So, here are a few statistics from my seven weeks here in Khayelitsha:
- Average temperature: 32 degrees celsius
- Total 0-22 year olds within the Baphumelele projects: 118 plus 17 adults in the respite care centre
- Current vegetables growing and being harvested: 3 (beetroot, cabbage and spinach)
- Plan vegetable growth within the next 6 months: 15 (beetroot, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, lettuce, onions, peppers, potatoes, spinach, sprouts, squash, tomatoes, turnips & courgette)
- Maximum kilometres covered in three days ... so far: 1245km
- Sugar intake in hot drinks alone: 100g
- Ice creams eaten: 3
- LARGE packets of crisps consumed: 7
- Ultimate culinary success so far: egg fried rice
- Number of toilet rolls provided every three months if in prison: 1
There are number of ways I could sum up how the people, cultures and country itself has surprised me and taught me lots already, but I thought I would narrow it down to just a few observations and a couple of short stories:
- Despite the shortage of electricity let alone money, the street lights are always on - day and night!
- Just wandering past the children here sparks a curious interest in them and compels them to touch you.
- Albeit I live behind a shebeen (township bar), but seriously, there is music playing in this town all day and all night it's fantastic! It varies from Celine Dion to trance ...
- Every time I look out of my window across the tin rooftops of the town, I can see people in the streets, not walking so much as dancing, wandering with a rhythm that is extremely contagious!
- My alarm goes off at 7.45am, 9.00am at weekends ... and what is that smell sifting in the windows already ... A BARBEQUE FOR BREAKFAST?! It doesn't matter what day or time it is, Khayelitsha is full of the most sociable of people and yes, they have braai's at all times.
I hope that has given you a brief update on things here and photos are being uploaded to http://www.theeventualists.co.uk
each week so please have a gander!
Just for your reference, there have been blogs posted each week - please click on the titles to read:
Theft in Johannesburg - any one surprised?!
A Slower Start Than Normal?
A Christmas feast to put yours to shame!
I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas and you see in the New Year with style this evening!
I also hope you will be feeling generous enough to help these fantastic causes just as much as you can:
- Baphumelele Children's Home please donate now
- Go Help please donate now
- Warwickshire & Northamptonshire Air Ambulance please donate now
Many thanks for reading and I look forward to hearing from you via email, Twitter or the website!
Melissa; Team The Eventualists