Published on September 12th, 20133
Catching Up Series: South Africa 5 of 12
The fifth installment in the “Catching Up: South Africa” series (gee, do ya think we’ll EVER get to the end of it?)
|Catching Up on… South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho & Mozambiquexxx
(April 2, 2004)
Pecked from: Johannesburg, South Africa
Tattoos, Krugerrands and Soweto Homestay
Goodness, just 48 hours and already so many new adventures to share.For starters, this near 6-0 grandma finally utterly lost it – went out and got herself TATTOOED! Yes indeed, no doubt just loopy enough from sleep-deprived marathon flights to push me over the edge. But actually it’s quite demure – an itty-bitty caligraphy for “tranquility”, now permanently etched near the pinkie toe on my foot.Now I ask ya – will that not ever remind me of my first day in South Africa or what?Other events – but quickly now ‘cuz I’m paying by the minute here on this ‘puter.
Krugerrands: For those of you hoping for them, I managed to get all you wanted. A sweet gaggle of wee 1/10 oz. Krugerrands – all shiney and new. All paid in full but left safely at the coin shop for security ’til I return to Johannesburg in May (i.e. not smart to tote around a bundle of gold dubloons for the next 6 weeks.) And oh my – no small adventure to snag them. Only took 5 different mini-taxis (each packed w/ up to 17 local South Africans plus one lily-white – me!) in a zany 3 hour gad about the big bad city of J-Burg. Hadn’t a clue where I was going, nor how to find my way back to the hostel, but… long story short? I managed to nab the dubloons and got to meet a great bunch of new South African friends!
And finally, the greatest experience yet – an overnight homestay in Soweto (the legendary township that produced no less than 2 Nobel winners (Tutu and Mandela) – where the fall of Apartheid was born). Had dinner with the most remarkable “Phoshoko” family: Grandma “Grace”, mother “Rahaba” (a 1st grade teacher) plus friend “Magantha” (also a teacher – of high school english and business economics) and children so bright and well-behaved – 15 yr. son “Thoto”, 13 yr. niece “Kgaogelo” (that’s her artistry – selected for a South African book on what freedom means), plus… the wee sausage dog aptly named “Limozine”. Goodness but I could write a book on the lovely evening and morning we had – in a most humble Soweto home.
But time to close, gotta quit – getting up bright and early tomorrow to head off to…
KRUGER NATIONAL PARK!!!
Fast-forward 9 years:
Of course… I STILL have my most favorite souvenir of those early days in my life-long dream destination: my precious TATTOO! Thus a little bit of South Africa continues to follow/lead? me nearly a decade later.
Indeed, just yesterday, on my last full day here in Nepal, I again suddenly decided to add another tat to my “collection” – a little beaded ankle bracelet (and oh my but did it HURT!)
|Check out all in the “Catching Up” South Africa series HERE|