This Time for Africa
|Me and Sam at the Hippo Hide!|
We had dinners with her friends in Joburg, did a four-course lunch with wine pairings in the bush, got 90-minute Thai massages for only $55, visited an animal preserve and pet a cheetah, took a game drive through Kruger National Park, stayed at a beautiful and peaceful B&B, interacted with elephants for an entire morning, and so much more. I got a wonderful glimpse into what life could be like if I lived in an affordable country with someone I love. Life can be worth living.
|At The Three Rondavels|
While walking with Sam and her friend Lorraine, I was confused as to why there were gates and walls everywhere. In the US, you usually see houses and apartment fronts as you walk or drive down a residential street. But in Johannesburg, high walls and electric fences are necessary to keep you and your belongings safe from robbery or worse. I realized how great the divide was when Sam mentioned that most black Africans walk to work in the homes of the wealthy, pass through a small door in the strong gates, and go in to clean all day before walking home.
At Thulamela, the beautiful B&B Sam and I stayed at for almost four days, I came close to tears when our African housekeeper came in on Friday morning, greeted us politely, asked if we saw the Big Five during our game drive, and then proceeded to get down on her hands and knees to clean our floor. A mop with a handle is too much to give her?
|More Rondavels Love|
I kept asking Sam what I could do to help, but I think she's right in that it's not an outsider's place to come in and "fix" all of South Africa's problems. A South African has to accept that challenge.
Lastly, my dating life is clearly meant to pop off in South Africa. Never have I ever been pursued like I was was while on the Continent. The man at Interscape casually said "I love you" as I walked to the double decker bus for our four hour ride to Mpumalanga. A parking attendant blew me a kiss as Sam threw XRM back, flipped it, and reversed it. Women touched my freshly braided hair, stared into my eyes and told me I was beautiful. And most notably, the security guard at Checkers was floored by my presence, and said that I was "the cheese" before asking if he could come with me.
Tsamina mina zangalewa...