HOW quickly Port Alfred has quietened down after the busyness of the holiday season. It was so good to have a full schedule of events again for locals and holidaymakers alike, from carols by candlelight at Settlers Park and the excitement at the switching on of the Christmas lights at the library lawns early in December, to the return of the sandcastle competition at Kelly’s Blue Flag Beach and the annual fun run at the Port Alfred Country Club on Boxing Day. There were also a couple of Anything that Floats events, both in Kenton and Port Alfred. We hope business was good for the accommodation establishments and restaurants in town over the season too, after another tough year of varying states of lockdown. The malls certainly seemed to be full of shoppers over the season, and it was also good to see both Rotary and Lions benefit from having tables at Rosehill – Rotary with their Tree of Joy to encourage gift-buying for the needy, and Lions with their Christmas cakes which always sell well. WE are also thankf l that South Africa remained on level 1 restrictions, which were lightened even further just before New Year to allow establishments with liquor licences to operate at normal trading hours, as well as the lifting of the curfew entirely. This could be viewed with some degree of cynicism as a ploy to appease people who wanted to indulge in New Year revelry, but the normality is welcomed.
THE big news nationally was the raging fire which caused so much destruction at the Parliament buildings in Cape Town. A piece originating in The Sowetan which has been widely circulated on social media has very astute insights questioning the official narrative. How could a homeless person have broken into the building? Why were no alarms armed? Why was there no security on site? Why were there no working security cameras? Why were there no smoke detectors? What motivation could the homeless man have had to commit arson? Why would he have been carrying explosives? Why did he steal certain documents? The Hawks’ quick response in finding a culprit sounds too convenient. Something is being covered up. Appalling too was that EFF MP Mbuyiseni Ndlozi celebrated the fire. As someone else said, it was a cancerous comment on a tragedy.
BIRTHDAY greetings and congratulations to everyone celebrating a special day in the week ahead. May the year ahead bring you most of what you wish for, especially to Debbi Reed, Michelle Jones Phillipson, twins Ross and Clayton Lloyd, Ann Chester, Angela Fourie, Daniel Paterson, Margie Siegers, Tracey Butt, John Butt, Kelly Avis, Shaun Botha, Myrtle Fleming, Gift Wallace, Jurie Wessels, Andy Simpson, Michael Gardner, Wade Cox, Dudley Callaghan, Janice Shelver, Ronelle Botha, Bob Hobbs, Marlene Bowdler, Nola Johannsen, Jonty Lentz, Lora Waters, Jackie Anderson, Celia Bradfield, Jaco van Rensburg, David Gwilliam, Lorraine Mobbs and Pauline Reynolds.
CONGRATULATIONS on another successful year to the following places and businesses enjoying another anniversary, with best wishes for many more years to come – The Fish River Diner, Eastern Cape Motors, The Royal Alfred Marina.
AT the time of going to press (with 2021’s figures in brackets) the rand was trading at R15.94 to the dollar (R14.83), R21.58 to the pound (R20.11) and R18.02 (R18.19) to the euro. Commodities such as gold were trading at $1,819.50 ($1,419.23), platinum was trading at $976.00 ($1,080.71) and Brent crude was trading at $79.81 ($51.78).
OUR best wishes and heartiest congratulations to all couples celebrating another year of wedded bliss, especially Lou and Annette Coetzee, Willem and Marlene van Rensburg, Dean and Charis Charter and Charlton and Shireen Hilpert.
THOUGHT for the week: “The greatest guarantee that you will leave the legacy you desire, is how you live every day”.
BEST regards as always,