21 March 2011 by Julienne du Toit

A Feeling of Contentment

Sometimes it’s hard to say what where compassion and common sense stop, and responsible tourism starts.

I was reminded of this the other day, after re-discovering a brochure from Lindani, which is in the Waterberg about 3 hours north of Joburg.

This is a beautiful place with several self-cater houses, all beautifully appointed. Each one has recycling bins and solar power where possible.

Yet Lindani is not a ‘responsible tourism’ labeled place. The owners, Sam and Peggy van Coller are just kind people and they like doing things right.

They are immensely fond of their staff, and it shows in their facilities. The staff houses are beautiful. The family units have two bedrooms, a front room, a fully equipped bathroom, and a kitchen with a fridge.

A big feature is the vegetable garden covered in shade cloth, with chillis, onions, cabbages, spinach and carrots. Last year there was an enormous glut of tomatoes, with tomato bushes taller than a man.

There’s a pre-school for the little kids, complete with teeny tiny toilet and little basin. Outside the children clambered over the wooden jungle gym and slide. Peggy said it took them a while to get used to it and play on it, but when they got their first toys, they went crazy, playing with them incessantly. One boy even took his truck to bed.

At the back was the soccerfield. Peggy says she says she loves hearing the sound of children laughing and playing. Nearby was a dam filled with waterlilies, dab chicks, moorhens and crakes. A few staff members were fishing for kurper. A feeling of great contentment pervaded the twilight.


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