Porcupyn's Blog

July 1, 2018

South Africa – Part 1

Filed under: Family,Travel — Porcupyn @ 9:15 am

Long long ago, in school, we had learned of the Continent of Africa – the sobriquet was ‘andh mahaadviip’ or Blind/Dark Continent. Among other countries on other continents, I had studied about the countries of Congo, Ghana and Nigeria. But though I had had urges of travelling to, say, Argentina and Brazil, I had not really thought that I might ever want to visit Africa. In those days, due to the apartheid policies, an Indian passport holder wasn’t permitted to visit South Africa (the restriction was on the passport; I don’t know if South Africa ever cared about it). So, even if I were to visit Africa, it would have to be one of the other countries.

Anyway, apartheid is a thing of the past (no such restrictions exist anymore on an Indian passport) and now I live in the USA, which makes it relatively easy to travel to many countries without a visa. But still, I’ve always felt that there are many other places and countries I would want to visit before setting foot on the continent of Africa.

Then, a couple of years ago, some of our friends in the same subdivision made a trip to South Africa. After looking at their photos, I commented about how while those photos were really nice, Africa would not be in my radar for the near future. At the start of this year, though, something happened that changed all that.

It was during the South African summer of 2017-2018 that the Indian cricket team visited for a test series. Having purchased an annual cricket subscription via Sling/Willow, I was following the tour and watching some of the matches as time permitted. When the cameras panned outside the grounds and then South African tourism commercials were shown, I suddenly started to get butterflies in my stomach and a desire to visit South Africa was born.

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