This week has been full of both fun and stress, ironically both primarily related to work. We are now running three work streams at the client: Data Reconciliation of the migrated data to the staging area, a Data Quality Assessment of the HR source data and a Data Governance audit. I am involved in all 3 for one thing or another. I do the project management, the mentoring, the reviews of any deliverable and testing of the outputs produced by the developer. For the Data Quality work stream I am the only analyst and I am documenting the data rules, the data mapping and managing the client liaisons to determine the requirements. Phase 1 is due to go live on Monday and then I will have a lot of documentation to prepare for the data recon of that phase. It seems I need about 12 hours a day to be on track. The mentoring I am doing on the Data Governance work stream is taking up about half of my day and causing me challenges with delivering my own work, so I am very behind.
On Thursday we only had a half day in the office as we had our work year end function at Cape Point Vineyards. We started out doing a wine tasting.
We had a stunning view from our tasting table.
We tried 4 different wines: a Sauvignon Blanc, both a wooded and an un-wooded Chardonnay and a red. I do not drink red so I did not note what sort of red it was. I preferred the Sauvignon Blanc, but that is what I usually drink so no surprises there! You can order their delicious wines online via their website.
It was lovely seeing some of my colleagues that are based at different locations. Tamarin is our office manager and she is such a sweet and helpful young lady. Norm said she looked like my sister, but he is too kind, she does however look a lot like she could be my daughter!
I sat by Guy whom I have not seen in ages. I really like him as well, he is a very clever man and is ever so patient when you ask him questions. We had a lot of giggles, he said he missed my irreverent sense of humour.
Next we moved down to the picnic area and they brought our picnic baskets to us. They were for two people to share and contained 2 of each of these items.
I thought the food was perfect for the situation. It was tasty and easy to eat. The ciabatta was soft and delicious and went well with all of the bits and pieces, the tomato compote, the cheese and the charcutery. My least favourite was the vegetable quiche.
I did not take a pic of the actual basket so I knicked this one online. It contains different items than our basket but it gives you an idea of the presentation. The food comes in a proper old school wicker basket which contains 2 racks of food, you pop them out onto the table to share. I was starving and my basket companion eats like a bird so it worked out great!
The views are amazing, you can see across the lake to the sea.
From the other angle you can see the lake, the mountains and the sea.
We all mingled and caught up with everyone’s latest news and the various projects they are involved with.
I had traveled there with my colleague Darren and he booked a Home Heroes driver to come and collect his car and drive us back. Two drivers come to you and one drives your car back with you in it while the other one follows to collect the driver once you are dropped off at home. Our driver looked like Nelson Mandela right down to the freckles. We had to pay for both cars to come back through the toll road on Chapman’s Peak and we managed to scrape up R100 to get through only to have one of the notes rejected as it was Jersey currency. Oops, we managed to find R10 in coins to get us through.
Norm came to collect me at Darren’s house and when I arrived home I could not find my keys. As I was rather tipsy I was in a panic as I thought I must have left them at the vineyards which is a schlep to get to. Darren would not answer his phone so Norm went around and knocked the door. Luckily Darren found them in between my seat and the center panel between the seats. Phew. Drunk Kitten strikes again.
It was such a fun day and I really enjoyed it but I was suffering a bit on Friday at work. I wanted to leave early as I was so hungover but I had to help a colleague and so I had to stay late again.
We had a bit of drama this week when one evening we were chilling out and Blue brought in an entire bird nest complete with a tiny baby bird which looked like it had recently hatched. We only realised it when we heard the gruesome sound of him eating the baby. It had no feathers and it’s eyes were still shut so it could not even make a sound of distress. I wanted to choke him and refused to speak to him for several days. I know he was just doing what nature dictates but it made me sad.
Regarding our own dietary habits, we are hardly vegan so maybe I am a hypocrite. We have tried to stay low carb this week but again failed miserably. It started out well, I made a chicken curry in the crock pot which was low carb. I served it with cauliflower rice fried with onions, curry powder and coriander and the only carbs were from the poppadoms. It was so spicy Norm could barely eat it. Oops. I thought it was perfectly seasoned. Norm says it is because I am Indian but I reminded him I am not THAT kind of Indian. Silly Norm.
One night Norm made Kassler chops with pureed cauliflower cheese, fried red cabbage & steamed asparagus. It was delicious, I love a nice Kassler chop. For any American readers it is like frying a slice of ham shaped like a chop.
