May every sunrise bring you a promise and every sunset bring you peace!

I would like to share that on the 31st December 2017, we experienced one of the biggest storms in the past 5 years at Nkambeni Safari Camp and the Numbi area. Many people often refer to the saying –  “We should not focus on trying to calm the storm, but rather on calming ourselves”. Have you ever really thought this through. It is quite moving when you really think about it. How many times do you ask, “why is this happening to me”? (and to be frank, this is just one of those questions we tend to ask ourselves). This concept contains so much truth. First of all, yes, why even try to calm a storm, literally and figuratively speaking. Because, we are completely unable to calm a storm, to avoid certain things to happen in our lives or to us or to prevent even the slightest drop of rain to fall down. Secondly, isn’t it more often than not, that in the midst of a storm, we experience a great sense of peace? Maybe, it is the fact that we somehow know that we are unable to escape nature and it’s power, (or fate for that matter) and that we absolutely need to remain calm in order to gather ourselves and our thoughts to act as rational as possible.

We are always thankful for rain, as it remains a great blessing. However, usually when we have a large number of international guests on their way out on open vehicle safaris, we prefer it when they experience more wildlife, than rain 🙂 However, this was “unfortunately” the case for most on the last day of 2017. Although it was a quick thunderstorm that briskly passed by, it had a major impact.

This thunderstorm was something far more spectacular than just the normal “Rains down in Africa”. You see, when reflecting back on this afternoon, the storm came without any indication (well, out of the ordinary afternoon showers on a hot summer’s day). But, as soon as our guests were departing for their sunset game drives, the rain started pouring down. However, I must admit it was somewhat refreshing after the incredibly hot and humid day. This made me realize how “storms” come by completely unexpectedly, without warning and it shakes your whole world.

With this being said, it is almost impossible to experience incidents of nature, and not believe in something larger than oneself, or not to dream. It is magic – how we can experience, what we might at a certain point “think” as a disaster and reflect on it as something negative. However, minutes later we often witness something spectacular, such as in the sunset, which burst the sky with colors. This whole concept brings a huge consolation to any obstacle, uncertainty or problem we encounter. As at first you might experience the rain and thunder, but soon after when you look back you might realise how incredible the magnitude of the blessing is that follows, bursting your life with color and growth.

Furthermore, I believe that it was no coincidence at all that this particular storm happened on the last day of the year. We often find ourselves in a place or situation – physically, emotionally or spiritually where we tend to get stagnant. We forget why we started something or we get anxious of where we are heading towards next, sad to say but we lose h o p e. And more often than not, this occurs towards the end of a year or start of a new year. This day emphasized yet again how in the midst of a storm we experience the presence of peace.

All of these images were taken immediately after the storm, with a phone (no filters to enhance the natural beauty). The way this storm cleared up and the sun was setting, the sky was suddenly painted in the most vibrant and extraordinary colors. Minutes after one another the sky kept on changing. Like our lives, year upon year – it keeps on changing. Like us, day upon day – we keep on changing, we keep on growing.

There is just something incredible about watching the sun rise and watching it set at the end of the day. Even more so, after a storm! It makes you feel small and large at the same time, it makes you realize that every day starts with possibility and opportunity, and every day ends with beauty and peace in knowing that regardless of what happened today, regardless the complexities or storms of that day, tomorrow the sun will rise again. How comforting?

With this year already flying by, and today being the first day of March 2018, let this be a deliberate reminder that we should be spending our time and our energy NOT only living for the weekend, for a new month, or for a new year. NO! We should shift our focus, to live, truly live for each new day. Stop waiting for 31st of December 2018 to make changes, start living today. Set goals, seak new opportunities, take risks, make changes and take chances and always remain thankful.

Every single day has a sunrise and a sunset! Can you truly say that you have seen the same sunrise or sunset twice? I bet not! This is what it is all about – every ending, how small or big, is the start of something new. Because with every “sunset” a new sunrise will follow.

Do not find yourself in situations where you are missing out on so many of them – they are free of charge and the lessons are endless and invaluable.

Let every sunrise and sunset you witness, be a constant reminder that we get to CHOOSE to start over every single day. So cheers, not only to the new month of March 2018, but on every new day for the rest of the year, every storm that will come along and every sunrise and sunset we will treasure! 🙂

“Every sunset brings the promise of a new dawn that will break”.