Weekend in Review (2-4 May) My Life 05 MAY 2008

Dan In Real LifeWhat an enjoyable week it had been. With only two working days in the week, the entire South Africa has been in that hazy slumber known as a long weekend. For me it was no different and I hadn’t touched a piece of work since Wednesday afternoon! Unfortunately for me of course, Chantelle doesn’t quite share the same luxury and worked the entire time – providing me with plenty of opportunities to rub it in by stretching out in bed while she had to get ready for work! :)

Friday started off pretty lazily in all honesty, and I ended up watching Stan Lee’s The Condor animated movie and some Justice League Unlimited episodes before escaping the duplex and going on a shopping trip just for the hell of it. I have been living here for a month now and still I don’t know the layout of Somerset Mall, so with that mission in mind, I went exploring. And what an exploration it was – two bloody hours of walking around one bloody mall! Thankfully I was lucky in that I found a host of cool graphic novels, comics and manga to purchase, all at basement bargain prices which kind of made up for all that time I had spent stomping around. Unfortunately my other main mission fell a little flat on its face when I realised that buying a new pair of long shorts at the start of winter fashion season is nigh impossible.

Eventually though I had had enough of shopping and it was back home to go veg out a little more and work on that entire tub of leftover icing that Chantelle had brought back home for me the other day. But not for long. This weekend was going to be a little different than normal because Friday night had my mom and my dad redeeming their exclusive Gordon’s Beach Lodge voucher that we had given to them on my mom’s birthday back in February, meaning that Chantelle was pretty excited to make sure that everything was perfect at the guesthouse in anticipation of their arrival. And of course, with both bosses away, the mouse will most certainly play!

Mom and dad arrived a little later than originally planned, but no matter, they turned the tables a little on us by inviting the two of us out to dinner with them at their once favourite eating spot, Surfside seafood restaurant in the Strand. Now this restaurant is fairly fancy, with live music and the lot, but unbelievably for a Friday night right after payday, it was as empty as a bag of peanuts left lying open next to a hungry elephant. Of course that meant all the more attention for us and with that said, we enjoyed the services of a good waiter and all had exceptionally good food eventually put down in front of us. The only slight niggle that I have was that the live ‘band’ was a little too live, playing their music more than just a tad too loudly and forcing us to just about shout at each other whenever we wanted to say anything. Still, it was a thoroughly enjoyable night out with the parents and it was a pity that it was over so soon!

Saturday morning the mouse was still playing, with the end result that Chantelle who is meant to start work well before 08:00 only buggered off to the office at 09:30! Of course, she had a fairly good excuse in that the guesthouse was currently empty apart from my mom and dad and that her assistant Charmaine was sleeping over there anyway! Anyway, after a little faffing around to organise some stuff that Rob needed to come pick up while we were away, I joined mom, pop and C at the guesthouse and we cracked the whip, putting her straight to work in preparing our breakfast! Lucky girl! :)

I hadn’t been over to the guesthouse for breakfast in ages I tell you, and as always it was such a treat. Being a four star place means that they offer you just about anything your heart (and stomach) could possible desire which means I always wobble away from the place when I’m done! Of course, with mom and pops there for company, we stretched out breakfast until almost noon before I finally excused myself and headed off to the mall to pick up my latest toy that I had spotted the previous day. And not wanting to be trapped between the two ladies by himself, dad offered to join me and together we tottered off to the mall in search of my very own mini hot glue gun. (And of course, dad drove, just in case you wondered. Some things will never change!)

Now a person would think that after spending what seemed an eternity at the mall just the previous day would mean that I would know EXACTLY where everything was – which of course meant that reality turned out quite differently from fantasy. First off, I got us headed towards the completely wrong entrance and hence completely wrong parking lot. Next, I picked the completely wrong wing to walk down in its entirety before realising that I had gone the wrong way! And with dad’s knee currently being more than just a little buggered, I was pretty much apologising all the way! All the VERY long way.

