On Saturday 26th March I had the wonderful opportunity to get together with a few of the Cape Town based members of ROSA (Romance writing Organisation of South Africa). It’s always wonderful to meet other writers and to spend an entire evening talking about books and writing, but what made this evening even more magical was that we met at the Bascule Bar at the Cape Grace Hotel. We sipped cocktails as the sun set over the marina, and talked and talked until long after night had fallen.

It was just a little after 8.30pm when I realised that we were now well into Earth Hour, that moment when the entire planet stands together in a show of solidarity and switches off their lights – and the hour appeared to pass completely unnoticed and unobserved at the Cape Grace Hotel.

A week or so later, searching for information on the delicious cocktail I sampled there that night, I stumbled across the hotel’s blog and read a post offering advice on how to spend Earth Hour. Incensed that they would blog as if they cared, while ignoring Earth Hour themselves, I dashed off a comment, never really expecting to hear back or even to see my comment make it past moderation.

BUT … this story has a happy ending!

Shortly afterwards I received an email from the PR Executive, Leah de Klerk. She offered apologies, pointed out that the hotel’s exterior lights had been switched off, but that the decision had been made not to hinder guests enjoyment of the hotel by switching off the interior lights – and she went even further: for every Saturday in April the hotel will switch off its exterior lights for one hour.

And this is how each and every one of us can make a difference to this planet. One simple comment on a blog led to a response, and thanks to that response a little bit of our planet’s resources will be saved. It might not seem like much, but even an avalanche starts with the tiniest snowflake.

I would like to say a massive thanks to Leah for her response, to the Cape Grace Hotel for making an effort (and also for a wonderful evening), and I encourage any of my blog readers to visit the Bascule Bar if they are ever in Cape Town.  [PS: They have a very nice selection of cocktails!] And next year, may I recommend that the Bascule Bar at least dim the lights and allow the guests to dine by candlelight? I am sure their enjoyment would be in no way hindered!

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