Soos Blits!!

English version below.

Teen 210 km/h om Killarney renbaan in ‘n BMW Z4M Coupe is daar geen beter beskrywing as “SOOS BLITS”!

Die oggend van 21 Maart breek aan en dis D-dag:  ‘n rit om Killarney renbaan saam met my boet Danie, die laaste van my “10-doendinge-voor-50”.

Ek was van die begin af effe senuagtig oor hierdie uitstappie.  Op hierdie ouderdom is ‘n mens mos meer bewus van alles wat kan verkeerd loop en het ek besluit om nie te veel vooraf te tob oor die detail van die dag nie.

Drie dae voor die tyd verneem ek met skok dat dit ‘n volwaardige resies gaan wees. Ek moet toe skoene dra, ‘n langbroek, langmou hemp EN ‘n helmet.  Dis nie wat ek verwag het nie!

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Ek sluk my motorsiekpil ‘n uur voor die tyd, staar met verwondering na al die vinnige motors soos hulle arriveer, luister na die inligtingsessie en al die reëls vir die resies, probeer nie te veel dink nie ….  Dan breek die oomblik aan!

Helmet op, sitplek verstel, veiligheidsgordel vas en daar gaan ons!  Vasgedruk teen die sitplek skiet ons weg uit die kuipe.  Die eerste draai is daar nog voor ek my sit gekry het.  Ek klou aan die deurhandvatsal vas met my linkerhand en aan die sitplek met my regterhand.  Ek herinner myself daaraan om asem te haal.  Kan ‘n mens so vinnig om ‘n draai gaan?!  Uit die draai uit jaag ons nog vinniger.  Ek weier om die spoedmeter raak te sien (wat ek nie weet nie, kan my nie ontstel nie).  Daar is motors voor ons, langs ons, agter ons en die volgende draai is alweer hier.  Danie slaan remme aan.  Ek onthou die inligtingsessie:  “apply your ABS brakes like squeezing a soft ball: slowly, brake 1-2-3-4…release 4-3-2-1…”.  Ek probeer elke oomblik in my geheue graveer – teen hierdie spoed gaan die oomblik vinnig verby.  “Sus is jy ok”, vra my bestuurder-broer;  “Ja, ek kan nie die padhouvermoë van die motor glo nie”, antwoord ek, maar eintlik wou ek sê,  “wow ouboet, jy weet hoe om jou motor te hanteer”….

Ons jaag voort. Steek motors verby. Trap rem 1-2-3-4 / 4-3-2-1. Jaag verby toeskouers. Ek probeer iemand erken, maar almal flits net verby.  Ek kan nie glo my hart het nog nie by my keel uitgespring nie

Met die waai van die swart-en-wit geruite vlag haal ek skielik weer asem – of nee, haal ek skielik weer NORMAAL asem.  Nou wil ek weet:  Hoe vinnig het ons gery? “210 km/h op die reguit stroke en 170 km/h net voor ons ‘n draai in is”. Hoekom het jy op ‘n stadium gesê dit raak nou morsig? “Want ek wou die motor agter my afskud”  Het ons met al 4 wiele om ‘n draai gegaan? (ek het toe nie hierdie vraag gevra nie; ek was bang die antwoord is ‘nee’)

Met bewerige bene klim ek uit die motor.  Ek het oorleef!  Onder die helmet is my glimlag groter as ooit.

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Wat ‘n ervaring!  Elke keer as ek terugdink, tref ‘n warboel van gedagtes en emosies my:

  • Ek is so dankbaar vir ‘n ouboet wat hierdie ongelooflike ervaring ge-inisieer en moontlik gemaak het. Dankie Danie!!
  • Ek het nie een oomblik onveilig gevoel nie – my broer Danie se bestuursvernuf is skitterend
  • Die padhouvermoë van die motor is verstommend
  • Ek het die wonderlikste toeskouers gehad! Dankie manlief Adrian, skoonsus Juanita, niggie Madri vir die fotos en videos wat sal sorg vir lewenslange herinneringe!

Nr 10 op my “doendinge-voor-50” was beslis ‘n hoogtepunt en ek is bly omstandighede het gesorg dat dit laaste moes gebeur.

Nou is ek reg vir die avonture van 50-wees!

 

LIKE LIGHTNING!!

 At 210 km/h around the Killarney Racetrack in a BMW Z4M Coupe there is no better description than “LIKE LIGHTNING”!!

The morning of 21 March dawned and it is D-day:  a ride around Killarney racetrack with my brother Danie – the last of my “10-things-to-do-before-50”.

From the beginning I was a bit nervous about this outing.  For at this age one is far more aware of things that can go wrong and therefore I decided to not think about the detail of the day too much.

Three days prior to the outing I discovered, with shock, that it is a full on race.  I have to wear closed shoes, trousers, long sleeve shirt AND a helmet.  This is not what I expected!

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I swallow my motion sickness pill an hour before the time, stare with amazement at all the fast cars as they arrive, listen to the drivers’ briefing and all the rules of the race, try to not think too much …… and then the moment arrives!

