Ten Ways I’m Becoming South African

1. I typically say things like, “It’s not a train-smash.”; “How’s it?”; “Get in the bakkie.” (pick-up truck); “Shame.”; “Haibo!” – a Zulu expression, typically used when children do something surprising, either negative or positive.

2. I watch American movies and there’s always a moment of confusion when I’m convinced people are driving on the wrong side of the road.

3. I’m averaging a mug of tea every two hours, even on 90+ degree days.

4. I sometimes forget my umbrella on days that it drizzles, but never when the temperature is any where near or above the 80s.

5. Half of the stickers on my water bottle are SAfrican – one from my church’s diocese, proclaiming to the world that I am “Proudly Lutheran” and one for the Kaizer Chiefs (#khosiforlife), a local soccer team who, to be honest, haven’t been doing so great this year, but as my brother tells me, being a fan isn’t about just supporting our team in the good times (my entire family are die hard Chiefs fans). Which means that my stickers now show my support for marriage equality, Alaskan beer, Lutheranism, and SAfrican soccer. Really, what else is there? 

6. LunchBar (something akin to a 100Grand Bar in the States) and P.S. I Love You (sort of like a KitKat) are rivaling my love of Rolos and Gummy Worms. Reeses stay uncontested as number one.

7. A meal feels incomplete without rice or phutu – a sort of mashed potatoes consistency starch made from cornmeal. 

8. When trying to speak French to two men from Switzerland, I could not force my mouth to speak anything but Zulu. 

9. My marriage proposals from complete strangers are dwindling into the single digits per week.

10. I constantly confuse my family by calling both our house home and the States home. Little do they know the amount of internal confusion it creates too.


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