Saturday, September 21, 2013

Moving House

Well the time has come for Geoff to leave the farm. I knew it was coming some time or other but was caught a bit off guard anyway.
Coming home from Johannesburg was interesting this time in that the Cape was experiencing major storms and flooding. People were telling me, "You're going back to floods, rain and cold, how can you be so glad to be going back?" Ah, they don't know what happens in September here. The place is wet and muddy, that much is true, but this is the time when the goslings, ducklings and all those interesting little creatures hatch. The flowers come out in force and nature puts on a display second to none.

On arrival I was shocked to see the state of my home, fully understood though. The people who feed my animals while I'm away do just that, they feed the animals, they don't clean up the house and with the animals essentially living in the house it gets a bit muddy in winter. Anyway, I got stuck in and cleaned the place up. My first week home involved cleaning up and visiting friends. I was quite surprised at how many people wanted to see me, great welcome home.
 Day two involved a lot of wandering around with my camera, it's so pretty at this time of year here.
As you may know, I love this farm and the amazing diversity of life that exists here. All good things come to an end sooner or later. I was driving back to the farm when I got a call  from the farm manager asking whether I was in the Cape or not, there was a document they needed me to sign. Being up to date with my rent, I wasn't worried but curious, maybe it was my new lease, who knew.
On my arrival home I opened the letter, it was a lawyer's letter telling me that the new farm owners wanted to redevelop the farm and I had three months to vacate my home. Rats!
Anyway, I'm not too upset about it, it's very likely to be for the best. For more than a year now I've been working in Johannesburg and leaving my animals in the care of others, which is unfair on them. Moving to Johannesburg makes a whole lot of sense now that I am losing the farm, not much keeping me here anymore. But, look at what I won't be seeing anymore.
I'm going to miss the farm and Melkbos, the people with whom I've become good friends, the braais at the bush pub, the wide open vistas. Lots of things I'm sure. I like it here in the Cape, it's clean and well run, the people are humble and friendly and crime isn't such a huge issue here on the farm. It's pretty much "Safe." But my time here is up, Geoff's leaving town.
I will be going up to Johannesburg some time next week to look for a home before I bring the animals up. The big truck will come down to Cape Town when I'm ready and we'll move everything, lock, stock and barrel.
There is a big farewell party planned for later, before I leave finally, when I know dates and so on.

The geese and chickens will have to fend for themselves unfortunately, I can't take them with me. I'll take the duck Wherewhere with me though, and of course, Archibald and Minnie my dogs, Tiny, William and Olive my cats and all the fish.
I feel sorry for Archibald though, he's terrified of thunder, which we don't get here, but they do have spectacular electric storms in Johannesburg with all the attendant frightening and thunder.
I'll need to get a place with a reasonably large garden and with space to make a pond for Wherewere the duck.
I've been on the farm now for about twelve years and in the Cape for twenty five years. On of the things I have found is that when you are relatively settled you tend to collect a lot of bits and pieces, chaff. Currently I'm emptying my work shed and store, getting rid of everything useful and keeping only the things I want. The junk I'm throwing out and the better stuff is going to people who will definitely have a use for it, and it's nice stuff. Long lengths of clean treated timber, cornice, paints, bolts and nuts and so on and so on.
A new fresh unencumbered start in a completely new environment, how cool is that?
Shelley, my daughter, is very happy to have me around permanently, she lives up there. James, who lives here in the Cape, isn't all that happy about it but it was him who dropped me off at the farm when I got back from Johannesburg. He saw the state of my house and I think he thought to himself, "Dad can't carry on living like this." So he's also okay with it. My sisters and my brother are all very happy about it. Me? I'm sort of okay with it but, not having any other option, I'll go with it.
 Being able to take photographs of things in their natural state from my front door has been fantastic and, on this farm, I've learned to appreciate all this incredible beauty so well looked after by God for such a very long time. Thank you Lord for that, please keep your eye on this farm and protect it from all evil. This I ask in the name of Jesus, the son of God.
When I finally do find a new home I'll post pictures and tell you about it. This is a good thing, I'm being removed from stagnation, cool.


  1. It is lovely there, Geoff! At least you have the memories and pictures to take with you.

  2. A new adventure, Geoff! We have had horrible flooding here in Colorado, but not where I live. Wish I could adopt your duck. Your living room looks so cozy, I know you will create a cozy and safe nest wherever you go.

  3. HI Geoff,
    I know how much you love that farm. I remember you mentioning before that you wondered how long you would have there, I guess now you know. Hoping and praying you find a nice place, one that you will be able to take the geese and chickens too.


  4. In one word: Bittersweet. I'll write more later, Geoff.

  5. Did we all know you played guitar? Wait, yes, I think you might have played a bit at your birthday last year...Your cozy little living room is so unique, so comfortable. I like how you hung your pictures and painting all in a group, no pretense there. Do I see Table Mountain in that one photo? And Cape Daisies? Frankly, I am sad you are moving. This place was 'you'. There will never be another place like this. The 'Essence of Geoff' is forever imprinted on this place.

  6. BTW, those are some excellent shots.