Something is Different
by Sylvia Hebert
When I returned to Texas from a month in South Africa, I heard, “Wow! Your energy is different.” That was said by a good friend who does energy work and knows things! I was thinking at the time, “Yes, I am different. I feel more grounded, more willing to go with the path of my lifeshocks, less attached to the outcomes, and more trusting.”
Was it about walking with the lions with Ann Mac at KudosRUs? Was it the 5 hours I spent at the Apartheid Museum or seeing the 11 languages on the outside of Constitutional Court in Joburg? I believe I was different because of those experiences, yes. But there was something more.
My trip to Cape Town to serve on the MTL Weekend team last October was a remarkable experience. I was serving as Team Support, but I was supported by the team in so many ways! David Curry, Laura Spokes and Priska Newham welcomed me so warmly to the team. Team support was done differently in Cape Town, according to Adrian Hulbert, who gently led our team. The wonderful part for me was that I had sessions with so many people on the team. I got to know so many of you, as we shared our lifeshocks and experiences, both on team and in our lives. Everyone was so open and seemed willing to trust me, an unknown trainer candidate from Houston! I felt connected and happy.
Priska and Scott Newham invited me to stay in their home, opening their daughter’s quarters for me for the duration of my stay. It was a beautiful home and garden, full of flowers, many of which were unknown to me. They were so generous and loving, being supportive as I navigated a new town and culture.
Kahnita Khan invited the team to her lovely, historic home for a team connection before the weekend. Her family was there and welcomed all of us, as they told the story of her grandparents’ house. Hilary de Kok and Heidi McAllister supported all of the trainers and the candidates with love and caring attention to detail.
I had a lifeshock when I saw an email that said, “Sylvia will be here for 3 more days. Who wants to spend it with her?” I had some MT that no one would have time for me! What a lie that was!
Patricia Byrne showed me Cape Town Harbor, as night turned into day. We ate an awesome dinner with her and her son. Kim Slater had just gotten her tour guide license and took me on a fabulous tour around the peninsula of Cape Town. She was knowledgeable and fun! Each turn on the road seemed more beautiful than the last. We ended up in Simon Town, watching the adorable penguins! That was a real treat.
Jonathan and Alison Sandak-Lewis showed me the Cecil Rhodes memorial. We had a lovely lunch on the top of the hill. I’d never seen ostrich on the menu before! We drove around to the beach, so I could see more of the town. Karen Kleinhans and I took the cable-car up Table Mountain. We had such a good time. It was a beautiful panoramic view of the city. I was able to see colorful flowers, lizards and rock dassies—a new creature for me!
Jenny Gardner-Medwin picked me up, so that we could tour some wineries. Steenberg was my favorite. It was a blessing that I was not driving, because I did quite a bit of sampling!
Manndi Schuld and Sarah Goldstein were so kind. They provided a beautiful pool house for Ann Mac while she was here, as well as letting us use their home for our trainer prep work. They threw a lovely team party after the weekend, to allow all of us to reminisce and share our learnings.
I met Yoka van Woerden on team, and I think she will be visiting me here in April. Yay!
I believe my “something different” is because of the wonderful, rich connections that I made in SA, both in Cape Town and Johannesburg. I found people so warm and friendly. You all made it easy to be a newcomer! I can’t wait to return for WOW in April 2019, so I can visit my new African friends!