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#71. Revive this blog. It’s 2009 and this city — like this blogger — has barely woken up.  The sun is shining,  the temperature hitting around 29 degrees C, the roads are empty, the Park Cafe on Jan Smuts Avenue that serves one of Joburg’s best cups of coffee is open [endorsed by the ever-fashionable The Frock Report],  and people are still smiling at each other and swapping holiday stories. Brief happiness.

But beyond the horizon the bombs are raining down in the Middle East in what must rank as one of the world’s longest standing and most bitter conflicts, Iran is contemplating how to build a nuclear bomb and South Africa will be gearing up for a year in which the raciest election since 1994 will take place and the curtains will be raised on the Confederations Cup — just a few hundred days before the Soccer World Cup pulls into town in 2010.

But the story that caught my attention today was one that appeared on The Telegraph.co.uk with the headline: “Man died in network of tunnels he made through house of rubbish”. It turns out that 74-year-old Gordon Stewart of Buckinghamshire (this could be the beginning of a limerick) had amassed an enormous amount of garbage in his home and died after losing his way in the intricate series of tunnels he had created. In this there is as good a new year’s lesson as any. Time to ditch the personal rubbish instead of trying to build tunnels though it. Will send a note to self while there is still time.