Tuesday, 25 March 2008

Pro20 Cricket Season begins!

I'm not much of a long term cricket fan but I remember the days my granddad would steal front row seats in the lounge in order to watch the game unrivaled by us kids. It was actually a great experience as my grandfather was very much into his cricket and he became quite boisterous when things weren't going his team's way.

I used to be enthralled just watching him jump up and down rumbling at the TV screen, but nowadays I'm sometimes caught reenacting those same movements that I found so funny about my granddad:-)

I like fast paced action and that's the reason why Pro20 cricket appeals to me. It's all about the action and chasing big scores which are built up by the 4's and 6's that are pummeled out by the fearless batsmen.

This year promises to be a super series and the excitement starts on 25 march 2008 and carries through for a month until the finals on 25 April 2008. For those of you who are not familiar with Pro20 cricket, it's a new formula of cricket that was founded by Standard Bank South Africa and is all about the action and the concept of 'sportainment'. The Pro20 series is a limited–overs tournament which has added another dimension to domestic cricket in SA and it involves 20 overs per innings where each match lasts approximately three hours.

See the Standard Bank website for more info.

Monday, 24 March 2008

Why Cape Town is wow!

The Cape Town International Jazz Festival takes place from the 28-30 March 2008. It is the most anticipated music festival for the astute jazz lover and has been rated as one of the best music festivals in South Africa.

The Dutch version of the North Sea Jazz Festival-Den Haag is regarded as one of the most prestigious Jazz festivals in the world, and the concept was initiated by jazz promoter, Paul Acket.

Unlike its Dutch counterpart, the Cape Town International Jazz Festival has a unique programming line-up with a 50/50 talent split between Africa and the rest of the world. The musical event allows for "local musicians to take their rightful place alongside International musicians, to the benefit of a very dynamic art form". The A Passion for jazz website says it's no wonder the media has dubbed the Cape Town International Jazz Festival as "Africa's Grandest Gathering", as it is certainly regarded as the most prestigious on the continent.

Cape Town International Jazz Festival is hosted at Cape Town's International Convention Centre (CTICC). Did you know that more & more airlines have recognised the importance of Cape Town as a destination?

Emirates Airline has sought to launch their new non-stop Cape Town to Dubai service at the end of the month and Delta Airlines will commence their direct Cape Town to New York service on 4 June 2008.

Monday, 17 March 2008

Human Rights Day

South Africa is not a war torn country and unlike many other African countries, all South Africans are citizens of an independent state. It is with this in mind that I'd like to reflect on what Human Rights Day means in South Africa.

In a democratic South Africa, it means we all should share in the basic human right to life, first and foremost. It also means or rather symbolizes the right to freedom which was not afforded to non-white people during Apartheid rule of our country.

Now our Bill of Rights which is contained in the Constitution is the cornerstone of democracy in South Africa. The Constitution has provided for the establishment of the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) of which the aim is to promote respect for human rights, promote the protection, development and attainment of human rights, and to monitor and assess the observance of human rights in SA. The SAHRC was launched on 21 March 1996, 35 years after the fateful events of 21 March 1960 when demonstrators were gunned down by police. In Apartheid South Africa, this day became known as "Sharpeville Day".

Even though South Africa has loosened its shackles of its past woes, the country is grappled with other difficulties like the current energy shortages, the crime statistics and our shaky political system. But as opposed to deflating a young person's positivity, I remain optimistic under the circumstance because life as we know it, is ever-changing, and South Africa's persistence to change and develop will only allow our country to grow for the better. That is what I choose to celebrate and commemorate on 21 March 2008 on Human Rights Day in SA.

Saturday, 15 March 2008

14th MTN SAMAs

I wrote a post on Deshanta's World about the South African Music Awards and think it's worth a read if you're a South African music fan. This year's nominees are a bunch of really talented super starts in their own right and they deserve all the support they get!

Check it out here

Friday, 14 March 2008

Launch of SA Fashion Week - Winter/Autumn '08

I attended the launch party of Samsung's involvement in this year's Sanlam SA Fashion Week! It was an exciting event with lots of glitz and glam! Here's a post I blogged live from the event:

"I'm in a crowd of the most gorgeous people in South Africa and we've just heard that Samsung mobile is looking for the next female and male Icone Modeles! These two lucky people will stand a chance of being the next face of Samsung Mobile!

They will be part of the 2008 above the line and below the line ad campaigns, which basically means they'll have their faces blasted on every billboard, poster and magazine cover in SA! Models will win themselves a $75k international modeling contract with Next modeling agency!

These two models will become the most sought after South African models abroad and get to don the most exclusive made-to-fit range of South African couture, which these models will showcase at SA's main Fashion Week in August 2008!

How awesome is that? Now to give you a little taste of this exclusive event check out the video and I just have to boast about who I bumped into - SA's hottest music star, Loyiso and ooh, I think Vanessa Carreira has just arrived. Toodles, have to go mingle ;-)"

Thursday, 13 March 2008

Inhaca Island Treasures

I haven't had much time to tell you about the great treasures we found on Inhaca island but nows the perfect opportunity because I was asked via comments on TravelStart blog for a little info on other aspects of Mozambique.

