I remember most of it like it was yesterday, even though it happened more than thirty years ago. I had just been given special leave to go and write an entrance exam at Durban Technicon to do graphic design. I had just got back to base after my shock encounter with the arty crowd, with … Continue reading Guard Duty.
On the morning of the 7th of February 1906, trouble was brewing in the small district of Henley. The magistrate had been theatened by a group of assagai wielding men led by their chief called Mveli. They refused to pay their poll tax and were stirring up supporters. The next day, the 8th of February, … Continue reading The Richmond 12
If you cross over the busy Kings Road in Pinetown, mind out for the taxis and hold on tight to your watch and wallet, in a little wooded area in the car park across the road from the municipal building, you will come across a line of scruffy and unkept graves that lie in the … Continue reading The famous horseman of Pinetown
There is a quaint little village in a valley, a little way out of Richmond that is comparable with Tolkeins description of Hobbiton in his book, The Lord of the Rings. This is a lush green valley where nothing much changes and life moves at a slower pace than the rest of the world. This … Continue reading The Oaks at Byrne
So I read Unapologeticallymels blog on her experiences growing up with Apartheid and my mind started wondering back to my own youth. Many people think that being white in Apartheid South Africa was a piece of cake, that us white people lived lives of luxury while the rest of the countries population suffered to no … Continue reading The bad old days…
I started my interest in the casualties of the Bambatha Rebellion when looking for the grave of Trooper Knight. Since then I have managed to visit a few more graves. Most of them are in isolated rural areas and they have been terribly neglected over the years. My aim is to try and visit as … Continue reading Colonial casualties of the Zulu Uprising
It was the morning of the 4th of May, 1978. It was four am and the day had arrived. Skillie, with the rest of the 366 Composite Para Batallion, comprising mostly Citizen force reserve parabat units were in the hanger quietly fitting weapons, equipment and parachutes. They had been away from family and friends for … Continue reading A long way from home.
I knew very little about my grandfather. He died when I was five. What I do remember was his tool shed and garage, his pigeons and all of us cousins piled into the back of his car careering down the back streets of Umbilo trying to "leave our stomachs in the air" as we went … Continue reading Old War Stories
It was a sunny spring day when the finely dressed gentleman stepped off the gangway and onto the dock at Durban. He walked past the white hull of the ship, the Royal Mail Ship Dunluce Castle which had carried him on his two day journey from Delagoa Bay. He paused for a moment, put down … Continue reading The Pocketwatch