Saturday, July 28, 2012

Discovery 702 Walk the Talk - Sunday 22 July 2012

At the absolute crack of Dawn, nay, before Dawn had even thought to get out of bed and flash her bits, Bren and I were up and ready to go do the Discovery 702 'Walk the Talk' 30km walk! WOOHOO!!!
Even for me 30km's would stretch my limits and hamstrings! 

5.30am and off we went to the Start and to our destiny! (I'm setting the mood here.)

And good thing went off as early as we did! With 50 000 entrants, there was traffic thick as scabs and twice as lumpy!

The sun is barely up and we're waiting to trot off! Us 30km and 15km walkers were all set to give that concrete a serious pounding! But oh, it was so cold, like doing a dawdle up in the North Pole! Kept expecting polar bears to come nibbling at my fingers! (They didn't though, I suspect they were like most everyone else not in the walk and having a bit of a sleep in.) 

Ah but the crowd was all amped up and there was a great vibe in the air! We were all ready to do this!
There were tons and tons of people there! 12 000 doing the 15km walk alone and another  2 000 doing the 30km. You just couldn't see the people within the sea of people!
And off we went!
I want that hat.

Above is a pic of the little flying camera used to record the event! 
Below I tried to magnify it a bit so you could see what it looked like.
Doesn't it just look like a buzzy mosquito? And is that a tiny munchkin riding it?
Sun is coming up, we're saved!

<--My hat.
Things are starting to warm up nicely! Everyone is jabbering on excitedly. At least I think they were, I couldn't hear them over my excitable jabbering!

The 1km mark, only 29 to go!

People, people everywhere and in all shapes and sizes! It was a lovely feeling of camaraderie!

Sadly it turned out that the 30km walk was so badly planned that they just told us, "you've done 15km's that's enough". Um, no!! Some just went to finish line but we quickly slipped in with the 8km walkers who were only just leaving when we got back.
Dang it, if we were going to be gypo'd on the distance we could at least squirrel away 23kms!

It's a Jo! I wore that heavy jacket for almost 16km. It was very comfie.

Here we are with the 8km people. They were a relaxed, easy going crowd. (Jovvian for: they walked too damn slow!)
Congestion was mostly caused by folk at all the refreshment stands crowding for Energade and Coke.

And in amongst all this, I still managed to find Waldo!

Discovery was out in force as well, offering fruit and water and cool-drink stops! 
There was even a helicopter on hand should it have been needed.
I'm not so sure about the guy in the Strawberry suit...

I was originally given a 5/8km medal, because they'd run out of 30km ones, but I managed to trade with a friend to get the right one. I must say the loss of the 30km walk was a bit of a blow, it would have been a wonderful challenge!

BUT, so speaking! We still had an absolute ball, and quite the adventure at that! From freezing to frying, being passed by people faster than us, and then passing those so much slower! We saw dogs as big as horses, popular port-a-potties and people in all manner of costume! Our muscles were worked out, our enthusiasm rampant and, all in all, THAT is how you do a Sunday!!
(Er, just not too often...)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Nonto Primary - Nelson Mandela Day - 16th July 2012

On a frightfully cold Monday, 21 brave volunteers, who cared more about helping others then getting frostbite, headed out to Nonto Primary school for Nelson Mandela day to help paint, hoe, shovel and rake to make the school a little bit nicer for the children who went there!


We all grabbed tools and set to work! Ten of us went to garden and the rest went to paint!
We gardeners cleared a dump site to make a vegetable patch for the kids for school dinners.
We put effort into it, no forking around!

I felt like a pimp the way I worked my Hoe!

 Backwards and forwards we went, clearing rubbish and rubble I found coke cans so old they'd not been made in decades! Archaeologists would have wept!

There was a fire for plant debris. I show this fire because, small and innocent as it looked, we all ended up smelling of burnt hay by the end of the day!

There was a photographer there to get publicity shots. Bet his pics aren't nearly as interesting as mine!
* Professional competitiveness*

 We managed to clear a large chunk of land! Made me wish we could have started planting already!

