What a crazy year it has been. Our amazing and dedicated Head of Reservations, Viv McFarlane, otherwise known as the Bookings Boss, has been on the receiving end of all the postponed trips, queries, tears and frustrations. Many of you know her well, some of you don’t, but this empathetic, brave women has been there throughout 2020 answering question, supporting travellers and helping all our guests. We are extremely grateful for her commitment, time and support.
We decided to ask Viv a few questions, not only about the atrocities faced by the Tourism Industry over the past year, but also about her as a person. So, you could get to know her a bit better and appreciate the trials she has faced this year on behalf of all of us at Tanda Tula.
What have you learnt in a personal capacity from the past year?
It’s been an interesting and stressful year – everyone I know has suffered the effects of Covid : friends, family and colleagues. I guess this has made it easier for us all to put ourselves in other people’s shoes, see that they too are suffering on some level. I have learned to practice empathy on all levels.
From a work perspective what has surprised you the most in 2020?
What has blown me away, has been the phone calls from so many of our return guests, from all over the globe, to say how they miss the special Tanda Tula team. They have supported us from so far telling us how they long for the smell of the Bushveld, they cant wait to see all the staff again and be in a place they love so much. What is also incredible is they all promise to get back as soon as they can, some have postponed their bookings two or three times, and they just don’t give up!
If you had to choose between the bush or the beach which would it be?
Definitely the Bush. I do love to get to the beach once in a while, but the African Bush runs through my veins, and I couldn’t imagine a better place to explore and live.
When you feeling down what is your comfort food?
I love cooking, and it brings me so much joy. I am a huge Mexican food fan, and I make a mean Burrito, its quick and easy and never fails. So, that would have to be my happy place: in the kitchen making Mexican!
What do you think 2021 holds?
I think if 2020 has taught me anything, it is to expect the unexpected! We remain cautiously optimistic that we will see tourism improve towards mid to late 2021. We can’t wait to have a full camp again and be busy with bookings. I have to end off by saying a huge thank you to everyone that has remained so loyal and kind throughout this awful time, we are extremely humbled by your support and grateful beyond measure.