Sorry for the delay in posting. You have to go to an internet café to get a connection, and every time I go, I just end up eating cake and drinking tea. Sorry friends!
One week into Africa, and it’s probably likely that I will never come home. Everyday I am greeted with the most beautiful, snotty, smiling faces and hugs. It’s not a bad way to greet 8:00 am. My volunteer placement is with the Sunrise Educare Centre in the Capricorn Township. A township is what most of us back home might refer to as a “Shantytown”, or even shacks. Despite the gross poverty that envelops the townships, these kids are still incredibly happy. They pray before every meal, and give thanks for the things they have. Today we were reminiscing on why each one of us are blessed, and there were no shortages of answers. Seeing how happy they can be with literally nothing is a truly humbling experience. These children are the greatest thing, and I hope to smuggle at least 10 back into the States. If some of you could send some more luggage to make this possible, that would be great.
Last Thursday, one of my buddies was sent home from the center. This was quite sad and strange to me, as not only would he be missing out on his education for the day, but also two hot meals and fruit. I later asked the main teacher, Teacher Mary, why he was sent home. She informed me that his parents had not paid his 200 Rand for the month ($20). A child was literally sent home from school because of his parents inability to pay the equivalent of about $20, or for some of my friends back in Bloomington, a $3 Thursday. The next day I brought in R200 for the child, and paid the principal, and she promised she would phone his parents, informing them that they could bring him back to school immediately. She also printed me off their monthly budget, and explained to me that each month they run out of money, despite their government endowment. When they run out of money, and are forced to send home children that cannot pay because there is hardly enough money to feed all of the children; even though this food is often the only time they will eat. It is a truly humbling experience, and I am honored that I can be called “Teacha Desiny”, and to help educate these children.
In other adventures, we hiked up the Muizenberg mountain to watch the sunrise on Sunday morning. It is such a blessing to have two feet and a heart beat, and we took full advantage of this on our trek. Although some might say we “got lost”, or “took the wrong path”, we like to refer to it as “trailblazing”, and/or “adventuring”. We were told of a 45-minute path, but we took the hour and a half, back tracking, rock climbing, cooler route. This ended well for us, as we were able to sit upon an amazing boulder that jutted off just below the top that allowed us to see the entire town and ocean. The hiking definitely helped burn off our delicious Friday market food.
Overall, there is a slight chance that I am not coming back home. Especially since Eric and I have located a couple of “vicious” guard dogs that give great hugs over their fences, and will happily eat any leftover Nik Naks (cheap Cheetos); not that leftover Nik Naks happens often.
Impressive and Angelique playing in the tire tower we built
Conrad, Praise, Lydia, and Sandra sitting on the bus, on our way back from our field trip to the BMV to learn how to cross roads.
Destiny Ever After
Because college is a fairy tale
- Adventures in Africa thus far