Tom’s laptop died…Its not easy to replace it in South Africa..A time consuming recipe…

Kudu females and their young stop by frequently, wondering what’s on the menu.

Who’s in the garden this morning?

  • 4 warthogs – inc Lonely Girl and others
  • 10 bushbucks – inc. Thick Neck, Bad Leg,
  • 15 helmeted guinea-fowl
  • 1 dove – inc. our favorite, Miss Dove
  • 4 Frank and The Misses

Regardless of where we’re living in the world, at some point, our digital equipment has to be replaced. But, unfortunately, ordering replacement products is pointless to ship to South Africa due to the high cost of shipping, delayed shipping times, and customs inspections and fees.

Crooked Face and Hal stop by for a few pellets.

In some countries, ordering a laptop from the US is relatively easy and painless such as when Tom needed a replacement laptop while we were in Fairlight, Australia. We ordered a new laptop for him from, and a week later, it arrived, not incurring customs fees. But, of course, we always have to figure in the shipping costs, which exponentially impacts our final price for the product, at times as much as 40% or 50%.

Yesterday, when Tom’s Samsung Chromebook’s screen cracked when he opened the lid, we knew we’d better order another from South Africa. But, unfortunately, he couldn’t take the risk of a later delivery and the fact it could easily go “belly up” with its current touchscreen status, and he’d be without a device.

A busy garden on a sunny morning.

We considered the possibility that we may be in the US on July 1, and he could purchase a new device when we were there. But, with that trip up-in-the-air at this point, we couldn’t take a risk and possibly leave him without a working machine. Thus, the online search for another Chromebook, an operating system we both have learned to use and like, after total frustration with Windows 10, we were determined to find another Chromebook.

Chromebook is not popular in South Africa. After hours of research on numerous websites, we finally found a suitable Asus model with a touchscreen and the Chromebook operating system. Recently, we’ve been ordering several items from South Africa’s version of

But, finding such a model was tricky regardless of what I entered in the search field. It was more of a fluke that I stumbled upon the model we purchased. Fortunately, it will arrive on June 9, only four days from today. Takealot is fairly reliable regarding its promised delivery dates, so Tom needs to make his last only four more days.

A little altercation between Medium Daddy and warthogs.

Tax and delivery were included in the price of ZAR 6200, US $462, a little more than we paid in the US in 2019 when he purchased his current model. If a laptop lasts us two years, we are fine with that. With all the stress on laptops when traveling, we figured two years is a reasonable amount of time for them to last. We haven’t noticed any other more expensive models lasting any longer.

On another matter, since Tom is at his lowest weight and holding his own, even when eating a few higher carb items, I decided to make him some of his favorite low carb meals, maybe once a week, making enough for two or three nights for him. However, because these recipes have too many carbs for me, I won’t eat these meals; instead, I will make separate meals for myself such as chicken, fish, liver, and lamb, all meats he doesn’t care to eat.

Kudus stopped by in the muddy garden after the rain.

I don’t mind making separate meals for us for a few nights each week. But I’d forgotten how labor intensive some low-carb recipes can be. Today, I made Low Carb Chicken Pot Pie, one of his favorites, and long ago, one of mine. But, I have no problem resisting this meal. To aid in my determination, I made individual servings for him in rectangle-shaped tin foil pans. This way, I won’t be tempted to take bites of a single bigger pot pie. For my dinner tonight, I made extra chicken breasts and chicken liver. This will be fine for me.

This morning I got up earlier than usual to begin the multi-step process of making five nights of chicken pot pie for Tom, freezing the extras for other meals. By 11:00 am, I had everything completed and his first pot pie ready for the one tonight. While prepping the many ingredients, I ran back and forth to my laptop, searching for Tom’s new laptop.

Bossy, Big Daddy, and Little hanging around for pellets, carrots, and apples.

With both tasks completed, my dinner ready to re-heat at dinner-time, the remainder of the day can be spent wrapping up today’s post, working on corrections while continuing to recover from my recent illness. All that remains from the flu I had (not Covid) is a cough, no longer painful and gradually waning, a little each day.

Last night, as always, we had a fantastic dinner with Rita and Gerhard at Jabula Lodge and Restaurant. It was so cold, we all wore jackets while eating on the restaurant’s veranda. We didn’t stay long after dinner since it was so cold. When we returned to the house, I was so cold; I wore socks to bed. I haven’t done that since we were in Minnesota in 2019.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Photo from one year ago today, June 5, 2020:

Even imperfection has a certain beauty. For more from the year-ago post, please click here.

