My dreary soul felt peace amid the weary veld


My dreary soul felt peace amid the weary veld

In a barren highveld winter, made more so by Covid-19, we find comfort at De Hoek Country Hotel

Chris Thurman

It’s a Tuesday in August. We’ve rented a cottage on a smallholding in the Magaliesberg, a few kilometres shy of the Gauteng-North West border. Sitting on the veranda and shifting our gaze between our books and the silhouettes of mountains is, my wife and I concur, as close to bliss as a person can reasonably expect to be in the miserable year that is 2020.  

But the chickens and the horses have been fed; the tyres on the kids’ bikes are covered in dubbeltjie thorns after hours of riding to and fro. An outing is needed. Lunch beckons.

Ordinarily in this area you’d be spoiled for choice. These are not ordinary times. Still, buoyed by level 2 optimism, we start looking at websites and making phone calls, until it becomes clear that we are pursuing a case study in the devastation wrought by the Covid-19 lockdown on the local hospitality sector...

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