Saturday, 16 March 2013

Weekend Explorations

It's been too long since I last posted! Please pardon the delay and bear with me as the blog catches up over the next few days to the present time. It's been a month, but it feels as though I've been here a long, wonderful time.
Where did we leave off last? 17 February, the Sunday we visited Jo'burg!

Photos Courtesy of Mike Rezin. Check out his facebook here which is regularly updated with photos from South Africa.
We explored a Jo'burg market in a warehouse with tree-shaded seating outside and a rooftop bar. I spent the first half hour trying every vegetarian-friendly sample that food vendors presented, including sweet rosepetal jelly, yummy sesame brittle, homemade pesto, and stoneground bread with hummus.  Here and there we found tables of jewellery, hair pieces, and other small trinkets. Upstairs was food-less  but fascinating, featuring art in multiple mediums from photography and sculpting to clothing and furniture constructed from recycled junk including a couch made of tires and pipes. My favourite room boasted books on everything from art to animals of South Africa.

After the market, we headed to Melville, a neighbourhood in Jo'burg featuring a long strip of road lined with bars, bookshops, clothing stores, and artsy shops. Chill and laid-back, it was a nice place to relax, have a few drinks, and read snippets from South African literature.

We took on another week of classes, a soccer game or two, and acquainting ourselves with our service sites. Things here move slowly in comparison to New York, which is challenge for many, but also sometimes a relief since we get a chance to slow down and take in our new experiences.

The last Sunday of February we headed to a music festival at Voortrekker Monument south of Pretoria. Unfortunately, when we arrived, the concert was sold out. The musical expedition turned into a journey through the monument itself and the museum underneath. The monument is a tribute to the Voortrekkers, pioneers who left the Cape Colony in the 1830s-40s and travelled north to escape British rule and find a better life. The view from the top of the monument stretched over hills, trees, and the city of Pretoria warmly lit by the afternoon sun.

Voortrekker monument, photo courtesy of Mike Rezin.

Monday I'll post about our first March weekend in South Africa and how our service placements are going.

Until then, tata,

~The Cloud Catcher

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