Day #180 in lockdown in Mumbai, India hotel…Frustration over WiFi issues…A cultural experience in Kenya in 2013…

This is a rendition of Hans‘, our landlord’s new construction project. (The pool is not illustrated in this rendition.). He was proud to show us the construction phase of his project, which proved fascinating to us. Construction is done very differently in Kenya and overall in Africa.

Today’s photos are from the post on this date in 2013, while we lived in Diani Beach, Kenya. For more on this date, please click here.

Yesterday, when I was attempting to upload the post, I could not edit the line and paragraph spacing. I tried everything possible to accomplish this to no avail. I uploaded the post anyway. A few hours later, as I was editing the archived posts, I ran into more issues, finally giving up for the day.

As we entered the multi-unit building site under construction, we were amazed by the handmade ladders made from materials on the site.

Hanging over my head is the necessity of preparing those 2000 word posts for our website optimization process. One is done with four more to go. It will take me weeks to accomplish this task. The WiFi issues added to the stress of having the 2000 word posts on my mind.

Branches, used as supports.

At 3:00 pm, I finally gave up trying, figuring “let’s take a break” and stream a few favorite shows. After trying to rush for almost an hour, I gave up and called the desk to report our WiFi wasn’t working. It was way too slow. Within minutes I was on the phone with the hotel’s tech support person.

The expected completion of the first of four buildings on this particular site was scheduled at the end of 2013.

It took another hour to get the WiFi working correctly on our Chromebooks and Tom’s phone, which finally seemed to be working efficiently. But, my smartphone would not allow the connection to take hold. The tech guy met me outside our door in the hallway to work on my phone. He wore a new pair of rubber gloves and a face mask as I’d requested.

Another hour later, after making several calls to his support team, my phone was working. I was sweating profusely while waiting in the hot, humid corridor with no air-conditioning and was anxious to get back into our cool room. By then, it was time to order dinner.

Seemingly fearless workers worked atop the highest levels of the building utilizing their handmade ladders.

Thoughts ran through our minds on how awful it would be to be without WiFi while in lockdown in this room. There are few English-speaking TV channels. That would have been one long night. We were grateful everything was up and running, anxious to return to our usual routine.

These coral rocks for both the pool and the buildings were hand-dug on the premises.

The chef sent me a complimentary treat of a buttered garlic prawns side plate as a possible alternative dinner option. Before I order these, which, by the way, were delicious, I’ll check on the portion size and price. Ordering a tiny 4 oz. Filet of salmon runs about US $18, INR 1325. These tasty prawns could easily be US $20, INR 1472, or more. Based on the fact the only side dish I can eat with it is a half-cup portion of sauteed vegetables, it is not worth it to me. It would be the same if I ordered the prawns.

Coral and mortar, placed by hand, to build a swimming pool.

Ah, the trials of living in a hotel! A tiny portion doesn’t do it for me after not eating anything from 9:00 am until 7:00 pm. Nor is it worth the cost for us to pay US $30, INR 2208, or more for dinner each night. For dinner, I can easily live with chicken meat, spinach, or mushrooms, occasionally adding two hard-boiled eggs I may save from breakfast. This meal will hold me through the evening.

These solid cement blocks were made on-site in one of the future bedrooms!

Today’s photo from Diani Beach, Kenya, makes us realize how many opportunities we had for adequate fodder for our daily posts, with many accompanying photographs. Now, I look around this small room and don’t see a single thing worthy of taking a photo. If you have any suggestions, please do share.

This is the stairway we took, albeit carefully, to the 3rd level to see the penthouse, also still under construction. We were long gone by the time this project was completed.

Not much on the agenda today. Once I upload this post, I will get to work on the following 2000 word post. I’m sure happy I got the tax information to our accountant this past week. That’s one more little project on my mind. I may be bored, but I’m busy.

“Jambo,” yelled the workers as they smiled and waved at us.

I hope your day is filled with pleasant projects. If we had a home of our own now, every drawer, every closet, every cupboard, the attic, and the basement would be spotless and organized. Lockdown has undoubtedly inspired me to get things done, even in our life of world travel.

Be well.

Photo from one year ago today, September 19, 2019:

Goats love standing on the highest structure wherever they may be. For more photos, please click here.