Oh dear. I slipped out of the blogosphere for a moment and more than a week has gone by without a post. This remissness can partly be blamed on our internet connection going down for four days, much to our consternation. We transferred to a wireless provider, at the end of last year, to get a 24 hour connection and can see the mast with its red light blinking reassuringly on a hill a few kilometers away. Every time we fell the need to check on it we peer out from the windows at the back of our house and it's still there.
When we rang to find out why we couldn't connect on Saturday, we were told that our whole week of rain had drained the solar power cells that keep the transmiter going and that we needed some sunshine...! We duly scanned the clouds every few minutes for blue sky and wondered how long it takes to charge the batteries. On Monday when my husband was pacing the floor, frustrated in his working from home drive, they informed us that the power supply had actually been vandalised and that they were working on it...he went into work at the studio.. and the next day until, at four o'clock on Tuesday, I was able to Skype him with proof that we were back online again.
We were muttering darkly about companies who previously had had a monopoly on telecommunications trying to put their competition out of business, but the truth proved less sinister, if equally disturbing. Apparently the mast was built on common land on its hill top. Some people are squatting on the land in attempt at a land claim, which is an extremely politically sensitive matter in South Africa, and it is presumed that they vandalised the mast to retain their perceived claim on the land.
Our main concern callously being our connection to the outside world rather than politics, we were relieved that the service provider is now intending to move the mast to a nearby wine estate, which is private land and hopefully it will be less of a target there.
It took me a while to catch up reading all my Bloglines subscriptions and by then my head was thick with a cold and too sluggish to string two sentences together into a rational comment, let alone write a post of my own. So many apologies for my absence. I promise to bring you a scintillating report of this years Midwinter Festival, which we are having tomorrow. Today I am going to prepare a vat of soup, tomorrow bake several loaves of bread, then a few puddings and everyone will bring sausage to braai around the bonfire, while we drink mulled wine. I'm keeping fingers crossed for a dry evening... we've had so much rain already this winter that we can quite easily do without it for one evening without risk of drought.