2009-01-29

Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms/Miss Anonymous

I'm not sure who you are as you did not leave your name and apart from knowing that you live in South Africa, have kept your backdoor unlocked for the past 20 years, an indication of where you are located based on my Statreader, and that your visit was one of more than 40,000 visits to date and that you are one of more than 100 readers who visit our blog, I don't know who you are, which is absolutely fine, being anonymous must be important to you and certainly that is why we have the option to post comments like this. I would like to thank you so much for stopping by and leaving a comment, I'm really glad that you find my blog informative.

I am really sorry that you feel offended about part of my entry, where I described my relief at coming home to find we accidentally left our sliding door wide open and to realise that we didn't have to worry.

I would like to assure you that in no way was my comment politically motivated, nowhere in that paragraph is there anything that is based on politics, I did not mention reasons as to why people might become involved in crime or the history of South Africa, I did not make mention of any of the political parties or the way the country is run or anything else other than making an observation that I am happy to be here and not still in South Africa because in all honesty I don't think we would have been able to accidentally leave a sliding door wide open without having things stolen. Certainly not from my personal experience.

I think it is common knowledge that South Africa does have issues with crime - one only has to look on News24 (which is a public website) and even here in New Zealand on our one travel website people are warned that there is a problem with crime in South Africa. I honestly did not think that it was a secret because most people I come across seem to be familiar with the situation.

I'm sorry that you felt I was running South Africa down, I did not say anything bad about South Africa as a place, I did not discourage anybody from visiting South Africa, except made an observation that I was pleased to be here and not there and that it was a relief when I realised we had left the sliding door wide open. Certainly I think there might very well be other countries in the world where people would not leave their doors open like that.

We have never hidden our reasons for moving to New Zealand and certainly whilst I don't make it a usual topic of conversation in this particular blog, I have always been honest about it whenever people asked or if I felt I needed to mention it. I appreciate that there are many people who do not share the same feelings as us, but certainly there are many people who feel the way we do, at the end of the day we all have to do what is best for us and for our children.

In a previous entry I even made mention of the fact that moving to New Zealand was in fact a blessing in disguise because we didn't know then that Bianca was going to get sick and so it is a blessing that she is able to receive her medical treatment here where we are not faced with the same huge expenses as other people are dealing with (if that was the case we would not have been able to afford Bianca's treatment and she would have died, simple as that!), in addition to this Bianca is receiving excellent education at a public school where she does not have more than around 21 kids in her class and her fees for the year came to $135 for the year (around R760 for the year if you convert it). From what I've seen it would have been much more expensive in South Africa and she would have likely had close to 35 or even 40 children in her class depending on which school she may have gone to.

You say that I chose not to handle your situation - I wasn't trying to handle any situations. I was merely making a comparison between my own personal past experience and my current experience. My comment was an observation and nothing more and it was based on my own feelings.

Wow, that is great that for the past 20 years you have left your backdoor unlocked. I am very happy for you and I think it is important that you feel safe where you live. You must count your blessings because everybody I know, and have spoken to to date, would tell me that they have not been as lucky as you where they could just leave their backdoor unlocked, certainly not without their security gates or if they lived outside a security complex (but maybe things have changed and it is becoming more common in South Africa for people to leave their doors unlocked). Certainly when we were still living there we most definitely could not have done this. One particular personal experience was that we had a burglary when we were all sleeping and had all our doors and windows closed and locked except one tiny little window which was open for the cat and that was how they gained access, and yes thankfully we did not wake up during that time. That was before getting married and having kids. My mom would probably remember this day quite clearly.

Please know I am very happy for you, that you are able to have that freedom, that is something we did not feel we had then, but certainly we have that now and we live our lives without burglar bars and security gates, high fences with electric fencing and we certainly count our blessings each and every day when we go for walks or go to the park or beach!

Why am I not allowed to draw comparisons between our past experience and our current experience? This is after all our blog, which is really no different to an online diary or journal and whilst most of it definitely is about Bianca and her treatment, surely I have the right to discuss other things too? Surely I should be able to inform our family and friends about things here that are important to us, after all that was really why this blog was created in the beginning - to keep our family and friends up to date. Yes, we chose to share it with others, but at the end of the day it is still based on our own personal experience be it past or present. It is still nothing more than a personal online diary. A place where I would want Bianca to come and read one day, to know why we made the decisions we made and to share with her the things she endured as a little girl. I'm not going to deny our past experiences and I'm not going to deny the factors that brought us to this point and surely we should be allowed to count our blessings.

