Tuesday 30 November 2021

One year (and one month) in George

 I missed the train in celebrating on 'One Year in George' anniversary at the beginning of November on my blog. 

Yes, I've been living in George for one year and one month. On Sunday, 1 November 2020, we arrived at night, after more than 10 hours on the road, in George. The next morning, we met the moving truck to load contents from three homes into one house and one big storage garage, collected 10 workers from the bus station and met three superlinker trucks at the factory building that had no roof and no walls - the first of four sections of the building (we moved into the fourth part only in mid-June - instead of late January as expected).

This year has been a ride.

While work is work, I do love living in this area.

I am thankful for the outdoor opportunities that George and the surrounds have to offer. Paddling is scenic with an abundance of options. The trails for trail running, mountain biking and hiking are extensive. There are beaches to visit, peaks to climb and the hot and dry Karoo on the other side of the mountains. The urban situation has a ton to offer - anything we need really.

Cape Town and PE are a hop, skip and jump away. In between are big towns like Knysna, Mossel Bay and Hermanus.

Shortly after arriving, I joined the local paddling club. I'm not very active in the club but they're a good bunch of people. I also joined the George Trail Running group. I've only done two Monday social runs with them. I sometimes do the route earlier with the dogs and unfortunately miss the Thursday session as I'm at dog school. Our George parkrun recently restarted and I spent two pre-event Saturday mornings and two event Saturday mornings as a volunteer and part of the team. Another good bunch of people.

I go to dog school with Rusty and Rosy, doing a double class on Thursdays. We don't socialise much with the other participants but we've gotten to know each other and they're a good bunch too. Two of them are trail runners (I knew their names from ages ago and it was just coincidence that we do dog school). Rusty and Rosy absolutely love dog school. I've learned a lot and it has also deepened my communication and relationship with these two girls. We have a third doggy in our household, Bella. She's my mom's old neighbour's dog whose next adoptive mom, after the neighbour, died from covid. 

I know a number of other people in and near George and have made some new friends, but for the most part I don't socialise much. Work and covid really being the two factors for my lack of social interaction.

Physically, I haven't done a fraction of what I would like to do, especially in hiking and running. I started going to the biokineticist in February. I was completely out of balance after last year's not-knee-injury. I'm hugely improved in terms of muscle strength, left and right balance and also muscle group balances. But I'm not 100% right yet and I have swelling flare-ups (fortunately no pain) occasionally for no apparent reason (I don't have gout, uric acid test in the clear). So I don't know why this all started in the first place and why it continues. I'm hiking well, jogging a little but after 18 months of this I'm pretty blue. I'm seeing a lady this week for another assessment to try to get to the bottom of this long-term situation for something that is in balance, has good strength, no pain but still swells and causes discomfort. This has greatly limited my activities.

I've done a lot of digging, earth moving, vegetation clearing and making nice at the house we're renting. We may be moving out come end Jan as the owners need to do some serious damp and water-issue maintenance. I don't really have capacity right now to move, but we'll have to do it if needed.

I am delighted by my discovery and keenly developed interest in fungi and the many fungi that I have observed and recorded on iNaturalit.org. There is never a dull moment out here on the fungi front. The plants too are extraordinary. My citizen scientist contribution. On this, I've done two or three RePhotoSA submissions and I know the location of another that I really should go to get it now that we're into summer (sun position).

For the rest, this year has sped past. I've read a number of books and have listened to a bunch more. It took me three months of every night to complete a special crochet gift project, and I've seen too many 2am (or 3am) mornings, especially the last six weeks) to just try to get on top of work. Being on the go, go, go and made this year go, go, go.

Here's to one year and one month. Cheers!

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