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Kuala Lumpur - Petronas Tower

Kuala Lumpur – Petronas Tower

KLCC (Kuala Lumpur City Centre)

Travel Blog 17/03/06

Today I did all my internet stuff. I just love it, my little laptop is sooo coool!

I had been at the tourist information, where I could sign up for a shopping card and get some vouchers. One of them was a coffee at ‘The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf’. When I arrived there, it was like a Starbucks but with a beautiful view over KLCC park. So I hooked up to their wireless internet access and enjoyed the view, doing my email stuff.

My gosh, it’s going to be a lot of coffee drinking this holiday if every time I want to upload my pics I have to go to a Starbucks!

 

This blog post appeared originally here on Monday, Mar 20 2006, 02:58:56pm: http://www.zorpia.com/TrulyJuly/journal/1499628.

 

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Review of lecture 'Hong Kong cinema: Crisis and Recovery' by Tony Rayns at the ICA

Review of lecture ‘Hong Kong cinema: Crisis and Recovery’ by Tony Rayns at the ICA

 

This article was originally written in July 2002 for Creative Week.

 

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.co.za is the default domain for companies in South Africa. Why is it not just simply .za?

.co.za is the default domain for companies in South Africa. Why not just simply .za?

 

Is your url ending in .co.za?

 

Do you know why South Africa is having this tongue twister as the default web address?

 

Few countries are using the second level domain .co in their url. It stands for ‘commercial’ as opposed to ‘academia’ (.ac) or ‘government’ (.gov) before the country’s top level domain.

 

One of these countries is the UK, where I first encountered the practice of using second-level domains in the url.

 

It annoyed me back then in the UK and it still annoys me now in SA:

 

Of course it makes sense to create credibility with moderated second level domains such as .ac or .edu or .gov or .ngo, because they help the user identify an official institution at a glance.

 

But .co.za, .net.za and .org.za are unmoderated second level domains, which means anyone can just get them.

 

So why not just go for .za then?

 

Many countries skip those superfluous letters of the second level domain and simply stick to their country’s top level domain. Like the host of my email address which uses only the German country domain, keeping it short and simple: TrulyJuly@web.de 🙂

 

Interestingly, it appears the UK is not only ditching the second level domain, but also offering to swap it with the shorter and sweeter top level country domain on its own.  As per Wikipedia:

“New registrations directly under .uk have been accepted by Nominet since 10 June 2014 08:00 BST, however there is a reservation period for existing customers who already have a .co.uk, .org.uk, .me.uk, .net.uk, .ltd.uk or .plc.uk domain to claim the corresponding .uk domain, which runs until 07:59 BST on 10 June 2019.[7]

 

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Please help and find these two adorable rescue puppies a good home!

Please help and find these two adorable puppies a good home!

 

Please help!

Puppy brothers Starsky & Hutch are looking for a good home.

 

Starsky is the puppy with the dark hair like Ben Stiller in the movie and Hutch is the blond one like Owen Wilson.

 

Just like Starsky & Hutch they make a great team!

 

While Starsky is outgoing, adventurous and up for anything, always in the middle of the action, Hutch is a very gentle soul, a tender handsome little boy, who always wants to cuddle.

 

Together they play and explore. Watching out for each other, they always have each other’s back. With their puppy clumsiness and swagger, they make a funny pair. You don’t want to miss out on all the hilarious entertainment these adorable cuties bliss us with every day.

 

Both are housetrained and socialised with other pets. They get on well with children and are an awesome addition to the family. As young as they are, Starsky & Hutch are already very protective over us and would make great guard dogs.

 

They’ve had all their medical checks, are dewormed and vaccinated, and come with dog bed and harnesses, although they are outgrowing these quickly!

 

Because they get on so well with our dogs, we’d love to find them a home in Cape Town or even Woodstock, so we can meet up for playdates. I’m also happy to dogsit them any time.

 

Most importantly we’d like them to stay together, they’ve been through such ordeal as rescue pups, but they always had each other.

 

Could you be the one who can offer Starsky & Hutch a forever home?

 

If you know someone who has the space for two medium sized well natured and absolutely charming male dogs, please get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de 🙂

 

For updates on Starsky & Hutch, please like their Facebook page: @SAfricanis

 

#AdoptDontShop

 

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"Ready for Season 2017" - Not so much, as it's 2018 already.

“Ready for Season 2017” – Not so much, as it’s 2018 already.

 

So it’s the middle of January 2018 and I still find visuals referring to 2017 around the internet.

Why even? In the above example, simply stating: “Ready for This Season” could’ve worked just as well.

Using imagery with concrete dates is an easy trap to look outdated. Unless you’re spot on on the case, updating your campaign the minute it expires, don’t dig this unnecessary hole for yourself. Every time you’re tempted to use a real date, be it only the year, think about it:

Does the date make the campaign look more current or rather outdated if you don’t have the resources to keep it updated.

Even if a date is required, for example for a competition, remember that incorporating it in your imagery means you’ve got to update all your visuals should there be any change to the date, for example extending the entry deadline. Rather referring to the Ts & Cs means you only ever have to update your Terms & Conditions.

If you do decide to feature a particular date in your graphics, set yourself a reminder to be alerted when this date has passed.

 

Kuala Lumpur 16.03.06

Travel Blog 16/03/06

1. Day in Malaysia - Exploring markets and shopping centres in Kuala Lumpur

1. Day in Malaysia – Exploring markets and shopping centres in Kuala Lumpur

Lola, who also came over to Kuala Lumpur to visit Laavan, and I went into the city centre today to explore Kuala Lumpur.

