Friday, July 30, 2010
Mayonnaise and chutney may sound like an unusual combination for a chicken casserole, but this saucy, flavoursome dish is much-loved in South Africa. It never fails to increase the appetite of your guests, who will invariably ask for more chicken, or, as we say in Afrikaans, "vra na meer hoender".
Serves 4 to 6
•6 to 8 chicken portions, or a whole chicken (the cooking time will be longer)
•1 onion, finely chopped
•2 cloves of chopped garlic
•1 teaspoon Worcester sauce
•¾ to 1 cup chutney
•½ cup mayonnaise
•¼ cup water
•Salt and freshly ground black pepper
•6 to 8 chicken portions
•1 packet brown onion soup powder or 1 onion, chopped
•1 cup boiling water
•1 cup chutney
•1 cup mayonnaise
•Salt and pepper
1.Pre-heat oven to 160°C
2.Season the chicken with salt and pepper and put in oven-proof casserole dish.
3.If using a fresh onion, sauté gently for 10 to 15 minutes until the onions are soft and has a golden colour. Do not burn it. Add ¼ cup water, chopped garlic and Worcester sauce.
4.If using onion soup powder, mix soup powder and boiling water.
5.Mix onion with chutney and mayonnaise, and pour sauce over chicken.
6.Cover casserole dish and bake in oven at 160°C for 1½ hours if you used chicken portions, or 2 to 2 ½ hours if it's a whole chicken.
Serve with rice and fresh, mixed salad.
One evening the old farmer decided to go down to the pond, as he hadn't been there for a while. He grabbed a five-gallon bucket to bring back some fruit. As he neared the pond, he heard voices shouting and laughing with glee. As he came closer, he saw it was a bunch of young women skinny-dipping in his pond.
He made the women aware of his presence and they all went to the deep end. One of the women shouted to him, 'we're not coming out until you leave!' The old man frowned, 'I didn't come down here to watch you ladies swim naked or make you get out of the pond naked.' Holding the bucket up he said, 'I'm here to feed the crocodile.'
Some old men can still think fast!
Thursday, July 29, 2010
"And he carried on purring all the way back; this is how I communicate with him, we understand each other ... Everyone is now having a whiskey at home, we are ecstatic and relieved."
Panjo was found in the bushes near Verena, Mpumalanga, at about 8pm.
A frantic search began for the majestic animal after he jumped out of his owners' bakkie in Delmas on Monday evening.
"He was frightened, terrified. I lured him with a piece of rump steak ... but he knew me already," Fernandes said before calling out Panjo's name.
"Yes, he is walking around the house, we haven't put him back on to the farm. He is enjoying being home, and we are enjoying him."
The animal was transported back in the same vehicle he escaped from.
Fernandes said he had been taking the 145kg animal to a vet for his vaccinations and for a chip to be inserted when "he went Awol".
"You know, when I realised he was gone, I just fell to my knees, phoned my wife and said to her, 'Dear God, Panjo's gone'," said an emotional Fernandes.
He said when sniffer dogs tracked the scent of the animal, people who were part of the search team started getting overly excited.
"I told them, please just leave him [Panjo] alone. It was dark, they were waving torches in hand ... I must say I got a bit cheesed off, so I said to them, 'Please, let me load him into the van'. "
Panjo, a Bengal tiger, caused much panic amongst community members since his escape.
Some expressed fears that he may attack a person as he had not eaten since Monday evening.
Many also claimed to have spotted the animal.
Earlier on Wednesday, Fernandes said he had started receiving calls from people demanding money as compensation for their animals -- they said were eaten by the feline, which was used to getting food from his owner.
"One guy said, 'Your cat just killed three of my cows. I have got him and I want R10 000'," said Fernandes. "I told him, 'I will give you R20 000, just keep him there', but then I can't get hold of him again."
It was eventually a sighting by a farmer in Verena that led to Panjo being found, Fernandes said.
"He had quite a roam."
Panjo was born on February 21 last year on Fernandes's property.
"He was born on Robert Mugabe's birthday, but Panjo is too loveable," he chuckled
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Tiger still on the loose and lost
As the light faded, owner Goosey Fernandes was desperate. "He is my life. He changed my life completely," he said.
Fernandes hand-reared Panjo from a three-week-old cub after he had been abandoned by his mother.
