Let­ters

go! - - Contents - WIL­LIE FOURIE, Stel­len­bosch

My mother-in-law Smé van Zyl has al­ways wanted to visit St He­lena is­land. Over the years, she and her late hus­band read al­most ev­ery book about the An­glo-Boer War and the pris­on­ers kept on St He­lena, but they never got the op­por­tu­nity to sail there aboard the Royal Mail ship. So, as a spe­cial treat for her 90th birth­day, we booked a flight for Smé and 20 of her chil­dren, grand­chil­dren and great-grand­chil­dren. Here we are at Ja­cob’s Lad­der in Jamestown. Our group caused quite a stir on the is­land! South Africans could learn a lot about hos­pi­tal­ity from the Saints, as the res­i­dents of the is­land call them­selves. It was an un­for­get­table ex­pe­ri­ence. We snorkelled, scubadived, fished, climbed Diana’s Peak and vis­ited Long­wood House where Napoleon stayed dur­ing his ex­ile. We also went to his grave and vis­ited the Boer graves on the is­land. We played golf on the so-called “most re­mote golf course in the world”. The Saints had hoped that tourists would flock to their is­land once the air­port opened, but it hasn’t hap­pened yet. Hope­fully your ar­ti­cle in last month’s is­sue will change that!

Read Sophia van Taak’s travel di­ary about her trip to St He­lena on page 42.

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