We went to Central Market, where they have lots of crafts, like wooden sculptures, masks, batik clothes, necklaces, paintings, accessories etc.

After that we went to Chinatown to see more peculiar stuff. Just walking around taking a look is incredible.

I’ve put up some pictures, so you can take a look at the album: http://www.zorpia.com/TrulyJuly/album/424638/album/page=all.

We travelled back to Laavan’s house on the LRT (Light Rail Transit). From the station to Laavan’s house we wanted to take a taxi, it’s so cheap and it was raining. But no taxi would pick us up! Apparently when there were heavy rains (and it does rain heavily all of the sudden later in the day), traffic goes manic and the taxi drivers just want to get back to their base.
So we walked back, luckily the rain had stopped. At Laavan’s place a lot of relatives arrived for the engagement party on Sunday and we had a fantastic dinner with squid and mutton and vegetable curry and rice. Laavan and Laavan’s mum had cooked it themselves and it tastes just amazing, like going to a restaurant.

 

This blog post appeared originally here on Monday, Mar 20 2006, 02:55:56pm: http://www.zorpia.com/TrulyJuly/journal/1499624.

 

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Review of Movie Night "FrameBarFrame" by Paul Hoson at the Vibe Bar

Review of Movie Night “FrameBarFrame” by Paul Hoson at the Vibe Bar

 

The original article can be found here:  http://www.freewebs.com/creativecommunicationswrithings/Writhings/MoviePaul.htm

 

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Look what I excavated from our garden: A vintage Mother of Pearl button

Look what I excavated from our garden: A vintage Mother of Pearl button

 

The excitement of excavating something shiny when cleaning up the garden soil from rubble and debris!

 

I gave this Mother of Pearl button a rinse and it’s gleaming in the sun.

 

According to Vintage Button Emporium this nacre button is even worth something, like a pound or two. It is the rim that makes it more valuable than just a plain version. Craftsmanship is always worth something.

 

Interestingly, this button seems to have been fastened with a metal noose, which is still attached to it. So was it part of some sort of uniform maybe?

 

If you know more about The Broken Palace or the people who lived there and what happened that we’re digging up so many artefacts. please get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de 🙂

 

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Oopsie, another bag full with used tea bags...

Oopsie, another bag full with used tea bags…

I drink at least 2 litres of tea a day. I use 3 teabags to brew 1 litre. That’s a minimum of 6 teabags per day.

So that 200 teabag bulk offer is probably what I go through per month.

Accordingly I have a lot of used teabags to do… well, what with? Read on for some useful tips.

 

What to do with used tea bags

 

Used tea bags belong in the garden.

A used tea bag is still full of nutrition. It is nitrogen rich and can be used like a fertiliser. Tear open the bag and sprinkle the tea into your pot plants or around your garden.

Line plant pots with old teabags, especially around the drainage holes, before filling them with soil. The tea bags retain water and nutrition.

Tea is a must-have for your compost, as it counter balances all the carbon-rich materials.

The caffeine in the tea is just as much a stimulant for your garden inhabitants as for you and has a great effect on earthworms: They will work and breed faster.

 

Used tea bags make great sponges.

Apparently adding used tea bags to your dishwashing water helps to break down grease and food stains.

You can use the tea bag itself to preclean dirty pans and trays. Be careful not to break the tea bag, as it works wonderfully to wipe up that grease, and simply throw it in the bin, instead of having to rinse your kitchen sponge with a lot of water. In addition, the tannins in the leaves will prevent the oxidising process, preventing rust.

Similarly, freshly brewed hot tea bags can be used to preclean windows. The tea’s tannic acid will leave the glass sparkling clean.

Scrub your dark leather shoes with a damp used teabag. Tanning leather involves tannin, the tea can add a new shine.

 

Used tea bags capture bad odour.

Place dried old teabags in the bottom of your kitchen bin to absorb liquids and odours.

Wash away odours from your hands: Rinse your hands with water and a brewed tea bag to remove odours of onions, garlic, fish and other foods.

If you’re a smoker or have an ashtray out for guests, put a wet tea bag or the leaves from a wet tea bag into the ashtray. When you or your guests ash in the tray, the wet leaves will hold the ash and absorb some of the smell from the smoke.

The antibacterial contents of tea bags will help neutralize the odour in your litter box as well. Just sprinkle the dried out contents of a brewed tea bag into the kitty / rattie litter.

 

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“Here, let me help you.”

 

“Ah, that’s ok. I do the MOOP Swoop every bin day. It’s actually quite quick, don’t worry.”

 

“Such a shame with the Cape Town wind: Everything you clean up today, it’s just the same tomorrow.”

 

“Yes, but if I didn’t clean it today, it’d be worse tomorrow.”

 

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Travelling off into adventure! 3 months South East Asia!

Travelling off into adventure! 3 months South East Asia!

Travelling from London to Bangkok to Kuala Lumpur

Travel Blog 14/03/06 – 15/03/06

I flew out to Bangkok with Eva Airlines. The flight was quite cheap, considering I booked only one week before. Food and in-flight entertainment was ok, luckily the seat next to me was empty, so I could lie down and sleep a bit.

At Bangkok I had to wait a bit, so I sat outside for some sunshine. I got into a conversation with a Polish man, who had been in Burma (Myanmar) for two weeks. It was nice just sitting there, having an interesting conversation and enjoy the hot weather.

On my flight to Kuala Lumpur I promptly fell asleep. I could hardly stay awake for the take-off, even though I find that so exciting. I woke up as I was freezing, my gosh, aircon is nice, but does it have to be this cold? Luckily I got into a conversation with the man next to me. He planned my entire route across Malaysia for me and even drew a little map!