 While my fork and hoe destroyed rocks and bottles and cans from the 1500's with reckless glee, it was fascinating to see what sort of items held up against all the abuse. Wonder if it still works...

The painters were also hard at work adding a bit of colour and pizazz to the kids playing ground. Those of us in the garden moved around a lot so we didn't feel the cold so badly. I fear the painters weren't so lucky.
Oh dude, you missed a spot over ........................................there...............

The cold, the hard work and the final warmth of the bus and we headed back to Discovery, tired and beat.
Job well done crew!!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Discovery Photo-shoot - 10 July 2012

When the notification popped up in my mailbox asking for folk to please consider having their pictures taken by the Discovery team my first thought was, "OH HELL NO!" And I deleted it!

Then of course I realized I'd gone from Jo to coward in 7 seconds flat! How embarrassing!
So I fished it out of the deleted items, said, sure sign me up, and sent the mail off before rational thought could say otherwise. 

Oh my Smurf what had I done?!? 

I enjoy stretching the boundaries of my comfort zone, but having people take pics of me?


So eventually the day dawned and I went down to the offices where the photos were being taken, clutching my cellphone and wearing the facial expression of a rabbit who's trying to charm a starved wolf and knowing she's not succeeding so well...

First off we had make-up slathered on.
Now I don't like make-up, it's against my made-up religion, but even the guys had to get powdered up, so, with a long suffering sigh, I got into the queue.

It was a long, long, loooooooooooooong, wait! Finding things to do in that line started to get interesting.

Once all the goop was on my face, I stood by, watching the Photographer show people exactly what he wanted.

Some people were pulled over afterwards and shown how their photos came out.
I wasn't one of them.
Mercy is a quality I highly admire.

It took an hour, 15minutes to get my 5 minutes in front of the camera. Admittedly that was fun and I enjoyed goofing off. I wonder if I'll ever get to see them? These are stock photos to be used at Discovery's discretion. Where Jo's face could end up? Who know?

And then that was it and good bye, be on your merry.

It was an unusual experience, and not as scary as I had thought it would be, even with the make-up!
It was wonderful to face that fear and knock it 6 ways from Sunday!!!
And now my views on being photographed?

CHOC Childhood Cancer CSI - June 2012

I'd happily signed up as a volunteer to take blankets to the Red Cross for winter. HOORAY!!
I innocently went downstairs, and, not finding my name on the volunteer sheet, added it anyway.
As we were heading out though I realized I'd signed up with the wrong group! (Because such things always happen to me...)
But since I had my managers permission to be out and about, and it was still a very worthy cause I thought, "Meh, why not?"

So instead of distributing blankets I went on a whirlwind tour of four different hospitals and children's homes, learning about Childhood cancer and what the CHOC foundation was doing to help combat this heart-breaking condition.

We went to two hospitals to learn what they where doing to fight the disease as well as meeting fascinating, passionate people who's boundless energy and selflessness was helping to make others aware of the problem and what can be done to prevent and cure it, because sometimes you need just a bit more than medicine to do the job right!

Now we couldn't take photos, which was only fair. I'd not like to be in bed sick and some arse is snapping my pic and asking if I could turn left so he can get a better shot of my IV stand!
But I think the pack we were given on the bus sums it up best!

Keeping MORE than hope alive!

Generations: The Hamsters

Our extremely long lived hamster, Professor H, died in June. Had he made it to September he'd have been 3 years old but alas that was not to be.He had many adventures with me, the biggest being our survival alone when my ex left us, and a full life is certainly what he lead!

We salute you little Prof and all the fascinating memories we still have of you!

And so we now have a new adopted child! Say hello to Quincy!
"You're not food, why are you here?"

Living in his Mansion De La Hamster:
"I put the Jacuzzi in next week!"

He's not a super young hamster but he's entertaining to watch and not shy at all!:
"I'm young enough you cheeky whipper-snapper!"

We hope we have as many interesting, odd and wacky years with him as we did his predecessor!.
"If you like watching animals eat, I'll rock your world!"