As previously mentioned, to us, The Narrative is like our baby. And as the legend goes, “it takes a village to raise a child” - so scroll down to meet the ladies raising The Narrative.
Retail and E-commerce Manager & Merchandiser – wanted to be a marine biologist.
A true organization freak, Astrid ensures that everything runs as smoothly as possible, behind The Narrative’s scenes. Having previously worked the boring 8-5 job of a draughtswoman, she’s found happiness in her new career, happier than she could have ever imagined - we’d be too if we got to travel as often.
Being proud of her “obsessive with a sprinkle of wild’’ personality, she goes by the name of “The General” around these quarters. We’ll probably never admit it – but this neat-freakiness is what keeps The Narrative afloat.
And when she’s not trotting the roads between Gondwana Curio shops, you’ll most probably find her on the rugby field – being that she plays rugby for the first ever Namibian 15 woman's team (flex) … but as this blog is all about bragging, we won’t mention the scoreboard.
While we do love our General, we have a slight concern when it comes to her unhealthy obsession with dinosaurs … and the colour pink. The woman even has a tattoo of a Triceratops.
One last thing though, don’t touch her desk – she'll know.
E-commerce Assistant manager – wanted to be a pet shop owner.
Danica is a vegetarian, we know this blog does not really concern dietary lifestyles, but she’d like you to know that anyways.
Having studied BA Fashion Design in Cape -Town, she has a keen eye for detail and takes pride in crafting a sharp and comfortable user experience on The Narrative. And when she’s not ‘e-commercing” her day away, you’ll find her on the road to a Gondwana Curio shop, along with The General. And what does she wear on these trips might you ask? Outfits she had packed 2 weeks prior to departure – is this normal?
Danica loves having a good read - although she’ll probably never really finish them all, considering the abnormal rate at which she buys new books. She’s also quite the photographer, having a snazzy Canon camera in her position and all, no amateur if you ask us – have you seen our product shots? Didn’t mean to show off.
She's not as neat and tidy as Astrid, but at least she calls it “organized chaos”.
While she only recently found out that Narwhals are real animals, Danica is all and all, pretty hip, but there’s just one disturbing thing to the girl - she loves Taylor Swift and she’s not ashamed. No wonder that all she wants for Christmas is for everyone to leave her alone for once.
In our opinion, “she needs to calm down”.
Brand & Marketing Manager – wanted to be a copy-editor at a publishing house.
Technically being guilted into a position in the original Marketing Team of Gondwana in 2016 -thank goodness for that - Jes soon fell in love with the brand and had her first marriage to Gondwana. It’s still a blissful union, as she has since become the leader of that team.
Jes studied a BA in Languages and Cultures and an additional course in Brand Management, making her the perfect fit for our “little” project.
Coffee junky, which is weird, as she’s almost always tired. Besides coffee, she’s got a concerning and almost problematic obsession with Pinterest – on her home feed you’ll find a wide variety of aesthetics, ranging from tattoos to organising hacks … and then of course articles on “how to keep plants alive”. She's been trying out the gardening thing, although it’s a love-hate relationship. Plants don’t like her very much.
While her 16 wishes include keeping her plants alive, she really does want that magic remote that stops time, the one from that Adam Sandler movie in the early 2000’s.
She honestly has quite the colourful vocabulary but she basks in the “fact” that apparently people who curse a lot are healthier and more honest – we bet you she misread that on Buzzfeed once. She has a love for bull terriers, claiming that they make the best cuddle-buddies - poor husband.
And then, Jes has a borderline unhealthy love for cheese, particularly melted, which nowadays smell and taste after burnt garlic – how kind of you Covid.
Brand and marketing artist – wanted to be flower farmer.
Marlene is the youngest member in The Narrative team, but deep inside, she’s a boomer - being an avid collector of vinyl records, it’s easy to make these claims.
She is an extremely passionate (amateur) Graphic Designer whose love for art and design has no other explanation than that of her family genes. She grew up amid story-tellers, painters, poets, wine-makers … and farmers – a peculiar combination for a child to experience.
Years later, after accepting the fate of her mutation, she finished her studies in Photography, and continues to do so in the Graphic Design field.
She was never really supposed to stay at Gondwana, initially taking a 3-month student internship – we've tried, but she refuses to leave, and 3 months have long gone.
Her colleagues describe her as “lowkey”, but we all know when Marlene leaves the office, you’ll most likely find her under a disco ball. And when she’s not busting a move, you’ll find her eating ramen whilst watching another episode of Seinfeld.
And so, it leads us to her next trait; the unhealthy obsession with Asian cuisine. Sushi, poke bowls, fried rice, wasabi green peas … a never-ending list really. Understandably, all she wants for Christmas is a hamper from the nearby Chinese grocery-store.
Dealer of Hope and chicken wings (choreographing backstage) – wanted to be a general manager of a Hilton property in a very exotic place.
Bringing her experience from The Netherlands and The United States (across the globe really), where she's worked in exotic places (after all), she keeps the grand canal flowing throughout the team – good thing she’s from Italy. On paper Sonia has 2 daughters, but it’s safe to say that she’s the mother-hen of our team.
While she claims to be stupidly brave, we think she’s a pretty fierce woman. And by that we mean, have you heard the story of how Sonia ended up here? Have a quick listen:
Along with her husband, she travelled from Belgium to Namibia in 1996, crisscrossing through Africa, and she ended up falling in love with the place, and never really leaving. Namibia’s incredible beauty and its people gave them the incentive to grow Gondwana Collection Namibia from scratch at its early beginnings – eventually providing power to The Narrative.
Sonia is a strict perfectionist, and does not rest until we have reached our full potential – yes, she drives us crazy, but also to succeed. After all, she runs a non-profit organization, where she has mentored girls in making handmade dolls and sells it nationwide.
On Saturdays, when she leaves us to rest, you’ll most probably find Sonia in hiking shoes somewhere in the veld and thereafter? With a Windhoek Lager, chilling on her stoep.
Random fact: Sonia speaks 7 languages – but we find her German much better than her Afrikaans.
So that’s our team in a nutshell. While we know that posting this blog might cause our audience to either spike or drastically decrease, we had to take the risk in introducing you to the wonderful women who’s keeping this ship afloat … although some of them are borderline concerning.
Written by: Marlene Orffer