When I got to Kuala Lumpur International Airport, the last train had already left, even though it says on the website it runs until 1am. Luckily I met Charan, who was waiting to pick up his Aussie friend to bring him back home to Bangsar, near by where Laavan’s family live. So I got a lift back there and was even invited for a snack and some nice ginger tea.

 

This blog post appeared originally here on Friday, Mar 17 2006, 12:07:10pm: http://www.zorpia.com/TrulyJuly/journal/1498190.

 

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Review of Movie Night "Arts Lab" by Jonathan Sedassy at the Rhythm Factory

Review of Movie Night “Arts Lab” by Jonathan Sedassy at the Rhythm Factory

 

You can see the original article here:
http://www.freewebs.com/creativecommunicationswrithings/Writhings/MovieJonny.htm

 

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First visit to the beach for Starsky & Hutch! And all I get a photo of is their backside… Which is, of course, also cute! 😉

 

“Hutch, over here!” Nope, Hutch is way too excited about what’s happening around him at the beach to look into the camera.

 

Clearly the first time at the beach is incredibly exciting, because not once did the puppies hold still just long enough to take a picture.

 

And the entire time Starsky & Hutch were watching Lola and Gigi run and enjoy the freedom of endless beach, with shadows of seagulls to chase.

 

The sand was also intensely interesting, to smell, to eat, and to dig. No time to look up at me long enough for at least one nice snap.

 

Well well, it was a lot of fun, and that’s all that matters. 🙂

 

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Did you know that New Year’s is celebrated around the world?

The calendar might differ, but the tradition to welcome the new year is honoured in most cultures.

Isn’t it lovely to know this is a custom for everyone, something we all join in to celebrate?

 

So, wherever you are, whenever and however you celebrate, I’m wishing you a: Happy New Year! 🙂

 

Cyanide & Happiness:

Cyanide & Happiness: “I celebrate New Year’s when I want.”

 

 

Google's New Year Doodle looks like

Google’s New Year Doodle looks like “GO GIF” in the search results thumbnail view.

 

This was funny, at first glance I misread it, but I think it’s still a great way to welcome the new year:

Today’s Google Doodle for 2018 looks like “GO GIF” in the search view thumbnail version or “GO GLF” on the main Google search display.

 

 

Especially the “GO GIF” is worthwhile googling if you need a bit of an upliftment for the new year ahead.

 

So: Happy New Year and GOoooo!

 

You go! :)

You go! 🙂

 

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These pieces of plaster have been around for a while: They all show different layers of paint.

These pieces of plaster have been around for a while: They all show different layers of paint.

 

This looks like we have many houses buried in our garden, with the colour palette ranging through the entire colour spectrum.

I love how each plaster piece has at least 2 different colour layers.

Do they all come from one house? That must’ve looked like Pippi Longstocking’s Villa Villekulla.

Or are these remains of the houses that stood on the now abandoned corner of Greatmore and York Street?

And why are they still in our garden, why did no-one ever clean up the rubble?

If you know more about The Broken Palace, please get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de 🙂

 

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Sisi and Molly are sharing and tearing a mini muffin. Harley and Mulan look cute in front. At the back, Cinnamonkey's bum. Somehow in there: Felix and Milka.

Sisi and Molly are sharing and tearing a mini muffin. Harley and Mulan look cute in front. At the back, Cinnamonkey’s bum. Somehow in there: Felix and Milka.

 

Our ratties’ 1st birthday! And they celebrated with lots of #rattie #treats:

Mini fruit skewers, mini bruschetta, mini cupcakes, mini biscuits, mini 85% dark chocolate splinters: Our ratties turn 1! :)

Mini fruit skewers, mini bruschetta, mini cupcakes, mini biscuits, mini 85% dark chocolate splinters: Our ratties turn 1! 🙂

 

Watch rattie Mommy enjoy her fruit skewer:

 

And a cupcake on top of it:

 

 

Yoshi is undeterred and only focusses on licking the yoghurt off the cupake:

 

They came, they saw, they ate:

The empty buffet after the ratties are done with it.

The empty buffet after the ratties are done with it.

 

Like after any good party, the ratties pass out all cuddled up:

After the feast, the ratties are cuddling up to sleep.

After the feast, the ratties are cuddling up to sleep.

 

We can conclude: The ratties had a great 1st Birthday Party! 🙂

 

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Metal bits and bobs that I find plentiful in our garden soil.

Metal bits and bobs that I find plentiful in our garden soil.

 

These are the contents of only one hole.

 

You might think I excavated this over time.

 

Far from that: The dogs start digging and I start collecting. This is the result of only one of their digging holes. I don’t even know what half of these things are.

 

The metal bits sit compacted on top of each other. Like parts of a house that has collapsed and been buried.

 

In a matter of one session of removing all items from the ground that could pose a danger to digging puppy paws, this is what I collect. Besides gazillions of nails and other unidentifiable scrap metal.

 

What happened to The Broken Palace that once stood here? Are these the remains? How come this never got cleared up? If you know more, kindly get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de

 

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Darn, my pet's drinking bottle has algae growing inside, and I can't even reach the rim to clean it!

Darn, my pet’s drinking bottle has algae growing inside, and I can’t even reach the rim to clean it!

 

In the 20+ years that I had pet rats I never had problems with algae in the ratties’ drinking bottle.

 

Then I heard from one of my #RattieSitting friends that she has to buy a new one, because hers has turned all green.

 

Weirdly enough, not too long after, also my pet water bottles showed signs of algae infestation.

 

Maybe something has changed to the Cape Town’s drinking water with the drought crisis?

