Tuesday, September 2, 2014

On healing, dog bites, and vodka

After a year or two like my last year or two, the word ‘healing’ gets thrown around a whole lot. After you get divorced, people say “You’ve got to give yourself time to heal” as often as they say “What happened?”, and almost as much as they say “Well, his loss.” And for a while there, you thought you were doing really well at this whole ‘healing’ thing. I mean, you were happy, you weren’t hurting a whole shit load, and you were getting on with your life. Or so you thought.  


When The Ex moved out, I went straight into party mode. I mean, literally. He moved out on the Saturday, and I went to Park Acoustics on the Sunday, and I barely stopped partying until I came to Cape Town. That’s almost a year and a half of solid, epic party insanity. But when everything in my life really began falling apart (you’d think that losing my best friend and safe place would be the worst that could happen. Apparently not.), I realised that I needed a change and a chance to really examine what had gone wrong in my life, and that’s why I came to Cape Town. Filled with fear and dread, I packed it all in and shipped what was left of my life across the country… ‘To heal’, I told everyone. 

I seemed to have this idea that coming here would just be a continuation of my post-divorce life with the sea in the background, instead of Ponte, and with my mama thrown into the mix. Turns out, there’s a whole lot more to ‘healing’ than that. 

Since I got here, there has been a fair amount of partying, but nothing like what I’m used to. It’s true what they say about the pace of Jozi, guys. It’s insane. Jozi-ites work faster, drive faster, and party faster. We’re on another level entirely. What most people here call an epic night, is what I would have called ‘pretty cool’ before.* Although, I’ll grant you, even my friends in Jozi seem to be of the opinion that I take epic partying to another level. Nonetheless, there hasn’t been much of that since I got here. 

I have, however, taken introspection to another level. (It seems that I’m the kind of person who does things to the extreme. How did I not know this about myself before?) I’ve examined The Things That Happened To Me down to the tiniest detail, and analysed them to obscurity. And therein lies the healing, for me at least. Just this morning, I was writing furiously in my journal about discovering NEW magic, NEW wonder and NEW adventure. About discarding my expectations and past experiences of the above, and finding new and unique ways of finding things that make me believe again. These are the things I miss about myself - the childlike way I saw the world, and how I loved it recklessly. Since The Things happened, I’ve not seen the world that way. I became excessively (see?!) cynical about life, and more so about love. It didn’t stop me from loving recklessly, but even that recklessness became destructive, leading to even more cynicism. Great. Anyone got a muzzle for this vicious circle? 

Anyway, a thought spewed out onto the page, and it struck me. In fact, it glared at me first, and then slapped me a few times, to make sure I got the point. (Sometimes I don‘t process things until I‘ve written them down. And occasionally, thoughts force me to pay attention like this, instead of just zooming by). This particular one went like this: ‘Just because I don’t see things with child-like wonder anymore, doesn’t mean there isn’t wonder to be seen. I’ve been so wrapped up in not being who I used to be that I just haven’t seen it.’ Not being who I used to be. That’s an interesting one. I think it’s a two-fold issue: 
1. I’ve spent the last year and a half making a point of not being who I used to be. The angry girl, the unhappy girl, the fat girl, the girl who needed a man, the girl whose dad died, the stuck girl… That’s who I was before, and I was trying my damndest to shed those versions of me, because I didn’t want them to define me any longer. The trouble, of course, is that in my determination to shed the labels, I missed a crucial step… REdefinig myself. It’s not all bad, though… In my avoidance of dealing with what had defined me, and why, I learnt to really live in the present.** 
2. More recently - since I came to Cape Town and slowed the pace a little - I’ve grieved for who I used to be. The angry girl, and the party girl. In all my ‘I’m not The Things That Happened To Me’, I didn’t really deal with those Things. I was too busy trying to survive and keep going; I was using all my energy keeping up the appearance of being alright. And I was hard on myself when I couldn’t keep it up. But now that I’ve had no distractions from any of that - no sand to bury my head in - I’ve taken a long, hard look, and I AM dealing with it all. I’ve allowed myself - with much gnashing of teeth and wailing - to acknowledge all the shitty Things, and start processing them. The Fears. The Guilt. The Loss. (You’d think that I’d recognise grief, but it took me a while to realise that that’s what I was doing). I’ve grieved for the recent version of me, because I was happy. I just wasn’t healing. 

