Even with our meagre salaries as educators, and two nippers at ex- model C schools, at hectically high fees, my family looked forward to use much of our savings to do some local touring at almost every end of term – like going to game reserves and visiting most of the other amazing high spots in South Africa.
Much of these holidays utilized economical, cheap, low grade boarding houses. Most of our travelling was done by a ‘Voetsak’ car that often broke down. Something or other cracked up, leaked or overheated. Nothing mattered except reaching our holiday destination. Nothing really was worse than returning home to go back to work.
With some extra money earned from giving private tuitions, we were able to see some great overseas spots like Churchgate in Mumbai and the Taj Mahal in Agra. Astonishingly without any loans from anywhere, we were able to see London, Paris, Venice…
Now that we have reached our twilight years, we don’t have much regret. In fact we can’t believe we did all of this and still came out solvent!
All of which makes me contemplate: ‘what happens to people younger than us who had not gone anywhere but had dreams to see the world after retirement?’
The present Covid conditions may have sadly killed one or the other partner in the family that may have shared such future plans.
This same cataclysmic epidemic has also put paid to any travelling at present or in the near- future time. This puts paid to the plans of couples who have just reached, or about to reach retirement, who intended to go on pilgrimage or to visit some distant island, walk the Tower of London, view the city of Paris from the highest floor of the Eiffel Tower, or even tour South Africa by car.
It seems the old golden advice to plan for the far future need to be re- examined …to instead grab every opportunity to catch the ‘ seconds’ hand of the clock, visit relatives (very cautiously), talk over video-call,….and if and when this disaster is hopefully over, to do things as soon as possible.
The next mutation may already be on the workbench of the Evolution Laboratory….!
Ebrahim ( ebkoybie) Essa