From Francé: To a sparkling spring…

Spring, season of rebirth and new growth, has become even more meaningful after the harsh realities of the past winter months have left us all emotionally drained. When the first radiant leaves started appearing on oaks and vines, we knew we were more resilient than we had ever thought.

We realised it was possible to celebrate life again. 

In this issue of Stellenbosch Visio we do that by raising our glasses of sparkling wine to people and initiatives that deserve recognition and to the healing powers of nature itself.

We raise our glasses to a visionary like Frans Malan, a driving force in the wine industry who, even during the turmoil of the ’70s, could still dream and work tirelessly to make those big dreams come true. Fifty years ago, as the Stellenbosch Wine Routes came into being, he took the first sip of Simonsig’s classically made sparkling wine and also tasted the proverbial stars, this time from the southern skies. We hope you will enjoy our special Cap Classique feature and treat yourself to that “joyous, life-affirming flavour and spirited playfulness” of this noble drink that Emile Joubert writes about so vividly (p. 60). 

In gratitude we raise our glasses to those heroes who have, in the times of the greatest need, selflessly given of their time, expertise and care; the healthcare workers who form the backbone of our fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, the people behind so many feeding schemes, support and other medical services who are helping the most vulnerable. Meet one such person, Dr Liana Roodt, who created Project Flamingo and selflessly devotes her time and expertise every weekend to giving women diagnosed with breast cancer the opportunity of a life-saving operation free of charge (p. 112). 

In springtime, what a privilege it is to celebrate the unsurpassed beauty of the countryside around us. The clarion call of this spring should be to pack up your troubles in your old kitbag, leave them hanging on a protea bush and let them be swept away in a clear mountain stream. Richard Holmes takes us through great wilderness walks (p. 122) and Marguerite van Wyk writes how technology can lead to a gentler relationship with Mother Earth (p. 102).

Stellenbosch Visio wil jou graag inspireer om elke dag iets besonders in jou omgewing raak te sien, iets te doen wat jou sielevreugde gee, in ons mooi omgewing te gaan stap, iemand wat minder as jy het te help of ’n vriend of vriendin in nood by te staan. 

As die afgelope twee jaar my iets geleer het, is dit om stadiger te leef, met sagter oë na my medemens te kyk en onbeskryflik dankbaar te wees vir my gesondheid, vriende en familie.

Laat ons die glase daarop lig!