"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Tuesday, 15 December 2015


I do not normally share my political views, because, well, they're private.  But, I have to confess that this past weekend I have been abysmally dejected, despondent and disheartened with the human race, per se.  I feared the worst for this country - and it's future.

And, that was all because of the actions on one pathetic individual who seemed determined to have his way - putting that before the country, before his (political) party and before the people who elected him.

What our "President" attempted to do at the end of last week was nothing short of a dictators action.  Thank goodness for the people of this land, and his peers, as well as the financial markets, have all let him know in no uncertain terms that his actions were unconscionable.

(please, if you haven't already signed this petition, won't you do so.  We, the public, cannot remove him from office, only the Executive can do so.  But, the more that the public make their wishes known, the better the Executive can act in the best interests of South Africa.  After all the politicians are not better than us, they are elected by the people, for the benefit of the people and this country.

"Be the change you want to see" - Mahatma Ghandi

But, it was because of that despondency that I was completely shattered and unable to write my normal weekly post this past weekend.

But, everything is better now ;)  Sanity in South Africa has prevailed.


Onto a more positive topic:

Would you like some inspiration on producing no trash / garbage?

I came across these two short video's on YouTube.  Please - check them out.


RMan and I have reduced our landfill quantity from 3 large black bags a week in 2005, to less than a third of a single black bag per week.

The bulk of our refuse we take to the recycling centre in Swellendam when we go through for our weekly shopping.

All it takes is a little bit of effort and the willingness...

Now, if our grocery stores would only allow one to purchase goods using your own containers that would be wonderful.  One day... :)


Harry Flashman said...

I have some friends in South Africa who felt very much as you did. Like a lot of people here, they won't blog for fear of the government, but I know what you are talking about. The third time is the charm, though. Maybe Praven Gordham (did I spell that right) can fix things. If he's still finance minister by the time I finish typing this.

Cheryl Thomson said...

Love your blog. Your feelings are echoed by many of us. I think there is a little glimmer of hope now that Zuma might just be stopped in his tracks; he HAS to be - this is the only hope for our country. ON a more pleasant note - I live in Napier, not THAT far from you. I have a number of young Hanepoot vines, 5 black figs, 2 custard apple, 2 cherry guavas - that will be looking for a good home when I have to move end March/April. If ever you take a drive out this way, you are welcomed to pop in and see, and if you can give them a home it would be so appreciated. I do not have the heart to leave them here. kind regards.

possumqueensa said...

I feel your pain Dani. But I am so proud of my countrymen and women for jumping up and down and screaming at the top of their lungs.

Dani said...

Harry - Cowering solves nothing. I have decided that if I feel strongly about something, I'm going to stand amongst those who are trying to make a difference.

Not sure if Pravin Gordhan can wave a magic wand - I fear our "President" has done irreparable damage. Yup - he's still finance minister at the moment... For a pretty good article : http://www.fin24.com/BizNews/rw-johnson-gordhan-no-horatius-on-bridge-sa-firmly-on-path-to-bankruptcy-20151216

T'would seem that the ruling party's support and backing of their "leader" has ruined the promise that this country had in 1994...

Dani said...

Cheryl - Thanks for your kind words and for taking the time to leave a comment.

Why are you leaving Napier? How big are your trees / vines? Why can't you take them with you?

We don't often leave our smallholding - we're not keen to leave the animals on their own for too long a length of time.

Dani said...

possum - I, too, am incredibly proud of the unity that is apparent in the reaction to one man's thoughtless, selfish actions. But, I fear, it is too little too late... : http://www.fin24.com/Economy/moodys-cuts-sa-credit-rating-outlook-to-negative-20151216

Can we go much lower...?

Rosemary said...

It has been an awful week for SA. I wish we could have joined one of the zumamustfall marches, but unfortunately Knysna municipality would not give permission to march through town :(

Good work on your refuse - we are also working hard to decrease ours. Luckily Knysna has a great recycling depot which helps a lot.

Dani said...

Rosemary - It's been a living nightmare. I, too, wish I could've joined in the marches. I did the best I could by signing the petition - the link in my posting above. Please, if you haven't signed, won't you? And ask your friends / relatives / anyone you know to do so too. Only by combining our voices can we expect to be heard - and understood.

I just wish that I could reduce our waste even more by being able to purchase in bulk taking my own containers - be that milk, oil, cereal, fish, meat, chicken, etc.

Cheryl Thomson said...

I am not leaving Napier. I rent and after three years the landlord has decided he had better replace the roof which leaks like a sieve (I think in case the Consumer Protection Act catches up with him...)Am searching for a decent place, not easy as my animals are my kids and where I go, albeit a caravan!!! they will go. Forgot to mention the pear melons - super easy and flower and bear right through winter (and birds don't get them as they are borne under and inside the bush
I quite understand not leaving the animals on their own for long - I even get twitchy when I have to go shopping in Bredasdorp!!! please keep in touch and maybe we can make a plan.
The vines are 2nd summer, supposedly don't bear for 3/5 years - they are full of bunches of tiny grapes; Custard apples are very small, maybe 2 ft high; Cherry guavas same - small but healthy and growing well; figs are between 2 to 3 ft high, also healthy and doing well.

Simone Cronje said...

Hi Dani, we have also managed to reduce our refuse to less than half a bag a week. All of our organic waste goes onto the compost heap an i have become very conscious of packaging. I try to buy glass and cardboard packaged goods as much as possible. We sadly don't have adequate plastic recycling facilities yet. It's interesting how we are moving back to a more frugal way of living after the excesses of the past three decades. I remember my mother and grandmother re-using everything from bottles to plastic sandwich bags to scraps of fabric.

Dani said...

Simone - Well done :)

I'm sure the plastic recycling will catch on where you are - at least they have glass and cardboard? Yes, even though it costs more, I too try and buy in glass in preference to other forms of packaging. I then try and re-use the glass when I store / preserve goods ;)