LOCATION: South Africa

This blog is a special set-up for all of my friends who wish to keep in contact with me while I am in South Africa. I will try my best to post as many pictures as possible and I will post journal entries as often as possible. It will be an inside scoop on how my experience is going in Cape Town, in real time, for the next 6 weeks.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

My First Week

Ok, so this is a group email, but time is limited. I LOVE SOUTH AFRICA!!! Things are going really well and I have already had some amazing experiences with people here on the trip and with some natives. I have particularly been enjoying the company of other black law students as well. There are about 60 students in the entire program and about 50 of them are black. Most from Howard but about 50% from other schools around the country. The location where we are staying is very BOSSY. The apartments look like they came straight out of IKEA the African version. It's truly amazing. I have 3 other suite-mates and they are pretty cool I will say. One is 29, from Jamaica, has 1 child and a husband and treats us all like children, which is actually getting on my nerves but I take it with a grain of salt, because I know she means well. Her roommate keeps to herself but I feel that she is the "if you don't start nothing won't be nothing" type of person, so I don't say much to her. My roommate, April is soooooo nice. Her and I are getting along really well and we have already spent hours chatting like school girls so I am pretty happy with that, cause there is nothing worse than not liking your roommate. So we have a kitchen and everyone is buying groceries .. hmmm, I am not too ready for that just yet so I bought some yogurt and cereal for starters. But I have been buying dinner at a ridiculous exchange rate lately from wonderful restaurants on the waterfront. My roommate and I have a running joke about the currency here:

So there is about R6.40 to every ONE American dollar, so that means:

R100.00 can buy one of the following ... rent for an apartment in a township, food for a family for a month, a nice steak dinner, a cab ride, 5 pairs of jeans, a nice cocktail dress, 5 extra value meals at McDonald's OR a handmade keychain from a street vendor

SO with said, the exchange concept here makes absolutely NO SENSE!!!! BUT we are just rolling with it, trying to get the biggest bang for our buck.

Hmmm... there is so much to tell though, because even though I get to live in the best part of South Africa, the waterfront, we had a chance to experience the realness of South Africa in the townships yesterday, which is otherwise known as the ghettos, where 80% of South Africans live. These areas are very low poverty areas where rent can be as low as R20.00 or about $3.00 american dollars and there can be about 45 people sharing one 3 bedroom apartment with no indoor plumbing or landline telephones. It was difficult to tour the area and still smile at the MANY children who ran through the streets of the township barefoot begging for food and money. This was tough. At that point I wanted to be Oprah and give every child a promise but all I could do was smile and be friendly, cause really that's all I have to offer right now. Hmm ... there is so much more I want to say about this but it's hard through email. But I will chat with you all more personally later.

Tours: So I have many more tours planned so I will update everyone as they come up.

WOW -- How could I forget this part!?!?! A part of my baggage got lost in LONDON.. Wait ... actually it never made it to London. It did not leave the DC airport. Basically, the short of the long of the story is that the attendant did not tag one of my bags before the guy in the back put it on the conveyor, so that's what happens when people don't pay attention I suppose. So when I arrived in London, my bag did not follow and I had to submit a claim. SO it has been 48 hours and I still don't have my luggage. BUT I have faith that it will show up. God has truly blessed me to have packed things in a way that permits me to live off of the bag that did not get lost. The only thing I REALLY needed was a pair of shoes, since all I had was some flip flops and my boots got torn so I threw them away. BUT my super nice roommate April let me borrow her tennis shoes and I'm once again good to go, so the blessings are really flowing in.

I would like everyone to keep praying for me. Please keep me in your prayers. I love you all and thanks for your support again.

Leesha
http://aliciainafrica.blogspot.com/

1 Comments:

At 5:27 AM, Blogger mphatigo is in this bitch said...

Glad you made it. And you are in Africa, why do you need clothes? You are in the motherland, live as you were meant to! Put on a loin cloth, some sandals and let your breasts be free from the harsh confines of imperialist clothing!
and send the photographs to me!

 

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