog posts should be perfectly grammatically correct. Eish! I cannot seem to keep to any of these pieces of advice.

Due to copyright protection, song lyrics can cause some hefty issues. However, titles do not hold copyright protection. Moreover, no one said you can’t make up your own lyrics – which is what I did anyway.
Halloween has come and gone. In my defense, we don’t really do the “old hallowed night” thing here. Also, I’ve been somewhat pre-occupied. More on that later.

I’ve wanted to share a snippet from my current work in progress. It is somewhat creepy and very Haloween’y. It also goes well with Christmas, which is coming up soon. Obviously, I will re-write this again. Many times. Currently, this is still part of chapter one. I may, however, start off chapter two this way…

Obviously, no guarantees that it will ever see the publishing light of day. I just happen to love this mini scene…. And so here it is:

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***

It seemed to be dusk. Miranda found herself in a forest. A branch cracked loudly as she stepped on it.

“Rudolf the red nose reindeer” she heard a girl’s voice sing off in the distance. The song vibrated through the trees and stopped when Miranda looked at a black crow, which had just perched on a stump in front of her.
She heard the girl laugh in song as it seemed the child was running through the dense growth.
Miranda would have followed the girl if it was not for the crow which at that point made the most horrible wailing croak.

“ARRRRRR!” its broken voice vibrated through the tree stems. The menacing echo of a flock birds taking flight made her heart jump. She looked at this black crow and noticed its blue eyes when blood started flowing from them. The thick red liquid quickly oozed all over the bird’s face. His wings got drenched. It started fluttering around, trying to take off. As if covered in a thick layer of oil, the blood-soaked bird, could hardly move. As blood oozed from the birds every pour, it fell to the ground in a big messy puddle of crimson. The copper smelling wet patch seemed to grow ever closer towards Miranda. A crack of wood announced someone behind the dense vegetation. A curly blond haired girl stepped out. She was wearing a white dress and white shoes, which were splattered in red as she jumped into the pool of blood.
“Why Santa chose him, not even Death knows” the girl’s clear voice sang. She giggled and ran back into the overgrowth.
“Wait! Wait!” Miranda called after her. She was about to follow when she noticed the lake of blood surrounding her. The scent of feces filled Miranda’s senses. It became difficult for her to breathe with this stench. Miranda tasted the acidic burn of vomit as she tried to fight nausea. She wanted to run, she wanted to scream but she was frozen.

***

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***

image credit: pixabay.com – Alexas_Fotos

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About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

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Do authors kill their darlings to torture their readers?

*Spoiler zone for Harry Potter and other book series*

“Kill your darlings”, is advice given to writers. Seriously, do they need to heed it?

As a reader, it is often frustrating and painful to watch how merciless author’s kill off a beloved Darling character. The first time I actively noticed this literacy trend was while reading the Harry Potter series.

Author J.K Rowling came under much fire for killing her characters in a book series intended for children. Rowling kills off Cedric Diggory in book 4 of the series. If you ask me, this was purely a plot mechanism. Cedric’s death plunges the story forward. It also signals that the story getting much darker. While terrible, the death of this minor character was not all that traumatizing. Quill held high, each subsequent book saw Rowling crossing out another Darling.

People debated whether the death of Sirius Black or the death of Albus Dumbledore was more distressing. Personally, I would go with Dumbledore. He was one of my favorite characters. However, none of this came as a shocker. I was reading all the spoilers (Hey, I had to wait until normal business hours to get my copy of the book). I read the end before the beginning. Book 7 saw several Darlings lose their life. Only Rowling could kill off her own protagonist in such a magical fashion and get away with it. Okay, so she brought him back to life.

What is a story without its hero?

It was while reading another series that the death of a major character really got me down. Author Kim Harrison, killed off one very beloved character in her “The Hallows” series. I, along with all her other readers was confused, angry and very sad about the loss of Kirsten, who was Rachel’s (the protagonists) boyfriend at the time of his death. Okay I’ll admit it, I was crushing on the sexy vampire. Later books in the series revealed that he really did have to go. He was in the way of the story moving forward. Still, it hurt.

Author George R.R. Martin, takes no shame in killing his Darlings. Those who have read the “A Song of  Ice and Fire” series, or have watched the Television Show, “Game of Thrones”, will know Martin’s beloved method. He takes the entire notion of killing major characters to a completely new level. Simply put, I find this disturbing. It is one of the reasons I stopped reading those books.

The question then remains, do authors really need to kill their Darlings?