"He taught me so much patience," said Fernandes. "He sleeps with seven Jack Russells."
Panjo means playful in Italian, and Fernandes has one of the 150kg tiger's baby teeth hanging on a gold chain around his neck.
The animal was being driven from Fernandes's game farm in Groblersdal back home to Endicott, near Springs. He was suppose to go to a vet yesterday for his inoculations and to have a tracking chip inserted.
But Panjo disappeared from the Ford F250 he was being transported in, somewhere between Groblersdal and where the R25 crosses the N12.
Fernandes discovered he was missing at about 10pm on Monday. He and his wife Rosa think the canopy door may have come loose when Fernandes went over a pothole.
Fernandes said he had looked into the rear of the bakkie soon after leaving Groblersdal to talk to his tiger. "He still kissed me, purred - that is what he does. And that is when I last saw him."
Rosa claims the canopy door was locked.
Delmas police were called in around 4am. The family called radio stations early yesterday. Friends heard and offered helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft to search. But no one knew where to start looking.
"We dispatched lookouts and informed nearby farmers," said Constable Ntomfuthi Mashiyane, who usually deals with truck hijackings.
Eblockwatch, an organisation usually involved in crime fighting, mobilised farmers in the area. The response was overwhelming.
"We got a farmer out here who was willing to use dogs that track lions in the Kruger National Park. There are farmers with dart guns. It is quite a circus," said founder Andre Snyman.
Helicopters and microlights also joined the search.
Then came the corny SMS retorts. "A tiger can never be spotted because it has stripes." "It is in the Woods," said another. And "Have you looked in your tank?"
The chief fire officer for the Victor Khanye municipality, Frans Bolton, said that because the tiger was semi-tame, they hoped it would behave like a cat and go home.
Some tiger sightings were reported in the area. At about 9am, some farmworkers saw Panjo south of the R42. Buthi Mahlangu claims to have seen him on a farm. "I saw that thing," he said. Unsure what it was, he ran.
A couple of hours later, a searcher in a Cessna said he saw Panjo near the R42. By nightfall, trackers "Mad Mark" Tennant and Ian Johnson had been brought in to look for him.
"Ian phoned me and said there was a tiger on the loose, and I thought he was joking. He said we have to find it before the hunters do," said Tennant.
The two men star in a programme on DStv's Animal Planet called Mad Mike and Mark.
Bolton said there were no plans to shoot the tiger or bring in dogs.
"You want to keep him as calm as possible, so that he listens to his owner."
By 5pm on Monday, a helicopter with an infra-red thermal imaging system had arrived.
Engineer Brett Wright said he had called his friend Mario Vergottini of RotorWay International, who organised a helicopter. They borrowed a thermal imager from optical company Carl Zeiss, worth about R400 000. They hoped to use it to spot the tiger from the air, by picking up its body heat.
Panjo, who wears a size 32 brown leather collar, last ate on Monday night and had missed his usual breakfast and dinner of milk and meat.
athletes. This woman 83 years old smoked a cigarette while
taking part in the bowling
And they're off!
Earl Fee of Canada (centre) leads his 80-84 age group in the 100-metre
He ran in the 100-metre sprint in the 80-84 age group.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
A cheesecake, generally made with soft cream cheeses and biscuits, is just the thing for a special occasion. Follow this quick and easy recipe to make a simple but delicious cheesecake – without even having to bake!
Ingredients – cake:
1 packet Tennis biscuits
1 tbsp butter
1 tin condensed milk
1 tub fat-free cottage cheese 250g
½ cup lemon juice
Ingredients – topping:
1 tub fresh strawberries and 1 tbsp icing sugar OR a tin of fruit jam (such as raspberry) OR a tin of passionfruit /granadilla pulp
- Crush the biscuits and mix with the butter to use as a base. Press into a shallow dish.
- Mix the condensed milk, cottage cheese and lemon juice together, and pour over the biscuit base.
- Pick your favourite topping; heat up a tin of jam over a stove until it’s runny and glaze it over your cake, or decorate it with fresh fruit and a sprinkle of icing sugar. Alternatively, glaze a tin of passion fruit / granadilla pulp over your cake.
- Let stand in fridge for at least two hours before serving, and keep any left overs in the fridge as well.
Monday, July 26, 2010
A firefighter was working on the engine outside the station, When he noticed a little girl nearby in a little red wagon with Little ladders hung off the sides, and a garden hose tightly Coiled in the middle.