 

Fortunately buying a new water dispenser is not necessary:

 

How to get rid of algae in your pet’s water dispenser

 

Simply soak the dish or bottle in 100% white vinegar.

 

Around the internet you’ll find a vinegar-water solution recommended at a ratio of 1 to 1. White vinegar also works well when diluted. Caution is advised when handling even food-grade vinegar as it is an acid.

 

But I find rinsing my rattie’s water bottle with pure white vinegar and let it soak for a while, does the trick: The algae simply disappears.

 

Wash the drinking bottle extensively to make sure all traces of algae and white vinegar are gone.

 

White vinegar is not bad for pet rats, apple cider vinegar is even good for them, but of course: only in a very diluted form. So don’t worry if the water bottle still smells of vinegar, a tiny bit of it won’t do any harm.

 

Of course, taking the time to clean your pet’s drinking bottle thoroughly means you need at least two. A good practice tip is anyway to provide two water bottles – just in case one fails – to make sure your pets always have access to water, especially in hot weather. This also gives you the chance to alternate between the two bottles when a proper clean is needed.

 

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Gigi makes herself small to play with the puppies. Just the other day she was a puppy herself, now she's all grown-up with our foster pups.

Gigi makes herself small to play with the puppies. Just the other day she was a puppy herself, now she’s all grown-up with our foster pups.

 

Our dogs are quite relaxed about other canine visitors. As I offer dogsitting services, they got used to having their friends around.

 

Inviting some newbies into our home such as foster puppies Starsky & Hutch has however an impact on the pack hierarchy, and it’s fascinating to follow how the dynamics change:

 

Gigi, so far the youngest, behaved very much like a puppy, including the odd wee inside the house that left me puzzled to wonder if she has a mini bladder and just can’t hold it long enough.

 

In come the rescue puppies. And voilà: Gigi stops peeing inside and behaves all grown-up and mature, doing her business in our garden. No more accidents.

 

Gigi is also the one who fell in love with our foster puppies first. She adopted them right away, and although being a puppy herself, she is looking out for them, watching over them and there in a flash when one of the pups starts whining.

 

All the while Lola, who did the same for Gigi, takes it easy with the new addition to the pack and only slowly allows them to interact her. So now that Starsky & Hutch can, they kiss her mouth and snuggle up to her and generally worship her.

 

But it is Gigi who takes on the role as puppy nanny and keeps them entertained all the time. She makes herself small, lying on the ground, robbing towards the pups to play with them.

Especially Starsky is on the same energy level as her and welcomes every opportunity for some play action. Hutch is more a cuddly one and will watch the tumult of puppy play unfold, preferably in the safety of a human’s lap.

 

Incredible how quickly they grow up. You don’t want to miss a second, before you know it the puppy phase is over!

 

So please spread the news for Starsky & Hutch: They’re looking for a forever home and whoever will adopt them won’t want to miss out on all the cuteness overload they’re blessing us with every day! 🙂

 

Kindly get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de

 

#AdoptDontShop

 

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Surely, the Microsoft Windows Firewall should be familiar with Skype, a Microsoft owned app?

The Microsoft Windows Firewall has a problem with the Microsoft Skype program. Surely it should know by now that Skype is trustworthy?

The Microsoft Windows Firewall has blocked the Microsoft Skype program. Surely it should know by now that Skype is trustworthy?

I just wonder how this company is running when already their tech is rejecting each other?

 

 

Always remember that the new year is next year.

 

I know that sounds odd, but it happens too easily that we keep on writing the old year when we mean the new year. Maybe it’s some kind of force of habit.

 

Especially during the switch-over in December and January, various examples pop up.

This sounds like a great resolution for the new year - which is 2018.

This sounds like a great resolution for the new year – which is 2018.

 

It’s easy to miss when proofreading copy for the new year, because, as we still are in the old year, the old year looks right to us.

 

So always double check the year!

 

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Extreme chill-out: When we took our pet rats on holiday with us to Beaverlac and it got hot, this is the way our ratties relaxed: They hooked their teeth into the cage bars to literally hang.

Rattie version of putting your feet up: Our pet rat hooks her teeth on.

Rattie version of putting your feet up: Our rat hooks her teeth on.

 

Rats don’t sweat and don’t pant. The only way for them to release heat is through their tail.

In the wild they might stay in a burrow throughout the day to avoid the heat. But in your pet rat cage it could get pretty hot.

 

10 Tips how to protect your pet rat from overheating

 

– Keep the air cool but not draughty

Of course, the best way to keep your rat cool is to keep them in a cool environment. Place their cage in a cool spot and remove all blankets. However, because rats are prone to respiratory illnesses, don’t put them in a draughty spot. If there is a draught, place a wet blanket over the cage. It protects against the breeze and cools the air down.

 

– Build a rattie aircon

Simply put a small bowl of ice cubes on top of the pet rat cage and cover with a larger bowl. This will guide the cool air into your ratoots’ cage and keep them chilled.

 

– Remove bedding and newspapers

To protect pet rat’s feet it’s a good idea to put down a solid surface on the cage floor. When it’s hot however, remove it. Your ratties will enjoy lying flat down on the cage wire mesh as it allows them to release heat 360 degrees all surround.

 

– Place a container filled with ice in the cage

This can be a frozen water bottle or a flat ice cream tub filled with ice cubes. Anything that cools down the rattie cage, as long as it’s safe and non-toxic in case the rats nibble on it.

 

– Place cool surfaces in their cage

Tiles, stoneware or terracotta pots are naturally cool materials and can help absorb the heat from your pet rat’s body.

 

– Feed them ice cube treats

Some rats really like ice cubes. Mix in a bit of juice and turn them into ice popsicle treats your ratties won’t be able to resist.

