Jock of the Bushveld!

Last Thursday night, we were invited to attend the premiere of Jock of the Bushveld in 3D!!

My Glugster and I were attending as blogger ambassadors for Kitty and Puppy Haven and we were treated to a proper glitzy event let me tell you! There were several SA celebrities mingling with the masses too- Lady Lea, Carte Blanche’s Derek and Devi, Ashley Hayden, Lew Geffen, and Lew’s daughter Ya’el Geffen- who single-handedly organised the whole event! We were served some fabulous wine and we got to nibble on the most divine finger snacks- single serving sushi rolls in little bamboo boats with pipettes full of soy sauce and little springrolls and wraps, and cheezy bread sticks I could happily eaten a dozen of! I got to meet some of the Quirk Stars too, and I got such an awesome introduction I think they may have thought I was paying Snowgoose!! My face was on fire I was blushing so much!

😀

 

Then it was time to go in and watch the movie, and we were given water, popcorn, Coke and jelly babies (or Astros) to nibble on during the movie!

Before the movie started, there was a short presentation on behalf of Kitty and Puppy Haven, and with a whole lot of donations made from members of the audience there was almost R20K raised for Kitty and Puppy Haven right there and then! It was awesome!

Then it was movie time!

I do love 3D movies, and whilst there were a few moments in the movie that seemed a little, erm, flat… (I dunno what the movie terminology would be) and the story has been considerably adapted from the book to make it kid friendly, I rather enjoyed it. I loved that I was able to identify the birds in the movie- the animation was that good! This flick is a proudly South African production, with a stellar international cast and the kids in the audience loved it! All around us we could hear the kids asking questions about the story and squealing with laughter!

After the movie, a few of the guests were lucky enough to be able to claim prizes for the lucky tickets they found on their seats, and we were given goodie bags sponsored by Hills before we set off for home!

Many thanks to Hill’s Pet Nutrition South AfricaLew Geffen Sotheby’s International RealtyQuirk and Kitty and Puppy Haven for an evening with a difference!

27Dinner!!

Last night, my Glugster and I attended the Johannesburg 27Dinner. It was great to go again ‘coz its been far too long since we attended one.

The Crowne Plaza is a fabulous venue, and the “new” 27Dinner format of having everyone inside an auditorium for a couple of presentations is a winner IMHO. It so beats trying to get everyone’s attention when they’re chatting at a dinner table or across a bar. This time, instead of sponsored wine and delicious finger snacks like we had the last time we attended a 27Dinner (a few months ago), this time we had a sit down, three course dinner. The food was pretty damn good, but the staff in the Crowne’s restaurant did not impress me at all. The bills did not arrive with the drinks, which caused immense confusion when several bills were brought in quick succession and no-one was sure who had paid who for what. And then the waitrons were standing at our table having a loud and heated discussion with each other about what was not yet paid for and who had taken the cash. This was- quite frankly- inexcusable.

The evening was supposedly sponsored by Intel, but I’m not sure how as I reckon R25 for a glass of wine and R18 for a 200ml Coke is horrendous!! We went home fairly thirsty…

The speakers were above the bar! Really well done Mike Stopforth and team!

The first speaker was Eric Edelstein and he spoke on “Why he lived in Silicon Valley for the last 4 months, and what he discovered?” It was very interesting to hear about how the people he met there had turned his way of thinking about business, on its head.

Then we heard from Dean Oelschig on “The Role of Traditional Advertising in the Digital Era”. Traditional media is dead. Traditional media is thriving. And fence-sitting.

Both Eric and Dean has us listening and laughing.

If you have not yet attended one, 27Dinner is well worth checking out if you want to meet and listen to some interesting people you might not bump into in your everyday life.

Art Reflects Life…

Has anyone watched the TV series “Parenthood“?

It’s one of my favourite favourite TV shows. Season 2 is about half way through on the DSTV series channel. Since I started watching it I saw parallels with my own life in so many of the characters and situations…

The series revolves around a big family of four siblings and the parents of these siblings, the siblings’ relationships with their partners and children, and each other. The grandfather is cantankerous and opinionated and loves his family. The grandmother is wise and patient and loves her family. There’s a single mom of 2 teenagers with an absentee dad. There’s a guy who discovered his ex-girlfriend hadn’t told him she was pregnant when they split five or so years before. There’s a couple with a genius IQ daughter who are TTC. And there’s a couple with a teenage daughter and an Aspie son.

