Apartheid is over. Deal with it- a message from the DA

I shall keep my opinions to myself on this occasion except to say: it’s on days like this that I miss Julius Sello Malema

apartheid is over deal with it_DA

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Why I won’t be using Ariel washing powder

Another washing powder promising to effectively rinse out those chakalaka and beetroot stains. Sigh.

Ariel washing powder has hit the SA market with guns blazing. Three television ads, billboards and a local spokesperson. Kudos to them for brand awareness. However, I am tired of seeing ads with happy black people that dance, sing, jump and clap at the thought of washing powder, cement, beverages, clothes and just about anything else.

For crying out loud where is the creativity?!

Exhibit A: Jik- Nkalakata

Exhibit B: MTN- Dr Malinga

Exhibit C: Doom Insecticide

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Sophisti Ratchet

middle class concerns 2

Buzz Feed has compiled 28 middle class problems that have been shared on Twitter over the past few months.

It made me roar with laughter. Personally , I’m having real trouble harmonising my love for ratchet hip- hop music with my university educated, 9-5, young professional side. Apparently I’m part of a new breed of 20 something year old females referred to as “sophisti- ratchet”. After feeling offended by the term, I realised it’s just plain true.

My playlist currently comprises of Rick Ross, 2 Chainz, Drake, Lil’Wayne and Kendrick Lamar and yet I’m up to date on current affairs and breaking news. Awkward.

Definition of Sophisti- Ratchet:

Adjective

  1. A woman of highly educated pedigree (academically, socially and otherwise), fluent in various forms of public etiquette yet is equally knowledgeable of the latest strip club songs.
  2. A high class individual who is open to incorporating low- brow tendencies in to her persona for momentary enjoyme
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High tea at the Westcliff

High tea at the Westcliff hotel

For no reason at all, a few girl friends and I booked high tea at the Westcliff Hotel.

It was just the kind of uppity activity we had missed while at Rhodes University. Perhaps we’re making up for lost time but who doesn’t want to indulge in a “lazily feast” that includes “tantalising delicacies”?

Whilst politely sipping on my ice tea- I couldn’t help but overhear the table behind us speaking about how irresponsible cyclists have become. It seems black cycling gear has become quite a fad and is causing real outrage in northern suburbia. As such:

Dear cyclists please wear light clothing. Maureen can’t see you coming from her E- Class Sedan.

And just when I thought the world had officially ran out of middle class concerns, the table in front of us whispered Happy Birthday. It was the first time I’d heard Happy Birthday sang like a hymn rather than belted out like a war cry.

Non the less fun was had, I learned to laugh like a lady rather than laugh out loud and I really need to work on my dining etiquette- elbows off the table and less clinking between my crockery and cutlery.

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Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

And so the year 2013 began…

Lomogram_2013-01-11_02-37-36-PM

Even more beautiful than I remember

Even more beautiful than I remember

Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

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Sky is the limit

I have a thing for looking up- I wouldn’t want to miss a call from the gods. Happy Monday 🙂

Corner Biccard and Stiemens, Braamfotein, Johannesburg

Corner Biccard and Stiemens, Braamfotein, Johannesburg

7th Street, Melville, Johannesburg

7th Street, Melville, Johannesburg

Rocking the Daisies, Darling Wine Estate, Western Cape

Rocking the Daisies, Cloof Wine Estate, Darling- Western Cape

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Food.Wine.Design 2012

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I would seriously suggest you pop into the Food Wine and Design Fair at Hyde Park Corner this weekend. It really is a celebration of bespoke goods. I had a sneak peek last night and was oohing and ahhing at everything. Your eyes, ears and taste buds will not be disappointed although, if you can pull it of, I would suggest you rob a bank on the way 🙂

Food Wine Design

Food Wine Design fair at Hyde Park

The return of bespoke goods at the Food Wine Design fair

Fine Brandy coacktails

Fine Brandy coacktails

Honest Chocolate

Raw organic Honest Chocolate

Sirkel Jewellery

Sirkel Jewellery on 44 Stanley Avenue

Stoned Cherry frock

Stoned Cherry frock

Tin Table

Wooden skulls from Tin Table at 44 Stanley Avenue

Crockery from Anatomy Design

Hand crafted crockery from Anatomy Design

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Open letter to South African Airways

If you follow me on Twitter (@PhakamaniLisa), you would already know that I have a serious gripe with South African Airways (SAA). I’m sure Sudan Airways and Eagle Air (Uganda) offer better service.

