Published: 30 December 2015
Its the end of another year - Perlemoen Trails 4th year in business! And what an interesting year we had - we grew in structure and went from strength to strength despite having our fair (and unfair) share of obstacles.
2015 unfortunately had some lows - theft, hacking, corruption, sabotage - you name it, we went through it. Also some bad publicity we could have done without but, unfortunately, one always finds some poor unhappy individual somewhere who revels in causing problems, regardless of the consequences of their lies and gossip mongering.
BUT 2015 also had a lot of highs! We branched out and was fortunate enough to get very busy, very quickly, with our new endeavours.
We were lucky enough to get a lot of new service suppliers wanting to join us, 'old' service suppliers who were always ready to help and, also, if needed, offer a shoulder to cry on and advise when we needed it.
We met a lot of very nice interesting people (and some not so nice :)) but all of them were a learning curve, who definitely broadened our horizons.
You realise that love really can be 'forever' when you have runners who have been married for 50 years and still hold hands! Or hikers, who after 6 years of marriage and 3 kids, still carry on as if they are on honeymoon, or a husband telling his wife that he is still very much in love with her and that she is beautiful, despite being wet and windblown after a day of cycling in rain and wind! Looking at the 90 year old who walked our trails so fast, the guides couldn't keep up.
And the sweet little seven year old girl doing a 7 kms trail hopping and skipping. Or the naughty-faced grade 2 boy who kept up with his family and walked almost 40 kms over 3 days!
It is because of these people that we do what we do and carry on, even on the days when we feel like staying in bed with the blanket pulled over our heads.
For the first time ever, our winter was very busy and already we are almost booked out for March and April 2016 with bookings well into December 2016 - Perlemoen Trails seems to be the main choice of venue for honeymoons then :)
As always, the good and the bad was a learning curve and I expect next year will be even more so as there will be a lot of changes and new beginnings at, and with, Perlemoen Trails, in 2016.
I want to thank Wilfred, Nica and all their great and wonderful staff at the Great White House where the best cappuccino in town is always available, Ian and Bonnie at the Franskraal Supermarket who are always ready with some coffee and a shoulder to lean on and who, by the way, makes the most wonderful bread, pies and hamburgers!
The lovely staff at Tolbos and B-Blondes, Soreta at Duineveld who is always ready to help out at short notice and makes scrumptuous seafood, as well as all the other restaurants we so regularly use.
Great guesthouse establishments like wonderful Annatjie and Hendrik at Dyer who always make everyone feel especially welcome, Tony and Nicky at Whale and Shark who are always willing to lend a helping hand even though they are so busy at their other businesses, Tot and Isabel with their comfortable units and beautiful seaviews on the farm, as well as all the other guesthouses and holiday units we so regularly use.
People like Brenda, Tina, Sara, Karen and Naiela who made my life a lot easier with their wonderful catering.
Jacques, who is always willing to jump into one of the vehicles and fetch lunch or sunscreen or water and who is so trustworthy and reliable in transporting our clients and staff.
Lastly, but not the least, my great guides without whom I would not be able to continue with such a demanding business.
I want to thank William especially as not only is he very good at what he does, but extremely helpful, loyal, (sweet and single for all you girls out there) but also someone who is always willing to go the extra mile and always the tactful one in the bunch.
We are all also very happy for our brainy Du-Aine who will continue with his studies next year. Best of luck and remember us when you are president one day!
I sincerely hope 2016 will be the year everyone's dreams come true.
Always remember, in good and bad - I am no longer a slave of fear but a child of God.
May you all have an extremely wonderful 2016!
Karen and the Perlemoen Trails Team