After a week of work in Pretoria, on Friday evening I took a taxi to Johannesburg, to the home of my cousin (first cousin once removed, specifically) EP and his family. We talked until late into the night, and around 2pm my brother Daniel arrived in his rental car from Maseru, Lesotho.What to do with one day?
1. In the morning we visited the Apartheid Museum. While I believe the museum could be better organized, it was still powerful to see how this horrible set of policies evolved and then how people of many races and classes fought to bring it to an end. Three hours well spent.
2. We drove to the Soweto township. After seeing Sarafina in the early 1990s, I was very interested in seeing the location of several important events in the struggle against Apartheid. We had only a few minutes, so we just drove for a bit. The parts we saw looked much nicer than some of the townships I saw in Cape Town.
3. We went to a professional rugby match, a steal at US$12 per ticket! We saw a New Zealand team, the Hurricanes, destroy a South African team, the Vodacom Blue Bulls. I’ve never seen a rugby game: men without padding run into each other and form giant piles. It was loads of fun: I also ate a bag of some powerful jerky bought from a vendor. (No hot dogs, but plenty of jerky.)
4. We ate ostrich burgers at a mall food court, surrounded by South African teens and pre-teens. Only one element of that experience was unfamiliar, but it was delicious. And then we browsed a bookstore, discussing options loudly; this is a must for any gathering of members of my family. (The per-trip “zoo visit” threatens to replace the bookstore browse, but we need to hold the line.)
A great day.