The girl was wearing a firefighter’s helmet.
The wagon was being pulled by her dog and her cat.
The firefighter walked over to take a closer look.
“That sure is a nice fire truck,” the firefighter said with a smile.
“Thanks,” the girl replied.
The firefighter looked a little closer. The girl had tied the wagon to her dog’s collar and to the cat’s testicles.
“Little partner,” the firefighter said, “I don’t want to tell you how to run your rig, but if you were to tie that rope around the Cat’s’ collar, I think you could go faster.”
The little girl replied thoughtfully,
“You’re probably right, but then I wouldn’t have a siren.
Justin said Mbuso overheard him asking the security guard to deliver the card to the former president and said to him: "Tata isn't too busy, he's reading the papers and I'm sure he wouldn't mind a visitor."
"It was really amazing to get to walk through their grand house; Madiba was sitting in the lounge. When he saw me, he told me to go closer, held my hand and said that my card was lovely," said Justin.
The grade 6 pupil at Johannesburg's German International School was not sure what to do for his 67 minutes of community service on the day so he made a card to thank Madiba for all he had done for South Africans and give clothes to charity.
After donating the clothes in Sandton, Justin asked his dad, Michael, to take him to Houghton so he could drop off the card.
On the card, Justin had written: "I wish you a happy 92nd birthday and all the best.
''It broke my heart when I heard about the death of your great-grandchild. I wanted to thank you for everything you did for South Africa."
Justin drew four cartoons: one depicting Mandela in prison in 1970, a poster of the Free Nelson Mandela campaign at Wembley Stadium in 1998, the Union Buildings in 1994 and Soccer City in 2010.
Mbuso took the picture of them with Justin's camera.
Justin said that when he told friends at school about his experience they did not believe him at first.
"Luckily I have pictures to prove it.
"When I think about it I feel like I was dreaming. I never imagined that it would be so easy to meet Madiba," he said.
His dad was not so lucky. He waited in the car while Justin went to drop off the card, and only learned of the meeting when his ecstatic son returned.
Saturday, July 24, 2010
So we won't be crybabies, but we will engage in yet more democratic debate and shout this from the rooftops: if this Bill in its current form becomes law and if other initiatives aimed at unduly reining in the media — such as the proposed media tribunal — become a reality, this free flow of information will be stemmed. Not only will the lifeblood of the media be cut off, but also the lifeblood of democracy itself.
Proponents of the Bill have posed what they regard as fundamental dichotomies: personal dignity versus unfettered flow of information, the broad national interest versus the right to know, as enshrined in the Constitution.
This way of seeing the matter echoes the way a reactionary United States has typified it post-9/11: national security versus civil liberties.
And so, the question becomes: How to balance these competing interests?
The dichotomies are false. As a former CIA lawyer put it at a seminar this week: don't balance the two. Transparency and openness make government stronger, enhancing national security. Keep your secrets to an absolute minimum; that way you can protect them better. Engender trust in your decisions about what to keep secret by disclosing the maximum. The same goes for the argument about personal dignity.
The Protection of Information Bill is just one half of a two-pronged attack on freedom of information in general and on freedom of the media in particular. The other is the resurgence of proposals within the ANC for the creation of a statutory media tribunal that would regulate the conduct of the press.
Such an organ would be structurally inimical to media freedom, even if presented in the most neutral fashion, but the examples chosen by its proponents to justify its creation are chilling.
For example, the ANC has suggested that a tribunal would be able to clamp down on reporting about the lavish, taxpayer-funded lifestyles of Cabinet ministers. Such reporting is the most basic example of what the Constitution and a growing body of common law enjoin us to do.
What both the Bill and the tenor of debate about a media tribunal represent is a deepening hostility to both a free press and the free flow of information.
These are not ornaments glued to our democratic architecture; they are part of its very foundations.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Yesterday Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu announced he will be retiring from public life on his birthday in October.
This is the highlight of his career, which has spanned decades and which he has spent, according to him, contributing to the development of a "new democratic, exhilarating, exasperating nation".
Tutu, a Nobel Peace Prize winner turns 79 on October 7.
During a press conference at St George's Cathedral in the city centre, Tutu often joked and laughed as he explained his reasons for stepping out of the limelight.