 

– Feed them frozen food

Feed them fresh veggies, salad and fruits straight out of the fridge. Prepare some frozen food mix and serve it right out of the freezer. A fun game for pet rats is fishing frozen peas out of a water bowl, perfect entertainment in hot weather.

 

– Freeze their bedding

Freezing the rattie bedding is a great way to kill mites. It also helps your rats cool down when it’s hot.

 

– Give them a bath

Spritz them with mist, rinse them under the tap or dunk them into water up to their necks. A cool bath will provide instant relief from overheating. If your pet rat really doesn’t like water, make at least sure their tail gets wet to cool down.

 

– Place a bath in their cage

Your ratties might seek a refreshing bath and welcome a bowl of water to use for washing. Make sure it sits safe and the surrounds can handle a bit of splish splash.

 

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“A LinkedIn connection means you’ll never lose touch”. Exactly the reason why I keep on connecting with my contacts on LinkedIn.

 

The connections you make are valuable. But keeping in touch with them poses a problem: Their contact details can change.

Maintaining a good relationship with potential customers is key to business success, but what if the contact details are outdated?

Or worse: What if your contact details update? You only need to change jobs and the rapport you built over time disappears in the moment your work email is discontinued.

One way to maintain your business relationships is through LinkedIn.

The advantage: You remain connected no matter what happens to the contact details.

 

3 simple steps to import your contacts to LinkedIn

 

1) Export your address book to a .csv, .txt or .vcf. file.

 

2) Go to www.linkedin.com/mynetwork/import-contacts and click on ‘Upload a file’. Browse to and select your contacts database.

 

3) Select the contacts you want to stay in touch with and press ‘Add connections’.

 

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#Good #Practice: This is a friendly way to start a customer relationship.

#Good #Practice: A friendly way to start a customer relationship.

 

When organising an event it can be tricky to gauge what your audience expects.

 

I like to give super detailed event descriptions so anyone who’s interested knows what will happen.

 

However, I still don’t know what exactly the attendees want to get out of the event.

For example if I organise an event “Content Marketing for Bloggers” there can still be questions ranging from text to imagery, website to podcasts, from LinkedIn to accessibility.

 

So why not run a pre-event survey?

It works great as a reminder for the event and gives you the chance to address everyone’s questions in detail.

 

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Scabs in your pet rat's fur can indicate a mite infestation.

Scabs in your pet rat’s fur can indicate a mite infestation.

 

Most parasites you find in your pet’s fur are only there because of a weak immune system.

Mites for example are always around, in bedding, on skin, in hair. It is only when the natural defence mechanisms of your pet are not strong enough to fight them off that you need to step in.

A weak immune system due to illness, malnutrition or old age is an invitation for mites to multiply. Once they’re taking over, it becomes a hassle for your pet to get rid of them.

 

There is medicine you can administer that kills off all parasites in general:

Ivermectin, which mites could be resistant to however, and

Revolution, which is normally for cats.

 

I try to avoid medicine as far as possible, so here is an alternative method:

 

How to get rid of mice or lice in a natural way

 

  1. Groom your pet

The mites have taken over and your pet is struggling keeping these buggers at bay.

Help them by grooming them with a small comb. You will soon notice that you’re combing out small particles, each one of them is a relief to your pet.

 

  1. Douse the affected areas with olive oil

I use high quality extra virgin olive oil and don’t dilute it.

Whatever oil is in excess, your pet can lick off and it’s even good for them: Virgin oil has proven to have a life-extending effect in rats.

 

Depending on severity you can give a pet rat an olive oil bath.

According to this story that can end up very messy.

But it seems drenching your pet rat in olive oil really does the trick, as this comment confirms.

 

Pouring pure olive oil on the affected areas should suffocate the mites and at the same time heal the scabs. Together with an immune-boosting diet, your pet should be able to fend off the invaders.

 

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Do you need to pee or not to pee? That is the question.

Do you need to pee or not to pee? That is the question.

 

Our first rescue puppy came at a semi-surprise: We thought about having a dog, but then it all happened very fast when I offered to foster and fell in love with Lola.

 

Telling my mum about our new addition to the family, she casually mentioned: “And always remember: When puppies wake up, they have to go.”

 

Best advice ever. Because all puppies do is eat, play, sleep, and yes, go to the toilet.

 

It makes things a whole lot easier if you just follow their pattern and watch out when they wake up. As soon as they do, simply take them outside to do their business.

 

Of course there’s the in-between pee and the it-surprised-us-all runny poo.

 

But anticipating when puppies have to go and putting them outside in time so they have the chance to do it right, helps to housetrain them quickly.

 

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Hello you little schmoopies! Starsky & Hutch are recovering nicely.

Hello you little schmoopies! Starsky & Hutch are recovering nicely.

 

It is so rewarding seeing these two improving day by day.

What handsome little boys they’re turning into!

While two puppies might make twice as much mess, seeing them play makes up for it. This is double dose of cuteness overload.

And play they do! Every day they get more daring.

From sparring to barking, wrestling, jumping, from whining to grabbing, dragging, growling, howling, it is fascinating to see them playfight.

They fence with their teeth, they attack from behind and they go for the kill. That’s usually when the game comes to a halt, as both actually need a break.

But soon after it continues, and the two are outdoing each other with tumbles, thuds and bangs, one being clumsier than the other.

The more amazing it is to see them fearlessly climbing the stairs, jumping into the garden and taking on our big dogs.

Stasrky & Hutch are having so much fun, it’s a joy to watch them as they become bestest brothers.

 

 

These two rescue puppies need a forever home. Please share, like, and spread the news.

