From Chi Town to Cape Town

A Chicago-Grown Girl's Adventures in Cape Town, South Africa

ChiTOWN to Hong Kong

Since my last post I have graduated from the University of Pittsburgh, and moved to Hong Kong. I am less than two weeks away from traveling to northern India to become a certified yoga instructor and I am both scared and exhilarated. I am not sure what comes next, but I am damn sure it is going to be an adventure.

They are Leaving on a Jet Plane

So my house mates and I have been ordered to vacate 12 Nursery Road, in Rondebosch on June 9th. That is this Saturday. With the exception of two or three of us, everyone is heading back to the states. I on the other hand will live in Claremont and leave for Jo’burgh on Sunday to meet up with my lovely family. Am I excited to see them? Of course.

Am I entirely dumbfounded about moving out? Yes. 

I cannot seem to wrap my mind around the notion that everyone is leaving. That i will be in South Africa (and then Botswana and Zimbabwe, to finally return to Cape Town). 

Strange Days, not sure if they are happy or sad.

A Sort of Separation

Can you develop separation anxiety 5 months after separation? This has seemed to occur for me, although I love South Africa with all my heart the notion of returning to Chicago is starting to creep farther and farther in my consciousness. Although it is not an explicit yearning, it is there, in a blurry sort of way, throbbing ever so dully in the back of my brain. Perhaps this is because my trip has been extended due to unforeseeable circumstances, perhaps it is because I am stressed about my impending finals. Either way, it is like a dull throbbing of discontentedness, and I am eager to admonish this desire all together.

Hiking Love. Day Something

Nature is a beautiful thing. Someone very intelligent once told me, while looking out over the whole of Cape Town, “This is our sand box, we can do anything we want”. I took that to heart. And what I want is to be in nature, to hike, to see what there is to see. I am just a kid, navigating an exotic sand box, and I cannot wait to see what I will dig up.

Champagne, if you are seeking the truth, is better than a lie detector. It encourages a man to be expansive, even reckless, while lie detectors are only a challenge to tell lies successfully.

Graham Greene

Stress. Day SomethingOrAnother.

Stress is a funny thing. Its boundless and timeless, with no regard for what city you are in. You could be half way around the world (as I am) and stress still hits you all the same. But why? Why all the fuss about getting in papers on time and grades? Many people say that you should put in the work now to reap the benefit later. But what about today? What about right now?

If you are wasting away from worry. If your relationships are strained because you have too much to do, should you reevalute your choices? Who says that we should dedicate our lives to being “successful” if that means that we push our minds, bodies, and souls to a state of perpetual discomfort.

Africa is way of life. A way of life that does not make much room for stress. Being a university student here has been challenging, not because the course content but because the atmosphere is so wonderful. Who would of thought that a place being so beautiful and calm could get in the way of “success”. Seems as though a perspective shift is in order.

Either way, the nice thing about stress is that it eventually disipates. Fading into oblivion. Such is life. Such is stress. I love Africa, I love Chicago. But hot damn will it be strange leaving this new home I have made.

Love of beauty is taste. The creation of beauty is art.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

AFRIKA BURN.

No need for a date time stamp, seeing as time didn’t seem to exist at this 5 day arts and music festival. There was only temperature, when it was hot it was midday, when it was freezing it was night, damp and moist in the morning.

This past weekend I spent in the desert. In an entirely temporary settlement populated by the most magical human beings to walk the earth.

There was no money. Only gifting, trading, and self-reliance. Radical Self Reliance. This means bring what you need, leave no trace, be good to the environment and each other.

This weekend was an extended love letter sent from South Africa to myself. And now, I am in love. The stars, the desert, the expansiveness, all welcome unconditionally. Just like at Afrika Burn everyone is welcome, unconditionally. Regardless of age, gender, orientation, clothing choice (or lack there of) you are welcome.