Lisbeth, my mother-in-law, a retired school headmistress and one of my main supports with this work.
My wife Bodil, who never complained and made endless suggestions and pointed out obvious flaws missed even with the 100th read. With her all things in life is possible.
Neither these ladies nor I can call English our first language and I believe they have achieved the almost impossible to get my ramblings into something resembling a book that others might want to read. I wrote “informally,” the way Afrikaners expressed themselves in English and was concerned about how this would be received. As I’m sure you know one becomes “blind” when having read a text for the umpteenth time.
Translation into Afrikaans will be such a natural step that I don’t even count this as an achievement but need to mention that it's work in progress as well.
If you could wind the clock back, would you join the military again?
In short no. Not because of the things I was exposed to but the knowledge that I wasted most of my adult life in defending a dinosaur cause. I should have listened to the career guidance councillor who advised me to become a “professional” student. I’m a born teacher and the part I miss most about the military is to be able to give instruction. I sometimes daydream about teaching young fertile minds, influencing them to expand their capabilities and to never stop doing so. Information will always be the most powerful weapon in the world.
I long for lost opportunities, for developing my own potential, for being able to speak more than four languages and to be able to play a musical instrument. Maybe it’s not too late but I can only mourn for all the time wasted.
On a lighter note, books are like cocaine, they are very addictive. I have never met an author that stops after one, and so what are you working on now?
I have completed a few children’s stories. They will be available soon. Currently only in Afrikaans and aimed at the expat community but they will be translated into English in due course.
I’m also working on a tongue in the cheek version of the “History of Ciskei.” This little Bantustan played a major role in the continued covert fight against the ANC after the organisation was un-banned. Call it a Tom Sharpe or Terry Pratchett version of events in this comical “independent country” that no-one but the National Party of old recognised as an entity.