His infectious giggles kept journalists laughing, but at least one was overcome with emotion and had to blink away tears as Tutu spoke.
Instead of being constantly on the move, he said he wanted to "wind down".
"I've always longed for more contemplating, for more quiet, to catch up on my reading ... The time has now come to slow down, to sip Rooibos tea with my beloved wife in the afternoons, to watch cricket, to travel to visit my children and grandchildren, rather than to conferences and conventions and university campuses."
Tutu said the "best decision" of his life had been getting married to Leah, his wife of 55 years.
"I pay tribute to my wife ... Now I will have time to serve her hot tea in the mornings as any doting husband should."
Asked if he had any regrets, Tutu chuckled.
"I still do have a tiny bit of me that wants to have been able to use a stethoscope ... I hoped to become a physician. Each time I see those white coats, a little bit of me feels it...
"And maybe somebody might tell me what it is like to be tall."
Tutu said he had "crazy grandchildren" who would keep him on his toes in future. He would possibly miss his hectic schedule and the attention he attracted, but did not think he would crave it.
Throughout the years, he had met a number of high-profile people and had travelled around the world, but his family had always kept him humble.
"Even when I've been sitting in the Oval Office (the US president's official office), I kept pinching myself, asking: 'Is this really me?' I have a wife and children who have kept my head the right size. Just when I thought I was the cat's whiskers, they brought me back down."
So far, Tutu said South Africa had "done well".
"Obviously the difference between apartheid and democracy is like chalk and cheese. I've been a school teacher and like a teacher says: 'This student is doing well, but there's room for improvement.'
"I will go to my grave happily when I see us become what we have it in us to become. Caring. Compassionate. Gentle. More than anything else I long so much that we will become the country that we have it in us to become.
"A caring country, not maybe hugely successful, we may become that, but one where every single South African actually feels they matter. Even when they are poor they know they matter."
Tutu said if South Africa were a film, "we'd be a shoo-in for an Oscar".
Though he had prostate cancer, he was "as fine as I can hope to be".
"I don't propose to climb Table Mountain ... I don't intend to keel over at present."
He retired as Archbishop of Cape Town in 1996 and again when the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which he chaired, wrapped up.
Since then his schedule had "grown increasingly punishing".
Tutu, who thanked his colleagues, doctors and all South Africans, said he would limit his time in the office to one day a week and honour existing appointments until the end of February.
He would still support the Desmond Tutu Peace Centre in Cape Town and would continue to be involved with the Elders, a group of global leaders, and the Nobel Laureate Group.
He would step down as chancellor of the University of the Western Cape and as a member of the United Nations advisory committee on prevention of genocide.
"On the whole I'll shut up. But sometimes I might find I can't resist it," Tutu said with another chuckle.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Albert is engaged to Charlene Wittstock, a former Olympic swimmer from South Africa.
The palace in the Riviera principality said Thursday that the two have set a date for a religious ceremony: July 9, 2011. A civil ceremony will take place the day earlier.
Alfred met the willowy blonde Wittstock during a 2000 swimming competition in Monaco. His betrothed has iconic shoes to fill, stepping into a role left vacant since the death of much-beloved Princess Grace in a car crash in 1982.
This will be a socialites dream so let's see which South Africans crack a nod to the event?
Link to a further Interview with Miss Wittstock in Vogue http://pessimistincarnate.blogspot.com/south-african-charlene-wittstock-in.html
Link to the wedding pictures http://pessimistincarnate.blogspot.com/2011/07/royal-wedding-of-albert-and-charlene-in.html
Link to sham marriage article http://pessimistincarnate.blogspot.com/2011/07/if-this-is-true-its-sad-charlene-and.html
Mothes said they were sailing at about three knots towards Robben Island. "We saw it breach about 300 yards away. It was on a collision course with us. It smacked the mast about a metre and half above the boom and everything collapsed. "It slid back into the water and there were pieces of skin everywhere. There was no blubber but lots of pieces of the whale all over the show," he said. "I had bits of prawn all over me," said Mothes. "It's amazing that we weren't injured." As for the whale? "It was probably bruised," and shaken up he said.
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Trading standard chiefs said they were "seriously concerned" about the sale of the model and have warned against its use.
As well as blinding, burning and causing cancer, its Hong Kong-based maker admits that "a split-second laser light in a plane cockpit (...) can be disastrous".
