I want to go to bed, but here’s a quick post.
Zulus have a habit of doubling words in English. “Yes, we must go quickly quickly.” Or one of my favorites is what what. “Over there, you’ll find another tuck shop with what what.” (For another reference, you may remember Mbecki’s “softly softly” policy on Zimbabwe, though I believe Mbecki is Xhosa.)
On Saturday, when we went to watch the rugby match, we got to the lodge’s bar (where they have TVs) and walked in and turned the lights and TV on; then we sat down to watch the game by ourselves. A few minutes later, a woman walked in and asked if we wanted drinks. She sent in a guy to act as a barman when we said we would. He sat in the backroom most of the game, saying to just shout if we needed anything. But near the end of the match, he came out and asked me to help him on his computer, to make a CD with some songs on it. So in addition to my tip, I helped him with burning a CD; I feel like he did alright on the day.
I leave Ingwavuma tomorrow morning. It’s been a weird two weeks; perhaps the weirdest is that it’s felt like much longer. I feel quite settled here. I’ve been cooking for myself; I have a routine; I’ve made friends. It’s also so far removed from an American life or really any city life that I’ve experienced that it feels like I’m living another life–perhaps someone else’s life–entirely.
What better way to end a weird two weeks than a weird day: I changed a tire, set up two computers, and had lunch at a hidden cafe where the waitress ran (jogged is perhaps a more appropriate term) from the table to the kitchen, despite the fact that we were the only two people there and that we were in no hurry whatsoever.
Tonight was a going away bbq–a braai as it’s called in SA English. My family friend, her fiance, my coworkers and a few of the people I’ve met here all turned out. We ate well, chatted and had a grand time.
On the way back, one pick up served as the ride home for eight or nine people. I stood in the back holding onto the rollbar with two Zulus and a Malawian as we made our way down a bumpy dirty road. People may decry being careless about safety in foreign countries when one wouldn’t be at home, but this time it didn’t produce any injuries, just a giant smile on my face as we bumped through black night with cold air rushing past our bodies.