Editor-In-Chief: Breathtaking 2019


2019 was a tough year on a personal level. But over and above the tough times tower the moments that took my breath away.

As the editor-in-chief of Sawubona I derive much joy in writing the monthly editors letter, and it’s the one page I assume people spend the least amount of time on.

That doesn’t stop me from writing a letter to a worldwide audience that will hopefully be read by every passenger on the plane. Getting a response would be a bonus.  

An Outpouring of Love

I was not prepared for what ensued after I wrote my first letter. I began to receive emails from people who fly on SAA planes who responded in the most amazing ways.

I wrote about our ordeal in Mauritius earlier this year, where my husband had a severe stroke. Letters with advicdropped into my inbox from people who had similar experiences and survived a stroke.

One passenger offered to send me a book, and she subsequently did after she found the last copy ever printed, and had it delivered to my office. Then I wrote about my Indian heritage, and my bucketlist desire to visit India to trace my roots.

Letters arrived offering assistance to trace my roots, and to top it off, I might have found a distant cousin with whom I will have coffee soon. She read the letter and made contact. 

Honouring The Ageless

Another awesome experience was to be asked to walk the fashion ramp of Cape Town Fashion Week at the ripe age of 57, wearing clothes from Hugo Fleur, one of our young designers who pays homage to what I call the silver surfers and he calls ageless fashion.

The response was amazing, and it made me look at what I wear very differently, wearing and buying local. 

Imagine my delight when Hugo sent a dress to my office with my face on it, as well as stocking a dress called the Ingrid Jones Collection 

Life has some breathtaking moments when you start looking at the moments that bring you joy and not the material things.

A Turning Point 

Although it was a difficult year, it was also the year that serves as a turning point in how I approach life.

To turn threats into opportunities, to reevaluate friendships that bring me joy, to pay forward because I’m receiving in abundance, to value family above everything else, and to drink as many glasses of bubbly as I possibly can.  

2019 is ending with SAA taking delivery of four Airbus A350s . There’s a saying that goes, “If you dream it, you can achieve it.” 

I’ve never flown business class and have never had the luxury of a lie-flat bed, sipping bubbly on a flight to New York. This is called manifestation, so I hope that the people at SAA will read my letter.  

Happy holidays to all of you! 

Ingrid Jones 

Contributors are the beating heart of Sawubona.

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