Twenty Chickens for a Saddle

Twenty Chickens for a Saddle is a charming story of an unconventional childhood in 1990s Botswana. Robyn’s mother is a staunch believer in home schooling, because “a syllabus stifles creativity”, and she cheerily proceeds to impose a rather haphazard schooling regime, as much driven by daily events and the life around them in the bush as any adherence to a formal curriculum.


Stone Town

Every vacation we go on at least one excursion that according to our kids is incredibly stupid and unnecessary. In fact, we probably violate the Geneva Conventions with the kind of torture we inflict on them. Last time around when we were in George, our crime was The ... 


Hakuna Matata

Zanzibar. Few names ring as magical and so full of mystery as Zanzibar. It makes you think of spices, Arabs, sultans, explorers, and all of 1001 Nights thrown into the lot. Noisette and I thought that while we’re living reasonably close, visiting Zanzibar was too good a chance to pass up.

So ... 


Family Travels

I’ve often told Noisette that my ultimate dream vacation would be the one where he tells me the two of us are leaving for the airport in one hour, that babysitting is all arranged, and to bring absolutely nothing as we will just buy whatever we need when we get there, wherever it is.

Alas, we live in the real world, where our vacations look more like this: About a week before we leave, Noisette asks me if I have packed yet. No kidding! About two days before departure, I print my color-coded 367-item packing list, just to appease him and be able to say “I’ve started packing” without lying. When I do start packing the day before we leave, I’m always determined to work extra hard to show that it can be done. But yikes! I now find myself with about seventeen additional crucial projects that absolutely have to be finished before I go, or the world will come to a standstill. They usually involve having to print something on our inkjet, which will usually go into those funky spooling modes where the job won’t print but can’t be deleted either, or at the least a cartridge will have to be replaced. In addition, the kids will have seventeen projects each that also have to be finished. Which is usually the point where Noisette casually remarks that this is precisely why I should start packing earlier.

Leaving  ... 



“Welcome to Africa!”

Remember how this has always been a comforting thing to say when things don’t quite go according to plan in our expat lives here in South Africa?

Well, it’s all a matter of perspective. Turns out we hadn’t seen the real Africa yet, just a very sanitized version of ... 


Victoria Falls

sunset over the Zambezi at Victoria Falls

A trip to Victoria Falls is a must if you find yourself in Africa. The falls of course are spectacular and you should take plenty of pictures, but there is more: canoeing on the Zambezi, going on an elephant ride, surveying the falls from the air in a helicopter, watching bucks at the waterhole, taking a sunset cruise, bungee jumping, and more. Here is all you need to know about your stay at Victoria Falls.