Unlike this particular post, the journey back to South Africa wasn’t short. We had to spend two more days in Morocco, one in Tanger and the other in Casablanca, before a long flight to Dubai and then an even longer flight straight back to Cape Town. Finally, I was back in South Africa! I could tell I felt at home because I didn’t have the jitters likes I usually get. The transition from the plane to going through customs, to retrieving our baggage was seamless. We walked out of the baggage area and I immediately spotted two Dutch girls holding posters with our names and pictures on it.
These two Dutch girls were Hanneke and Mieke who were nice enough to arrange a taxi pickup for us. The whole way home they asked about the trip and wanted to know our favorite parts and what not. Also along the whole way they kept on giggling and hinting that my room might look different when I got back. They also made it a point to know that I should be hungry, because if I was, then that was a good thing. Just so the world knows, I am ALWAYS hungry. Needless to say, they left enough hints for me to expect something would be different with my room and that they made us something to eat. I’d just have to wait and see!
When we finally arrived back to Mama Zulu’s, I eagerly walked to my room to find out what they did. Did they arrange the furniture? Did they clean it or something? I opened the door and found there were tons of sticky notes and pictures posted everywhere!
Each note had a special message such as “Welcome Back Chris and Dan”, “Please comeback with your iPad”, “Dan, you are cool like a duck swimming on a dam”, and ” Your Dutch friends are awesome!”. The drawings on the wall were made by the kids. It was pretty impressive and never have I seen the room more colorful. It took a while to read all the different notes and messages because everything was well thought out and a lot of effort was put in. A little bit later, the girls went into the kitchen to prepare our other surprise.
I was getting a little hungry, and I was hoping they made some kind of dessert! They usually do. Finally they summoned us in and we sat down at the dining room table. Hanneke brought out a plate of crepes. A big pile of it! They actually refer to the crepes as pancakes. In America, these are definitely not pancakes! Everywhere else, it is it seems. I don’t remember if I ever told the girls before, but I usually make it known that I really don’t like crepes. But the girls put so much effort and slaved away in the kitchen all day to make them, that I kept my mouth shut. I actually attempted to eat a few. I put honey on one and even put cheese in another. Neither worked but I tried my best! And I’m not a fan of Nutella either (weird right?) so that wouldn’t work. I think they realized when I had a plate full of barely eaten crepes that I didn’t care for it. But more importantly, the bottom line was that I appreciated all the effort put into the surprises! I think they redeemed themselves on the crepes when they brought out the chocolate mousse which was pretty amazing. It was just as good as the mousse I made back in Vietnam. Thanks for everything ladies! A great welcome home!
When I was all settled in, I almost immediately started to plan out the special Halloween party I wanted to throw for the kids. I only had a couple of days to get everything together! In order for any Halloween party to work, you need the right decorations. No Halloween Party is a memorable Halloween party without sound effects, black lights, and a fog machine. Halloween isn’t at all popular here in South Africa so I doubted I would find a fog machine. The party would be on Thursday which meant I had about two more days to get all the supplies. During the week, I told the kids to come over Thursday at 6 pm and try to wear a costume. Just wear your worst clothes and you can be a zombie. It took a lot of venturing into town, store searching, and a lot of money to get everything together but I finally think I had enough stuff to throw a memorable partay!