Recently, I’ve started to stress about doing everything I possibly can. Since my last blog, I slept over in an aquarium to fundraise for literacy programs, attended a music festival on the beach, snorkeled with baby seals, watched an outdoor movie at the botanical gardens, explored caves at Kalk Bay, and found my new favorite food: Bunny Chow! Don’t worry, it’s not an actual bunny. It’s curry in a bread bowl and can be found at the local Indian restaurant, Maharajah!
While I’ve been busy and made plans for the upcoming weeks, I still feel a bit anxious about all the experiences I haven’t had yet; such as going to Boulders Beach to see penguins, driving through the Garden Route for Elephant Sanctuaries, attending a wine tour at Stellenbosch, and hiking Lion's Head and Devil’s Peak. If you’re feeling similarly I’ve compiled some ways to get involved and make the most of your time:
The three classes I am enrolled in are all interesting and relevant in my life. My Poverty Development and Globalism course is my favorite since it relates to my major and gives me a different perspective than I’m used to. I genuinely enjoy attending classes and learning about the case studies in South Africa. My African Music 1 class is a first-level course, so the content and workload is not too difficult or demanding. Both classes increased my knowledge of South African history and culture, which allows me to better understand Cape Town. Arcadia’s program class takes us on field trips to places we might not have gotten to see. We’ve been to Robben's Island, !Khwa Ttu Cultural and Education Center, the District Six Museum, the play “Master Harold and the Boys”, and Bo Kapp. I’m looking forward to kayaking, hiking, and staying with a host family for a weekend through the Arcadia course.
There will be days you just stay in and clean, do laundry, and go to class. What I’ve found is saying yes to last-minute plans is the best. After two busy weekends in a row, I decided to lay low this week and get some work done. Despite this, I still said yes to hiking and exploring caves at Kalk Bay after a morning exam on Wednesday. I said yes to surfing at Muizenberg after my 8 am class on Thursday. And today, I slept in and am going to a picnic on Signal Hill and watch the sunset.
Not every day is going to be an adventure, but you can make a little adventure in each day. I am so grateful for the friends I made here and am thankful they are pushing me to do new things. Make local friends, do your homework at Cocoa Wah-Wah or the botanical gardens, plan to go to the beach after class, join a club that is completely out of your comfort zone (surfing for me), and join one that makes you feel at home. You don’t need to do it all at once. You have time.