Off to the Sea Side ….

{Image taken by me, in Sandbaai}

This weekend I am heading out to Hermanus to visit my mom and spend some time lazing around and have “treated” myself to a long weekend.  I really, desperately, need some down time, and just not to feel like I am rushing from one thing to the next and always on my way to something, or late for something.  I need some downtime, with just nothing to do.

Well, that is the picture I have at any rate.

Kennith is away in Germany/Bolivia or where ever, and I thought it might be good to take a long weekend and just have a laze around.  I am hoping to try to spend some non-stress time with the kids, and try to just “be present” – I have been a bit sucky at that as of late, and realised it again this morning on the drive to school that I seem to be living passed my kids and not really savouring the important stuff I should be.

My kids love being at my mom’s house.  They run around, get dirty, Connor over doses on fishing, Georgia plays doll house until she can’t anymore, and generally Isabelle spends her time trying to get someone to give her more Flings.

Again that is the plan of how I see it going – the vision if you will.  I feature in the role of a person sitting on an outside chair reading my book with a chilled glass of Chenin Blanc balancing on one of those plastic kid’s chairs.

I am taking my rather thick book of “Henry VIII King and Court – Alison Weir” along with me, and hope to move my way through nearly 700 pages of Tudor History – it’s a good time to me – I also have a back up book just of Sherlock Holmes in the event that Henry does not bring his A Game, one never knows with Henry, he is a bit tempestuous and erratic at times.

I am also taking along our new maid Privilege along for the weekend.  Yes, I do understand how “white colonial” that sounds.

Privilege does appear be a winner-winner-chicken-dinner.   But I am trying not to get too attached or too excited, things have been known to go badly quickly as of late, so I am just breezing along.

This week she has really been great, and her only “minus” appears to be that she cannot cook, but I can teach that.  She cleans really well, and is quiet, and has managed to pack/repack and sort out the kids clothing cupboards already – brilliant!!

On Saturday I am going to a wedding, so am leaving my three kids with my mom – no doubt she will have developed a facial tick, and be drooling a bit out of the corner of her mouth by the time I get back – but that is also why I wanted Priviledge to come along.

I am really looking forward to the wedding.  It is at Moggs in the Hemel and Aarde Valley which is going to be spectacular, and I know it is just going to make me cry – all weddings do.  Congratulations Ian and Sue!!

{Image taken by me, Sue with her flashing light bling on her Hen’s Night}

I feel relieved that we may be on the right track with our nanny/domestic helper/mommy’s side kick, and I have great aspirations of this weekend going well.

I do want some time for my brain to just slow down this weekend, and hopefully get some sleep — I feel like the walking dead.

Hope your weekend is good, where ever you may be and when ever it gets started!

City Animal By-Law … no this has nothing to do with children …

I remember when this discussion came out about two years ago.  The City of Cape Town had requested/required its residents to register their pets.

In terms of the City’s Animal By-Law of 2010, residents are required to register their pets so that the City can monitor and control Cape Town’s animal population

Easy enough.

When this was discussed, and I think it was at least two years ago, people went bezerk – there was hair pulling and “they won’t make me…” and the sky was so falling on Chicken Little.

People were foaming at the mouth, and there was discussions about how the City of Cape Town was going to take pets away.  Other than religion (in this case the Red Bull Advert which really is a fatal exercise in how to alienate half your market), vaginal vs c-section and breastfeeding vs bottle feeding, nothing quite makes people go as “befok” at the mere suggesting that you might take away their animals.

The short part of it is, unless the city knows how many animals are living in the city, and where the problem areas are, it can’t really do anything to assist people or animals.

Seems a fairly simple principle to rationalise.

According to the by-law I am permitted four dogs and/or four cats on a property of my size – which is a hell of a lot of animal as far as I am concerned.

The neighbour a few houses up has six dogs – that I can see (there may be others and cats I have not seen).

They are little Yorkshire Terriers.  So he would go along and register.  As he has more than permitted, he would need to request permission to keep the extra two or how many ever.  Judging by the size of his property (huge) and the fact that the dogs are not a problem, there is no reason for the city to say no.

If the City says yes, it does not mean that you are always now allowed to keep 12 dogs, it means that they give you permission, but as they start to die, then you are not allowed to replace them – you will need to get your numbers down to the by-law level.

Applications in terms of section 4(1) of the City of Cape Town: Animal Bylaw 2010 to keep a greater number permitted in terms of section 2(2) will in the first six months of promulgation of this By-Law, be granted up to a maximum of six dogs on any premises, subject to the owner not replacing any dog that dies or is disposed of as it would result in a contravention of section 2(2).

Of course there are always exceptions – kennels, pet shops, and so on.

I really have no issue with this by-law, and when I read through it, and listen to the discussions on 567 Cape Talk it all appears quite reasonable.

Presently there is no licence fee in place – but odds are there will probably be one coming.

I do not have an issue with the City deciding on a licence fee, provided I can pay on-line, and there is some sense in where the money goes.  I have no qualm about a licence fee.

But for some reason, people are still sh*tting in their pants about registering their pets.

I do think the key points are.

1.  People often do keep way too many animals, and they are a nuisance – and unfortunately the person keeping the pets often does not realise the effect on his/her neighbours.

2.  If you can afford to keep 6 dogs, then you need to appreciate that the city may need to charge you a fee per year.  And if you can keep 6 dogs, then odds are you can pay a reasonable licence fee.  We often throw our hands in the air about all these animals and them arriving at the shelter, but these animals do start somewhere, and unless the City gets a firm handle on it, and puts controls in place, the situation is not going to get any better.

3.  Register your pets – it is not a conspiracy, the City needs to understand how much animals they are dealing with.  Register on line, it is really quick – you will need your rates bill as they ask for your account number and erf number.

If you are Cape Town based, and own a property, and there is an animal on your property – even if you do not own it, you are responsible to register the animal.

Pop along to the link – it took me about 4 minutes to register.