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From J.R.R. Tolkien to Anne Rice, many authors have killed their Darlings. It’s not for nothing that this is something so frequently found in our literature and storytelling. Sometimes a Darling will stand in the way of the story moving forward. He will stand in the way of the protagonist’s personal growth. It is all part and parcel of plot dynamics. There certainly is good reason behind this madness of, killing off Darlings.

Authors do not only apply this concept of killing off their Darlings to their characters.  This technique is applied to entire scenes, dreaded adverbs and other things that do not serve a book. Some of these things are more painful to the author, than readers will ever realize.

However, when authors kill their characters, they should not expect their readers to react graciously. Sometimes only, the author and his editor will know why a beloved character needed to take a bow. For the rest, there are online forums, discussion boards and even book reviews where readers will take their disappointment out on the coldblooded author.

What’s your opinion on the killing of Darlings?

Thanks to Author Stevie Turner for : #OpenBook blog hop prompt.

About the Blogger

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

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Let’s talk about #Politics, you, me and dancing – baby. Let’s talk about . . .

In the one corner, we have that dude with the fake hair. You know whom I’m talking about it’s the guy who invented the word “fired”. It’s no other than Mister Donald Trump. The crowd cheers as he turns to wave, or are they booing him off? In the other corner, we have Miss former white house first lady, Hilary Clinton. Her wave is somewhat more composed, but the crowd seems to react in quite the same manner.

By DonkeyHotey (Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump - Caricatures) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
By DonkeyHotey (Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump – Caricatures) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons
“Ding, Ding, Ding”

There goes the bell folks as we look at these two American white house nominees go head to head. Donald is about to throw the first punch, but wait . . . What’s happening in the crowd?

Someone wearing all blue has just dived onto someone wearing all red.  Here come the men in black, who are rumored to have blue blood. Sheesh! The crowd has become a mob. The MIB is pulling out the big guns. Time for a well-timed distraction. In walks, Helen Zille, wearing a light blue dress suit. That won’t calm down the crowd Misses Zille. What’s this? She is starting to sing and dance!

Yes, Darlings the official opposition to the ANC, in South Africa – the DA which was led by Miss Hellen Zille a white lady I may add, dances along on her political rally just like the rest of the comrades in politics in that country. The rest of us Africans look along in wonder. Only the South Africans dance when they are doing political speeches. They dance when they are “toyi-toying” (that’s slang for protesting, political rallying etc.). They dance when they are sad. They dance when they are angry. Oh yes, they do! Right before they burn stuff down, they dance. You will find the South African mob dancing through the street with the Knobkerrie in their hand.

What did you think this was going to be another post on the American political scene? Contrary to popular belief the U.S. of A. is not the entire world.

Y’all should stop watching the Kardashians and take a look at the South African parliament. Much more entertaining. For sure! Apart from the hilarious nose picking (right there) on International TV, there is always some kind of commotion going on.

If it’s not Julius Malema, booing of the President of the South Africa – Jacob Zuma during the state of the nation address, then it’s some other thing that would get the former ANC Youth leader forcefully escorted out of the building. And of cause, he sings and dances all the way out. Nevertheless, seriously, if the fact that one of the biggest South African online shops was selling toilet paper printed with the face of Julius Malema, isn’t an indication of that man’s personality, I don’t know what is.

Y’all think you have it bad with Trump? Let’s compare him to Zuma. Not only did Zuma very recently steal billions of Rands for his private homestead at Nkandla. No. The polygamist (which is traditional and legal here) was accused of raping a young woman. His other five wives must not have settled his,”em” appetite.

Yes, of cause all allegations from his political enemies.  He has been acquitted. It was consensual. (Big sarcasm). This is debatable. What is not debatable is that the woman is HIV positive. And what does this African leader tell his nation, which has one of the highest HIV rates in the world? Oh, no he did not wear a condom. Not to worry! He took a shower afterward. Because, people, hygiene is obviously more important than wearing a condom.

I could go on and on here. The entire region is tired of that man. Not because he treats women like property. No, we are tired because he single handily is ruining the economy of that country and the Southern African region with it.  The same basket of food a year ago would have cost me R50. Today it costs me R150. That in a region where most of the people are living in shacks, below the bread line!

With the huge gap between the rich and poor here, is it really such a surprise to see students burning down educational facilities? You know what the problem is? It is corruption. I’m all for Free education. #FeesMustFall ! Yo! However, fees cannot fall if corruption rules these lands. Don’t be fooled. While the South African and Zimbabwean corruption has been exposed on international media, other leaders in the region are just as cunning in their ways of obtaining fortune. And still, there are those who blame it all on Apartheid.

Nevertheless, I feel for you America. I worry for you. Cause let’s face it. Jacob Zuma can’t just flip a switch in his “Oval Office” and nuke the entire planet.

