GREETINGS FROM SOUTH AFRICA!
There are some sounds which are so integral to life in Johannesburg – the ever prevailing hum of the traffic, the intermitted sounds of aircraft streaming across the skies, constant conversations and sounds of all sorts of machinery.
In the suburbs, it’s the sounds of dogs barking, lawn trimmers and a soiree of bird calls – doves, olive thrushes, black-eyed bulbuls and nesting weaver birds. In early Spring we look out for a new call – the Burchell’s coucal, commonly known as the ‘Rain Bird’ – a sure sign that we’re in for a thunder- shower.
But I would imagine that many people don’t notice these sounds because the pace of city life is so intense. Most people are too pre-occupied with the stresses of modern living. But if you take a moment to switch off that ever present radio stream, you will understand what I mean.
Obviously at night, the modern day living sounds are dampened when people crawl into their beds and try and recharge their batteries for the next day. But it is the first Spring thunderstorm, which generally jars us all from our sleep to remind us that there are greater things at work in the universe than our little lives. I just love that first thunderstorm of the season!
There was no warning to our first storm last night. We’d had clear skies yesterday afternoon. But the first bolt of thunder at about 3am rendered me wide-awake. Soon, Toffee’s whimpering and desperate raking noises at my bedside made me sit up and retrieve him; to hug him gently to my chest and to reassure him that his world wasn’t actually ending. He was soon tucked into my side, underneath the warm duvet, snoring comfortably.
But, my own sleep was a thing of the past, so I decided to absorb the wonder of the storm.
First, soft raindrops played their magic on the roof of our house. Then the heavier ones confirmed that the storm was upon us. It wasn’t a violent storm by any means, but enough to remind me that some things are beyond my control. I listened, in awe, to the wonder of this gift from the universe – the opportunity for winter to shake off its cobwebs and to embrace the new growth of summer.
This morning, bright sunlight streamed through our curtains. The neighbourhood is once again beautiful; sparkling and clean. It’s a new day, a new page in our lives and the opportunity for new hope – yet another opportunity to ‘Live life to the Max’.
Is it the excitement of my book which is making me more aware of the world?
Somehow it all just fits.
Yesterday we finalised MAXDOG’s cover and now it all seems so real. I am both excited and admittedly, a little daunted. Soon that special dog, who played such a significant role in my own healing, will be immortalised in print. I can’t help but be overcome in amazement that I have actually accomplished my task.
“Wherever MAXDOG goes, let it do good!”
Here is a sneak preview of the final front cover. What do you think?