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Hey Alan, the past three months passed by so fast. From my first day in Swanage I felt like home. Thank you a lot for so many things: All the really advices, which made life in Joburg so much easier, the awesome safari (Unfortunately without leopards), all the restaurants you showed us and the nice evenings we spent there together (I loved the Indian place) and of course all the enlightening and interesting stories about life and South Africa you shared with us. After the exhausting and crazy shifts in Bara I was always happy to know that there is a home with nice people and a lovely garden to relax. You are a great host and I would come back anytime. Hope to see you again! All the best wishes from Felix.
Dear Alan. Thank you so much for everything! We enjoyed every minute in Swanage and are so thankful that you created a home for us so far away from home. We will never forget the friendly loving atmosphere, your understanding and the fun we had with you. You always knew when it was time for a good steak, plus you always knew where to get this steak. You showed us lion in Pilanesberg (alas the leopards were not seen), you cooked the best meals, you gave us precious travel tips so we could and did eventually see leopard. You taught us how to handle the crazy patients, doctors and nurses in Trauma, you inspired us and generously let us into your home life! You always say that everyone brings a first to Swanage. Well here is a list of our firsts: 1. You had to set up camp twice because we did not find the right spot. 2. You had to stay awake until 2am because we had to finish Marcel's famous Gin and Tonic. 3. We were all guys with one princess on Safari. 4 First time to do a safari open vehicle drive with Gin and Tonic on board. Thank you! We truly appreciate it. We hope you will have many more Swans. All the best from Marcel and Max.
Alan. The love you share with people around you is not to be forgotten. You have got a big heart for your brothers and sisters and for the things you do. Passion, kindness and hospitality you embrace. These small things like sharing your food, lighting a candle before a meal, asking how was your day - it's very nice. It has been a pleasure to get to know you. Our trip to Pilanesberg - Private Safari, seeing leopard so many times for so long. Life's amazing isn't it? All the best Alan, hope to see you again. You're welcome to in Norway Marta
Dear Alan many thanks for contributing to such a great time. Your welcoming and open way made me feel almost like at home. I just don't know where you get your energy from, do you have a hidden source??? It's always good to have one or more safe spaces, thank you! I'll be back for sure, maybe sooner than one would think! You have a safe space in Germany. I'm more than grateful for my choice of accommodation here in Josi. Thorbs
Dear Alan You have created something really very special here at Swanage and I have felt kindness and openness that is rare to find, although I need not say anything more about that as I am sure you have heard this all before, I have had an utterly terrific time here! More than anything else I am pleased to have met such friendly and interesting people during my time here., and there is no greater feeling than knowing you have made friends new friends from around the world, whom you can turn to when you visit their country, or they visit your own. I have enjoyed my time in SA so much that I would be keen to return some day! Should you find yourself in London or Macedonia, it would be a pleasure to see you again. Many, many thanks and all the best ! Damjan Veljanoski DAMJANDV@gmail.com
Dear Alan. Merci Beaucoup pour le temps magnifique a la maison Swanage! We enjoyed our time here very much - starting right off to Safari was awesome, your late-night round table discussions were as enlightening as they were interesting, going out for dinner was always a joyful even, your piano concerts amazed us... Thank you for making us feel at home and sharing your vast knowledge of living and travelling in South Africa ! We are sure you will treat the future Swans with as much kindess and hospitality and we'll be happy to return some day. Danilo, Laura (les trois - the three) Swiss.
Dearest Alan and Swan Banter Family. Thank you for letting us be apart of your home. We loved every minute of Swanage, all the banter, the safaris, dinners and laughs. you have touched us all in so many ways. Our Swanage family will forever be in our hearts. This isn't goodbye, but farewell for now. Thank your being our father. Love always The Aussies Matthew Lindfield, Aiasha Saikal, Trish Griffiths and Hardip Chahal. (An extensive list of where to go and what to do was left in the Swan Book.)
Dear Alan: Happy birthday for the 21 August. It is with total joy that I write this excerpt in the Swan book, to be a part of this community - your community - has been an absolute privilege. I came to Joburg for the trauma, without much regard for anything else, however Swanage has offered a wealth of understanding of South Africa, it's way of life and it's people that I was foolish to omit in my decision to come here. In the midst of the turmoil that bestows ward 163, yourself and Swanage are a blissful retreat that fosters time for reflection and kindling of relationship unlike anywhere else. Future Swans should absolutely make the most of their opportunities here and for God's sake LISTEN TO THE SWAN COMMANDER!!! As discussed this will not be my last time in South Africa and I hope to see you sooner rather than later. If you are in the UK Alan, please do contact me and I can show you what Scotland has to offer!. SWANS: work yourself to the bone, but don't forget "there is no systole without diastole" so make the most of your time with this wonderful and man and his beautiful home. With utmost Gratitude (Prof) Michael Helley Michael.firstname.lastname@example.org
Dear Alan, I genuinely find it hard to believe that my time here at Swanage has come to an end! Like many things in my life, I'll attempt to explain using a recipe Swanage Souffle. 1x Swan Commander, 10x medical students, 1x Swanage, 1x Banter, 1x Love, generosity, kindness, 1x Community, Dash of alcohol or as required 1x Safari, 8x Fahrenheit Steaks. Take all the ingredients and combine in a cool climate of rugged South Africa for a once in a lifetime experience. Food aside, I cannot begin to thank you for the kindness and generosity you have shown me, there are very very few people who even begin to come close. Your jokes, advice and worldly knowledge surpass that of a lifetime, and I only believe you're a priest as well for the bants and robes. Cheers for letting me try them on. Alan and South Africa I will see you again. Whether as a doctor or something else, I/m coming bank whether you like it or not! ::))
Dr Peter, Swan Commander, Pulmnologist, Piano Player, Game Ranger, Elephant Whisperer. After 11 weeks in Swanage I am very sad to be leaving my second home. I hope someday to return for a reunion hopefully with the same swans whom I have shared your home with. I have many highlights of my tine in South Africa. Our Elephant encounter in the Pilanesberg is a memory I shall keep for the rest of my life!!!! Swanage was my home away from home, the family in a foreign land, I have made friends that I hope to keep for the rest of my life. I appreciate all the wisdom and advice you have shared with me over my time in Johannesburg especially in the dark moments, your words of comfort made ALL the difference to me. I wish I had left more time to write something meaningful and compassionate in the Swan Book. But like all good things my time in Swanage must come to an end. So this is no goodbye Father Alan, but farewell for now. I hope you continue to share your love and guidance with future Swans for many years to come. You set a standard as a good human that we all should aspire to. Till we meet again. John Canon June to August 2017. Swanage will be forever in my heart and often on my mind.