South Africa

How can I possibly begin to tell you what it’s like to feel the entire globe united under one passion?!  Soccer/football, whatever your chosen terminology may be, is a sport that truly binds nations together for a common goal: winning the game.  Countries from all over the world came together in South Africa for an event that changed the history of FIFA.  Africa was finally able to host a Cup, which played out most gracefully and I am one of the luckiest people alive to have been able to experience that (I won’t even deny it).

We spent six weeks in Southern Africa, circling the country twice, attending the multiple matches for which were fortunate to have had tickets (some better than others – everything from nosebleed to second row, all equally epic).  Multiple safaris, a world-famous surfing competition, long scenic drives, wine tastings, site seeing, seal-watching, hostel beer-drinking, historical pit stops, house-stays on game reserves, and spirit induced sport gatherings in various cities were some of the incredible things we were able to experience.  To be honest, chasing penguins was probably the best.

One of my favorite days in South Africa was one that included a visit to Robben Island, a place where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years of his life serving a sentence that later represented his fight against apartheid.  If you ever travel to South Africa, be sure to take a trip through its past.  The narrative is surreal and the fight against racial oppression is evident in the country’s spirit.  Still with some slight separation, the country continues to strengthen itself under a more united flag and a promise of following Mandela’s most important philosophy…

Ubuntu: I am because we are.