Outside of it being the year in which both Chantelle and I turned the milestone 30, it was also the first year in my marriage to Chantelle, which as anyone can see, continues to go from strength to strength. On the birthday note, we celebrated my birthday with Chantelle whisking me away on a surprise holiday in the gorgeous Drakensberg – where I also learned that we were expecting our first child!
Needless to say, as you also all know by now, 2010 also proved to be the year that our little beloved Jessica decided to join the Lotter clan (a little ahead of schedule), in other words a momentous 2010 saw me grow as both a husband and become a father all in a single breath!
Although nothing particularly great happened on the career front, the work situation did force me to buy my very first, brand new off the showroom car (a beautiful midnight grey Hyundai Getz) – which of course was further complemented with the purchase of my very first house towards the end of the year, again all in a single breath and now firmly placing us a Gordon’s Bay locals!
I’m just thinking here, but I’m pretty sure that I never mentioned on this blog that way back in the beginning of Februrary, end of January, we got confirmation that one of our two bids for tickets to the Football World Cup 2010 was actually accepted! :)
Four of us guys, namely Damen Oosthuizen, Dean Stapelberg, Terrance Brown and myself, got together and put in bids on two games, one of which turned out to be accepted, meaning that on the 14th of June 2010, at 20:30 in the evening, the four of us will be sitting somewhere in the new Cape Town Stadium (not sure where Category 4 puts us) enjoying match 11 of the football spectacular: Italy versus Paraguay.
And it’s a win-win situation as far as I’m concerned. Italy with it cadre of greats will be an awesome sight of footballing skill to experience first hand, and I know for a fact that Mr. Brown has always kind of followed/supported/cheered the Azzurri on in these big international competitions – so he’ll be pretty chuffed to see them in action I’m sure!
On the other hand, I’ve had a soft spot for the Paraguay team for quite some time now, mainly based on their heroic run in the France 1998 World Cup when the awesomeness that was Jose Luis Chilavert as a goal-scoring goalkeeper extraordinaire was on display and will be quietly hoping that they pull off another miracle and show those Italians a thing or two on the pitch! ;)
In any event, I can’t wait. Hopefully the game will be a cracker, but most of all, I’ll then be able to say that I witnessed a World Cup soccer game first hand, in person – and it was on my home soil to boot!
It’s exciting, I won’t lie! :)
Well, we’re finally back from what has been an absolutely brilliant break from work, the excellent four day weekend courtesy of Easter Weekend. Unfortunately Chantelle worked every single day of my four days off, but luckily for me, I was able to sketch in some great social time dashed with a splash of personal time! :)
Thursday evening kicked off with a braai at our place (well technically I suppose I should mention that we had already gone out on Tuesday night to Ben’s on the Beach to celebrate Chantelle’s raise and on Wednesday night to Panarottis to celebrate my new car), with Chantelle and myself playing host to Terrance and his new beau, Lize. As what now seems the order of the day, I put in a fantastic performance behind the coals (must be the new braai and classic Champion Braaier apron I tell you!), and ignoring the darkness all around me, managed to produce some rather tasty goodies if I say so myself! We sat and chatted and ate like kings, before Terrance and I managed to goad Lize and Chantelle to accept a round of 30 Seconds, in which the team of C&C actually did rather well for a change! :P
Friday saw me tackle some housework in the morning before my doorbell rang and I ushered in Mr. Brown, back again but this time sans the new partner. In other words, it was gaming time. And so we got stuck in to some Resident Evil 5, Gears of War 2 and Modern Warfare 2, before eventually powering down and heading out to the mall with the plan of grabbing some new gear… which unfortunately didn’t exactly pan out as what we had planned. It turns out that on a public holiday, Somerset Mall pretty much shuts the doors of all its shops! So settling for a delicious Subway for lunch, we headed back home in the Getz and got to grips with our game controllers once more. Evening rushed upon us pretty quickly and so the decision was made to pick up some Ooskus for supper (as per tradition) and Rush Hour 2 was selected as the viewing for the night, an action-packed Jackie Chan comedy that simply never lets one down! (Needless to say, Chantelle was quite keen to still be at work when she heard that was what we chose to watch for the evening!) :)
Saturday morning I busied myself with housework (still left over dishes from Thursday evening!) and some shopping, trying my best to hunt down a chocolate Lindt bunny for Chantelle – but can you believe everywhere I looked they were simply sold out!! I also tried my luck in getting some transfer papers from the traffic department, but alas, I should have known that the GB office was closed. Back home I pottered about, writing some blog posts and watching some Mazinkaiser anime, before heading out to the mall once again with the purpose of meeting up with Chantelle and her two miniature charges, Holly and Maddy, for a movie and a hunt to try and locate a standalone scanner.
Now the movie, How to Train Your Dragon, was a really fun blast, thoroughly enjoyed it, but the hunt for a standalone scanner was a completely different animal. Browsing around, it quickly became apparent that it is in fact cheaper to buy a all-in-one printer with a scanning option than purchasing a standalone scanner unit – are these people insane?!? Anyway, I couldn’t find one that I like on the shops’ floors, so it looks like I might buy the entry-level Canon LIDE 100 scanner, but hell, that’s going to set me back R737! On the other hand, I did stumble across Red Faction: Guerilla for a R100 at Incredible Connection, and of course knowing me, couldn’t resist this bargain which I then purchased and went home to play, spending the next three or four hours straight with controller in hand!
