Am glamping

We’re glamping, it’s apparently glamorous camping  and that’s actually not a bad description. Full review to follow, but think big tent that’s set out like a full-on self-catering chalet. And think this view off the front deck:

So much nature reserve, such blue skies. Magnificent.

Today involved a hike through the valleys towards those mountains, some brandy tasting at a distillery in the middle of nowhere, a bit of swimming in the dam at the top of the hill here (and some drone play) , and – still to come – an evening braai.

Tomorrow involves the two hour return to Cape Town, after some pony trekking and lunch on the Breede River.

More when we get home. Have a great evening.

All roads lead to recovery

Mrs 6000 is virtually completely mended and that means that we are able to head south and leave the bitter flighting on Clifton beach behind us. It’s no big deal that we’ve delayed our trip by a day or two, but I’m ready to go and relax now (not that I’ve been doing an awful lot of much else over the festive period).

Last night, I got to return to the marital bed after a couple of nights on the couch for everyone’s sanity and for the wellbeing of my throat. No-one likes Strep being breathed at them all night. I’m feeling rested and ready to go.

The beagle has been washed, the plants have been watered, the housesitter is sitting and the R316 and its sister, the beautiful R319, are calling.

Blogging will continue, of course, but you might reasonably expect shorter, more image-heavy posts. It is holiday time after all. A reminder that my instagram and twitter often get additional usage at these times.

We’ve been here before…

After a lot of teasing, they finally shared the tour poster yesterday:

And the idea sounds pretty awesome:

Magne Furuholmen, Morten Harket and Pål Waaktaar-Savoy will be performing in An Evening With format, with an interval. For the first half of the concert, they will play new and old, familiar and less-familiar songs. Then, after returning to the stage, they will play the ten songs of their 1985 debut album Hunting High And Low in the running order of the original release.

Which, as I recall from my cassette tape days is this:

Take On Me
Train of Thought
Hunting High and Low
The Blue Sky
Living a Boy’s Adventure Tale
The Sun Always Shines on T.V.
And You Tell Me
Love Is Reason
I Dream Myself Alive
Here I Stand and Face the Rain

I thought that I’d missed their last ever concert. And then I thought I’d seen it.
It turns out that I was wrong on both of those.

But it’s always been a privilege for me to see a-ha in concert, and I’m happy that they’re still around and – hopefully – producing even more new material. While this all sounds very special, the surprising omission of a South African leg on the tour, together with the frankly terrifying state of the South African Rand means that we won’t be going along this time.

Still, if they’re going to do all their albums this way, there’s always the 2020 Scoundrel Days tour to consider. And then another 8 to follow that…

I’ll start saving now.

Bar Wall

A quick flashback to a bar wall in Paris.

This was in Montmartre. I’ve no idea who the guy in the centre is (or was?), but I do remember that the bar in question was called Le Tire Bouchon – “The Corkscrew”.

This idea of “leaving your mark” when you visit is a very similar one to Ronnie’s Sex Shop (it’s not actually a sex shop) in South Africa’s Karoo. There, you’re encouraged to write on the walls or to leave an item of clothing (ties and bras are the most popular if I remember rightly) (I wasn’t wearing either on our first visit – rookie error).

The result is messy, random, eclectic and completely unique.
It’s also rather engaging. After all, I didn’t take any other photos of bar walls while I was over there.

More micro in the news

I had literally an email about yesterday’s post, in which I lamented the frankly appalling image of microbiology in the news. And it turned out that the email was sent regarding a speling errer in the post, which I thought I had, and have now, corrected.

Still, despite the lack of support from the 6000 miles…  reading public, I set out with renewed vigour yesterday in an effort to find and document a better side of my favourite branch of science in the media.

I failed.

The most recent stories I could find which involved Microbiology were this one:

which included this line:

Staphylococcus aureus, which causes a range of conditions including MRSA, was found three times more often on the surfaces of air dryers compared to paper towel dispensers during an international study.

Well, MRSA is Staphylococcus aureus, it’s not ‘a condition caused by’ Staphylococcus aureus. It’s almost as if the S and the A in MRSA stand for… ag… you get my drift.

Gell-Mann Amnesia Effect anyone?

Anyway – the upshot of this whole thing is that there are fewer bacteria that are going to kill you while you’re in hospital if people use paper towels than if they use jet air dryers.

We found multiple examples of greater bacterial contamination on surfaces, including by faecal and antibiotic-resistant bacteria, when jet air dryers rather than paper towels were in use.

Nice. [dry heave]

And remember, folks: Hand dryers also terrorise the vulnerable.

… And this one:

No issues here though, because the chances of anyone picking up a virus and transmitting it to anywhere around the world in this scenario is… oh… is actually really high. Could there be a worse place for nasty viruses to be found? This is literally how pandemics start. Or at the very least, it’s how they become pandemics.

Not great.

The image that Sky News chose to illustrate this story is interesting.

Now, I’m not someone who travels an awful lot, but I’ve done my fair share of flying, and that looks highly illegal. I’m pretty sure that whoever’s plastic security tray that is, isn’t getting their stuff back.

But then, considering that it’s now all – from their Old Spice stick deodorant to their Maybelline foundation (mmm) – covered in nasty viruses from the tray anyway, maybe not getting it back is actually quite a good thing.

Perhaps the best professional advice I can give is for you to pick your hand luggage up from the plastic security tray, and then go and immediately wash your hands in the first public loo that you can find.

Unless there’s an air dryer in there, of course.
In which case, you’re already as good as dead.