Caveat: Apologies readers. These first few days in CT have been crazy, full of the kind of incidents (and a shocking England match) you would expect from me, and want to read about. You are about to read about Thursday and my initial impressions of SA. Tomorrow will be the weekend. Please bear with me. I am tired. Happy Father’s day Dad.
vuvuzela. its the word, and the instrument on everybody’s lips.
Everybody thinks they are realy annoying, until you get one in your hands and it’s the greatest thing ever.
After 3 days of travelling I had finally made it to South Africa, Cape Town, and the word (and crumpled plastic horn) on the street was vuvuzela.
My initial impressions were mixed. You were immediately overwhelmed by FIFAs corporate armada. Ticket machines, Coke, McDonald’s and MTN (the phone carrier in South Africa sponsoring the games) ambushed you before you could get through customs. Which was fine, but once I’d added a South African Sim card to my UK mobile (Take note stupid American Networks), and collected my tickets without requiring my photo ID, credit card or confirmation letter, I didn’t want a Coke, or a Big Mac, I wanted to go to sleep.
Fortunately my wonderful hosts had agreed to collect me, and I was soon whisked away through the streets of Cape Town. FYI America, and Britain, Cape Town’s road network would put you to shame. Even the traffic lights (or robots as they call them here) have a trendy white border giving them a classy feel.
The drive immediately illustrated Cape Town, and Africa’s largest issue, the huge gulf in the lifestyle of the haves and have nots. The new roads and airport terminal shone to the new arrival, but my friend explained how the houses, promised to the city’s poorest residents who had been displaced by the new ring road, had not only not been finished, many had been postponed indefinately.
After an involuntary nap we headed out to explore the fanfest, and again it all felt very well done. Huge TV screens and wannabe kids TV presenters enthusiastically transmitted the matches and commercials to a decent crowd of people of all races and creeds. After having our fill of the cheap beer (well cheap to me) and the artifici-thusiasm, We proceeded to a local bar (Irish pub no less) to watch Mexico (Viva Serg!) crush the pathetic French to the pleasure of almost everyone around us.
Everyone was pleased the match had been a good one, and only one thing kept me from enjoying a restful nights sleep under my first Afrikan moon. VU VU ZELA.
Next blog on CSI: Vuvuzela. Andrew and the gang watch a killer whale chase a pod of Dolphins from a sea kayak. I sh*t you not.
#the part of Nelson Mandela in this blog is played by Sir Morgan Freeman.