I'm sorry if you don't agree, all I did was to make an innocent observation and in no way was it intended to offend anybody, however this is our blog and we reserve the right to write down our thoughts and ideas and opinions whether people agree with it or not.

I would like to wish you all the very best, and really I'm very happy for you that you are able to leave your door unlocked like that! Since moving to New Zealand that is what we found, that it isn't the end of the world when you forget to lock or even close your door, that's a great feeling isn't it?

14 comments:

Kristy said...

Hi

I am just stopping in to say hi. I too have a visitor from South Africa, that comes off your blog to my blog. I wonder if it's the same person. Must be. I wish they would id themselves, it would be interesting to learn about their area.

Anonymous said...

You sure told her Lea. I can just imagine your fingers flying over the keyboard.
I hope that you guys are having a good day and enjoying the last of the school holidays.
Take care,
Bridget

Anonymous said...

Lea, Connor's school fees are R1 150 per month. That is a total of R13 800 per year. He is only 4 years old and in a nursery school, which is slightly more expensive than primary school. He is in a very good school, one of the best schools in town, as we feel education is very important. I just wanted to give you an indication of what you would probably be paying for Bianca's school fees if you were still in SA.
Please give the girls a hug and kiss from us.
Sharon

Amanda said...

Good for you Lea!

Anonymous said...

Your bolg, if she doesn't like it, then don't read it.

Simple as that.

Anonymous said...

You go girl! People are quick to attack - jealousy makes you nasty!
Just for the record, we cant wait to get to NZ, the crime here is terrible!!

Take care

Sam

Anonymous said...

Haha, you sure told her!!
And for the record, I'm glad you game here to NZ and Bianca can get the treatment she needs for free, at least our health system works in some ways ;O)

Siobhan said...

hey Lea, good on you for stating the obvious. I too am happy to be in NZ rather then South Africa and have had that very same feeling of relief when arriving home and finding the back door wide open knowing nothing has been stolen.

As far as "Anonymous" is concerned, they are choosing to be anonymous so that no one will know that it is "her" back door lock that is broken and go and rob her.

chantelle said...

you go girl!!! they must just be carefull of what they say about the open door. murpheys law people!!! good luck to you

chantelle said...

you go girl!!! and to the people that is so happy to be able to sleep with their back door open for 20 years, good luck to you!!! don't know how long it's going to last. and remember - murpheys law...

Anonymous said...

Well said Lea and "AMEN"
Rosemary NY

MICHELLE said...

And breath.... Fantastic retort... I'm so glad I have to approve all comments left on Mia's website. I could never argue y case that well, but you are abolutely correct it is your Blog and I for one support you to carry on writting what ever you want. XX
Have a good weekend XX

Anonymous said...

Well said Lea and "Amen"
Rosemary NY

Gnarkill said...

Anonymous said...

I check your blog on a daily basis and I am really concerned about Bianca and am glad that you and her and your family are doing so well. But please don't spoil by running South Africa down. Yes we have our problems but you chose to leave. So leave us to handle our own situation. You chose not to. Please leave politics etc out of your very informative blog. Incidentally my back door doesn't lock and we have never had a problem in over 20 years!!! Makes one think doesn't it.

Anonymous clearly has no idea whats going on. After being burgled twice in two months, we were subjected to a violent armed robbery. During this we were beaten and burnt with cigarettes not for resisting, but for, and I quote the armed robber: "Being white pigs"

Besides the fact that Lea never once brought politics into her post, I find it interesting that Anonymous is so eager to mention politics... Maybe because he/she knows that it is in fact the case.

Here where there is no money to build the rdp houses as promised by the politicians in '94, but there is enough money to buy trains and armaments no one needs. New opportunity for politicians to stick the hand in the cookie jar arises. And taxpayers' money is used to defend these politicians in court. Why not spend this money feeding people and fighting crime?

As mentioned, "Anonymous" has no idea of whats going on.
Im glad for the people who got a chance to leave this place, not all of us are that lucky.

Eric Opperman