The Year of the South African World Cup

This year has been one of fantastic adventures and difficult challenges. Alisa and I began the year in Washington DC having started entry level jobs at the most innovative technology company on the planet, but with no real plan for the future other than to save up and return to Africa, where hopefully we would find employment. When the email came from FIFA on the 5th of February notifiying me that I had won tickets to all the matches I had submitted for during the random drawing, it gave me what I thought would be new purpose to life. I finally had confirmed tickets to return to the country I had fallen in love with only 3 years earlier. It would finally give me a reason to book my plane tickets and set off, hoping that Alisa would tag along for the World Cup part even though she sought to find a ‘real’ job in Washington DC. The year took on new meaning when just seven days later, I received another email accepting me into the African Studies Program at the University of Califorinia – Los Angeles.

I had lost hope of getting into graduate school when I saw my GRE scores flash on the screen the previous December. I thought I had blown my money on apps and the test as well as the chance to improve my chances for ‘real’ employment in the near future. So when UCLA sent the confirmation email of my acceptance, I was relived and surprised that I had got in. That surprise grew when just a few weeks later I learned that the Masters of Public Diplomacy at the University of Southern California had also extended it’s acceptance letter to me. Suddenly I had a reason to return to the United States after the World Cup, and I set out to convince Alisa to embark on this journey of a lifetime. Continue reading

Advertisements

Lost Posts of 2010

Over the course of 2 months in Southern Africa this summer, Alisa and I strove to blog about our experiences everyday to provide friends and family a look into our daily adventures but also as a way for us to document the journey. Hopefully this will allow us to look back in the years to come and get a clearer picture of all that we did and where we went. The blog helped serve as our motivation for keeping track of things we did, as we also felt a responsibility to pass on the insider information we acquired throughout the region so that future travelers would have smoother sailing.

Blogging from the iPad exclusively in Mozambique was difficult as it was our first leg of our adventure, and the least amount of data coverage we would come across. While we sought to review each place we ate and stayed, we quickly realized that our nomadic lifestyle wouldn’t allow for hours of writing each day. Thus days were back logged and reviews were left in drafts. Moving back to South Africa we retrieved Alisa’s Macbook Pro from safe keeping and we were able to write in a speedier manner and catch up to just a day lag for our blog posts. However, we’ve found that days that were written about were not posted, or they were deleted (thanks to the glitchy WordPress app for iPad, which has by now of course recieved many updates making it a much more reliable app). Over this holiday season, Alisa and I were able to pour over our writings together for the first time. We found that our memorable 30 hours in Kimberley never got documented at all, the day before and day of the  France-South Africa match had been lost, and that our days of driving back into South Africa were of such tedium that they were never written down.

While back in the US, the blog will primarily shift back to postings articles on African studies and news, but it will fire back up for the preparation for the next trip back to the African continent!

Below are links to the ‘lost’ posts:

Kimberley Day 1

Kimberley Day 2

Bloemfontein Day 1

Blomfontein Day 2

Kenya Photos 2010

Hello Everyone,

I’m back in California! Incase you didn’t know I made it back safely from Kenya about a month ago. Just in time to spend my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving, with my family.

Upon my return I packed up my boxes in DC and moved to Los Angeles where I am working on grad school applications and waiting to find out where my next adventure  will be.

It has taken me a few weeks to get all my photos and movies together (at least 3,000), but now they are finally posted to my MobileMe Gallery, so PLEASE check them out!!

The pictures only begin to share all the wonderful experiences I had so if  you have any other thoughts, questions, or comments let me know. I enjoy talking about all of it.

Continue reading

The San Francisco Giants and Zimbabwe: An Unlikely Connection

On 9 July 2010, the San Francisco Giants were 45-41, but 5 games back of the NL West leading San Diego Padres and were 9th overall in the National League. They had just lost to Steven Strasburg and the Washinton Nationals in DC, with Matt Cain giving up 8 runs, 7 earned in just 6 innings to the Nationals that would eventually finish 69-93, 28 games out of first place.

Also on that day, I was disembarking a train in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe accidently leaving my one and only San Francisco Giants hat on that train, losing it to the continent of Africa for good. Because my head rarely fits baseball caps well, the perfect fit that this one provided made me quite disheartened over the loss. This was accenutated by the significant history this cap hat witnessed in its lifetime. But in the end, perhaps it ended the drought of my hometown ball club.

Continue reading