Karma Chameleon

Yesterday, when I was watering the garden, I noticed this little master of disguise in amongst some grasses that I had just cut back. However it was only when I was cropping the photo that I noticed the water droplet on his head. No wonder he looked a bit pissed off with me! I don’t know how I spotted him, as you can see he was quite well camouflaged. I think when you live in the country you tend to become a bit more observant, a bit more attuned. This afternoon Edna and I heard a bird calling very persistently and without even thinking I identified it as a Southern Boubou.  A year ago, it would have been just another anonymous bird call to me. Birds and chameleons are not the only critters I’ve noticed in my garden recently. A couple of days ago I was meditating one morning in front of my bedroom window, at about 5:30 (it was still quite gloomy outside) and something made me open my eyes at the very moment a hare hopped across the front lawn, white tail and all.

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I have to say, as much as I love living here and have no intentions of ever returning to Durban (or any other city for that matter) voluntarily, I have started to get a bit lonely, especially in the evenings. Usually, by evening time I’m so tired and shagged out after a long squawk in the garden that I don’t have the energy to feel any sense of isolation but recently, I have started to feel a bit dejected at the thought of yet another evening alone. And I know exactly from whence this feeling comes! Last week my ex-friend (of 25 years), neighbour and partner in the farm (of 10 years) left and I watched her go with mixed emotions. Although I was pleased to see her go, there was also feeling of sadness that comes with the awareness that there is no turning back. It’s a bit like having a dog put down; you wake up the next day thinking “hold on, I just need to rethink this one” and then you realise that it’s too late. Of course I go through all the dirty pain stuff, should I and what if and, even though in my heart of hearts I know that ending the relationship was the right thing to do, I still wonder if I could’ve handled things differently! Well, we’ll never know for sure, will we?

Judy once asked me if I missed Essa at all and her question gave me pause for thought. I realised that I did not miss her per se, in fact I felt as if a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders when the friendship ended. I had not realised just how judgmental she had become and how critical she was, not only of Peter and me, but just about everyone else that we knew! So it was quite liberating not having that negativity to deal with, but what I did miss (and still do) is the sociability of having a neighbour on whom I could just pop in. In the “good old days” we would see each other almost every day. I would take my dogs for a walk most evenings and stop at her house on my way home for a drink and a chat. So now she’s gone and although I haven’t popped in for over a year, and really didn’t want to anyway, I miss having a neighbour. And this feeling of being on my own has been exacerbated by the empty house next door, full of memories.

I’ll get over it. Time is a great healer, as they say; this too shall pass, blah, blah, blah! Yes, I know all that but in the meantime, I still feel a bit sad. On the bright side, I can do what the bloody hell I want to (it’s a long story but I was always the townie when she was around).

So now I’m planning new water systems, staff accommodation, new plots in the veg garden, let’s throw caution to the wind and go for it. Why not, you only live once and this is our only bash at it, after all (well, that’s if you are an atheist like me and don’t believe in the hereafter).

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One Response to Karma Chameleon

  1. Mark Muggeridge says:

    Hang in there Cathy, I know what it is like, the evenings can be lonely, especially when I’m cooking supper, it helps to talk, pick up the phone otherwise distract yourself with cropping pictures of chameleons that always look a little pissed of in my view – that may make a great short story about how chameleons only look pissed off when you see them (because you were not fooled by their camouflage) other wise they look very happy.
    And yes, the best place for the past is in the past, move on…

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