Mary and Jean

Mom: When the Colemans arrived in Harrismith for Ken to start work in ‘the milk factory’ we met them right away as Dad was a great friend of Ken’s older brother Wally. Wally had been his tutor as an appy electrician in the Pietermaritzburg Post Office back in 1938. I recall visiting Uncle Wally asContinue reading “Mary and Jean”

Today Fifty Years Ago

Today fifty years ago was also a Sunday. I know cos sister Sheila kept a diary in high school and every now and then she pops out with an entry that brings back a flood of memories. Even everyday entries like ‘had lunch at (place) with (people)’ can trigger memories and start some lovely reminiscing.Continue reading “Today Fifty Years Ago”

His Uncle Hec’s Funeral

Des is a mensch. He’s a gentleman and he has good intentions. He’s in a serious marriage and under strict starter’s orders. The thing is Des has a bit of a dodgy handbrake. Even when pulled up tight it can occasionally slip and he can lurch forward a few steps and then all hell canContinue reading “His Uncle Hec’s Funeral”

Polo in Harrismith

The first recorded polo game in South Africa took place in October 1874 at the King Williams Town Parade Ground between the Gordon Highlanders and the Cape Mounted Rifles. The Military Ninth Division played during the 1880s at Harrismith, Orange Free State. Polo was played in Cape Town in 1885 at a club formed byContinue reading “Polo in Harrismith”

Balmoral Dam

Hector and Stella, Ian and Bev and Tabs – all or some of them! – built a large dam on the Swartspruit, a tributary of the Wilge river on Ian and Bev’s farm Sarclet. The Fyvie’s Balmoral dam – If you build a dam you need a boat and Tabs found one in Howick, goingContinue reading “Balmoral Dam”

Rust in Warden

Rust in Vrede means Rest in Peace. Rust in Warden was anything but peaceful on account of an invasion of hooligans from the Last Outpost of the British Empire – a flock of unruly wimmin studying to be teachers back in March 1976. It took us gentlemen from behind the boerewors curtain in the salubriousContinue reading “Rust in Warden”

Mona’s Wake

A gathering of a flock of du Plessis is always a very special occasion. Not an orderly occasion. Not a quiet occasion. Just very special. Mignon, Jean-Prieur and Jacques-Herman celebrated their Mom Mona’s wonderful ninety years of Mom, Music and Magic at a wonderful venue outside Harrismith – where I forgot to take any picturesContinue reading “Mona’s Wake”

Volkskool – Primary School

Mom went to this school, as did all three of us kids. Annie, Mom’s Mom, would not have, as it seems it was established 1915, see below, and Annie was 22yrs old by then. Before us, Etienne Joubert went, and he remembers: Playing ‘Hasie’ under the Bluegums near the old Golf club house; Playing ‘Bok-bok’Continue reading “Volkskool – Primary School”

The Mass Choir Amasses

A large gathering of the Goor Koor – that assembly of happy inebriates led and accompanied by virtual-teetotaller Mary Methodist, our Mom, gathered together – assembled, amassed – on the occasion of Mom’s 45th birthday. Usually there were far fewer of them gathered at any one time, an occasional Lubricated Quartet perhaps, but this wasContinue reading “The Mass Choir Amasses”

The Subway

Greg Seibert arrived in Harrismith from Ohio in 1972 as a Rotary exchange student. In 2014 he was sending sister Sheila some of his pictures from those wayback days. He wrote: Here is one I’m sure you will like. It is one of the very first pics that I took in Harrismith, probably the dayContinue reading “The Subway”