Long ago (1988) I moved to Berkeley and started sending a monthly "newsletter" to my Boston friends. When I returned to Boston (1993), I continued the tradition for about five more years (or until I had kids). Looking back, I realize that I was actually blogging. Each newsletter contained anywhere from a few to several blog posts. Having been silent for the past decade or so, I've decided to resume these activities. Don't expect anything profound -- I tend to focus on what I find entertaining or amusing and perhaps sometimes informative. We shall see!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Into Africa: Walter Sisulu Botanical Garden

It is our first day in South Africa, and we are all a bit punchy, tired, jet-lagged, and extremely excited! The decision for a relatively short outdoor adventure with the potential for a bit of a hike was the perfect way to get us started.

I have to admit it -- I was a bit surprised to see that there was a suggested reading list for this trip. But, I wanted to be a good doobee, so I read the short Mandela book recommended for the students and then dove into the rather long, "Long Walk to Freedom," Mandela's autobiography. I am so glad I did! It let me put many things into historical context and more fully appreciate everything we saw. For example, when we landed at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg, I knew who Oliver Tambo was. And when we visited the Walter Sisulu Botanical Garden, I knew who he was too.

The botanical gardens was our first real introduction to South Africa and it reminded many of us of southern California in its fauna. The highlight for our crew was a beautiful waterfall and the hiking trail that led to the top of it.

Some spotted the black eagles that had been advertised, but I missed them. I had to settle for guinea fowl!

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