Guys, they don’t tell you this at school, but… Healing fucking HURTS. We all seem to think that it’s light and sunshine and roses, because how can anything hurt more than the things that have broken you, right? Well, guess what? IT FUCKING DOES. 
When you think about an injury, is it just the initial injury that hurts, or does the healing process contain pain too? When I was bitten by my dog, it hurt like a motherfucker when his tooth was actually IN my hand, and as he ripped it out. But did it stop hurting once I’d been to the doctor? Um… NO. It hurt like hell for weeks after that. Throbbing pain that kept me awake at night, and resulted in pharmaceutical companies making a few more bob out of me and my stupid dog. Once the pain eased up, it was still there, itching and stinging. The skin started to knit, but if I waggled my thumb, it all opened up again and bled and oozed and stung, and I’d have to start all over again. The tetanus shot and antibiotics made me feel like a very nauseous, angry zombie for 2 weeks, and the rabies shots bruised and itched along with the rest. And years later, it still aches in a certain kind of cold. 

The same concept applies to emotional pain, and heartbreak. If my heartbreak had been physical, it would most certainly have gotten infected and probably turned septic, because I just left it and hoped it would go away. Pouring vodka on a stab wound, like they do in the movies, doesn’t actually fix it. The stab victim - usually on the run because Hollywood - eventually ends up getting it seen to by a professional, and they put gauze on it, and he gets medication for it, and it hurts when he moves. Vodka might keep it clean-ish, but it doesn’t stitch it up, and it still stings like hell. Think of how the tough guy ALWAYS winces when he pours half a bottle of liquor on his wound. 

All I did for a very long time was pour vodka onto my wounds. (Literally, sometimes. So many empty Smirnoff bottles in my recent memory. Vodka is great, but not very helpful.) But I think that, perhaps, the skin and bone of my raw, infected wounds are starting to knit, finally. They will reopen from time to time, and bleed and ooze all over my life, because I’m not laying in traction until it’s all better. I’m living in spite of my pain. I’m living because of it. But, Goddammit, I’m living! And there will be scars. That’s what happens when you get ripped open and your insides are set on fire. But the scars won’t define me, either. I have to wear them for the rest of my life, but they don’t have to be ugly. I’ll never be the girl I was before, but that’s ok. Even stalagmites grow, no matter how slowly.

*I am not referring to partying in town, mind you. I haven’t done much of that, but I suspect even that couldn’t keep up to the insanity I’m used to.
** For the most part. There was a romantic element that took up all my ‘what-ifs’, but those are as pointless as nipples on a chest plate, so we’ll let that one slide.

Also, you might be interested to know that Cape Town - or Table Mountain in particular - is one of the healing vortices on the planet. That’s why so many people are drawn here when they need to heal. The Universe, right? 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Shit You Couldn't Make Up - The Rainman Edition

Guys. GUYS. I have a serious, and pretty unbelievable problem, and I need your help. Miss Loudmouth Chatterbox (moi, obviously) CANNOT TALK TO GUYS.
I know, I know. You're thinking 'Pfffft! Sure, Shell. Whatever you say.' But I swear, it's happening to me, and I'm fucked if I know why, or what to do about it. I've gone from the girl who makes friends with a girl by telling her that her (hideous) top is cute and so unique, just so I could get her to talk to my friend who couldn't take his eyes off her all night, to the girl who can do no more than coyly bat her lashes and smile at the boy across the room.
I was the girl going up to a cute boy in a bar and saying, 'Here's my number. That's where you can call me to fetch my friend over there after you take her home tonight.' Now I'm the girl who says it counts when a gorgeous specimen who makes her lady parts giggle follows her outside when she goes to smoke, and they stand near each other and do the subtle check out, but nobody says anything.
Old me: "No time to explain ... Get in the punani!!"
New me: *Gurgling fish out of water noises, complete with bulging, panicked eyes* (Thank God for giant sunnies!!!)
I can remember dates of 1970's celebrity deaths, and my junior school phone number, but I can't remember how to flirt with a hot guy? What am I, the fucking Rainman?!?!?!
You see, I've come across a remarkably sexy and sweet looking guy a couple of times on my jols with Mama Boo the last few weeks, and we've established that we've noticed each other (as evidenced by the pathetic overuse of Bambi-style Kissy Eyes.) The next logical step is one of us talking to the other (and hopefully, the other talking back, thus creating what I believe they call Conversation). This is where shit gets weird, because I freeze up and get clammy. Fuuuuuuuuuuuck. 
I know what you're thinking... 'Dafuq, Shell?! Why are we even having this conversation?!'* I'm wondering the same thing.
So, friends, this is where you come in. I'd appreciate any reminders of how easy it is to just fucking talk to a guy. ALso: tips on how to talk to a smoking hot yet apparently shy boy would not go amiss. You guys can be my wingmen... wingladies... Wingpeeps!**
* Transcript of actual conversation about the dumbest problem I've ever had, so I know it's what you're thinking

** Weeps? Er... 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

A new feature! Shit You Couldn't Make Up

Boolings.... Dear Boolings.
You must be SO tired of hearing how hard the last year's been, with the divorce, and moving house, and losing my job, and losing my house, and having to move to Cape Town. And yea, it has been hard. And I've alluded to some pretty cool times as well, and there have been a load of those. 


