As spring break rolled around, I finally had the chance to do some real traveling. 5 friends and I had planned for weeks, laying out a trip that would take us up through Zambia and Zimbabwe. While they had planned on spending two weeks traveling, I had decided to return after only one in order to not miss school, so I would have to find my way back to Gaborone on my own.
Our bags packed, computers stashed in a friend’s apartment, and minds steeled against the rigors of bus travel, we stood on a warm Monday evening waiting for the bus to arrive. The Gaborone-Livingstone Express would take us up through Francistown and Maun, cross the border into Zambia at Kazungula, and deposit us in Livingstone, Zambia, a journey of some 15 hours. We boarded at 7 pm, and hoped to arrive in Livingstone at 10 the next morning.
When we arrived at the border at last, we were all relieved to spill out into the cold morning air to get our exit stamps. As we walked down the road that crossed the no-man’s-land at the edge of Botswana, we were unprepared for the sight that greeted us. The border, we discovered, is the Zambezi river, and the only way to cross is by ferry! We gladly boarded the ferry, and crossed over into Zambia for the first time. The ride to Livingstone after we had gotten our visas was mercifully short, and we arrived at around 9:30 in the morning. Read more
I think it’s safe to say that it’s the little differences that really throw you off in a new country. You prepare yourself for things like exchange rates, getting lost, and people driving on the wrong side of the road. But one small change in the McDonald’s menu and you’re left in a state of utter confusion. I’ve promised myself not to make late-night McDonald’s a routine here so I’ve only been once but that one trip was all it took to shake me up a bit. As the woman handed me my chicken nuggets, I asked for ranch. Read more
I think I’m in love. No- not with a person, but something much greater….. a place called Galway. It’s in the west by the ocean (which being the Atlantic, makes me feel right at home) Compared to Maynooth and the Greater Dublin Area, Galway is more Ireland than ever. It’s a traditional coastal fishing village meet lively youthful city of fun- best combination if you ask me. Read more
October has been a hectic time in Cape Town. The beginning of October brought my 21st birthday at Rocking the Daisies, a popular music festival outside of Cape Town. My friends and I drove to the festival on a Saturday, as I anxiously anticipated turning 21 at midnight. As Americans know, turning 21 is a huge deal, but even though I was excited for it, I was a bit sad that I would be spending it away from my friends back home. Thankfully, my interstudy friends made my 21st birthday wonderful. As the clock struck midnight, I was surrounded hundreds of people in the Red Bull Tent. Read more
I can only imagine what my friends and family are going to say when I return to the states with countless new phrases integrated into my everyday vocabulary. So, I figured the least I could do is explain some of my favorite Cape Townian catch phrases now so that everyone has five weeks to study up. I’ve provided a full dictionary-like description, complete with phonetic spelling, context of use, definition, and example. No excuses if you don’t know what I’m saying when I come home! Read more