I am Dale, a name I hated as a child, because it rhymed with frail, pale or whale, also it’s a girl’s name, yuck! Little did I know…?

Many years back, after my divorce, roughly 25 years ago, I moved-in with my brother Clive, his wonderful wife Jan and their 3 children, in Benoni.

Yes, I said Benoni! It wasn’t bad enough that I had deal with the combined trauma of being wrenched away from my own boys, but having to suffer the indignity of living with my all too generous family, also to move to Benoni? A small city, east of Johannesburg, just a mention of that name, sent shivers down the spines of any Northern Suburbs boy’s like me.

Clive and Jan’s children were still small, none of them could say my name, ‘Dale’, so they used to break it up into syllables, day-all. This promptly landed up as Day-Old, hence the name of my blog.

Frail Dale

Dale at 10 years old. Frail Dale was one of many nicknames.

As a child, I had a bad squint, so at 18 months old, the youngest person is South Africa to have received pioneering surgery to rectify the squint, this resulted in having to wear thick black rimmed glasses until my teens. Now sorry, surely only brain dead parents would realise that these don’t endear you to anybody. Imagine, from frail Dale to that dumb nerd!

No wonder I hated school and couldn’t wait to get finished!

At 56, I am starting to realise the damage that was done, by me hating school, then becoming the worst maverick imaginable, which assisted me in stuffing up my already bad record. Do you know what the stupidest thing of all was; I spent the 1st 25 years of my adult life trying to impress my parents, specifically my near perfect dad. As a result, I made even more bad decisions, which lead to worse consequences.

Well, by now you are thinking, idiot, what a sad story, rubbish! This is the happy bit…

I have no regrets, I would obviously do things differently if given the chance, but that ship has sailed. So at the ripe age of 56, I am studying again, mostly online. Now it’s time to rebuild the finances and get ready for promises to be a grand final chapter.


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