Star Wars fans are among hundreds of people who have already shown an interest in buying the laser, for sale to the general public for £135 or R1576
An expert, said the 1W beam was 1,000 times stronger than laser pointers normally available to the public.
They could be "deadly" if aimed at car drivers or even pilots in planes, Mr Colton added.
Wicked said the device would have cost thousands to build not long ago, but technological advances have made it available much more cheaply.
"This laser possesses the most burning capabilities of any portable laser in existence," the website reads.
"That's why it's also the most dangerous laser ever created."
The website goes on to warn: "Extremely dangerous is an understatement to the power of 1W of laser power.
"It will blind permanently and instantly and set fire quickly to skin and other body parts."
It adds that users should use eye protection and must read and agree the "Laser Hazard Acknowledgment Form".
It's a role reversal not commonly seen, but then the cat chasing this dog is a little larger than most. Salati, a ten-month-old leopard, and her best friend, golden retriever Tommy, like nothing more than to run amok before settling down for a friendly cuddle. The odd couple were reared together at Glen Afric Country Lodge near Pretoria in South Africa .
The pair take daily walks together at the Glen Afric Country Lodge near Pretoria in South Africa 'When we first received Salati she was tiny and Tommy could chase her around. But now with Salati matching him for weight the tables have turned. 'It's all fun and games and they love playing together. 'But dogs aren't used to being chased by cats almost the same size as them. I think it was a shock for him when she started doing the chasing but it's fun to see them exploring together.'
Tommy and Salati enjoy a bit of rough and tumble in the South African bush. As a cub Salati was much smaller than friendly Tommy, who weighs 18lb. But the fast-growing predator now packs a bigger punch at a hefty 40lb, more than twice the weight of her excitable dog friend. Mr Brooker added: 'Dogs need to walk and going out with Tommy for a ramble in the bushes means Salati develops properly into a fit adult leopard
The pair lay contentedly together in the boot of the four-wheel drive 'I take them out in the truck so they can have a good run-around together in lots of space.' Rescued as an orphaned cub, Salati was donated by a local vet to the family-run country retreat, which helps to rehabilitate injured and destitute animals. Breeding programs at the spectacular venue also ensure that some of their animals who will never be able to survive in the wild enjoy the good life within huge enclosures. The Brookers' hard work has helped boost wildlife numbers in the area.. They have over 200 animals across 32 species on the grounds. The stunning getaway is visited by resident guests staying at the lodge and day visitors who want to see Africa 's amazing creatures including lions, elephants and giraffes.
Perhaps it ought to surprise no one that the power struggle in the ANC Youth League has degenerated into the purging of those who disagree with its leaders.
The current crop of leaders in this wing of the ruling party has never seemed too keen on democratic processes.
Remember how they came to power at that chaotic national conference in 2008?
The same can justifiably be said of the spectacular self-destruction we continue to witness in the Congress of the People.
Regardless of what its founders said about the necessity of a viable opposition in building a strong democracy, we know that there would not have been a COPE had Mosiuoa Lekota, Mbhazima Shilowa and their fellow travellers not lost a democratic contest at the ANC national conference in Polokwane in 2007.
And then there is the IFP, whose national council, its second-highest decision-making body, resolved on Sunday to once again postpone an elective annual general conference that was scheduled for the coming weekend.
The general conference, which should have taken place in June last year, has been shelved because party bosses are afraid of losing a democratic contest to national chairwoman Zanele Magwaza-Msibi.
Whatever one thinks of party president Mangosuthu Buthelezi and his track record at the helm of Inkatha for the past 35 years, the fact is that the prince considers himself a dyed-in-the-wool democrat.
His supporters often wax lyrical about how he helped to stop post-apartheid South Africa "from sliding into a one-party state like most of Africa".
Some of those supporters must now be wondering why this leader, who has always fashioned himself as a champion of pluralism and freedom of association, would allow the party hierarchy to use every trick in the book to try to circumvent a democratic process.
Two weeks ago, the party's national council initiated an inquiry into Magwaza-Msibi's link with a group that has used guerrilla tactics, inside and outside the IFP, to campaign for her presidency.
Were a link to be found, Magwaza-Msibi would be suspended, or barred from contesting the election next weekend.
But she did not pitch up at the national council meeting last weekend at which the inquiry was to be held. She submitted a medical certificate instead.
