Marimba and Tolerance: South Africa Day 6 Part 2

The ferry ride back to mainland Africa was even bumpier than the ride to the island, I even think we caught air a couple of times on the waves.  Back on terra firma we caught our bus that took us out to Langa Township, the oldest township in Cape Town.  There we stopped at a restaurant run by a lovely old woman that did not have many teeth and liked to tell stories, and we ate the best food I had had on the voyage thus far.  I tried ostrich and who knows what else, and it was all delicious.  A live marimba band played us their music and I ended up buying their CD, and it reminds me of tropical beaches way back in the Caribbean when we started the voyage.  After lunch, we drove to the District Six museum.  District Six was an ethnic area of Cape Town before its 60,000 residents were forced out of their homes by the apartheid regime in the 1970s.  The museum was small and touching, although I do not believe it did the area residents justice for the hardships they endured.

By then the day was waning, but the tour was not over yet.  The bus took us to the Malay neighborhood, where we were to take a walking tour of the area.  A few of us elected to sit down at a café near where the bus stopped instead of walking around.  Some got coffee and juice, but I just sat and chatted.  Apparently there was a mosque around the corner from where we were sitting, because as the late-afternoon sun slanted across the brightly-colored buildings, the sound of the call to prayer made its way to our ears.  I was moved by this because it’s on my “bucket list” to hear the call to prayer, even though I had wanted to hear it in a primarily Muslim country.  I thought the moment seemed right for me to cross it off my list however.

We headed back to the ship just in time for on-ship time.  I was sad as I took the step from the groun onto the gangway, because South Africa was my favorite port we had visited yet.  I knew as I sat on Deck 7 and watched Table Mountain slip away that I would be back to South Africa someday, back to find those elusive lions, back to try and figure out a place that is trying desperately to put itself back together after a history of ripping itself apart.  South Africa, you have my heart.  On to Mauritius…

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Posted on May 8, 2012, in Semester at Sea. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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