Most who know me will know that movies and such do not make me cry. I may get a lump in my throat but I don’t actually cry. This show makes me cry.

An episode that really hit me hard was when the grandfather wanted to take one of his grandsons fishing because he takes all the boys fishing at a special place and they spend the night just him and them and it’s a tradition and and and.

The grandson in question is 7 or 8 years old, and he has severe Aspergers Syndrome. The boy’s own family has been battling with living with and treating his syndrome and they have changed schools and hired a coach for him and so on and so forth, and whilst they do not keep his Aspergers a secret or anything- their extended family has no idea what they really deal with unless they accidentally witness a meltdown.

When the grandfather started planning the fishing trip, the Aspie’s parents tried to speak to him about being on his own with the Aspie, and gave him a folder containing information and suggestions to read on how to handle potential issues with the Aspie. They have tried repeatedly to explain- to the grandfather especially- how their son is very different to a regular kid and has to be “handled” differently to other children because of his Asperger Syndrome.

The grandfather didn’t read the file and didn’t pay attention, and as a result the fishing trip was nothing short of a disaster, the Aspie only calming down after the grandfather called his parents to ask for help.

It broke my heart because at one stage I was giving folders like that to my family to read about my knucklehead’s ADHD. It took a long time for me to talk to my family about my son’s diagnosis and to tell them what I was dealing with, and it took even longer for them to actually pay attention to what I was saying!

Anyone who is parent to a special needs child will be able to identify with this situation. We are too often fobbed off as over-reacting or being over protective, and at the same time judged to be too lax in disciplining our children.

Southern Sun Rocks!

I was wined and dined at Sandton City Garden Court when Southern Sun launched their programme allowing people to book a stay with them- wait for it- VIA THEIR FACEBOOK PAGE!

Yup. You heard me bunnies.

This is a first among SA’s large hotel chains!

Southern Sun is no stranger to social media- being active on Facebook and on Twitter– and they want to embrace their potential guests in a space where they already feel comfortable.

Facebook’s constantly increasing popularity means that most people log into their Facebook profile before they do anything else, and now they can check availability and reserve rooms without leaving Facebook! And there are some pretty cool deals for Southern Sun’s Facebook page fans. If you make a booking before the end of July 2011 you could win a 2-night getaway, and booking via the social media site immediately gets you 5% off the regular rates! Register as a Frequent Guest and you can get as much as 20% off the normal rates.

So on Thursday night, we met up with a group of bloggers and journalists and made our bookings using the Facebook page- with help from the Southern Sun staff. It’s a pretty cool little set up and if you’ve ever shopped online or booked airplane tickets online then you will easily navigate the menus!

As much as I love gallivanting and spending time with friends and family and such, there are few things I like more than being able to do my business online, from the comfort of my own bed!

This new option from Southern Sun is a winner, IMHO!

We then had dinner at Café Maude and WHAT a dinner!! OMW!! The starter platters consisted of mini tartlet thingies (camembert in phyllo pastry with a smidgeon of cranberry jelly, chicken liver vol au vents, snails in phyllo pastry) mini sirloin kebabs and little Café Maude salads! I could have eaten a whole platter of the camembert things on my own! The main course was Osso Bucco, “a classic winter dish of braised beef shin in a white wine and tomato sauce served on a bed of smooth mashed potato and seasonal vegetables”. Fabulous! The dessert platters had mimiature coffee flavoured crème brulees, profiteroles and miniature malva puddings! Talk about mouth-watering! Heavenly cappuccinos ended our meal whilst we chatted to each other by candlelight.

And then, when we arrived in our room, we found a bottle of bubbly on ice with 2 glasses and a special happy anniversary message from Southern Sun! It seems someone had been paying attention to our dinner conversation and picked up on the fact that our anniversary was a couple of days away!

Now that’s service!

It really is the little things isn’t it.

Friday morning started with a fantastic buffet breakfast before I headed home again- after the traffic rush and after a fabulous nights’ sleep.