The biggest treasure you'll find is the beauty and kindness of the people on the island. I've told you about Fabio in a previous post so do check him out when you visit Inhaca.Then there was Albert, a crafts-maker on the island who has a charming stall in the middle of the village. He makes beautiful arts and crafts and can chat just about any buyer up so be aware of the sale and don't get ripped off because you don't know how to haggle down prices ;-)
If food is your favourite pastime then like me, you must check out Lucas Restaurant in Inhaca village. We met Joao, an intriguing and friendly waiter at the restaurant. If you're not sure of what to start out with, get Joao to suggest a few of the House favourites because that way you get to a little bit of everything when it comes to the seafood and just a hint, be sure to ask for the fish samoosas - they are absolutely divine!

Inhaca Lodge has incredible gastronomical offerings too so be sure to check out all their buffet-style breakfasts and dinners. The Lodge's activities are a real treat so be sure to don your cozzie, slap on some sunscreen and head for the Gone Fishing company office. There you can book any trips to nearby beaches or even a car ride around da island to explore all its nooks and crannies.

We did two trips, one to Portuguese island where we swam an endless amount of time in the warm Indian Ocean. And the second trip was to Santa Maria where we indulged in a close up of the beautiful coral gardens while we snorkeled for a good hour.

All in all it was a great experience and I'll definitely do it again.

Wednesday, 12 March 2008

SA music releases 2.0

I read about an artist who was going to use new age technology to release his debut album in South Africa. I didn't really believe it until I saw an article on BizCommunity covering the subject.

It's amazing how innovative people can be when they put their minds to it and I guess the artist 'J' is laughing all the way to the bank with a big smile on his face because he was the artist that started a trend.

Nowadays people are not only buying musician's albums on CD, the new trend is to have multimedia with your album launch, for example, when the Parlotones, great South African band, recently released their new album. They had a DVD made of all their days in studio recording their album and also teamed up with Microsoft to present the Xbox 360 Summer Tour where they helped in promoting their new album as well as the Xbox around South Africa in December 2007.

Truly unbelievable what one can really do with music and technology, huh?

Monday, 10 March 2008

SA Artists doing it for themselves

Two major developments in the South African music industry have paved the wave for new and exciting methods of marketing an artist's album. I'm a geek and as part of the movement in SA, I follow the 27Dinner event which happens bi-monthly in JHB and Cape Town. Upon following the feedback from one of the dinners held in CT, I stumbled onto Verity's webpage.

Now this woman is really unique and she's a very talented musician, but instead of selling the rights to her skill to a record label, she has decided to take matters into her own hands..In an effort to make something of her musical abilities, she first started coaxing her friends and family to pay R150 towards your own copy of the future release of Verity's album, thereby contributing to the production of her upcoming album.

This marketing concept quickly spread online via her website and now she currently has 1,600 people all socially involved in the production of her album, which she is in studio producing at the moment. How clever is that?

Ordinary people have managed to be part of her creative process every step of the way and what's more interesting is that Verity can really call herself the 'people's artist' when she does drop her album.

You can check her site out to read more on her journey in the music biz and contribute to her album release if you want.

Friday, 7 March 2008

Lekgotla: 'Let's meet'

Merv and I at my bday dinnerLast year I celebrated my 24th birthday by graciously treating myself to an exciting night on the town with my partner. We've been together for ten years, but can you believe, we've never spent our birthdays alone. I've always tried to organise dinner for two on my bday, but when you're part of a very loving and close family, it's hard to say no to big, family meals together on your special day.

Alas as luck would have it, I did most of my birthday celebrations beforehand, as I jetted off to have a nice, relaxing holiday in the Garden Route as part of the celebrations.

Lekgotla: The African Dining RoomAnyway we ended up dining at Lekgotla at the Nelson Mandela Square. I have always been drawn to restaurants that serve up scrumptious, authentic cuisine, and it is my favour towards North, East, South and West African food that led to a booking at this exquisite restaurant. For more images of the nights flagrant affair, check my pics out on Flickr.

First off, I have to say the whole dining experience was fantastic and I would highly recommend it to those seeking a little adventure into culinary delight. I was overwhelmed by the variety on the menu and was definitely spoilt for choice from starters straight up to dessert.

I hadn't been in the mood for alcohol in a long while, but the 15 year old Glenfiddich appertif that I had before supper, warmed me up and was a great accompaniment to my meal. It's hard for me to drink wines these days because of the high sugar content so whiskies are nice once in a while to get the blood flowing.

If you are into Moroccan food then you must try the 'Baba Ganoush'. It's a dipping sauce which consists of smoked aubergine, fresh lemon juice and creme fraiche. Very delicious and extremely good with unleavened bread.

The cool decor at LekgotlaWhat makes you think I was in my element last night?

Tagines are another favourite in Moroccan dish and is quite a nice hearty meal for a cold winter's evening.

Well I had an awesome birthday and even though it's not a landmark one, I had to seize the moment. I have so many great things that I wanted to celebrate this year and I'm glad I got to celebrate them with the people I love and cherish the most. Afterall what is a person without family and friends?