This is not about the tiny leg room, dry food, the 2hr delayed flight with no notice, lost luggage or the time they sat me next to an obese man who took up half my seat- it’s about the ongoing bad service. And it appears I’m not alone, their Facebook and Twitter pages are rife with tongue lashings from disappointed and angry travelers. HelloPeter is a playground for angry SAA consumers reporting an array of issues from “Bad Attitude” to “Billing” and “Damaged Goods”. Worst of all, the complaints are going unattended. So tweet by tweet, they’re reputation is being further obliterated.

I really can’t imagine why a huge parastatal would risk forsaking an on and offline reputation management team. I hope they are considering stepping into the 21st century with the R5 billion bailout they’ve recently been handed by treasury following an abrupt walk- out by several board members.

I don’t have the time to school them on public relations but should one of their members find this blog post within the next decade, they should read about it here, here and here.

I rarely complain about bad service but thought I must share the story about the straw that broke the camel’s back. The letter to the current CEO Vuyisile Kona went as follows:

“In early September of this year I booked a return flight from Johannesburg to Harare for October. I purposefully book my flights ahead of time so that I don’t incur high tax rates. I paid R 3 888 for a return flight.

A week before the departure date I received an email from SAA saying my flight had been rescheduled (17 October 2012): “We would like to inform you about a schedule change on at least one of your flights booked. Please click the following link and enter your booking reference XXXXXX in order to see your updated itinerary…We would like to apologize for any inconvenience caused due to this schedule change.”

The inconvenience they might have been referring to is the fact that I couldn’t catch a 16.15 flight. As protocol would have it, you must check in 2 hours before for international flights and board an hour before. Including travel time to the Gautrain- this would mean I would have to leave work at 13.00 latest. This would also mean that I would have to take a half day of leave from work. I am contracted to apply for leave 2 weeks in advance and with SAA only notifying me a week before there was no possibility of applying for leave and catching a 16.15 flight.

The next option was to catch the first flight out the following morning at 06.10. When I called customer service, the agent said I would have to pay an additional R 2 000 because the flight was not “in my class”. The next available flight “in my class” would be 10.40 which would push my travel itinerary in Harare out by over 12 hours.

I then cancelled the booking expecting a full refund for the original flight cost and booked the morning flight for R 5 605 this is (an additional R 1717 to the original flight I had booked and paid for a month in advance). As mentioned, I book my flights ahead of time so that I don’t have to incur high tax costs. I would also incur an additional R500 weekend parking ticket because at 4am in the morning- there is no Gautrain to the airport (which would have cost me half the amount).

Yesterday I received a computer generated credit note saying I would only be refunded R 3 203 of the R3 888 I paid for the original flight booking and the additional R1717 I had to pay to be on the 6.10 flight

 Note:
1. SAA sold me a service that doesn’t exist by not providing a flight on the agreed date at the agreed time and at the same cost

2. They notified me of a schedule change 6 weeks after I confirmed my booking and 1 week before departure date


3. SAA was not diligent about finding a suitable alternative between the time I received a rescheduling notice and the time I cancelled the flight


4. The amount I paid for the original flight has not been fully refunded, R685 outstanding


5. I have not been compensated for the difference of the new flight which means I’ve suffered an additional cost of R 1717.

Given the above circumstances, charging me 17 % for a service SAA could not deliver is unfounded. Given the fact that SAA failed to give me a suitable alternative, the ticket must be refunded in full.

Per article 11.2 of SAA’s “Conditions of Carriage”:

“11.2.1. If we cancel a flight, fail to operate a flight reasonably according to schedule, fail to
stop at your destination or Stopover, or cause you to miss a connecting flight on
which you hold a reservation, the amount of the refund shall be:
11.2.1.1. if no portion of the Ticket has been used, an amount equal to the fare paid

Hard to tell but this has little to do with the R685 ($80) they owe me and more to do with the state of South Africa’s airline industry. With Velvet Sky and 1 Time having filed for liquidation, the low cost airline industry is basically non-existent. A few years ago, we were celebrating growth in the domestic airline market; from 7 million flyers to 12 million within 5 years. Today, SAA is hemorrhaging tax payer’s money so fast they need a turnaround strategy with a dash of miracle. So now what? We cheer “support proudly South African products” whilst booking holiday flights on British Airways…

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God bless the Obama’s

In Obama’s own words: “Four more years”. What a triumph.

Four more years, Barack and Michelle Obama

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No student hungry

This is why I love the interwebs.

This is an ad for “No Student Hungry”, a program that provides needy students with a balanced meal on a daily basis, because after all there’s no focus without food. The aim is to help students excel in their academic endeavours and, ultimately to obtain their degrees.

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