Robben Island

The SOTA ended today. I think we all were anxious to see some real sunlight after being cooped up in paneled conference rooms lit by dim chandeliers reflecting off of smudgy mirrors on the ceilings. This week, we saw the great outdoors only when we were waiting for Raymond or cabs to drive us to and from restaurants. Thank goodness we took that walk on Sunday, less I would not have seen the sun in a week.

I jumped at the chance to go on a bouquet mission this morning to the flower market around the corner. Though it was pouring out, Michele and I borrowed umbrellas from the hotel and headed for the markets. I spent the rest of the morning making 140 flash drives for our grantees, then taking 200 photos of grantees receiving certificates, using my phone bc my camera battery died, unbeknownst to me. I definitely do not think like a photographer yet. I check my laptop battery and my phone, but having used disposable cameras on the rare occasions when I wanted to take pictures, charging camera batteries isn’t a priority yet.

Because we weren’t involved in the logistics, Michele and I were basically done early, so we ducked out to go to robben island. On the boat, we ran into a number of other grantees who were also escaping the claustropobic feeling at the hotel. It felt so good to be on open water again. The tour at the island was quite powerful. Lead by one of the former prisoners, who let me record his stories ( so different from us museums), the tour was pretty impressive. I thought we were a bit shuffled around in large groups more than I would prefer, but it’s something I’ll never forget.

We walked around the stores at the waterfront on the hunt for FIFA jerseys, and even ventured into a woolworths (in capetown, it has a supermarket much like whole foods- eg i enjoyed a turkish rose flavored yogurt for a snack). Though we toyed with staying on the waterfront, we returned to the hotel area for dinner. A few of us ventured into malaysian muslim part of town for cape malay food. Still on my veggie kick, I had a delightful lentil kalai curry. Being veggie in capetown has some perqs- dinner worked out to about R80 ($10).

All in all, a pretty great day. Looking forward to more outside time tomorrow and Sunday before another 24 hour trip home.

On a random note, my roommates in Boston start the PMC this weekend. Join me in thinking good thoughts for them!