“This country is running away from responsibility like a headless chicken”

The title is a quote from a representative from the World Economic forum being held down here in Cape Town. I was just sitting somberly in the chair an early morning and suddenly I heard this coming from a stonefaced guy on tv. Fascinating, indeed.

Here comes a row of days at once. I haven’t had time to do proper updates. Varkey George, head of the program down here in Cape Town, has certainly been keeping us busy! Here comes a very belated account of our second day in Cape Town.

Second day Being shown around school & stuff #

Waking up to a warm morning. The sheets feeling comfortable warm, too warm. I realize the alarm hasn’t gone off yet, probably too much excitement on my part. Well, I have to admit I don’t quite know what I’m supposed to be excited about yet because I didn’t read through the schedule very thoroughly. So… Snooze some more.

Waking up again, three minutes before the alarm is supposed to go off. I guess I really am excited. It’s still cold outside, or chilly, maybe it’s just soft morning dew clinging to my sheets. The newscast states it’s a cold and bitter winter morning in South Africa. While the TV drones on, everybody is doing their own morning ritual. Erlend has been making his papaya (paw paw in local dialect). I’m munching on my rye bread. Still a little bit too excited to be able to chew down all of it. Simon heads out for a coffee run and I hurriedly hand him some cash to buy me one. And before we know it 16 hopeful students are packed in a van, most of us with a delightful coffee in hand.

The weather proved to be just playing us a pun. Upon arriving at the University of Cape Town we’re greeted with a most spectacular view. A glance from the topmost part of UCT grants us the view of a city slowly waking up, but already teeming with life. In the horizon the morning mist is still gathered heavily. The mountains far, far away seems to grow out of them.

Climbing the steps of UCT was awe-inspiring. Old, decadent and beautiful was the words which resonated with me while I thread upon the age-old cobblestone. As our guide described to us this university was one of many layers. Up through the ages the university had always been embroiled in heated issues.

After a lenghty, but nonetheless entertaining bit of lecturing by our wise tour guide we were let loose to roam the campus. It almost proved troublesome, I’ll refrain from using the word “fatal”, but it could have gone quite bad.

See this picture?

Picture of a puff adder snake

Puff adders are not to be stepped on

Photo: Lars Erik Brekne Nielsen

Yours truly almost stepped in some puff adder. One of the most poisonous snakes around these parts. When my adrenaline rush started fading away I started remembering seeing that shape of snake at some “dangerous snake series”. That was later confirmed by a passerby we showed our picture to. What can one do, but to laugh it off somewhat worryingly?

After the rendezvous with the snake we finally reached Rhode memorial, the place we set out for. Rhode was a colonial bad guy, easily comparable to Hitler or Mousolini. However we all had to admit that he did achieve great change, regardless whether it was good or bad.

Sitting by the Rhode Memorial

Photo: Lars Erik Brekne Nielsen

Rhode Memorial © Lars Erik Brekne Nielsen

Rhode Memorial © Lars Erik Brekne Nielsen

And there ends this post. I could write so much, and will, next time… ;)