The mall was packed to the max but eventually after a couple of wrong turns, we ended up at our destination of Game and thankfully I actually managed to locate the glue gun shelf without any difficulties whatsoever! Oohing and aahing (I’m sure my dad was having fun too), I eventually picked up the little handheld hot wonder, grabbed the correct size glue sticks and escaped from the mall before anyone could stop us. We returned to base where I bade my parents and Chantelle a fond farewell and then returned home for the next job on my list.

Now my telephone jacks are situated in the kitchen, a fine place for telephone jacks to usually be… unless you have an office sitting in one of the other rooms of course. So twenty metres of cable and one hot glue gun in hand, I set to work gluing the cable down and snaking my way into the room. Amazingly my DIY skills held strong and I managed to avoid gluing myself to the wall, ending up with a nicely snaked cable and a working telephone on the other end. Will wonders never cease?

My work clearly done, it was time to relax again! :)

Thankfully, Chantelle decided to ditch me on her eventual return from work to go mall shopping by herself and even more thankfully she eventually arrived home bearing a nice surprise in the form of supper, more specifically in the form of those humongous and mouth-watering Flameros chicken burgers! She also returned with a number of framed prints which she wanted to test on our walls – probably the reason she hadn’t wanted me with in the first place!

Surprisingly enough I liked all but one of her choices, pleasing her to no end because she thought that I was going to hate them all! Next on her list of things to do was clean out our extremely murky fish tank vase, which was also precisely when things went wrong. I was happily sitting in my ‘man room’ entertaining myself when I heard a strained ‘Ag no!’ escape from the kitchen, to which I rushed in only to find Chantelle with an empty, but cracked fish tank beside her. By the looks of it, the change in pressure when she removed all the water from the tank to clean it was too much of a stress on it and it instantly cracked, leaving us with a couple of very confused fish now sitting in a big yellow bowl.

Shame, the girl was distraught and feeling very, very sorry for herself, which is why it was an inspired idea to go watch ‘Dan in Real Life’ at the mall instead of mulling around and worrying about the fish all night long. So I and the Wrecker from Ridgeworth, Breker of Bellville (She doesn’t find that title amusing for some reason) hit the mall once more where we spent the rest of the evening watching the thoroughly entertaining Steve Carell put through his romantic paces in what is a great date movie to be honest!

Sunday and the lazy bug was still upon us because we couldn’t resist the temptation of staying in bed and not going to gym, a bug that stayed with Chantelle because she only ended up getting to work in the afternoon! When we did eventually get out of bed though, it was off to the pet store once more, this time to find ourselves a new tank. Actually, that proved a pretty fruitful mission because we found a great tank at a good price (if you can call R450 a good price I guess) and once more gave these life suckers even more of our cash. A little bit of grocery shopping on the side, and Chantelle was once more off to work and I was back to my DIY ways, this time rebuilding the ‘display stand’ for our new tank so that it can withstand the heavy weight we now expect it to carry.

Actually, that ended up being my only job for the day because the rest of the day was spent pretty much watching even more Justice League Unlimited as well as putting in a good bit of time in on Tomb Raider: Anniversary, a game that I have finally chosen to pick up and play again. Funnily enough, having left it alone for well over a month meant that I picked it up and instantaneously got through the frustrating section that had caused me to toss away the controller in the first place!

After a nice long relaxing day, Chantelle eventually returned home which meant that the work started right away. We put up one of the paintings, set up the new fish tank and made burgers with chips for supper, all in a single breath. Which gave us another breath to finally sit down together on the couch and watch the entertaining ‘The Mummy’ on SABC1 to finally bring down the curtain on what has been a slightly frustrating (I also learned that I need to buy a new fridge this week) but thoroughly rewarding long weekend!

Now the only question is how to get through this very, very blue Monday…

About Craig Lotter

South African software architect and developer at Touchwork. Husband to a cupcake baker and father to two little girls. I don't have time for myself any more.