But take it from an African. Corruption has just as much destructive power has a bomb. It kills a society slowly. Brick for Brick. Layer for Layer.

There seems to be a wind blowing in the political air these days. If the Brexit is anything to go by, the world may soon wake up to one of the wealthiest economies lead by a cutthroat businessperson! Does this man care about his own interest or is he interested in the state of his nation?

Is it really, such a surprise, that Americans voted that man into a white house nominee seat? The United States of America is after all the nation that brought us this man:

Picture courteously of Facebook
Picture courteously of Facebook

That would be Pastor Steven Anderson from Arizona. In case you did not know this is the man who praised the Orlando shootings. What you may not know is that this “Pastor” was banned from entering South Africa recently. South Africa have enough of their own hate speech. They do not need to import y’alls. Although sadly this man did visit Botswana (was later deported).  As a region, we still have a long road to go, to do away with the anti-gay law. Long, Long, Long road.

Americans have woken up and smelled the coffee. There is defiantly something wrong with y’alls political system. The USA has become a trigger-happy country with a huge national debt. It is something to be worried about. Is Hilary really the person to save y’all? Your choices do really seem somewhat limited.

If I go to the voting booth here, I have no less than thirteen candidates to choose from. Not that most of those will make a dent in the ruling parties 70% majority, but still. People vote based on culture or because they have always voted a certain party. You will find some family members disowning their own if the kid, for example, he decides to vote for the opposition.

Still, I can see the appeal of three or four strong parties up for election. It is not always, about who wins but about who will be representing you in parliament. A voice of reason when two parties are darn out not agreeing, or when both have gone insane.

That, however, is not a realistic choice for Americans going to the polls soon. So instead of becoming hooligans on the on-line forums, perhaps y’all should take a leaf from the South African political book. Y’all should start to sing and dance when y’all are angry, when y’all are sad or when y’all just feel like pulling out each other’s hair.

So, let’s talk about politics baby. Let’s talk about you and me. Let’s talk about all the good things, all the bad things that may be. Let’s talk about politics.

 

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

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#Weeklysmile where there is never a lack of things to write about…

There is never a lack of things to write about. Seriously.

I’ve been too exhausted (for lack of a stronger word), to even read five sentences never mind string two words together. Pair that with my need to suddenly whip out my sewing machine and try some DIY projects (which were epic fails) – there was simply nothing left in me to even look at the computer screen.

Oh, we are not going to mention the blood pressure, the chronic sinus infection or the fact that I’m in my third trimester. I don’t complain too much about the havoc pregnancy is been having on my body. It simply seems wrong to moan about that, when I’m really happy about having a baby soon. Pair that with the fact that quite a few people in my inner circle have been struggling with conceiving one of their own, or their life circumstances just never added up – I think complaining would be a slap in the face.

Obviously, they’d notice the difficult way I get up and the slow manner in which I’ve been walking. It is all good, though. So long as I have a healthy baby I’ll bear it with a big grin on my face. It’s something to smile about.

new-baby-gift-bag

Talking about my friends and family – they recently threw me a surprise baby shower. Whoop! Big smiles all around, because my hospital bag was still lacking in some small items. When my doctor sent me to the hospital for some tests yesterday, I was very relieved to have finished packing the hospital bag. I almost thought I would have to have the baby one whole month early. Sheesh!

Turns out to be nothing that drastic so I was sent home. I should try to rest up before the due date.
I felt somewhat bad and stressed out about that, because I was only scheduled to go on Maternity leave in a weeks’ time. In an abrupt manner, I dumped all my workload on my colleague, for whom I feel super sorry. Such is life and sometimes we need to just roll with the punches.

Alas, Darlings – I felt to drop by here for a quick hello. The Weekly Smile link up hosted by Trent seemed like the perfect opportunity to drop by.
Moreover, since there is never a lack of things to write about, I may drop by a little more (but no promises, though). I have got ,like, so, many things floating about in my head; the abstract roller-coaster in my head is making me dizzy.
And in case you missed it, y’all should listen to Annette’s interview on “Tell me a Story” with Jo Robinson. As a writer, she understands the fact that there is never a lack of things to write about. Jo is an excellent writer, so the interview gave me something to smile about.

