Everyone has experienced that feeling before, you are at a new place, someone by the name of Stephen said that you would really enjoy the vibe and to be honest, you just aren’t feeling it. You look around yourself and are surrounded by people who all seem to be enjoying themselves, what are you missing? It hits, and it hits hard. You are the only person standing alone. Everyone else seems to be deeply engaged with each other, talking, laughing, and sharing an experience around the event they are participating in.
This experience could so easily be your first experience of climbing, with the result being that you leave and never come back. “I just didn’t feel the vibe” you would tell yourself and miss out on all the wonders that the sport can bring into your life. How sad dude…To avoid this sad, sad situation I have worked hard to place Community at the center of FA, to ensure that all our climbing tjommies have access to great Friends and Allies through which they can experience the wonders of climbing.
Hopefully, you felt that the moment you walked through the door, even before the gym was officially opened, with so many climbers coming in to volunteer their time to sand the walls, paint the art and install the mats, kak jobs really but done with the most Gees. These good vibes have simply been transported into the now fully operational FA, where we hope to create the environment where an inviting and open community encourages and invites each other out onto rock on the weekend, and in the process become best maats. Now, all that needs to happen is for you guys to be your perfect selves.
The world out there is a weird place, and we easily lose touch with what it means to build community, but it is a conscious effort that needs to be taken up by all. So I would like to offer a few tips to all our maats in the FA community. The most important tip, just to show up. Perhaps one of the easiest things to do is to just show up and climb. Setting aside regular days and time to train you will tend to see familiar faces and masks. This makes it easier to approach and strike up a conversation, the gym is so small you really can’t miss each other. This also probably means that you will be working on a project together, talk about the problem, ask for some beta, make suggestions. We are all here to be stoked on climbing and want to feed off that energy with each other.
Then when the session is done, don’t be shy to ask your new tjommie to come and share a beer with you. As we all know nothing quenches sore muscles and battered egos quite like a lekker cold one. You might be wondering where this wonderful place might be, I mean beers, climbing and lekker tjommies, let’s be real.
What if I told you that we have the SHY Brewery in our basement for this very reason. Did I forget to mention that Made In Workshop has a fully operational brewery and that the FA Balcony Bar will very soon become the new sundowner location in Joburg? Oh my bad, guess we will keep that our community’s little secret…
So until we get time to crank together, here’s to YOU, the beating heart of Joburg’s stoked climbing community.