Home Away from Home | #4

During my time abroad, I have been lucky enough to stay in a wonderful home on the Eastern Cape of South Africa. The house is located in a small beach town, known as Chintsa East, and it houses several student interns including myself. The area is absolutely beautiful, although it is incredibly different than I had anticipated it would be. In preparation for my travels, I had expected that most all of South Africa would be fairly well-developed, with most all citizens living in conditions that are comparable to that of the lower-middle or simply middle class of the US. Upon arrival, I quickly realized that I had been entirely wrong. There is a major class and race separation throughout the country, or at least in the area that I am staying, and I was incredibly surprised by this when I first arrived. Just 3 minutes from the white, upper-class, and lavish area that is Chintsa East is a black, lower-class, and disadvantaged township. The contrast between these two areas is astounding, and I have found that this is a very typical distinction that exists all around South Africa. While this division is not something that I see as being even remotely close to ideal, I have genuinely enjoyed interacting with and exploring the distinctly unique people and cultures of each area. There is much developing to be done in the future, but for the time being, the characteristic ways of life that exist in these divided areas has been absolutely amazing to witness.

Till next time, hamba kakuhle!

Sammi

—all photos taken by myself—

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