But what I haven't told you about? The crazy times. And when I say crazy, I do mean cross-the-street-she-looks-like-she-might-bite-you crazy (sometimes). Some of my friends have been privy to the silliness and downright insanity of those times, and more than one of them has told me to BLOG IT. NOW. In the thick of the insanity, I never felt much like blogging (or breathing, for that matter, but hey... Keep on swimming!) Now, however, as I'm healing, I have realised that you might actually enjoy some of those stories, and so I've decided to create a new feature here. So, get your popcorn popped, your Kleenex packet open, and settle in for
Miss Boo Presents.... Shit You Couldn't Make Up
There will be thrills, spills, and probably more than a few grils. You can also expect a very unhealthy dose of weird-guys-in-bars, so stay tuned! Some of it will be outdated, but the thing with my life is that it seems to be a constant stream of Shit You Couldn't Make Up, so the likelihood of running out of material is minimal.
Until the next post, dahlings, stay silly!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

An Ode to Old Shoes *Updated*

I (re)discovered the most perfect song for this story. OMG, how did I forget about this?! I went to the Mr Cat & The Jackal album launch last night (amazing doesn't even begin to describe it!!!) and they played this song, and I was just like 'Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaait a minute....' So, here ya go. Give this a listen while you read this story. It's just a perfect combination. 

A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned my trusty old FILAs in this post. God, those shoes! 

They’ve been through things, and seen things I can’t even remember (mostly due to debauchery and drunkenness, but also because it’s impossible to remember everything that’s happened in ten years.) I have loved those shoes like babies, and they’ve never let me down. Well… things changed last weekend. But I’ll come to that. 

I bought these babies for R130, ten years ago (almost to the day, now that I think about it!), at the Oriental Plaza. Moderately dodgy, maybe, but well worth it. If I work out cost per wear so far (which is how girls usually justify expensive shoes, not el cheapos), it must be down to a matter of cents. 

From the first day, I practically lived in the damn things. They were always my go-to shoes, for pretty much any occasion. (I even considered wearing them for my wedding, but changed my mind when Mama Boo and The Ex shot that idea down in shouting flames.) Off to the shops? Trusty takkies. Family do? Yep. Night out, filled with dancing and debauchery? Obviously!! Even when our cleaning lady damaged the canvas when she tried to bleach the rubber caps, they stayed and ‘developed more personality’. 

If shoes could be used to chronicle a life, these would result in volumes. They were there when Daddy died, and when I had a gun held to my head (I distinctly remember thinking ‘Just look at your shiny new shoes and not at his face, and you’ll be fine.’) They were the shoes I was wearing when The Ex proposed, and the day my divorce came through. They saw the inside of dodgy clubs, doctors’ rooms*, dozens of concerts, shopping malls, airports and planes, funeral homes, churches, abandoned hospitals, and countless other attractions. They saw numerous Park Acoustics, nature reserves, cross-border game drives, the streets of Sydney, and hundreds of local beaches and markets. They got me through at least a dozen house moves (I shit you not. There have been more than 2 dozen in my mere 28-and-a-bit years, but that’s another story!), and so many important and not-so-important events I literally don’t have enough space in my head to remember them all. They even outlasted my marriage, making them one of my longest-lasting relationships! 

And now… they’re gone. *sniff* (I’m taking a moment here, guys. You may need to grab a Kleenex for the next part…) 
I wore them on the day I left Joburg, and they facilitated my first contact with Cape Town. That night, Mama Boo glanced at my feet, and a gasp of recognition burst forth. ‘Are those the same old Plaza takkies you’ve had for years?’ she yelped. ‘The very same,’ I replied proudly. Apparently I’d mistaken her yelp as one of joyous recognition. Her next comment remedied that. ‘NO, Shell! I cannot believe you still have those, let alone wear them. No, no, no. They’ve got to go.’ My face fell. ‘They go, I go.’ Nobody said ugly things about my babies! That didn’t stop Mama Boo from pulling very amusing faces and sighing in frustration every time I pulled the Trusties on, though. 

