Arriving in the Garden Route

Weeks have passed in South Africa and I finally got into updating some news on this site. It sure has been an eventful couple of weeks, settling in again this time in Plettenberg Bay, meeting old and new faces and getting involved with new activities, and so it was too easy to postpone updating online.

I hope that this blog might reach some of those out there with whom we’ve been in touch and of whom I also keenly hear when they have the chance to write or call. What wonderful people I met and spent time with during the spring, in Finland and elsewhere.. Friendship, love and help were given and received everywhere, as they are here now – what a blessing and what wonderful people there are, indeed.

Having been in touch by email only for several months, the activities with Lunchbox Theatre in practice are now slowly becoming known to me. Their theatre side of operations take them to schools and other venues with a number of shows. Among them are conservation related shows, about trees, animal welfare and marine conservation, and there are also more abstract shows such as iLifa which is a story about a young boy setting on a search for his inheritance – search that turns into self-discovery, change and reflection on what things truly might matter in life. They also organize performing arts related workshops to youth. Then there is the side of Tshisa Talent Organization and Tshisa Talent Agency that operate to discover, develop and promote young talent in the communities, and to assist linking up artists with clients.. I’m helping out at the office, with fundraising and other activities related to the Lunchbox shows (see more about their activities at http://www.lunchbox.org.za) and to the talent search and development side of things with Tshisa Talent (www.tshisatalent.co.za). I was excited to see two shows by these wonderful energetic actors, the iLifa show about children’s rights, and a dog’s story which is about animal welfare. Touching, relevant topics and the shows are emotionally captivating – and the children seem to love them. 🙂

iLifa by Lunchbox TheatreHorses of T'Niqua Stable Inn

Apart from these activities I’ve been involved on the farm where I found temporary accommodation, to start with. T’Niqua Stable Inn are located in a beautiful forest setting overlooking the sea and the gorgeous Robberg peninsula where plenty of animals take residence such as seals and sea birds, and off where it is quite common to view sharks, dolphins and whales that regularly visit the bay.. The owners of the inn host travellers as well as organize outrides and carriage tours with their white horses – such a curious bunch they are! A few of them are the biggest horses I have ever seen, of Percheron breed they are – and then there is Marshmellow who is possibly the smallest pony that I have ever known. 🙂 It is good to be part of farm life, caring for the animals, cleaning and gardening, in the “out of office” hours.

And there is music making – singing, playing and getting all excited! Visiting home of last year St Francis Bay we played a little “gig” with Mekhala, great practice for me though it was quiet and so mostly served to motivate me to practice more – so much to do & learn, and the prospect of making music together is a new kind of energizer! As are these other inspiring people I meet in Plettenberg Bay, artists, musicians, conservation folks and those that can’t easily be “categorized”.. 😉 Everybody is up to their thing, or several things, and bring something to others through that doing, humans and animals alike. There is much to learn from each other, not least about letting our walls crumble, opening up and embracing humbly that which takes place and that which can be.. and doing – taking steps, walking ahead as we in any case do as long as we are here, and maybe even after that 🙂

mek&zappy

I was thrilled to accompany Lisa during some of her field trips to visit conservancies and people who would participate in a photography exercise related to her research and place attachment more specifically, such interesting topics. Through and with her, it has been a great privilege to get to know some of these environment-focused folks and be inspired, get involved. Keep wondering, alone and together, and observing these peculiar ways in which we function in this world and with and around each other.

P1170231 Knysna estuary Lisa At Noetzie conservancy

Speaking of this, there is a wonderful blog written by Plett based Matthew Zylstra that is a lovely place to read stories, research findings, poems and other things related to our connectedness with nature especially – if it is of any interest to you please do visit and explore, just wanted to include a link here: http://www.eyes4earth.org.

Such factual updates this time! Just a briefing of what is taking place in this corner of the world – from one person’s perspective.

Love from the bottom of my heart to everybody out there. 🙂

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