This put a spanner in the works of those who wanted her suspended before the elective conference.
So they decided to postpone the conference indefinitely, announcing that it would take place only "subsequent to the normalisation of the atmosphere within the party".
In other words, there will be no elective conference for as long as the Magwaza-Msibi threat continues to exist.
But what is wrong with holding a fair and open contest at which the party rank and file can decide whom they want as their leader?
Magwaza-Msibi is clearly a popular figure in the IFP, but surely her support base cannot be larger than Buthelezi's?
So why all this fear?
The IFP president has kept everybody guessing about whether he'll retire. Current events suggest that he has decided to step down but fears that his choice of successor, the Rev Musa Zondi, would not be able to fend off a Magwaza-Msibi challenge in an election.
If Buthelezi is the true democrat he claims to be, he will allow the two to fight it out, and accept the democratic will of IFP members.
But what does all of this have to do with the state of the country's democracy?
If political parties, both in government and opposition, cannot brook dissent from within, what hope is there that they will do so on a national stage?
The decay and eventual collapse of the Zimbabwean democracy - once regarded as the best in Southern Africa - began with the suppression of alternative voices in the ruling Zanu-PF.
It is in the interests of us all that the democratic space remains open in all of the political parties.
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Well here goes my advice after
years of practice
Then their is the question of a good Marinade?
Try this one i use it often and it works a treat
2 Tbsp honey
2 Tbsp lemon juice
Now enjoy your steak and don't forget a bucket of beers with it or a real good full bodied red wine for those who want to be a little more cultured
Benjamin and Angela Ihegboro's daughter, Nmachi, has flummoxed genetic experts who are unable to explain why she looks they way she does.
Doctors say the white-skinned newborn is not an albino.
The blonde, blue-eyed girl's Nigerian parents say they don't know
The British couple are both of Igbo Nigerian origin and have dark skin.
Father Ben Ihegboro, 44, a customer services advisor, admitted that when he saw the baby he exclaimed 'What the flip?' before joking: 'Is she mine?'
Doctors at Queen Mary hospital in Sidcup insist that Nmachi - whose name means 'beauty of God' in the couple's native Igbo language - is not an albino.
Her stunned parents, who already have two black children, just 'sat and stared' at their white baby when she arrived, they told the Sun last night.
'We both just sat there after the birth staring at her,' said Mr Ihegboro.
Mum Angela said: 'She is beautiful, a miracle baby.'
Despite jokingly asking whether he was the father, Mr Igegboro said: 'Of course she is mine.
'My wife is true to me. Even if she hadn't been, the baby wouldn't have looked like that!'
Pale skin genes can skip generations but neither Ben nor Angela Ihegboro - who only moved to Britain five years ago - know of any white heritage in either of their families.
'She doesn't look like an albino child anyway,' Mr Ihegboro said. 'Not like the ones I have seen back in Nigeria or in books. She just looks like a healthy white baby.
'My mum is a black Nigerian although she has a bit fairer skin than mine. But we don't know of any white ancestry.
'We wondered if it was a genetic twist. But even then, what is with the long curly blonde hair.'
Genetics professors expressed amazement at the birth last night.
'The birth is extraordinary,' said Professor Bryan Sykes, head of human genetics at Oxford University.
'In mixed race humans, the lighter variant of skin tone may come out in a child and this can sometimes be startlingly different to the skin of the parents.'
Professor Sykes said both parents would have needed 'some form of white ancestry.'
He added: 'The hair is extremely unusual. Even many blonde children don't have blonde hair like this at birth.
'The rules of genetics are complex and we still don't understand what happens in many cases.
'This might be a case where there is a lot of genetic mixing, as in Afro-Caribbean populations.
'But in Nigeria there is little mixing.'
The couple also have an older daughter, Dumebi, two, and a son, Chisom, four.
Mr Ihegboro said the couple's son was even more confused than them.
He added: 'Our boy keeps coming to look at his sister and sits down looking puzzled.
'We are a black family. Suddenly he has a white sister.
'But all that matters is that she is healthy and that we love her.'
Skin colour is believed to be determined by up to seven different genes working together.
If a woman is of mixed race, her eggs will usually contain a mixture of genes coding for both black and white skin. Similarly, a man of mixed race will have a variety of different genes in his sperm.
When these eggs and sperm come together, they will create a baby of mixed race.