Then, last Saturday, we finally had some gorgeous weather. And, after my griping the night before**, we headed off to the beach. Mama took me to the spot where she scattered my grandparents’ ashes, and we sat and took in the glorious beach and view for aaaaaaages. It was exactly what I needed. Unfortunately (in this case, anyway), I’m still a real Vaalie at heart, and so I only took off my shoes (the Trusty Takkies were the obvious choice) once I was on the Actual Beach. I strung the laces together and threw them over my shoulder, and strolled through the icy West Coast water barefoot. It was amazing, and quite an interesting experience when the cold made my feet so numb I couldn’t feel them anymore. 
Eventually, we started back to the car, for the sake of a proper pee (I was NOT having a pee in that sea – it would make a solid pee-cicle***, and I wasn’t risking it). We must have walked for a good half hour, and were almost at the car when a horrible realisation hit me. Something was missing. I spun around searching for the Trusties, but they weren’t over my shoulder, and they were nowhere I could see. They must have fallen off my shoulder**** where we were sitting at the G-Force’s Ashes Spot*****, and I didn’t realise. By the time we had got back to the car, the tide was coming in fast and strong, and I knew that if I tried to go back to the spot, a) I’d pee in my pants (warm, yes, but still not an appealing option), and b) the tide would likely have taken them by the time I got there. So I had a little moment of pricking tears (I am not even fucking kidding), and decided that ten years was a good run, and we’d seen a lot together, but maybe this was part of my Fresh Start, and maybe it was the Universe trying to make me let go of things. Lesson painfully learnt, Universe. 

I have since bought a new pair of shell-toes, but they’ll never be my old Trusties. While similar, and effective, they’ll never live up, and we can’t (yet) laugh together over some of the things we’ve seen. In time, sure. But there will only ever be one pair of Trusty Takkies, and they’re somewhere in the icy Atlantic Ocean now.****** They will be missed, and remembered with fondness (except by Mama Boo, who said that me losing them was the best birthday present she got. Puts the money spent on Actual Gifts in perspective, no?) 

* Not entirely unrelated, in many cases, to aforementioned dodgy clubs
** (To the tune of ‘This is officially the most beautiful city in the WORLD, and what have I seen of it since I got here? Pubs and bars and back seats of cars. I could be back in Joburg for this. Natural beauty, this weekend, or I’m going home.’ Yes, you’re right in thinking I’m a brat, but that doesn’t take away the validity of my argument.)
*** A pee icicle, obviously
****I’m not unconvinced that Mama Boo didn’t assist them in ‘falling off my shoulder’. Ahem. 
*****When we had a house full over over-70’s, we referred to them collectively as the Geriatric Force, or G-Force
******If you are the lucky finder of a scrappy pair of FILA takkies, found on Milnerton beach, hit me up. Those babies have at least another 5 years in them! 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Greetings from the Mother Shitty... Er... City

Well, it’s finally happened. After a few false starts and delays, I’m officially a Capetonian again. At least for the foreseeable future. 

There were farewells aplenty before I left, some crazy drunken moments, and LOTS of memories made to see me through the next however long, until I get back to my beloved city. I managed to miss my original flight on Sunday, which gave me a bonus extra night in Jozi (spent sleeping, after some of those crazy drunken moments the night before). I managed not to cry at the airport when I said my goodbyes and I love yous, but once we were airborne, and I saw this skyline, 

it was over. I was DONE, and bawled mine little eyes out. Fifteen years of good times, bad times, heavy times, rough times, awesome times and crazy times, all washed in the neon glow of the City of Gold, and they all came to a very emotional close when I saw Ponte and the Brixton Tower for the last time. 
But I did manage to get some sleep on the plane, because I was utterly exhausted to start with, and then there was the mass of Feelings. That little nap meant I got to Cape Town refreshed and (almost) ready to face my new adventure. But first, I had to face Mama Boo. After missing my flight on Sunday, she was NOT impressed with me, but all was forgiven when she rushed at me and almost squeezed my left lung out of my…. Well, let’s just say it would have been painful and awkward to explain if she hadn’t let go when she did. 
And then there was the welcoming committee when we got home. We’re staying with friends of Mama’s at the moment, and they had heard a lot of hype about Boo 2 (c’est moi), so they were all very excited to meet me. I felt a bit like a shleb, which was equal parts awkward and awesome. Cemented the fact that I’m not ready for fame *just* yet. 

But the thing that I was most excited to do? Give my little smelly cat a ton of love. 

Happy now that mama's here!

I flew her down on Saturday, after having her in boarding for almost 3 weeks. I missed the shit out of her, and she seems to have missed me too, evidenced by the fact that she lost a load of weight in the time she was in boarding, and the fact that she didn’t want to know Mama at all. But when I walked into our room and started talking to her, she perked up immediately, and we cuddled the shit out of each other. She’s even talking again, which Mama has found amazing and also unfair, because Ally didn’t talk to her without me. 

