SA in a nutshell

Things they do terribly…

1. Coffee – It’s instant, and never iced!*
2. Bacon – it’s just not the same**
3. Conditioner – The hotels don’t have it. My hair is a constant tangle***

*Upon arrival in Cape Town, I’ve found that there are perfect little coffee shops EVERYWHERE. All over the place. You can’t walk five minutes without walking by a cute little place with fair trade and organic espresso. They still don’t do the whole “iced” thing though.



**In recent developments, apparently it causes cancer anyway. Who needs it.

***I could easily purchase some conditioner if I wanted to.

Things I can’t quite get over
1. They don’t refrigerate eggs*
2. Milk comes in a box on othe shelf**
3. It’s common for people to walk around barefoot***

*I’ve seen it other places so I guess it’s not too crazy. It just feels wrong. It took some serious mental strength to finally cook some of the eggs that had been sitting out on the counter for a week. Mental strength…and starvation.

**Same with the milk. Costa Rica and Mexico did the same thing. Maybe we’re the weird ones.

***At first I thought – maybe as Americans we’re just overthinking everything. Why shouldn’t kids run around barefoot in the streets and stores. Then I thought about how this country has far more disease and health issues than the US. Perhaps there is a middle ground that would be “ideal.” I saw a sign one day while we were out that said, “Water is life, sanitation is dignity.” The campaign’s purpse was to promote saving water – a most precious, and often scarce resource here. I interpreted it as saving water was more important than sanitation… like, think twice before you wash your hands. Like sanitation is a luxury or something. I agree that water is life, but I think sanitation is too. I think that in the US we over sanitize – but I wouldn’t go around campaigning for people to sanitize less. Maybe I interpreted the sign wrong. Maybe they meant something else. Either way, it was interesting.

Random things I’ve noticed…

1. The shampoo smells like “Skin So Soft.” After days of shampooing and saying to myself, “I know this smell,” it finally dawned on me.

2. Everyone serves milkshakes. It’s a thing here, a big thing. And I don’t hate it.

3. There aren’t may stray animals. We’ve stayed in a little country town and a big city and I really haven’t seen any at all. I’m sure they are out there in some places, but I thought there would be more.

4. If someone stuck you on a plane blindfolded, and dropped you off in South Africa, you might think you were in Europe. There are German people everywhere. I’m not entirely sure why. The official language here is Afrikaans, which I very closed mindedly pictured in my head to be a language sounding “tribal” with grunts and clicks – or something similiar sounding to the beginning of the lion king. Instead, it sounds very dutch/german/european.

5. The beaches look so tropical, like something in the Caribbean, but the water is ice cold. They told us that this is because in the summer, the ice bergs melt a bit so that freezing cold water makes it’s way over to the beach. In the winter, the ice bergs stay frozen so the water near the beaches actually has a chane to warm up.

Beaches via helicopter ride

Beaches via helicopter ride

6. The sun is HOT – but it doesn’t burn too bad. I’ve really only had one sunburn since i’ve been here and it was on my shins. I’ve spent tons of time outside, and while I’ve been careful to use sunscreen, I feel an equal amount of time outside at home would have resulted in many more sunburns.

Suburned Shins

Suburned Shins




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