Thursday, October 4, 2012

Sawubona from South Africa, Lekker, Ja?!

Picture taken about 120 km outside of JoBurg

Sawubona, I am told, is a universal South African greeting. Lekker pronounced "lekka" is slang for "cool."

Perhaps now is the time to tell you all about how I decided to accept a ride from a complete stranger within hours of arriving in South Africa. I'm pretty sure that this is the first thing people tell you NOT to do when abroad.  The stranger, told me that it may be a little weird but I'd probably be safer taking a ride from him than trying to get a (pricey) cab late at night. I think he was probably right and look I'm here to tell the story so calm yourselves. In fact, I managed to make my first friend before even touching down in Durban and have gotten myself invited to a real-life Durban beach front par-tayyy on Saturday afternoon (not that I plan to make a habit of this little adventure).

Outside my window in Durban

I was actually in flight for a total of around 20 hours. I landed in Durban at 22:00 South African time, which would be 4:00 PM EST. I had to make a mad dash in Atlanta's huge airport. However, all that aside, the most challenging part of my journey was probably getting from the airport to where I am staying...and I had a local on my side! But I made it, not before trying to get into the car on the wrong side of the vehicle of course (dumb American). Tomorrow I'll go to my orientation at the CAPRISA headquarters and Monday it's off to Pietermaritzburg to visit the clinic site, which is about 45 minutes from Durbs.

Thanks again to all my well wishers. Your support is great. 

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