Being surrounded by so many people has been a bit overwhelming so far, but it’s because I’m not used to living with anyone except Smelly Cat, so it’s going to take some practice. And I’m missing my amazing friends and the funny little things I never realised Jozi had going for it till I woke up with no hadedas shrieking this morning. 

Joburg's indigenous natural alarm clocks
But I’m not rushing it or being too down on myself for not being into it immediately. I’m allowing myself some time to figure things out, and to settle in and get used to the idea of the Mother Shitty being my spot for a while. It’s not going to be home overnight, and I can’t expect it to be. It’s a huge move, and it’s going to take time to adjust, and that’s okay! 
Today, I’m off adventuring with Mama at her office, and plotting my next move. There are emails flying to agencies, my CV is going up everywhere I can think of, and my pen is close to melting with all the notes being made. So, Boolings, wish me luck with this adventure, send love and light and good vibes*, and the strength to make this work, stat. 

*Jozi-themed care packages would not go amiss, either. Just saying. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Coming To Terms With Being A Hipster

Friends, I’ve recently had one of those revelation things I keep talking about. This one, however, made me snigger and roll my eyes, instead of the usual tears and anxiety that follow. I’d call that progress? 

I realised that… well…. 
I’m a hipster. 

There. I said it. There’s not going back now, I guess. 

My friends have been accusing me of being a hipster for years, and I’ve always vehemently denied it. I’ve pointed out how I couldn’t possibly be a hipster, because I don’t have an iPhone. Instead, I have a 3rd hand Blackberry that works as it pleases, not as I please. 
Apparently, shunning the iPhone only makes me more hipster. Great. 
Nonetheless, in the last 2 weeks, there have been too many signs of my hipsterdom to ignore any longer. Some of them were: 

- I don’t own a TV, and can’t relate when people talk about the awesome or lame ads they saw while watching 7de Laan or whatever. 

- I crochet. I give crochet as gifts, I sell my crochet goods, I wear my crochet goods. 

- I sew, and people come to me for advice and help with sewing and related topics.* 

- I lived alone, save for my cat, in a gorgeous studio cottage with no security. I stayed there because it’s pretty, despite 3 break-ins. 

- I live on sweet tea, popcorn, and frozen veggies. (Not all at the same time, though!) 

- I’m divorced. I’ve been divorced since just after I turned 28. 

- I know what a Saturn Return is, and I’m in mine. 

- I paint and sketch, and display my work proudly on my wall, as well as gift it to friends. 

- My wall-of-art left a bona fide hipster speechless, and she wanted to steal the idea. 

- I have dozens of files on my computer that are filled with story ideas and actual unfinished short stories, novels etc. 

- I drove a clapped-out old car, put plasters on the bumps and scrapes, stapled the fabric back when it fell off, and I named her FrankenCar. Frankie, for short. I sold her the other day, to fund my move, and now rely on my Moses Wheels: 

These shoes have seen things I can't even remember. The best takkies EVER!!!

- I regularly ran out of fuel for Frankie, and kept a 5l bottle in the car in case of such emergencies, as well as having my friends on speed dial in case it happened at night. 

- My friends asked me to be their social media person for their band, because I never shut up about the beauty of Twitter and Facebook. 

- I know ALL the festivals. (I haven’t been to many, so that loses me hipster points, but hey.)

- I have retro-ish glasses, with solid black frames

- I have a weird-ass, creepy-ass, huge-ass tattoo that has mystical meaning. 

- I carry a notebook wherever I go. It’s a Moleskine. And when I am without it, I start getting separation anxiety. 

- I’ve had pink/purple/turquoise/blue hair, and an undercut. Sometimes simultaneously. Before the mommies started doing it. 

- I have totem jewellery, and feel totally lost without it. Because of this jewellery, I can’t sneak around anywhere – I make too much of a racket. Friends comment on this constantly. 

- I worked at a creative company, which was great. Now that I’ve left, I am doing random part-time work to keep me out of too much trouble while I figure things out. 

- I use the phrase ‘Figure things out’ in reference to my life. 

- I’m uprooting my entire life and moving across the country, with no solid plan, and I’m more excited than afraid. 

- I am ridiculously uptight about things like grammar and spelling. It’s worked out, because I got a boy’s number after a rant about spelling in his bar, but still. 

Incidentally, the same place has the BEST spelling mistake EVER on their menu!

- I’m an epic geek. Whedonite. Shelockian. Tolkeinist. Throney. And soon-to-be Whovian, once I free up space on my hard drive, I suspect. (Yes, I’m late to the Whovian party. It’s ok, though. I’m getting there.)

