"There is no passion to be found playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living." - Nelson Mandela
The Story of an Old House and a Potty Training Toddler
If you don't know where you are going, any road will lead you there. And this is not necessarily a bad thing!
As long as I can remember I've had two passions, one was to travel and the other was to write. I boarded my first plane when I was 9 years old, travelling with my father to Austria. At the age of 12, I wrote my first short story. Later as a teenager, I dipped my toes into poetry. Then life happened. I finished high school, thereafter obtaining a B.Pharm degree as a pharmacist. Really. My passions, long forgotten, I continued searching for what would make me happy. So I obtained another degree. This time a LLB in South African Law. I know right?!
In 2010 Ryno and I boarded our first plane together to Thailand. We were immediately hooked and as soon as we got back from our trip, we started to plan our next trip. The only problem was that travelling on a South African Rand budget is very, very difficult. We worked and saved, worked and saved until we could afford our next destination. We didn't buy new cars, instead, we saved up as much as we could for our next budget trip.
During our travels, we stayed in small guesthouses. Getting to know the owners, their children and pets(!) it soon became clear that "one day" we would LOVE to own our own guesthouse. By chance, "one day" came a lot sooner. I found this beautiful old house, in a small town in the Western Cape of South Africa, Swellendam. Swellendam is located exactly between Cape Town and the Garden Route. It is the MOST beautiful town.
The grey old lady (as I call our house) has high ceilings, original wooden flooring, and a beautiful veranda overlooking the valley. When falling in love, one sees the other person's flaws, but somehow it doesn't matter. It is the same when falling in love with a house. We saw her flaws, but it didn't matter, we were in love! It turned out that the house needed a little bit more "TLC" than what we prepared ourselves for. It was a very tough journey moving from an entire house to a one bedroom "16m² bachelor's flat", in which we lived for 9 months. Two adults, a potty-training toddler, two large dogs and a stressed parrot. There were so many obstacles we had to overcome. Luckily obstacles are only temporary! I truly believe, that once in your life you have to give it all up and follow your dream.
“People are capable, at any time in their lives, of doing what they dream of.” ―
I am hoping to boost the economy of small towns in South Africa. I firmly believe that tourism is the answer to many problems in South Africa. By reading this blog, you are already part of the solution. Thank you!
Love and Happy Travelling,