Timol’s & Andy’s love rings

Timols’ 40th was coming up with a dash of speed in early July and I thought a handmade ring would suit the occasion.

A bit of reading revealed:

Birth Stones – July: Ruby “The gleaming ruby should adorn, All those who in July are born. For thus they’ll be exempt and free From lover’s doubts and anxiety.”

First stop was my mate Michael Finch Jewellery with “Timol in tow”.

But then it became “Andy in tow” when Timol’s mind got “expansive”.

I therefore abandoned Timol, with her consent of course, and set out on a solo mission to conquer the purchase of my 1st ring ever!

Next stop was Leaza of Touch Stone Gems who showed me a lovely selection of synthetic and real-deal stones.

If I was going to pay Mike 1/2 my salary to make a unique once-off ring then I couldn’t possibly choose a synthetic stone.

I saw such a lovely Sky Topaz but then oops!!!

My eyes also missile-locked in on a shiny glistening pink red ruby.

No choice – I took both before Leaza could leave with her showcases of jewels.

I showed Mike who immediately blurted out “Sorry brother, you need another ruby to balance alongside the Topaz or it’s TWO rings”.

Leaza could not supply us with any firm guarantee in the short space of time before deadline.

One ring became two, which Mike so eloquently described in his surfer Buddhist drawl as follows:


1 x 14x12mm Sky Blue Topaz – long cushion cut

1 x 3.5mm round Select Ruby – 0.195ct


Approximately 17grams of Sterling silver was used in total.


These two stones were set in two separate rings.

The Sky Blue Topaz was tube set in a cupped setting and mounted on a 6mm wide court shaped silver band with a milled finish.

The Select Ruby was gypsy set (rub over) in a court shape silver band with poished rims and a milled finish.

I took the images below in true amateur Andy style, being my first attempt at close-ups of rings in terrible light and like always; refusing to try any manual settings – full auto for me!




360º Panoramic Photos by Andy Carr

An introduction by Andy Carr , who is incidentally and definitely not me.

“Have you ever been overwhelmed by the astounding beauty of vistas that you have come across in your travels? Have you been frustrated in that you never seem able to capture the feeling of the magnificent view of the vistas in front of you in a single photograph. For this reason I have experimented with the combining of multiple photos to achieve a better representation of what one sees in front of one at these special power spots in our world.


I started to play around with the combination of multiple photos to build up a 360° views as a project when I was at university. After capturing the vista in black & white with anything from 40 to 60 photos, then developing and printing them and sticking the photos down on a board, to build up the image. The results where promising, the process challenging and ultimately the results where ok, not fantastic.

After finishing army national service in 1989 as a photographer I left photography all together, only to be grabbed by photography again in 2008. Astounded by the versatility of digital photography and the ability to manipulate images, opened up the idea of once again trying the multiple photo approach, to 360° views.

The web site is a documentation of the results of this journey over the last few of years.”

What lovely and amazing pics by a cool artist!

Check them out right here.

Mutton curry potjie

Visit Potjiekosworld and read about our South African culture.

Here is a taster from them:

“When the first Dutch settlers arrived in the Cape, they brought with them their ways of cooking food in heavy cast iron pots, which hung from the kitchen hearth above the fire.

Long before the arrival of the early settlers in the Cape, the Bantu people who were migrating into South Africa, learned the use of the cast iron cooking pot from Arab traders and later the Portuguese colonists.

These cast iron pots were able to retain heat well and only a few coals were needed to keep the food simmering for hours. They were used to cook tender roasts and stews, allowing steam to circulate inside instead of escaping through the lid. The ingredients were relatively simple, a fatty piece of meat, a few potatoes and some vegetables were all that was needed to cook a delightful meal.”

Read more here.

Guided by expert cook Timol, I set about cooking a mutton curry potjie with beans.

The images below tell their own story.


Burst water pipe

7 April 2010

Bellair Road, Durban South Africa armed only with a Samsung G800 Camera Phone.