- The staff at my local Cash Converters know me by name, and greet me with hugs and fist-bumps. 

- I loathe trendy places like Billy the Bums, I think Greenside is becoming too popular with piepie jollers, and I will always love dodgy old Melville, and the Doors in Edenvale. 

- My friends can’t see how I haven’t been able to see my hipsterdom. 

- My style trademarks are slouchy beanies (usually made by moi), t-shirts (back to 42 at last count!!!), and scrappy old shell toe takkies (Moses Wheels, as above) I’ve been wearing since I was 19. Also: I own a fedora woven out of recycled paper, and everyone knows it’s made out of paper, because I can’t shut up about it when I wear it. 

- My dad’s greatest fear for me was that I’d give it all up and join Greenpeace. This is still on my bucket list. 

- I celebrate random things like Earth Hour and Ice Cream Day. Alone, usually. 

- My own mother called me a hipster last week, and is trying to set me up with a bona fide hipster boy. 

- I have a blog. Everyone knows. They call me my blog name as much as my given name. 

- I'm editing this blog in an internet cafe in Melville. While wearing my Moses Wheels, and a beanie I made. It doesn't get more hipster than that, does it??

Now, none of these things has been done with hipsterdom in mind. As I say, I’ve spent a large amount of time vocally denying any hipster tendencies I’ve exhibited over the years. So I’ll call a compromise… I’ll accept being an accidental hipster. It’s not something I set out to be. It’s just something I’ve gradually become. But when you hear it from half a dozen people in the space of a week, I think the time for denial is over. 
I’ve done the anger, bargaining, depression, and denial. So the next stage that I’m working on is acceptance, and staying vigilant about avoiding douchey hipster traits. Wish me luck, Boolings! Who knows? I might even get myself a vintage bicycle when I get to Cape Town?**

* I intend to start sewing again when I get to the Mother City, so look out for awesomeness at markets soon!
**You have my permission to make endless fun of me if I do.

Monday, April 14, 2014


Just when I thought it was safe to say that things were settling down… 
God, the Universe really does like her curve balls, doesn’t she?? After all my raving about how happy I am in my own space, and how I’ve finally found the thing that makes me want to get up every morning and get out there for, everything got chucked up in the air again, and it’s all landed in a scattered pattern. Nothing looks like it did a week ago!

Last week, I was convinced I was having a bona fide nervous breakdown. All my old, awful so-called coping mechanisms came back to haunt me, and I felt like I was going out of my mind. Like clawing at my skin and sleeping all day just so I’m not weeping kind of out of my mind. Spent a good hour and a half on the phone with SADAG. They are amazing. The chick talked me down from a total fuck out, and gave me some solutions so that I didn’t feel so fucking helpless. And once that had all settled, and I’d stopped scratching at myself for no good reason, had something to eat and calmed down a little bit, my land-hag came by and gave me notice on the cottage. She’s a grumpy old dragon, and she stayed true to form that evening. But in a way I guess I was lucky that I was already completely drained after everything else that day, or else I might have reacted in a very different way. Instead of going completely off the deep end, I just sort of nodded and processed what she was saying, and went and sat on my bed and just breathed. Panicked a little that night – not much sleep was had – but by the next morning, I was ok. I had a couple of back up plans in my head that I then followed through on, and pared those down to one viable option.

Which brings me to my latest news:
Miss Boo is moving to Cape Town!

I won’t lie, I’m totally heartbroken at the thought of leaving my beautiful city. This place is my heartbeat. Being away for a week in February was so difficult, and I was more homesick than I’ve ever felt in my life. I guess it’s because Jozi is my hometown. I’ve lived here for 15 years, for crying out loud. Every single Important Life Event has happened to me while living in this place. I never thought I’d have somewhere to call my hometown, given the nomadic existence of my family. But goddammit, this is it. It’s a part of me! So leaving is going to be one of the hardest things I’ll have had to do. If I was sick of the city, as everyone gets from time to time, it might be different, but this is like leaving someone you’re in love with. Nonetheless, I know that Jozi will always be here for me. BUT! I'm getting more and more excited about the prospect of being a Capetonian again (for a while) every day. Things are just happening and before I've had a chance to process one thing, the next thing's on the go. It's truly going to be an amazing experience, and I have a feeling it's going to be the restart I've been so desperately in need of for such a long time.*  

And, in the meantime, I’m looking at this move as a brand new, sparkling adventure. Just because it wasn’t part of the plan doesn’t mean it’s bad. It could just be the best thing that ever happens to me, you know? I’m going into this with a shiny, positive outlook, and not with fear and loathing. Day one of the plan was very much fear and loathing, but since then, I sat and wrote lists, and by the time I was finished with those, I had found the excitement that was missing. And now? I’m antsy to get going! I have my lists – Things to Sell; Things to Pack; Things to Donate; Things to Chuck – and I’m getting a move on with those. Jesus, I’m such a nerd. Lists calm me down and make me feel better. Seriously?!

