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Category: Weird

Cole has an school outing to visit the Castle of Good Hope today, which he is very excited about. He was most excited when I told him that it is haunted and now he can’t wait to ask the tour guide about these ghosts. Cole has become almost obsessed with ghosts lately.

Now, I cannot tell how much of the ghost stories at the Castle are just yarns spun to scare people, or based on actual experiences. I tend to be a bit of a skeptic when it comes to ghosts, first trying to find an alternative explanation rather than resorting to the supernatural. However, there are times when explanations defy me.

A few weeks ago, we were having a braai at some friends of ours, and Wendy, my friend, tells me this story of what happened to her.

A number of years ago, her mother was terminally ill, and just before she died, Wendy spoke to her mother and told her that if she ever came back to see her as a ghost she would completely flip out, since Wendy is petrified of ghosts.

Well, shortly thereafter, her mother died, and at around that time, Wendy had a dream while she was sleeping, where her mother (looking rather healthy) was stroking Wendy’s hair and was telling her not to worry about her as she is now fine.

Rather unsettled about this dream, the next morning over breakfast, she mentioned the dream, and her father said that funnily enough, he had had the exact same dream as Wendy had. Her brother at this point got really unsettled, as he then piped up that he also had had the identical dream.

The eerie story does not stop there though. Wendy has family in the UK (over 10 000km away) and around about the same time, one of her young nieces was playing in their house, and laughing and appearing to be talking to someone sitting in an armchair.

When one of the adults came to check up on her, and asked her who she was talking to, the little girl said that the woman sitting in the armchair was making her laugh.

The armchair was empty, so confused, the woman then asked the girl who the person was, and then Wendy’s niece pointed to a picture on the wall of Wendy’s mother.

Wendy’s mother had last seen these kids (while alive) when the children were much smaller.

Now, as a skeptic, if this story had been told to me third hand, I would dismiss it as fantasy, but Wendy was adamant about the truthfulness of this story. How to explain it….I have no idea.


I have been blogging a lot lately about programming, and so for some of my non-technical readers (translated as my mother and girlfriend), here is something a little different.

By far, my favourite artist is M.C. Escher. His prints are just so intriguing for an analytical mind such as mine. Every one of his works makes you take a second look to see what is really going on, and that is what I love about it.



Something else that I love (and used to play with constantly as a kid) is Lego. I spent many, many hours building and rebuilding everything that my imagination and selection of blocks allowed, although there is one thing I had not dreamt of doing.

One guy went one step further than I ever did. Andrew Lipson, with a friend of his, Daniel Shiu, recreated Escher’s “Relativity”, using Lego. You can read more about that on his site. They also recreated “Balcony”, “Belvedere”, “Waterfall” and “Ascending and Descending.

The only thing…wow…


I came across this very entertaining sound clip (which you can find here). The Virtual Barbershop is a demonstration of the immense power of the human brain to calculate the position of objects using only your hearing.

The clip works best when listened to using headphones. As the characters move around, your brain maps the movements as if it was a real scene. While listening to this clip, I kept looking behind me as I thought someone had spoken to me from there. It is superbly done.

Enough reading now, just go listen……