Goodbye and good riddance? A final hoorah to 2020.

"Your present circumstances don't determine where you can go. They merely determine where you start."-Nido Qubein



Travel & Things has decided to take some time off to create content and assess the direction that the Blog will be going in 2021. I will return before you miss me too much…




My message to my Travel & Things readers, friends and family. What I thought was going to be a “soft-landing” end to the year was not to be. I did not want this to revert into a ‘rant’ posting, but given the current set of circumstances, I fear that it just might. Take a deep breath and bear with me on the final day of “The Decade that was 2020“!




First, our President put the entire country back into Level 3 lockdown and extended the curfew to curtail end of year celebrations. It is difficult to accomplish a midnight countdown to 2021 when you have to be back home by 21h00. But do we REALLY have to ‘see in’ the New Year? Perhaps it is just another tradition that we can leave behind in pre-COVID-19 times. Basically, here in South Africa, the population refused to heed the pleadings to wear masks and social distance. Therefore, much like my Junior school Head Master used to say before he beat us…”If you cannot listen, then you must feel” our President was been forced to implement measures to try to ensure our safety. Basically, it was, and is, our fault for not observing the correct safety protocols, and we all have to collectively suffer for that.




Would you believe it, no sooner did we go back into lockdown than ESKOM decided that it was a good idea to turn off the lights. Now we have nowhere to go, other than sitting at home in the dark bemoaning the ineptitude of those who are running that entity. And the excuse is the same as every year, “We have to save diesel for when the factories return to work”. Gosh Darn, I would have thought that you would have figured that out during the year so this did not happen AGAIN.




If 2020 was a song… Just saying. Actually, I do like this song, but I am not that enamoured with the video.




An exquisite Greek Orthodox Icon of St. Anastasia the Healer, by well-known Linden artist Yannis John Generalis. She is venerated as St. Anastasia the Pharmakolytria, i.e. “Deliverer from Potions” or “Healer”. The world could certainly use someone like her currently. We have a signed print that will soon be framed and hung in our house.




Today, December 31st would have seen my Dad turn 95, but that was not to be as he died 16 years ago. I miss him on a daily basis.




We only had a minimal amount of fighting in our house…how about you? The months of lockdown also taught us basic skills, like cleaning and cooking. And baking, I must not forget the baking. Although the Sourdough loaves have continued, the banana bread has, thankfully, ceased.




Oh, I tried…I really did but not always with a great deal of success.




These words always make me weep when I read them as they are so accurate. 2020 taught us to hold those we loved close, and it also showed who cared about us and what we meant to them. Will that continue after the pandemic has tailed off? I somehow think not. Human nature being what it is, I am uncertain if kindness and compassion will continue.




Although my wife and I were able to get away on a couple of occasions in order for me to work as a travel writer, those trips seem surreal in retrospect.




I smiled a LOT as “In conversation with” kept me mentally active during the worst of the lockdown. My thanks to the more than 100 guests who were part of the first 3 seasons! You can tune in and SUBSCRIBE to my YouTube channel,  to catch up on the interviews that you missed.




My sentiments EXACTLY…Time to get the hell out of Dodge…for those of you who have always wondered about Dodge City. Founded in 1881, it was a rowdy town infamous for its saloons, outlaws, and Boot Hill Cemetery. The expression “Get out fo Dodge” means to leave a difficult or dangerous environment with all possible haste.




For those who were lost and dedicated to those who were left behind…





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