 

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

Find her here:

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Arrive Alive: 13 Tips to keep you safe on the road

Every weekday, I drive a stretch of road that adds up to about 30 kilometers (roughly 19 miles). If you total in the factor that in 2014 (the last time they did one of those survey study things) the country I live in, was the worst rated for road accident fatalities in the world – those 30 kilometers stretch of the road become somewhat of a scary prospect. So when I get into my car, I make sure I do my best to keep my family safe during our travels. No matter if, we take a five-minute or a five-hour drive. Here are some of my road safety tips:

1. Buckle up

Sometimes you think you are only going to be driving around the corner. Just going to buy a loaf of bread? According to a survey done in the U.K one in three accidents happen, when we are close to home. Most likely it is at these times that we are driving on “autopilot” or that we are not hyper-vigilant.
There is a rule in my car. I make sure my daughter is well aware of this rule. All people in the car need to be seated and buckled up at all times. I cannot even count how many times I see children in other cars standing. Not only is this hazardous if you suddenly need to hit the brakes but such children tend to be a distraction for the driver. The safest place for a kid under the age of 12 is buckled up on the backseat, even if you are just buying a loaf of bread.

2. Cell phones and driving

A driver, texting while driving is said to cause more accidents than a drunk one. Seriously, peeps, you can send that “What’s App”, when you have safely stopped somewhere. Hands-free kits enable us to answer the phone if we really can’t live without taking that call.

3. Speed kills

We were once driving home when a car raced passed us on a stretch of city road with a speed limit of 60 km/h (roughly 40 mph). He must have been driving 200 km/h (roughly 125 mph). We were shocked at the speed this dude was doing. Our home was only a few kilometers down the road. At our gate, we noticed that the car which had just zipped passed us was sitting in a head-on collision with a tree next to the road. The car was written off. The driver was severely injured. To this very day, I still do not understand why he was driving so fast. It is better to arrive at your destination five minutes later than never arrive at all. There are reasons for speed limits.
That being said, I’ve also driven a stretch of road slower than I was allowed. I don’t drive the long road much. I don’t feel safe doing 120 km/h so I’ll do 100 or 110 instead. It is important to feel safe with the speed you are driving.

4. Overtaking safely

Frontal collisions are the highest cause of road fatalities here. Many of these accidents occur when drivers overtake other cars in the most terrible manner. Overtaking while driving uphill, into the rising or setting sun, is a bad idea. Not only does the driver put himself in danger but the people in the other vehicle, who probably cannot see him coming … It’s a worst case scenario.
It is best to overtake when you can clearly see what is happening in front of you.

5. Sunglasses

Talking about, what you see – I find wearing sunglasses during daytime driving, useful. Obviously, we have lots of sunshine in these parts. What you may not know is that your sunglasses or regular specs can also act as safety goggles if they have been fitted with the right type of lens. Here good quality plastic lenses out-way the risk associated with glass lenses. If you wear spectacles, talk to your optometrist about this.

6. Tissues

Eyestrain can really be a pothole in your driving skills. If you have spent an entire day sitting behind a computer screen, driving can become a tearful event. For this reason, I always keep tissues handy. It has helped me get to a safe area to pull up next to the road until I was able to see better.

7. Blind spot check

Are you changing lanes? Do a quick blind spot check! Don’t know exactly what that is? Here is a video.

8. Hazards

Sometimes you have to abruptly slow down or come to a standstill while driving. At these times, putting on your hazard light can alert the driver behind you that there is an obstruction in the road. It’s like saying, “whoha wake up dude!”

9. Mindful driving

Try not to drive on autopilot. Be present while you are driving. Keep your eyes and mind on the road. Put simply: Drive mindfully.

10. “Leave space in your schedule for life’s little-unplanned events” – Joyce Meyer

A post shared by Sarina (@shiningseeds) on

Life’s little-unplanned events include traffic jams and accidents on the road. Giving yourself those extra ten minutes to arrive at your destination will make you a less stressed driver. You will be more courteous to other road users. You will be less likely to speed.

11. Slow down when …

I hate it when children play next to the road. This is just an unpleasant fact. The same applies to dogs, cats or other pets. It is better to slow down when you see these things. It is also courteous when passing a cyclist to slow down.

12. Other drivers and traffic rules

man-peeping-in-his-side-mir

While all of the above are very important to remember, the best piece of driving advice I’ve ever heard was this: “Don’t expect other road users to follow traffic rules”.
Drivers may; run a red light. Forget to put on their indicators. Put on their indicators but not turn. Drive on autopilot. Speed. Swerve unexpectedly into your lane. … the list goes on and on.
Being vigilant about such things has saved me on many a close shave.

13. Pray

If you are the kind of person that prays, then doing so before driving is a good practice. If you are the kind of person who talks to your God, Jesus, angels, your divinity – all the time, then doing so while driving is a good practice. Having spiritual protectors along your journey has never hurt anyone.

What other tips would you give on road safety?

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

Find her here:

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writing myself into wellness