Cape Town

After a very lazy week in Mauritius, it was time to make our way to Cape Town for the start of our organized safari. In Cape Town, we went to Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned during the apartheid years.  It was quite a sad experience listening to the guide, who was imprisoned there himself, tell the atrocities that occurred there not so long ago.  Adding to the apartheid excursions was the township tour.  It was quite humbling to go through these neighborhoods, most of which wouldn’t even be adequate for farm animals in the US.  In a “hostel”, which consisted of four small bedrooms, one bathroom and a kitchen, there could be up to 12 families living there.  Those at least were made of stone, while some others who didn’t like the cramped living quarters made their own hut of a mixture of scrap metal, wood, and cardboard with dirt floors.  It was a weird experience wandering around the area that is very much lived in, with all the little kids so starved for attention that they clung to you.  Other than the still obvious effects of apartheid, the city is quite nice- a beautiful maritime landscape topped off by Table Mountain.

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