But, very occasionally, the egg or sperm might contain genes coding for one skin colour. If both the egg and sperm contain all white genes, the baby will be white. And if both contain just the versions necessary for black skin, the baby will be black.
In 2006 a British mixed race couple last year gave birth to twin girls, one of whom was white and the other black.
Both Kylie and her partner Remi Horder, 17, are of mixed race. Their mothers are both white and their fathers are black.
But the chances of the twin girls having completely different skin colours was one in a million.
According to the Multiple Births Foundation, baby Kian must have inherited the black genes from both sides of the family, whilst Remee inherited the white ones.
Monday, July 19, 2010
" The next night he came home from work and yelled
Curry spices could hold the key to reducing the enormous greenhouse gas emissions given off by grazing animals and errant TV contestants, scientists have claimed.
Research carried out at Newcastle University has found that coriander and turmeric – spices traditionally used to flavour curries – can reduce by up to 40 per cent the amount of methane that is produced by bacteria in a sheep's or cow's stomach and then emitted into the atmosphere when the animal burps.
Working rather like an anti-biotic, the spices were found to kill the methane-producing "bad" bacteria in the animal's gut while allowing the "good" bacteria to flourish. The findings are part of an ongoing study led by Dr Abdul Shakoor Chaudhry at Newcastle University.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
The hospital's medical team has since diagnosed the young dog with life-threatening heart defects which will hopefully be rectified during open-heart surgery later this week - a first of its kind for the facility.
The female puppy, was being fed vitamins through a drip at the Onderstepoort Veterinary Teaching Hospital in Pretoria on Thursday afternoon.
"We hope to have her back in Uganda by Tuesday or Wednesday next week," said Kia's Ugandan vet, Dickson Okello.
"Today she is on a drip, being fed minerals so that her strength is up for the operation tomorrow.
"After the operation she will spend a few days in hospital and then hopefully she'll be able to fly back to Uganda by Tuesday or Wednesday."
Kia was born in the kennels of a breeder in Nairobi, Kenya. She was relocated to Jinja, Uganda with two other puppies to join the canine section of a family owned business conglomerate.
Within two weeks of relocation to her new home, however, she developed breathing problems and was treated for pneumonia by Okello, the resident veterinary surgeon.
Kia responded to the treatment, but four days later she showed the same signs of pneumonia, cyanosis - blueing of mucous membranes, exercise intolerance, hyperventilation and unthriftiness or stunted growth.
Okello said he heard heart murmurs which prompted him to "tentatively" diagnose a heart condition. He took an x-ray which only showed enlarged ventricles.
The ultrasound scan and the electrocardiogram could not reveal much.
"Because of these findings and the presenting clinical signs, he diagnosed a medical condition known as Patent Ductus Arteriosus, where a duct which connects the pulmonary artery and the aorta that closes at birth fails to close," Okello said.
"This leads to poor oxygenation of the blood and body tissues."
Kia's owners were concerned because the puppy was not living a good quality life.
"They asked if there was any treatment available for the condition and they were advised that only surgery to legate the duct was the definitive treatment, or else the dog would die of hypoxia or congestive heart failure."
Okello was asked to find out who or where the procedure to correct the condition could be performed.
He made enquiries and was directed to Professor Louis Coetzee at the Onderstepoort Veterinary Teaching Hospital (OVTH).
Coetzee discussed the case with Okello by telephone and email and he suggested that the dog be flown to Onderstepoort for further diagnostic imaging and tests. Okello accompanied Kia to Pretoria on July 12 for the appointment with Coetzee.
Upon arrival at the hospital from the airport in Johannesburg, Kia was taken straight to the Intensive Care Unit. Diagnostic tests including haematology and biochemistry were carried out on July 12, 13 and 14.
An ultrasound scan revealed more intracardiac defects such as pulmonic stenosis, ventricular septal defects, overriding aorta and ventricular hypertrophy, a condition known as Tetralogy of Fallot.
A human paediatric cardiologist from Montana Hospital in Pretoria was called in and he confirmed the condition of Kia's heart.
In the operation on Friday, surgeons will try to create a conduit between her pulmonary artery and aorta to enable more blood to be transported to the heart for oxygenation.
If successful, this will allow about 93% oxygenation of the blood that is transported the tissues.