Kindly get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de

#AdoptDontShop

 

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When faced with potential disaster, and overcome it, there’s a great urge to make things better.

 

Like it was so close but we managed to escape catastrophe unscathed, it’s not possible to carry on the day as usual.

 

What better thing to do than put our new learnings into action:

 

Rubbish is a fire hazard, so let’s get rid of it!

Wild growing shrubs can also easily catch fire, especially during drought, so let’s pull them out!

 

So now the empty corner plot at 23 Greatmore Street is clean again:

People power: Together we can clean up even Woodstock! :)

People power: Together we can clean up even Woodstock!

🙂

 

Because this is how the council leaves it:

All the council had to do was to maintain it clean.

All the council had to do was to maintain it clean.

😦

 

Seems like this is going to be same procedure as every year, because this is how we cleaned up last year:

All cleaned up and neat! This 'earth' is actually compacted rubbish that collected over the years and needs to be removed.

All cleaned up! This ‘earth’ is actually compacted rubbish that collected over the years and needs to be removed.

 

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The fire brigade managed to get the blaze under control quickly, thank goodness!

The fire brigade managed to get the blaze under control quickly, thank goodness!

 

I would’ve never thought that 3 shacks could threaten to burn down the entire neighbourhood: Especially with the drought crisis, informal settlements pose a dangerous fire hazard!

That’s what I learned after a representative of Cape Town’s Disaster Risk Management assessed the abandoned plot at 27 Greatmore Street.

The verdict: We were very lucky the fire didn’t spread to the neighbouring properties. Who knows what would’ve happened then. Well, clearly disaster enough for the City of Cape Town to be very concerned!

From my perspective, no luck was involved, but the combined efforts of neighbours fighting the fire with whatever means we had, keeping the blaze at bay until the fire brigade arrived just minutes away from our house going up in flames.

 

See our everyday heroes in action

The fire brigade is hosing down the fire:

Lots of smoke and steam from the fire:

After the fire all the rubbish is still smouldering:

Our back wall is so hot from the fire it is steaming:

This fire and then the water hosing is causing structural damage to our house:

 

But the real heroes to me are still our neighbours who did what had to be done without thinking twice:

As the fire had started in the early morning hours, we were all not dressed properly as we climbed onto our roofs to combat the flames with what little water we had.

In moments of potential disaster, nothing matters but action. It is thanks to this heroic act that nothing worse happened. Luckily, no-one got hurt, but we’re all left with structural damage to our properties.

If you don’t want this to happen to your home, report any illegal housing constructions right away: Report a problem building.

 

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A firefighter is hosing down the smouldering debris at 27 Greatmore Street.

A firefighter is hosing down the smouldering debris at 27 Greatmore Street. Watch this space for more pictures to come.

 

 

Today in the early morning hours the informal settlement at the abandoned plot of 27 Greatmore Street went up in smoke. The flames leaped so high, they came over our second storey roof and burned through the telephone overhead line.

 

 

It was thanks to the group living rough on the empty field next door that I was alerted about the fire. They saw the smoke rising behind our house. As I ran upstairs to look, I could already see the flames licking at our windows, which means they were about 5 metres high.

 

We have all emergency numbers on our fridge, so I called the fire brigade who had already been informed by our community.

 

As the house started to react to the heat of the fire with bangs and cracks, I realised I had to protect our back wall.

 

Since the drought crisis we collect our rainwater in water canisters, the only problem was just:

How to get those 50 litre containers from the other end of our house up onto the roof?

 

First I had to untangle our folding step ladder and then, and I’m not really sure how, but I managed to heave that 50 kg water container up onto the top of the ladder and from there up onto our flat roof.

 

By that time the flames were coming at me and our roof fascia was smouldering. I poured the 50 litres down the back wall into the fire. I just lay the canister on its side and dragged it along the roof while the water was spurting out to get as much surface wet as possible.

 

Opposite me, from the back of Oxford Street, our neighbour stood in his blue boxers atop the roof, hosing down the fire with what little water pressure they got. It was reassuring to see we were just doing whatever we can.

 

I was busy heaving another canister up, when the fire brigade finally reached the blaze and contained it quickly.

Just in time, as our water distribution efforts were only holding back the fire for a short while.

 

It appears no-one got hurt as the people living in the shacks had made a runner.

 

As the firemen were hosing down the smouldering debris, the smoke cleared away and revealed the mess of burnt rubbish. The fire had eaten up everything and blackened the ground to a grotesque landscape like from an apocalypse movie.

 

Our back wall got so hot, that it was steaming as soon as the fire hose hit it. The plaster and one of our windows cracked.

 

Thank goodness for fire regulations which demand to set back the windows 1 metre from the boundary wall, I see now that this is for a good reason!

And thank goodness our windows are double glazed, which means only the outer pane cracked.

And thank goodness we’re storing water at home, it came to an unexpected helpful use.

 

As quickly as the fire had spread, it was all over within the hour. It was still before 8am when the fire brigade left.

 

And as another hot and sunny day commences in Cape Town be extra careful: Especially now during summer season coupled with a drought crisis, it is so dry, anything can just go up in flames.

 

 

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It's tempting to rescue abused puppies from street sellers, but if you want to help end this cruel practice, do NOT buy them.

It’s tempting to rescue abused puppies from street sellers, but if you want to help end this cruel practice, do NOT buy them.

 

What would you do when confronted with cute puppies who are clearly in need of rescue?

Your animal loving nature is what these cruel puppy sellers are counting on when emotionally blackmailing you into buying their pups.