Helmet on, adjust seat, fasten seatbelt, and off we go!  Pressed against the seat we shoot out of the pits.  Before I can settle into my seat we are on the first bend! I cling  to my seat with my right hand and to the door handle with my left hand.  I remind myself to breathe. Can one go this fast into a bend? Out of the bend we race, faster and faster.  I refuse to look at the speedometer (that which I don’t know can’t upset me?!).  There are cars in front of us, next to us, behind us and then the next bend again.  Danie brakes. I remember the driver’s briefing “apply your ABS brakes like squeezing a soft ball: slowly, brake 1-2-3-4…release 4-3-2-1…”.  I try to impress every moment in my memory – at this speed the moment passes very quickly!  “Sister, are you ok”, my driver-brother asks;  “yes, I just cannot believe the road-holding ability of the car” I answer, but what I actually wanted to say is “wow brother, you know how to handle the traction of your car”…

We race ahead.  Overtake cars. Brake 1-2-3-4 / 4-3-2-1.  Race past spectators.  I try to recognise somebody, but everything just flashes past.  I cannot believe my heart has not jumped out my throat yet!

At the waving of the black-and-white chequered flag,  I suddenly start to breathe again – or no, I suddenly start to breathe NORMAL again.  Now I want to know:  How fast did we go? “210 km/h on the straights and we entered a bend at 170 km/h”.  Why did you mention things getting messy at one stage? “I wanted to get rid of the car behind us”.  Did we go around the bends on all 4 wheels? (I rather didn’t ask this question as I was scared for the answer would be ‘no’)

With shaky legs I climb out the car.  I survived!  Under the helmet my smile is bigger than ever before.

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What an experience!  Every time I think back a tangle of emotions and thoughts hit me:

  • I am so thankful for a big brother who was prepared to initiate and organise this amazing experience
  • Not once did I feel unsafe – my brother’s driving expertise is magnificent
  • The road-holding ability / traction of the BMW Z4(M) is unbelievable
  • I had the most amazing spectators! Thank you hubby Adrian, sister-in-law Juanita and niece Madri for the photos and video clips which will ensure lifelong memories!

Activity number 10 on my “to-do-list-before-50″ was indeed a highlight and I am glad circumstances allowed for it to happen last.

Now I am ready for the adventures after 50!

 

 

 

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50 Bankies and more!

I have completed my bankie challenge (sit on 50 bankies before you turn 50) and managed to sit on 61 bankies! I am happy to share the pictures with you – each one telling its own story.

Without planning it that way, I sat on my first bankie on my 49th birthday with my bankie friend Liesl.  A special way to kick off the bankie year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For my husband’s birthday in July we have spent time in Stellenbosch and visited the Lion Park near Klapmuts.  Not even the storm could prevent a bankie moment….and thankfully we found a huge sun umbrella to keep us dry.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the highlights on my “turning 50 to do list” was the visit to the house in Paarl where I spent the first 4 years of my life.  The bonus was to find a bankie in the beautiful back garden which runs into the Paarl Mountain reserve.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A school friend, Jeff Rossouw, decided to celebrate his 50th birthday in Greyton.  The Sauve theme allowed for an opportunity to dress up and sit on a beautiful bankie. I could also add 2 more special bankies to this trip.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On 10 October 2016, hubby and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary – indeed another highlight on my journey to turning 50. We took some time out and spent it in the beautiful Knysna.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My dear bankie friend, Liesl, decided to spoil me with a bankie tour and introduced me to all her favourite bankies. This was a very special outing and I loved every moment of it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I visited the Strooidak Church in Paarl in which I was baptised.  Sitting on this particular bankie overlooking so many graves stirred something in my heart.

 

My visual journalling friend, also a Liezl (with a z 🙂 ) took me on a journalling trip to Gordonsbay. We took over a few tables in a restaurant and had lots of journalling fun.

 

Bankie number 50 happened at a very special place without it being planned that way.  I grew up with holidays in Still Bay and this picture is taken with the Still Bay harbour in the background – exactly where many precious childhood memories were created!

‘Tannie’ Doreen and her son, Danie – special friends I grew up with.

 

 

 

My favourite holiday place, Jongensfontein.  What a privilege it was to have dear friend Anneke visiting and have a bankie moment with her.

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is a bankie in Blouberg and definitely my favourite. The bankie I escape to when I need quite time, time to think or write or pray or just ‘be’.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And then bankie number 60 happened!  Another special location with special people!

 

I ended the bankie journey on my birthday and will include those pictures in a separate post.

Looking at all these pictures I realise just how special this bankie journey was – so special that I plan to continue it.  I started to look at my environment differently: notice what is in front, behind and on the sides of me (as it was necessary to choose the best angle for the bankie pictures).  As this journey continues, I will appreciate every opportunity to sit on special bankies and share bankie moments with special people.  Bankies are adding tremendous value to my life!  Thank you for teaching me the bankie lesson, Liesl!

 

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