A very poor area; plagued by crime and other misfortunes, such as fire.

At 12h36 that afternoon the three delighted young chaps shown below were having a whale of a time.

The water was shooting up high into the sky and they were laughing, dancing, bopping, weaving and smiling from ear to ear.

Whilst I would have liked to have had my Canon handy; I do believe that the camera phone captured the essence of what transpired then and there.

A scooter, a bridge and a maiden

Early morning 17 January 2012, somewhere on the road between Shantadurga Temple and Morgim Beach in Goa, buzzing along on a 125 cc Honda scooter.

Wind racing over my semi-bald head, eyes stinging, mouth watering for that first beer on Morgim Beach and mind gloating over the possibilities: chicken tikka, prawn curry, roti, rice, chips…

It was then that I saw the bridge, an upcoming sandy village and a maiden in a yellow sari.

To be honest, she was just passing by at the time I got captivated by the old bridge and dirty muddy river underneath.

The route from my temporary abode in Candolim, dotted with holy cows, chickens, more scooters, taxis, tantalizing smells, sleepy villages and bustling junction points, is shown below.

About Scooters, Churches & Chickens in Goa

Call this a late night snack with a travel flip over to India.

Goa is India’s smallest state by area, fourth smallest by population. Located in West India. The Arabian Sea is its western coast. Goa is India’s richest state. Rated number one for the best quality of life in India by the NCP.

A lot of Goa still shows the cultural influence of the Portuguese, who first landed in the early 16th century. Goa was previously a Portuguese colony. Portuguese India lasted for around 450 years until it was annexed by India in the early 1960’s.

Beaches, tasty food, scooters, places of worship including many churches, friendly people and world heritage architecture, visited by large numbers of tourists each year.

It’s now 22:10 and I had a choice; straight to bed or tell a quick tale on the blog about Goan chickens.

Chickens in Goa find their way into a lot of tasty dishes: Chicken Xacuti, Tandoori Chicken, Galinha Cafreal, Butter Chicken, Chicken Baffad, Goan Chicken Fry, Galinha Com Coentro, Goa Sausage Terrine, Chicken Gizzard, Chicken Moelho, Grilled Chicken, Chicken Guisado, Chicken Masala, Chilli Chicken, Chicken Lollipops, Mustard chicken, Chicken Cutlets to name a good few.

A rough guide:

  • Grind ginger, garlic, vinegar , cinnamon stick, pepper , cloves, cumin seeds, salt, turmeric, lemon, green chillies into a paste
  • More garlic in the form of thick flakes and olive oil tossed in would only enhance the taste
  • Rub the paste generously into the cut chicken and at least marinade overnight
  • Cook on a slow flame for about 45 mins until all the paste has been soaked up by the chicken, which should then be cooked
  • Garnish the cooked chicken with mint and lemon pieces
  • Serve with chips and a colourful salad

The image below was taken by me on a beach on the coast of Goa: 9 January 2012

Timol’s South Indian Toast

It was a windy and cold morning earlier today in Durban and other parts of South Africa.

The usual Jungle Oats or plain toast just wasn’t going to cut it.

I was pretty disinterested in the kitchen as thoughts of creating this blog had me studying my 22 inch monitor.

Irene “Timol” ambled into the kitchen and, in lightning speed, whipped up a toasted sandwich of note.

Basically, buttered bread covered with cheese, sliced viennas, freshly chopped green chilli, sliced tomato, ground black pepper and a sprinkle of salt.

Then another layer of cheese and roughly chopped dhania (coriander), pressed into a sandwich and toasted in a non-stick pan on the stove.

Finger licking stuff!

Image below taken at halfway stage before toasting.

A Food Orgasm?

Now it’s been said that one should never ever give the “competition” free advertising; but my blog is under construction, I need some time to create (a breather) and credit must certainly be given when and where due.

Megan’s sister Amy is a top food blogger.

The title of her blog might leave you wondering for days, and the content of her blog is fresh / exciting.

Read further and explore right here.

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." -Mark Twain

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