Unfortunately however, rescuing these creatures in need by buying them will only contribute to this vicious cycle: For the puppy seller any sale is a success no matter the underlying motivation. So they will continue this irresponsible puppy breeding to make more money.

Instead, be vigilant, stay safe and report these illegal puppy sellers:

 

What to do if you encounter puppies being sold on the street

1) Take a photo of the perpetrator

Be careful, these puppy sellers know it’s illegal what they do. But they might not know that you know.
Keep it that way until you got a clear headshot picture of the offender and have safely put away your device with which you took the photo.

2) Call the police and the SPCA

The SPCA is very clear that you shouldn’t buy that puppy.
Instead call Law Enforcement on (021) 812 4464 and the SPCA on (021) 700 4158/9.
The puppy seller is committing a criminal offense and should be arrested. Remember you’re dealing with an animal abuser, let authorities take the appropriate actions.

3) Do not take the puppies home

You’re putting yourself and your pets in danger of contracting any illnesses these puppies might carry.
The first stop for these abused pups is the vet. Alternatively you can ask any animal shelter to take care of them.
Unless the dogs have been treated for worms, fleas, ticks and received the proper vaccinations, handle them with extreme care: wash your hands frequently and disinfect the area around them.

4) Publish the photo of the offender

Email the picture you took together with time and place to the police and the SPCA, so they can build a case.
Utilise social media to warn others about this crook and use the opportunity to create awareness about not ever buying from puppy sellers.

5) Adopt Don’t Shop

There are so many pets in need out there, give one of them a chance! If you’re looking for a pet, rather adopt from one of the many animal welfare organisations.
Every day many rescue animals are being put down. Save a life by offering one of them a home.

#AdoptDontShop

 

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Our dogs look on as we accommodate the two new rescue puppies.

Our dogs look on as we accommodate the two new rescue puppies.

 

Foster Bliss! Look who popped into our lives being rescued from one of those opportunistic street sellers.

 

These two little boys were confiscated to protect them from further abuse and rushed to the vet where the prognosis was grim:

Besides the usual neglect – dirty, full of fleas and ticks and grime; abused, covered in scabs and bruises; malnutritioned, with underdeveloped and wobbly bodies – they had a severe problem:

It appears all these puppies got fed was bones.

They had to be operated to remove all those sharp pieces from their tiny bellies.

 

What a hardship! To go through such a tough operation. At such young age, about 8 weeks old. They are so small, the scar looms along their entire underside.

 

And yet, and this is where the foster bliss comes in, they are so happy and grateful!

 

Especially Starsky, the black and tan pup, such a clever little chap! He already goes to the toilet on a newspaper. Full of energy, he barks when he gets bored in his puppy corner. Already he explores every nook and cranny and even tried to climb up the stairs.

 

Hutch, who is tan with cute white markings, is taking it easy as he’s recovering. A very gentle soul, he monitors everything with a slight suspicion, but gets it when you’re doing good to him. He held very still as I washed him in the sink and enjoys being wrapped up in a blankie.

 

This is such profound inspiration: These boys went through a terrible ordeal of abuse and yet, the moment someone is kind to them, all of it seems to fade away and they are just happy happy happy.

 

I too am grateful to live in the moment with them where everything can only get better. 🙂

I just have to remind myself that these two are not for keeps! 😮

 

So watch this space, as these lovely munchkins are going to be up for adoption soon.

It’s difficult to tell what they’ll turn into, but they look like medium-sized, short coat but fluffy haired, floppy ears and upward pointing tails type of dogs.

 

Please share and spread the message:

We’re looking for a loving home for two little puppy boys, Starsky & Hutch, who will surely bring a lot of love and happiness to their new owners.

Kindly get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de

#AdoptDontShop

 

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So no-one can sign you up for a subscription without your knowledge, a double opt-in is required.

 

That means the email or phone you signed up with needs to be confirmed.

 

This can however go easily wrong, so why not list the steps how to check for that confirmation email in a well designed thank-you screen such as this:

This thank-you screen provides a checklist and prompts to look for the confirmation email.

This thank-you screen provides a checklist and prompts to look for the confirmation email.

 

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It doesn't take long to dig out a variety of nails from our garden soil.

It doesn’t take long to dig out a variety of nails from our garden.

 

This is the reason why I start excavating when our dogs start digging: Rusty nails.

 

They are everywhere in the ground of our garden. When the dogs are digging, I have to extract the nails, preferably before the dogs even reach them. Who knows where they come from, but best to get rid of them before they come too close to any soft dog paws.

 

Only one hole dug by the dogs contains a variety of numerous nails making me wonder how it came to be that The Broken Palace was destroyed.

 

From masonry nails to tiny screws, from bolts to cut clasp nails to staple fasteners, this is a collection of pretty much every nail type there is. So how did all of these come to be in our ground?

 

If you know more about The Broken Palace please get in touch: TrulyJuly@web.de 🙂

 

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While it’s always best not to waste water in the first place and make sure you close the tap and plug the sink whenever possible, the next good practice to save water is to collect what you can.

 

That means out come the buckets!

The bliss of rain! Quick, capture as much water as possible!

The bliss of rain! Quick, capture as much water as possible!

 

Collect water in the sink

Recycle a large ice cream tub by using it to catch water in your sink.

This grey water can be used to flush toilets or if it’s dishwater you can water your plants with it.

 

Collect water in the shower

Quite an acrobatic feat, place a bucket right beneath the shower head to capture most water while balancing around it.

Better even: Stand in a large plastic basin while showering and catch as much water as possible.

The bucket can be emptied out into the toilet canister to reuse as grey water.

 

Collect rain water

The fresh smell of rain! The soothing sound of drops on the corrugated iron roof!