Also, an awesome silver lining is that I can probably continue with CAMI when I get to Cape Town. We have an office there, and one of the sales consultants has just left, so I could slot in there chip-chop and make a good go of it there. So there is a Plan. I’m not just going down there to see what I can see and hope for the best. I don’t want to be there indefinitely. There’s got to be a timeline. I’m looking at nothing less than 6 months, nothing more than a year and a half. That’s the ‘plan’, anyway. We all know what happens to the best laid plans, though, don’t we? Who knows? This could just be the beginning of the life I always hoped for. I’ve always looked at the bigger picture, and have learnt that leaving the finer details up to the Universe can work out pretty damn well in the long run, so that’s what I’m trying to do with this opportunity. Who knows where this could take me?

So, for the next few weeks? Head down, stomach in, chest out, and MUSH! I’m doing some work for an awesome interior contracts company, NODDS for the next couple of weeks (*ahem* If  you need any interior decorating or alterations, hit them up, y’hear? Tell em Miss Boo sent you!) to keep myself out of too much mischief, and supplement the moving costs.
And then? Packing my rucksack, getting my walking stick out, and probably forgetting my handkerchief, because...

If there’s any hope of allies like Kili and Fili, this adventure ain’t gonna be half bad!

If I wasn't so bloody stubborn, I'd probably be well past the initial reset phase by now, but nooooooo. I was determined to prove that I could do this all on my own. Well, self: Lesson learned. No man, woman, or unicorn is an island. It's ok to need someone, mkay?

Friday, April 4, 2014


At the beginning of the year, I decided to write myself a manifesto to turn to if I ever felt like I was forgetting who I was or what I wanted, as I’d felt that happening quite a lot late last year, and didn’t like it. With all the drama been at the centre of my life the last few months, it sort of fell by the wayside. But then I found an old one I’d written on my laptop, and I updated it for who I am now. So, without further ado… 

ROAR AT LIFE – A Modern Rebel’s Manifesto

* Intelligence is sexy (Just ask Sherlock) * Question authority * Say yes to adventure * Live with intention * Freedom, beauty, truth, and love * Don’t walk – DANCE * Find your tribe * Have a zombie apocalypse plan * Trust your intuition * Travel * Talk to strangers * Long conversations are vital * Dream big * Make changes, not excuses * Be your own hero * When in doubt, spin in circles. You’ll be too giddy to focus on any problems * Dress like your inner rock star * Don’t be afraid to feel * Work hard * You are worthy * Have a plant / pet / teddy bear to talk to * We are the dreamers * Be present * So many things are so much more important than money * A great pair of shoes can change your life * Light the way * Magic. Everywhere. Always. * Do it because it’s fun * Let your freak flag fly * All you, all the time * You can’t overdose on music * Stay awesome * Why be normal when you can be yourself? * Learn to love your pimples / cellulite / stretch marks / saggy butt * Stay weird * Create * Tequila is more powerful than lemonade * You are only one person * Keep your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel * Catch the curve balls, cover them in glitter, and throw them back * Watch more sunrises * Always make your bed, and wear clean underwear * Believe in something * Listen to old people – they know what’s up * Vote * Rules are for other people * Never dumb yourself down * Let love in * It’s just hair. It’ll grow back * 

Monday, March 31, 2014

Guess who's back?!?!?!?!

Babies, Miss Boo is back! New, improved, and – believe it or not - feistier than ever before. Boo V2.0 is the result of a lot of trials, tribulations, and tequila. So. Much. Tequila. (gagging sound) 

To give you a very quick summary of the last year: 

* Frequently-bearded husband moved out with the fish and bird;
* I had to downscale epically and rehome myself and Kattie Boo, which also meant finding a shelter for my doggies (Go sponsor a doggie at FORA guys!!! No-kill shelter that does Good Work); 
* Faced my fear of driving, and conquered it in one weekend (and am now a certified, if still unlicenced, windgat); 
* My beautiful brother passed away; 
* I had 3 break-ins at my new house in 3 months and lost a lot of sentimental things;* 
* I got officially divorced; 
* I finally started work on my sleeve; 
* I collected some amazing, incredible people into my tribe, and rid some who turned out not to be who they said they were; 
* I finally left my crappy, dead-end, suck-your-soul-out-through-your-ear job (under a dark cloud of ugliness that’s not worth mentioning beyond a single word: KARMA); 
* Started my Saturn Return; and 
* Had what I’m pretty sure was some kind of breakdown in there somewhere, and yet I’ve survived somehow for the last 2 months with no income (because miracles are as real as monsters, and that’s said without a hint of sarcasm).

