Posted by: Naima | January 27, 2009

Honeymooner

As appropriately described by a dear friend of mine, I am living in a honeymoon period. I’ve met, become infatuated and am now having a wild love affair with Cape Town. Within one week, everything here has made me want to know everything about this crazy/new/familiar/strange/beautiful place.

On Friday, everyone in my program hiked Table Mountain. Seeing as its probably one of the first things you notice when you are in the city, it was definitely a good first “excursion”. The only downfall was that I am by no means a hiker and I’m one of those people that only puts on sunscreen after the sun has made a fool of my skin. But all in all it was worth it. The entire hike up (all six hours or so) was sprinkled with these beautiful pink orchids – I swear it’s what kept me going up that mountain. And for me, the best part was having my head in the clouds. While some tourists (who took the cable cars up) were bummed that the clouds disrupted the gorgeous view of the city that one has on the way up, I just love the idea of being that high up parting through white space. Here’s a photo taken on the way up – a few pitstops were necessary.

going-up-table-mt

A couple days ago I went to a global tattoo convention with some kids from my program. The convention center is in downtown Cape Town and this was such an awesome outing. The entire hall was made up of small booths holding tattoo artists from Copenhagen to New York. You could flip through their books of sketches and photographed tattoos while they were inking up people in their booths. I felt kind of funny with out ink peaking out of my sleeves, collar, and pant legs, but it was still really awesome. I went with four guys from my program and wandered around the waterfront afterwards. We ended up at a brewery watching an awesome band of 60ish year olds. While I’ve been on a search for live music here, it wasn’t exactly what I was looking for but it was so fun and they were playing everything from “Mas Que Nada” to “St. Louis Blues”.

Yesterday was my first beach day. We went to Muizenberg, a small town about a half hour away on the train were the view is incredible and the water is warm (due to its proximity to the Indian Ocean). Beautiful place, wonderful town. A couple buddies and I wandered from the beach into this awesome music store loaded with vinyls and CDs for about $3-$5 and books about conspiracy theories, revolutionaries, and herbal remedy (among much more). We made friends with the owner who loves people from the states so we will definitely be returning. Here’s a picture of Muizenberg/my new home.

muizenberg

After we came back from Muizenberg, I spent the night seeing and listening to some truly wonderful live music. I ended up with three kids from Yale and saw a jazz/funk/hiphop fusion group. They were great, the lyricist was dope, the singer was bomb, and there was a full band. I have a thing for trumpets and trombones so I was very pleased. The concert was at this bar at the end of Long St. (one of the major club scenes here). It was actually suggested to me from a Bates senior who was abroad in Cape Town last year because it lies above apparently the best burgers in Cape Town and has a rooftop bar, so I was happy to end up there.

This honeymoon period is amazing, but classes will be starting in a couple weeks and creating some feeling of structure. Right now I am having that crazy overflow of feelings you get about a new place. Few people have honeymoons before the wedding, but there’s a first time for everything and hell, me and Cape Town might just elope.

Peace and then some,

Naima

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