"Kia is currently hospitalised at the ICU section of OVTH and is getting much love, attention and care that she deserves from all the medical team, surgical team and the students," Okello said.
Okello said Kia's owner was phoning every hour from Uganda to find out the latest news on his puppy.
Saturday, July 17, 2010
Madiba turns 92
This year on Mandela Day, July 18, South Africa's beloved Tata Madiba (grandfather Madiba) celebrates his 92nd birthday. Once again, with his smile and his presence, he will sound the call to action for all South Africans to lead the way in the world and to make a difference in the places in which they live and work.
Friday, July 16, 2010
2 lb mutton shoulder may substitute with beef
1½ cups water
6 ripe red tomatoes
70g can tomato paste
3 cloves garlic
•1 chicken stock cube
•2 Tbsp oil
•1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp potato flour
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp sugar
•1 tsp mixed herbs
•½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
•½ tsp paprika
•¼ tsp chili powder
Cut the meat into 1 to 1 ½ inch cubes, Peel and dice the potatoes.
Peel and crush the cloves of garlic, Peel and chop the onions.
Heat the oil and butter in a big, heavy-bottomed saucepan, over medium heat until the butter discolors. Add the meat in batches and stir-fry until brown. Remove each batch with a slotted spoon and keep aside. Season the browned meat with salt and pepper.
Sauté the onions in the remaining oil until golden, soft and translucent add the tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, chili, paprika, garlic, herbs, water and stock. Bring to a slow boil.
Add the prepared meat, reduce the heat, cover and simmer the bredie very slowly for 2 hours. Add the cubed potatoes and continue simmering for another ½ hour thicken the gravy with a little potato flour mixed with water you can prepare a day in advance and leave to mature in the refrigerator.
Reheat and serve with steamed rice. Traditionally, a handful of chopped parsley will be added to the rice. This Tomato and Mutton Stew Recipe is easy to prepare and makes a lovely rich tasting dish
Anderson-Reade predicted even more activity in the days to come. "I think they will make an appearance at KwaPhumula next, or even as far north as Mtwalume. Yesterday's activity was especially good for traders of the fish, who were disappointed at last year's meagre run.
BJ Bonakele, a fisherman on the Look Sharp boat, said he was very happy with the number of fish that had been netted.
"Last year was very bad for business; we didn't get anything. But I'm very happy about this year's haul," he said.
Locals were happy with the late appearance of the sardines after most foreign tourists had left South Africa, after the end of the World Cup.
They were happy that on Wednesday's activity had drawn people from other parts of KwaZulu-Natal but said the presence of foreign tourists would have affected the prices they paid for the fish.
Mzwakhe Hlophe said: "The fish would have been expensive if the tourists were still here and their absence is a bonus for us."
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Have You Ever Danced?
An old prospector shuffled into town leading an old tired mule.
The old man headed straight for the only saloon to clear his parched throat. He walked up and tied his old mule to the hitch rail. As he stood there, brushing some of the dust from his face and clothes, a young gunslinger stepped out of the saloon with a gun in one hand and a bottle of whiskey in the other.
The young gunslinger looked at the old man and laughed, saying, "Hey old man, have you ever danced?"
The old man looked up at the gunslinger and said, "No, I never did dance... never really wanted to." A crowd had gathered as the gunslinger grinned and said, "Well, you old fool, you're gonna dance now," and started shooting at the old man's feet.
The old prospector --not wanting to get a toe blown off-- started hopping around like a flea on a hot skillet. Everybody was laughing, fit to be tied.
When his last bullet had been fired, the young gunslinger, still laughing, holstered his gun and turned around to go back into the saloon.
The old man turned to his pack mule, pulled out a double-barreled shotgun, and cocked both hammers.
The loud clicks carried clearly through the desert air.
The crowd stopped laughing immediately.
The young gunslinger heard the sounds too, and he turned around very slowly. The silence was almost deafening.
The crowd watched as the young gunman stared at the old timer and the large gaping holes of those twin barrels.
The barrels of the shotgun never wavered in the old man's hands, as he quietly said, "Son, have you ever licked a mule's ass?"
The gunslinger swallowed hard and said, "No sir..... but... I've always wanted to."
Never be arrogant.
Don't waste ammunition.
Whiskey makes you think you're smarter than you are.
Always, always make sure you know who has the power.
Don't mess with old men, they didn't get old by being stupid.