Odd Thomas, my favorite character in Dean Koontz’s repertoire, has this ‘ability’ of being ‘drawn’ to stuff he concentrates on. I think Odd himself calls it ‘psychic magnetism’.
On our second day exploring Swellendam, we experienced this.
The sun had already set when we arrived on Friday evening.
Saturday morning we woke up to a stunning view of the Breede River & fresh Canola fields.
We’re staying at Stonehill River Lodge, just outside Swellendam.
Or rather, perfectly positioned between Swellendam, Barrydale & Malgas.
We hope to discover all these places, but today we’d prefer not to go anywhere. Stretching our legs & enjoying the tranquillity of Stonehill, just for a moment, before we plunge into the rest.
As we prepare breakfast, Zuko reminds us that we need to get some fruit & vegetables. We read about a lovely organic market in Swellendam & so we pile into the Chrysler Grand Voyager for the short drive to town.
Swellendam is very beautiful.
Settled in 1745.
The 4th oldest town in South Africa with many original buildings well preserved.
You could spend a whole day walking from museum to museum, enjoying the architecture, taking in the history, getting a feel for a South Africa of long ago.
We’re just hunting fruit & vegetables.
We find the market.
Zuko gets stunning fresh produce, including organic heritage seeds to take home & rusks & nuts & an interesting quince extract created by a Korean family who settled here many years ago.
Satisfied that we’d be able to feed a Tribe for the next few days, we load the Voyager’s spacious boot & start heading out of town, back to Stonehill.
We turn, turn again.
Swellendam is not a large town in which you should get lost.
The next moment we’re driving past this beautiful Village’s Fearie Sanctuary.
We go in.
We get lost in time, space, love & peace.
The Fearie Mother eventually finds us.
We listen to the story of how the sanctuary came to life over 22 years.
About children growing up.
Neighbours infected with love, as everything the sanctuary represents spills across boundaries & fences.
We drink from the fountain of people who just gave themselves to being.
Everything which was alive inside of them.
We all desire love.
We all hope to be connected somehow.
We express ourselves differently.
Use different words & language.
Our hope is not that different.
To be loved for who we are.
To be known.
To be part of something.
Something greater than the sum of our individuality.
As we say our goodbyes, the Fearie Mother puts a spell of happiness on us.
We each receive a tiny bottle of fearie dust & the instruction to sprinkle it wherever we go.
Some sprinkle water.
Others sing songs or whisoer words.
We all express hope.
To bring happiness.
To taste what is beautiful.
When the Chrysler Grand Voyager comes to a stop at Stonehill it is afternoon already.
We play chess.
As the sun sets, Theunsie lights a fire in our fireplace.
Zuko cooks the most beautiful meal.
We talk about how we were ‘drawn’ to the Fearie Sanctuary.
How we are ‘drawn’ to each other.
How we could ‘draw’ others close to us.
As love, happiness & kindness spill from us into our world.