Saturday, May 26, 2007
Monday, May 21, 2007
This nasty creature was spotted in my friend's classroom. Our teacher's aide pointed it out, shortly after you could hear our screams from down the hall. Even though I was disgusted by this thing, I had to get a picture (well, I persuaded Richard to do it for me). He kicked it and it quickly curled into a ball. After taking pictures, he put it outside...whew!!!
Cape Town South, Africa
My friend, Andrea, went down to South Africa for hip surgery. She had a lot of free time before her operation, so she kept pushing me to come down to South Africa with her for our Spring Break. I kept going back and forth on the idea. Finally, three days before the flight, I bought my tickets down to Cape Town. I spent an entire week in Cape Town. Below, are some pictures that I took from the visit.
Camps Bay, South Africa
Robben Island was a prison for political prisoners and criminals during the Apartheid years in South Africa. The prison was a harsh one, designed to silence anyone who spoke out against the laws. However, many of the prisoners, despite the harsh conditions, were able to rise above these hardships.
Today, to visit, you will take a 45 minute boat ride from Cape Town to Robben Island. Once there, you will receive a bus tour and then a guided tour by one of the actual prisoners.
It is definitely a place worth stopping by when in Cape Town.
Nelson Mandela's Prison Cell
These are pictures of the prison cell of Nelson Mandela. In the prison they separated the political prisoners, from the criminals. They also separated people based on their ethnicity. Each group received different meal plans, different items of clothing, and were treated differently. Before becoming a prison, the island was used as a leper colony. Afterwards, it became a prison that was forbidden for most people to visit.
The first part of the Robben Island tour consisted of a bus ride around the main parts of the island. One of the major stops on the island was the lime quarry where Nelson Mandela and other prisoners worked for nearly 13 years. Initially, they were only supposed to dig rock for 8 months, but the hard work extended to more than a decade.
The room leading up the stairs, was used to censor any mail that entered the prison. If I remember correctly, the prisoners were only allowed to receive two letters per year. The officers of the prison would cut out any questionable material.
The prisoners were able to play tennis outside in the yard. They used their recreational time to communicate with prisoners in other parts of the compound. In order to communicate, they would stuff messages in the tennis balls and then "accidently" hit them over the wall.
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
You know you're in Cape Town when get a breathtaking view of Table Mountain. And you're right, it was named as such by early explorers who thought the mountain looked similar to a table. At times, the clouds cover the upper portion of the mountain and the clouds become the "tablecloth."
The night before leaving we decided to take the cableway up to the top. Also, there are options to hike to the top.
What wonderful views of the city!!
The district 6 area in Cape Town used to be a lively neighborhood where many of the former slaves lived. After some years, many families were forced to move into another area of Cape Town, so that it could become a "white" neighborhood. These families were moved into insufficient housing. Now, the site stands as a reminder of the removal of people. Check out this website for more info:District 6
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Monday, May 07, 2007
Drive down the coast to the Cape of Good Hope
We decided to take a day trip and head down to the Cape of Good Hope. The Cape is only an hour drive from Cape Town, however, we made a few stops along the way. We stopped at a beach along the way. I didn't actually confirm whether it was the Indian or Atlantic Ocean. Either way, they both kind of converge somewhere around that area.
After hopping out of the car, we took a stroll along the beach and admired the homes and the huge jellyfish (do you see how big that thing is) that laid stranded on the beach!! You wouldn't catch me swimming in those waters, not with animals like that living there.
Well, the following posts will show pictures of our drive down to the Cape. Enjoy.
On our way down to the Cape of Good Hope, we stopped over at Boulders Beach to enjoy the cool waters and penguins. Actually, we didn't go swimming because we left our swimsuits at the guest house. However, we did take off our shoes and walked through the cool, refreshing waters. Looking at these pictures makes me want to go back down to South Africa to swim at the beach.
The African Penguin
At Boulder Beach, they have a park where you can admire the African penguins. Of course, they are termed African penguins because this species of penguin are only found in the Africa (southern portion).
The sign reads "Warning: Please look under your vehicles for penguins." I thought that was funny.