We derailed a few days with take-away meals and then I had my usual sushi from K1 in Hout Bay on Friday night.
I ordered 2 portions each of Prawn roses, Salmon roses and Cucumber roses topped with prawns. Unfortunately for me they got my order wrong. My fave is the cucumber roses topped with prawns and they only sent one portion of those and instead sent 3 orders of salmon roses. I can only eat so much salmon, however I can eat prawns until they come out of my ears.
On Saturday I had a long lie in bed and Norm made us a delicious brunch of poached eggs, crispy bacon and avocado.
When he was in the UK he discovered these little bags for poaching eggs. We both love poached eggs and have tried various egg poaching products but they all have some issue. These were so easy to use, the eggs did not stick to the packet and there was minimal mess. We cooked them for the time recommended but my eggs were medium rather than soft so next time we will cook them less time. I really recommend these little gems and give them 5 Kitten Stars. Pick them up HERE from YuppieChef.
In the afternoon we went into the city to collect Alec and Anne, some friends who are over from Scotland. We took the scenic drive around the city and showed them the Parliament buildings, the entrance to Company’s Garden and the view from the top of District 6. Norm knows so much about South African history and he told them about the impacts of apartheid and the city’s dirty past of oppression. I told him I am going to book him some side gigs as a tour guide.
We drove up Ou Kaapse Weg, a curvy mountain road which has a stunning view.
We drove through Simon’s Town and stopped off at Boulder’s Beach to view the penguins. We did not go into the actual sanctuary as it is expensive, crowded and a penguin is a penguin, so we skirted around the various other viewing sites.
We saw a big group of penguins chilling out on some rocks.
We then walked a bit further and spotted more rock dassies (aka Rock Hyrax) than I have ever seen in one place. There were loads of babies with them.
They were so cute! They were all over that bush like it was a jungle gym.
Alec and Anne seemed to really enjoy it.
Norm and I also enjoyed it and were ever so pleased that it stopped drizzling rain while we were wandering around.
After the Penguin Colony we drove to Cape Point Nature Reserve. It was so expensive to enter, R350 per person! But it is a lovely drive with gorgeous views and if you are lucky you can see various animals. There are no predators there, only bucks, a few zebras and ostrich.
We saw quite a few ostriches, both males and females. This male looks quite young still.
We saw a few springboks and we were ever so lucky to see a herd of eland!
Unfortunately they were very far away from the roads but it was still fabulous. You can see them up close via this google link.
We saw a few gemsbok. Here is a link to see them up close.
We saw a few tortoises in the road.
We drove down to Cape Point, where there are some stunning remote beaches.
And then we drove up to the top to the visitor’s center.
You can see the light house at the top of the mountain.
We then left the Nature Reserve and continued around the peninsula.
We drove home across Chapman’s Peak which has the most amazing views.
We could view Hout Bay off in the distance.
There were some very stupid young people who climbed over the safety barrier and hiked down the mountain in the exact same place where a young woman fell and died last year. Norm shouted at them but they just ignored him and when he persisted they cheeked back at him. I told him to leave them alone, it is an opportunity to cleanse the gene pool of ignorance. Callous but true. I tried to distance myself from the drama by taking selfies.
We drove around Hout Bay beach and then went to the Hout Bay Harbour.
We chose the The Lookout Deck for dinner.
Alec and I ordered the prawns.
Anne ordered the prawn and calamari combo and Norm ordered the hake and calamari combo.
Anne and I treated ourselves to a chocolate nut sundae for dessert. I forgot to take a pic so here is a pic from the last time I had this sundae just to make you drool ❤
We sat chatting for ages and then left just before 9pm. Norm dropped me home and Anne and Alec popped in for a minute while Norm fed the dogs. As it was so late the pups were ravenous, bless them. Norm then took Alec and Anne back to their hotel. It was a very long day but we had such a lovely time. I have enjoyed sharing the beauty of my gorgeous city with our guests and with all of you.
Today is a lazy day, I slept in until 9.30am which is so not like me. I was exhuasted and needed the sleep. Norm made brunch and is now pottering around while I write. The rest of the day will be spent slobbing about in my jimjams.
I hope you have all had a wonderful week and that your week ahead is stress free.
Until then, kisses from the Kitten xoxoxoxox