Ideally you collect all rain water that hits your roof in a water tank.

Until you get there, whip out all the buckets, watering cans, canisters, you name it, and collect as much rain water as possible. It can be used as non-potable water to flush the toilet, wash your clothes and water the plants.

 

 

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Not the healthiest of treats – but then again, not much worse than your average breakfast cereal. Plus, modelling for a PortRATure photoshoot is quite exhausting and can be rewarded with a special treat. 😉

 

Accordingly Yoshi cannot believe his luck when he’s presented with a marie biscuit:

Rattie Yoshi is tentative: Biscuits don't just lie around like this!

Rattie Yoshi is tentative: Biscuits don’t just lie around like this!

 

He really looks like thinking: “Quick! Let me get this piece before anyone notices!”

"When there's a biscuit, grab it!"

“When there’s a biscuit, grab it!”

 

But of course, there’s nowhere to hide:

"I'll just munch it right here and now then."

“I’ll just munch it right here and now then.”

 

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Plug the sink instead of running the water to rinse your razor and save up to 300 gallons a month.

Plug the sink instead of running the water to rinse your razor and save up to 300 gallons a month.

 

Here’s a way to realise how much water is wasted down the drain: Put a plug on it.

Close the plug in all your sinks – bathroom, kitchen, pantry – just for one day and see how the water builds up.

All of what you capture is grey water and can be used for flushing the toilet or watering the plants.

 

Remember to put in the plug more often:

 

Save water when washing your hands

Not much water is being used washing your hands, yet you could save around 3 litres per wash if you put in the plug instead of using running water. When doing an activity that requires frequent rinsing, such as working in the garden or painting, leave the plug in and wash your hands / equipment in the water collected in the sink.

 

Save water when brushing your teeth

Get a feel for how much water you’re using by closing the plug when brushing your teeth. Close the tap whenever you don’t need running water. Rinse your toothbrush in the water you collected. If you don’t feel like scooping out the water to reuse it, you can clean the sink with it.

 

Save water when shaving

Put the plug in the sink when you shave and rinse your razor in the water collected. Even better: Fill a cup with hot water and shake your razor clean in it. Not using running water when shaving can save up to 1200 litres a month.

 

Save water when you shower

If your shower is in the bath tub, close the plug. All the water collected can be used as grey water. If you flush your toilet with your shower water, it’ll smell nicely of your shower gel, so it can have unexpected benefits. Scooping the water out is a mission though, ideally you’d upgrade your plumbing system to automatically collect grey water.

 

Save water when cooking

When washing fruits, vegetables or salad, make sure the plug is closed. You can do your dishes in the water collected. Scrub potatoes, carrots and other sturdy veggies in a bucket. Use this nutrition rich water for your plants.

 

Save water when doing the dishes

Close the plug of your kitchen sink. Your dishes get prewashed by themselves if you simply collect the water in the sink and let them soak. You can use the water to clean your dishes and then you can still use it as grey water. The only problem is scooping it back out, so make it easier by placing a bucket in your sink and doing the dishes in there. Whatever you do, not one drop should leave the kitchen sink when it can be reused.

 

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Reduce the flow by lowering the water pressure.

You can easily save water by reducing the water pressure.

You can easily save water by reducing the water pressure.

High water pressure in the system is actually not desirable:

Typically, lower pressure systems have lower operating costs, as they use less energy to produce and pump water, spend less repairing pipe breaks, and lose less water through leaks large and small.

The reason why we have high water pressure is convenience – so the kettle fills up quicker, and fire safety – if there is a fire you want a lot of water and quickly.

But with the current drought crisis in Cape Town, the City of Cape Town has urged residents to adjust the water-isolating valves (stopcocks) on their properties to reduce the flow rate and save water.

Reducing the water flow means you’ll need to wait longer for water to refill, giving you time to realise how much water we waste and become more mindful with water.

In addition you can always learn to stop the flow altogether and close the tap more frequently.

 

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Plastic Bags: The Ocean's Deadliest Predator.

Plastic Bags: The Ocean’s Deadliest Predator.

 

I cannot remember ever buying a plastic bag.

 

But we started early with the whole environmentally friendly idea in Germany.
I was a teenager when we had the green revolution and I always used proper bags or at least reusable shopping bags.

 

Then I moved to the UK where they still gave away free plastic bags in the supermarkets.
We used them as our bin bags and still accumulated so many that I regularly brought a whole bunch of them back to the supermarket for recycling.

 

Then I moved to South Africa. Here plastic bags are flying around on the streets and get caught in barbwire on every other house where they form a grotesque flag waving our own waste at us.
The cashiers don’t even offer me a plastic bag anymore, they know by now that “we really shouldn’t use them, they’re so bad for the environment.”
Although plastic bags cost something, be it ‘only’ 50 cents, I see people buying them for one item, walk out, take the item out of the bag and throw the bag on the street.

 

It’s so easy to never buy a plastic bag ever again and save a fair share of money:

Simply use a reusable shopping bag. Any bag can do really, practical are a backpack or shoulder bag.

At least reuse the plastic bags you already have. It’s surprising how long they last. Always keep one folded up in your pocket, you never know when you might need it.

 

Even without buying plastic bags ever, I still get them given at so many places that I never run out of bin bags.
Everything is packaged in plastic too, so I never run out of dog poop bags either.
I do a weekly MOOP Swoop and pick up so many clean and intact plastic bags that my dog poop bag pile never gets depleted.

 

It can take 100 years for a plastic bag to break down, but it never disappears: It only disintegrates into toxic chemicals such as bisphenol A (BPA) and PS oligomer.

 

Please! Don’t buy plastic bags!

 

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