- Walking adventures around the village and bee attacks
- Lots of books
- Some rad sports gear from a South African lotto grant for my school
- More books, books, books
- My first visitor to South Africa – Amy, a best friend from my hometown will be staying with me in my village for a little bit. Very excited!
Posts from the ‘A Month in Photos’ Category
- Literacy Day Competition in Nquthu; select learners read poetry in Zulu and English, recited motivational speeches and sang gospel and Mariah Carey songs. (“Hero” by Mariah Carey will never be the same again.) We didn’t win any categories, but the learners had fun and tried!
- Yearly field trip to Ncome Museum — a Battlefields history museum at Blood River where the 1838 Boer-Zulu war took place.
- Unveiling ceremony for my sister’s baby girl Noxolo. On August 28th, 2012, my sister Munu had a miscarriage and was about seven months pregnant with Noxolo. The family buried Noxolo at her boyfriend’s property in our village. The “unveiling ceremony” is when everyone gathers, prays and the tombstone is exposed to the public for the first time. This ritual ensures that the deceased is at peace and welcomed by the ancestors. In Zulu culture, a goat is always slaughtered the night before. The day-of entails lots of signing, praying and then individuals say a few words about the person and place money on the tombstone.
- My mama’s traditional Sesotho/Swati wedding on our property! Long story short – my mama’s husband (Victor Mathebula) passed away around two years ago. They had their “white” wedding in 1993. (South Africans call a modern wedding – white dress, tux, church – wedding a “white” wedding.) They planned to do the traditional wedding later during their marriage to honor the ancestors and keep with tradition. Unfortunately, Baba Mathebula passed away before this could happen. However, the two families – Mathebula (Swati) and Skhosana (Sesotho) celebrated together. Victor Mathebula’s brother stood in for him as the groom. My mama first wore traditional Sesotho attire to represent her heritage then switched over to Swati, as she was accepted into the Mathebula clan. South Africa is known as the “rainbow nation” because of the diversity of languages and cultures. This wedding was in a Zulu/Sesotho village and brought Zulu, Sesotho and Swati culture and languages together. How neat, right?! This wedding happened right on our lawn and will be one of those days of my service I’ll never forget. My friends Michael and Shawn attended as well; Michael bonded with my host brother Nduduzo last time he visited with Katrina, so he came back to visit all of us and brought Shawn along.
- Mid-service training at the Peace Corps office in Pretoria and Khayalethu backpackers; first time I’ve seen my cohort in six months. Nice to see everyone. The 26 26s!
- Visiting Siyabonga (Will) in Rorke’s Drift and adventuring around
- Thank you card making for my friends and family who donated to our library project! (We raised $12,000 dollar and the books will be shipped within the next week!)
- Katrina and Michael visit the Battlefields
- Constantine’s goodbye party/braii
- Matric Farewell 2013 (South African version of prom)
- First grade 7 pen pal letter exchange with my friend Josh’s City Year students from Stevenson Middle School in East Los Angeles. Pretty much one of my favorite days in the classroom so far — none of the kids could pronounce Los Angeles or Spanish last names, but were beyond excited to have a new American friend. It was really neat to be able to tell them kids all over the world learn English as a second language just like them. Such a simple, yet powerful project. Can’t wait to keep the exchange going!
- My 24th birthday
- KwaZulu-Natal PCV Provincial Conference in Durban — a weekend conference to get to know other PCVs from other Volunteer classes, discuss projects and what not
- My counterpart’s gogo’s 89th birthday
- Cultural competition photos — my learners performed the traditional Zulu dance Indlamu and won 1st place and won 2nd place for a traditional wedding song
Paige and I were running around like chickens with our heads cut off at camp (speaking of which, I have seen one in my yard and can attest to how true this hyperbole is), so I didn’t get as many pictures of the Grassroot Soccer practices I would have liked to. Nonetheless, we still took a good amount of pictures — most are of the activities Paige and I facilitated!