On 16 September 2020, the lockdown that government had imposed on South African citizens ended…. Well, not on the actual day, on that day, an announcement was made that the lock down is ending. My feelings, joy! Relief! Excitement at the thought of travel…. And then: fear! We may have reached level 1, which gives us a lot more independence and freedom, but, somebody, please give this virus the memo that it needs to JUST. GO. AWAY!!!!!
We have news that in Europe the numbers are increasing everyday, in Israel the government has taken the decision to go back to a hard lockdown. This is going backwards, not forwards in any way!! But I take courage and hope from President Cyril Ramaphosa “Even as restrictions have eased over the last month with our move to alert level 2, there has been a gradual, but steady, decline in new infections, hospitalisations and deaths.”
So, even, as we in SA are rejoicing, (and I am jubilant! It gives me a chance to rebuild my travel business, to carry on directly supporting 6 families, and indirectly, a countless number), I am cautiously optimistic!
I want SA to start welcoming visitors, I want the freedom for everyone to move to and from the country, I want to go back to exploring the country and the continent, but I urge that everyone doing so is cautious. The face of travel has forever been changed. It will never be the same again. This is a new version of 9/11. After 9/11, every airport, every border crossing was on high alert, very high alert, and the fun of travel was almost taken away from the equation of travel… roll on to 2020… I think initially it will be the people stranded in parts they don’t want to be in that will begin to travel, and then the ones who have truly missed their loved ones and have been separated from them for these last 5 months. Whatever the case, we will need to recognise that the face of travel has changed forever.
So… we want you to travel, we NEED you to travel, it will kick start the economy, it will help put food on the tables of many homes, but we ask that you back patience in your luggage (along with face masks and hand sanitiser): the sanitising, checking and rechecking of documents, maintaining physical and social distancing, corona testing will surely take its toll on some people, but, if you remember to be patient, if you remember that a few months ago in Spain and Italy there was a major shortage of ventilators and our television screens were filled with desperately sad images of exhausted, overwhelmed health care workers, if you remember that we still do not have a proven working vaccination, if you remember that immigration, and customs officials and security and janitors working at airports are all working in the realm of a new strange “normal”, then travel will be pleasant again, or at least half way bearable. As usual with travel, on the other end awaits: love, adventure, home, treasures, dreams…. So, dust out your passport, prepare for the new normal, and get ready to TRAVEL in the year 2020!!
With love and hope,
What have you missed most about travel?
What destinations are you keen to get to?
Founder and Owner