Oh, and I’ve lost somewhere in the vicinity of 35kgs. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So, all in all, a pretty eventful few months, no? I’m sure you’ll forgive my absence in light of the fact that I’ve been trying to take this all in my stride and not end up in a mental institution. 

But the good news, Boolings? Despite a few little blips of uncertainty on my radar of sanity, I’ve come through all of this stronger, tougher, better, and more grateful for my blessings than ever before. And still smiling. A little more acidic and cynical than a year ago, but still fucking smiling. 

And my life is finally starting to look like the life I’ve always felt was right for me. That’s not to say there aren’t challenges – my god, the challenges! – but despite those, my life feels good. I feel good. For the first time in years, I really feel good. Who can argue with that, right? 
I’ve come to terms with emotions and realities and illusions and fears and misconceptions. I’ve battled dragons, and I have the scars to prove I conquered. My life has been far from charmed, but it’s still been beautiful, every step of the way. Sometimes I think that the times when I’ve been dragging my sorry ass along in the midst of whatever drama or crisis was kicking me in the teeth have been the most beautiful times. Hindsight, right? 
But because of the challenges and the lessons, I now have a home that truly feels like ME. It’s tiny, and I am only a few steps away from tomato-crate furniture, but fuck it. It’s my happy place, and my sanctuary, and MINE, and it’s awesome. I have a car full of dents and scratches, covered in band-aids that say things like “Whoosh” and “Ka-Pow”, and staples in the roof to keep the fabric from falling down, and which frequently runs out of fuel, but it too is MINE. My little Franken-car and I have had some adventures! I have the most amazing, beautiful, unbelievable souls around me, who have got me through some of the darkest times, and who have reminded me that there are such things as angels and miracles, in the most untraditional sense. And it won’t be long now before I can show them how much it’s all meant to me, and share some sunshine-and-vodka times with them. I can’t wait to spoil them! 

And the biggest deal in my life at the moment is my awesome, spectacular and unbelievably amazing new job. Yup. I just said that. I am a sales rep for CAMI@home, which is the most incredible educational software. I’ve honestly not felt this excited or passionate about getting up every morning and going to work in my whole life. It’s like I’ve found MORE of my tribe, and I get to go out and do this amazing thing with them every day and actually HELP people. 
It’s funny, you know. When I was writing my list of 2014 Revolutions, the number one thing on my list was ‘NEW JOB – Education??’ And here I am. Not quite how I thought it’d happen, but the Universe has her own ways, and I’ve learnt that questioning her ways is pointless, so I’m just going with it now, and saying Thank You. 

So, Boolings… Those of you who have been the angels (with discarded tinsel hanging off your black wings) – THANK YOU. If I’ve cried to you on the phone or in person, or texted you in the middle of the night going ‘What do you do if you think you’re having a nervous breakdown?’, or you’ve had to hold my hair back after a dozen too many tequilas, or you’ve danced on tables with me, or you’ve tolerated my excessive nerdism in my attempts to escape reality for a day or two, or you’ve put me on a bus for a week by the sea to clear my head, or reminded me that feeling is actually not all evil, or any of the countless amazing things you guys have done for me… I can’t begin to thank you, and will always, ALWAYS be grateful to you. I love you. (Yes, make gagging noises. I would if I were you. In fact, I might be doing that right now. Ahem.) 
If you’re one of the Boolings from far-and-wide, I’m sorry I’ve neglected you. I hope you’ll forgive me. I’m back now, and I have so much magic brewing that I just can’t keep it to myself for another second. So, expect good things! 

Here are a few photos that’ll show that I haven’t been hiding under a rock all this time, but am indeed alive and kicking. That should tide you over till the next post, oui? 

In The City 2013 

Hallowe'en 2013 - Little Dead Riding Hood and Corpse Bride looking intimidating

Being crazy at Justin's birthday

New Years craziness with Lady Smash

Beachy happiness in PE with Vaughan

New Years madness

The start of the New Years madness

High school reunion

reliving old times (we spent a lot of time doing this)

I got Lei'd

Having fun at Hooters

Rockabilly Radness

Shelly and the Jennas rocking Hogshead

Post-reunion face-licking

Party with my peeps

I think this speaks for itself

Coolest couple plus moi

Hogshead Hilarity

Crazy times at my niece's engagement party