I woke up to a knock at my door. It was Avele. I let him in, gave him my iPad, and then I went back to sleep for a bit. I think these kids like my gadgets and gizmos more than they like me! They can’t get enough of Subway Surfers haha! I finally had a morning of not doing anything so I wanted to take advantage of it. It was short lived though; once I’m up, I’m up. I went to shower and when I came out, Mawande and Toy Toy were there too. Soon some of the others came over. It was pouring cats and dogs outside by the way and these kids still woke up early to swing by. Unfortunately, I couldn’t have them stay long, as I had plans for the day. I was going to meet the other volunteers in Cape Town tonight. Whenever I tell the kids I have to leave or I won’t be here on a certain day, I feel a bit guilty. I know they look forward to hanging out and if I could do that with these kids everyday until I leave, that would be absolutely fine with me. But, there are a lot of things I still want to do as well before my time in South Africa is up and hitting up Long Street tonight in Cape Town is one of those things. I haven’t done that yet. Actually, I’ve never been too interested really. I hate wasting my money on junk when instead, I could be giving that money to a kid who is in dire need of school supplies.
I took the train (which took forever to arrive) to Cape Town from Stellenbosch. I jogged in the rain from the train station to a restaurant in the Waterfront. If I can avoid a taxi then I will! I usually never mind going by foot. I still have to work off all the crap (but delicious) food I’ve eaten this past week anyways! At the restaurant, I met up with Alissa, Nicole (Germany), and a friend of theirs from New Zealand. I was a good boy this time and forced myself to order a huge salad. The olympics were on the tv’s and it was the women’s speed walking event. I didn’t even know speed walking was a sport! The women looked silly, but let me tell you, they probably walk as fast as I can run! I told Alissa how everything is going great for me in Kayamandi. Great homestay, great school, awesome kids, no complaints. It’s not the same for the other volunteers. She said they have strict rules at their homestay and there is nothing to do in their town. Some of the U.K. girls even left South Africa early because it wasn’t what they expected. Yikes! I hate when volunteers do that. This is Africa people! Don’t come here expecting a five star hotel with a towel folded into a swan sitting on your bed. I say your trip is only as good as you make of it. I came here wanting to do anything and everything I possibly could. There’s still tons more I want to do here! Also I’m pretty lucky with my homestay, I have all of Stellenbosch to play in. 🙂
Later on after eating, we met up with Mohammed, who was still sore from hiking up Table Mountain yesterday. He vows to never hike a mountain again after that. Speaking of which, I was originally supposed to hike Table Mountain for a THIRD time today and then abseil down the cliff, but once again the rain ruined that idea. After hiking Kili, Table Mountain looked like a joke haha! So instead the plan tonight was for all of us to hop around Long Street. But…that didn’t happen either. At least for me. I took a brief power nap at the hostel I was in which turned into a longer nap which turned into me waking up the next morning. I vaguely remember them trying to wake me up but I was knocked out. Oh well.
I woke up early and took a train the next morning to Muizenberg from Cape Town. Around noon, Lucy, Jaime, Spencer, Larry, and I were going to Mzoli’s! Mzoli’s is a huge braii in the middle of some random township where they serve up nothing but meat. Tons and tons and tons of disgustingly, delicious freakin’ meat! Steak, lamb, sausage, chicken, kabobs, beef chunks, you name it, they have piles of it. My mouth was watering the whole morning just thinking about it! We took a large van and picked up other volunteers, who I never met, from the Palmer House. Mzoli’s is set up in a big red tent with tables and chairs everywhere. There is a DJ who plays an amusing assortment of beats for all of the people who attended. Lucy, Jaime, and I ordered up about R155 worth of meat. Three strip steaks, a loin of sausage that stretched for miles, and mounds of chicken, all smothered in sticky barbecue sauce :).
No silverware necessary, everyone at Mzoli’s eats with their hands and fingers. Like true carnivores! No napkins either. I loved every moment of it. There was barbecue sauce all over my fingers and face. I felt like a kid again! The food was delicious. As for the drinks, Jaime and I went through three bottles of horrible tasting red wine. I’m still unfamiliar with South African red wine but the wine we picked was extremely dry and had a stingy after-taste. But no fear, this is when I introduced the other volunteers to a Kalimotxo. What is a kalimotxo you ask? It’s simply coke mixed with red wine. Sounds weird, but if your wine doesn’t taste all that great, put a little cola in it to make it all better. That’s what we did. Worked out great! We stayed there for hours and I got to know the new Palmer volunteers a little better too. Mzoli’s is authentic South Africa and I would love to come here one more time before I leave. The ride back to Muizenberg was interesting afterwards haha!
When we arrived back to the Rec House, I met the rest of the volunteers who now resided there. I can’t even tell you any of their names, there was way too many of them for me to remember. They have all just come back from the Garden Route. We hung out at the house for the remainder of the night. I didn’t really want to spend the night because then I would be late for school in the morning, so I called up Abdullah again and he was happy to take me back to Kayamandi. I could guide him to Kayamandi but once I got there I wasn’t exactly sure how to get to Mama Zulu’s haha! It was dark and there aren’t any street signs. I’ve been here for about a week now and I still get lost in this rather large community every single time. It’s a giant maze to me! Usually when I’m walking around with the kids, they guide me to wherever I need to go, but I’m so interested in talking with them – that I don’t pay close attention to my surroundings. One day, when the sky isn’t dumping rain outside, I will have to take a stroll around to familiarize myself with my township. Abdullah had the patience of a saint and drove me around until I figured out where I was. He wouldn’t let me get out until I found Mama Zulu’s! Thanks Abdullah.
My weekend was sweet! I felt like a kid again at Mzoli’s but now I must revert back to teacher mode. Tomorrow I would begin a new week at the school.