Australian fires brought back African memories


Burning led me to think of burns and wounds and the healing power of vegetable oils. One important oil being avocado (Persea Gratissima) oil, which  has been used  for its healing qualities for wounds

My life has certainly changed now, as I live in England, but in the eighties,  I had moved to Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, with my husband from Rhodesia. Two months after we moved there, I gave #birth to my lovely daughter. The house we rented was on 60 acres in the bush. Our view from the house was to look down upon Albert Falls dam – breath taking and beautiful. Every so often the clouds rolled below us, as the house was perched on top of a hill, which gave a magical feel, but it was very isolated.

Fire Breaks

Before winter the fire breaks had to be burnt around all properties in case of bush fires, as the veldt was very dry in winter. The fire breaks helped to stop the bush fires burning properties down. The local Zulus used to burn the fire breaks and my gardener, Beggabantu would organise all the workers from around the local area to help with this annual event. As my husband worked, it was my duty to go with Beggabuntu and the workers to ‘supervise‘ the fires breaks.

Scary Stuff

I was born and bred in Nottingham, England, so found it a frightening experience, when they lit the grass and the flames appeared to be very high. The beaters were very competent and my confidence grew, as I soon realised that Beggabantu was very knowledgeable. He assessed the wind direction and where the beaters should stand and of course kept me at a distance, so he wouldn’t hear me trying to give advice in a nearly hysterical voice! He politely asked me to be quiet,  well it could have been polite, but he only spoke Zulu! I have to say that my understanding of Zulu is zero, but a look from Beggabantu and the intonation of his voice spoke volumes! I soon realised that I was there to run back to the house and phone for help if the fire became out of control, so I was useful. Due to Beggabantu’s expertise this was never necessary – thank goodness.

Springs into Life and Sadness

In spring when the rains came the fire breaks sprung to life again, but this time with the most beautiful brightly coloured flowers.

I have always had a great respect for fire and one of our farming friends in Natal died after a fire break got out of control – the wind suddenly changed direction. He sadly died with very severe burns in hospital.

Wounds and Healing

This led me to think of burns and wounds and the healing power of vegetable oils. One important oil being avocado (Persea Gratissima) oil, which  has been used  for its healing qualities for wounds

Avocado oil is exceptionally rich in vitamins, minerals, proteins and essential fatty acids. This oil is remarkable for its outstanding regenerative properties and has been purported as a wound healer.  It is a natural oil, and is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids that will soften and revitalise rough, dry skin. I have blended avocado oil with other carrier oils to create Motherlylove Down Below Perineum Massage Oil.

Healed wound

Here are two pictures of a hand, after surgery. The first one is 3 weeks after surgery and the next photo, after massaging Motherlylove Down Below Perineum Massage Oil into the operated hand, twice a day for one week. This photo was taken after 4 weeks. The wound healed perfectly and very quickly.


3 weeks after surgery
3 weeks after surgery
4weeks after surgery
4weeks after surgery

By Jan Bastard BSc. (Hons) complementary therapy/aromatherapy, RN, RM, Anaesthetic Diploma, IAIM.

Motherlylove – Skin Care for Pregnancy and beyond.







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