Sunday and Chantelle was straight off to work again, leaving me behind to take care of even more household chores and get a little blogging in, before I put on my walking shoes and trotted down to Pick ‘n Pay in order to buy a cooldrink which was to accompany on my lunch time trip through to Claire and Riley’s pad in Newlands.
As it turned out, lunch at Claire and Riley’s was really enjoyable, as it was a family affair starring Mom, Dad, Ryan, myself and obviously Claire and Riley, making it the first family get together since Mom’s birthday back in Feb. Claire’s newly renovated flat looks amazing and now with their large and in charge 50 inch Panasonic plasma and matching PS3 to dominate their lounge, the flat is really beginning to look rather ultra stylish! I took some photos of the pad for Chantelle’s sake, and boy is she jealous! :P
Oh, the food was simply divine as well. Weber chicken, roast potato, etc. You get the idea, proper Sunday lunch! :)
Back home I managed to convince myself not to do any work and instead told myself I’ll just quickly play an hour or so of Red Faction: Guerilla. Yeah right. I spent the rest of the entire day, well into midnight playing the damn game and loving every minute of it. The only break I took was to watch a quick episode of Mezzo DSA (fun show) and have some of the delicious stew Chantelle brought back with her from work. Oh, and to make Chantelle a much needed cup of coffee!
Monday morning, and having survived the embarrassment of Chantelle once again recording my snoring concerto, I set about quickly tidying up the place in expectation of Ryan’s arrival, for a planned day of manly bonding over a super long XBOX 360 session. And when I say play XBOX I mean play XBOX. We started just after 10:00 playing Gears of War and drove all the way through until about 18:00, polishing off all five chapters without resorting to violence towards one another. The only pit stop we put in was for a stroll over the road to Pick ‘n Pay and then a making of toasted cheese sarmies in the pan, but man was it worth it. From start to finish, I can see just why the original Gears of War was a popular a game as what it is.
However, the time for Ryan to finally go home was upon us, and kicking him out into traffic, Chantelle and I finally got to spend some quality Easter 2010 time together by hitting the Tallahassee Spur in Somerset Mall for a nice supper and then into Ster Kinekor for a viewing of Sandra Bullock in The Blind Side.
And that wraps it up for what in the end turned out to be quite an enjoyable Easter 2010, even if it was filled mainly with an inordinate amount of gaming! :)
Well, I’m currently back at the grindstone, having started work on Monday again (and my first day was spent on tech support trying to bring all our systems back up seeing as we ran out of electricity on the same day at around 03:00 in the morning!), but looking back at it I really did have a pleasant break to end off the year and welcome in the new one, the first year where I now no longer can work out how old I am simply by looking at the year any more. In case you are lost, in 1990 I was 10, in 2000 I was 20, 2008 I was 28 and in 2009 I was 29. Damn you 2010 for screwing it up! (Though the more astute among you may point out that now instead of just dropping the two middle numbers I can now simply add the two number pairs up for the correct figure. You sneaky mathematicians you!)
Anyway, the point is that I had a fabulous time away from work where I did almost nothing I had planned to do during the holiday, got stuck into copious amounts of xbox playing (finished Mirror’s Edge, Stranglehold, Prince of Persia and are currently well into Tomb Raider: Underworld), visited with Ryan and Terrance for games at Ryan’s pad, enjoyed a family-orientated Christmas, became Godfather to Dean’s daughter, hosted Wayne and Candice for a visit on the last day of 2009, had a fantastic New Year’s Eve celebration complete with fireworks and pita bread at the guest house, swam in the sea, watched loads of animated DVDs and finished off the year with my first ever braai using my new braai that I received from Chantelle, with a visiting Karl, Trish, Damen and Michelle in attendance. Oh, and I walked and practiced Karate.
So really not bad when you look back over the last ten days! :)
And to top it all off, I’m feeling quite refreshed and am blazing away at work to boot! Not that I am sitting back socially just by the way. I’ve got a karate camp this coming weekend in Betty’s Bay to attend, not to mention Cats tomorrow night at the Artscape, I’ve got a weekend away at Warmwaterberg in Barrydale with the Montgomery clan the following weekend, then on the first weekend of February I have a possible weekend away with the folks at Pinnacle Point and the weekend following that Chantelle and I will be in Hermanus, to take part in Zandea’s Christening! Oh, and Ryan’s birthday falls somewhere in between!
So life is good at the moment, I must admit.
Before I forget though, I don’t think I’ve yet gotten around to chatting about New Year’s eve yet have I? Well as per usual Chantelle was on duty and as per usual the Guest House was throwing a big party to which I was invited – in fact, even the Montgomery clan joined in on the celebrations. A mixture of guests and friends, including Andy, Albert and their posse, the evening was filled with drink, music (a host of guitars, drums and even trained singers it would seem), greek delicacies (Chantelle put on a fabulous spread as always) and firecrackers – lots of firecrackers. In fact, about R1,000 worth of firecrackers were lit along a quiet stretch of Gordon’s Bay beach, most without incident – and that’s not counting the one that nearly struck the guy out on the rocks in front of us, the one that nearly burnt down the Milkwood trees or the one that exploded in the guys’ faces, causing Albert to perform a rather spectacular Matrix style back leap. Funnily enough though, the two rockets tied together actually worked just fine.