A Passion for Peace

Responsibility, respect and a loving connection with all beings and for this Earth we share.

Soccer Zulu-gans

We were there! Friday I drove the ladies down to Durban for the Brazil-Portugal match. They were alternately in Bafana Bafana jerseys and church clothes. I had to arrive by 1 to fetch my passport from the American Embassy, and of course we arrived at 1:05. Last time I parked downtown I scraped the side of the vehicle in the garage (cities & Valerie-drivers were not designed for 4x4s), so with a bunch of ladies in the car I was confident could talk us out of anything I decided to double-park the double-cab and make a dash for the passport (and of course the Embassy's on the 31st floor, the very top). Since I called ahead someone kindly got my passport anyway (thanks, USA!) and I ran back to the lobby to find two ladies waiting. "The police are there, hurry!" They had asked the security guard, "Do you know Valer?" to which he replied, "There are a lot of people in this building." I froggered across the street back and apologized profusely. The ladies had made up a story of my being an overseas driver not used to the vehicle and that I had to go into a shop to ask for help because it was broken down, but neglected to tell me so I could keep the story straight. The officer let us go, with some words in Zulu that the ladies should be ashamed for making him "look like a fool" and we were off to sit in traffic and avoid the psychotic weaving of taxi vans til I found safe non-garage parking. (Photo: soccer balls of the world & a typical Brazil fan.)

It took about 2 hours to walk 2 km, what with photos, complaints and the slow shuffle of black people (hey, you US blacks know you walk slowly, too). We passed approximately 37 Brazil fans for every 1 Portugal fan, and the ladies collected discarded plastic bottles to fill with seawater. I asked what the water was for, and one said, "We need wives!" Silence and confusion ensued. Another corrected, "husbands!" and we all laughed. I asked the one who has a husband what she'll use it for, and she said she will wash with it everyday and "it is very important! the most important." It reminds me of New Orleans, the mix of traditional customs and ancestor worship with very heavy Christianity. By 3:45 they were all hungry as none had heeded my advice to bring lunch, and kept fruitlessly hoping the next shop would be cheaper. With the game set to start in 15 minutes, half went on a hunt for KFC and half sat at Wimpy Burger. I said I didn't come to Durban to sit at Wimpy and made my way onto the sandy Fan Park. (Photo: Moses Mabida, the best-looking stadium)

Portugal and Brazil were so well-matched it was a rather anticlimactic game. For all the pre-game vuvuzela-ing, parading and yelling, afterwards the fans were all rather subdued as yellow and green with a hint of red streamed out of the stadium. After driving in Durban during World Cup I think I could maybe handle Bombay on a weekend. But I don't care to test that theory. On the way back when we stopped for gas the ladies talked the attendant filling our tank into buying them a big Fanta to share. True teamwork.

Sunday early we were at it again: another community movie showing (Mr. Bones was requested again), using our new popcorn machine. We sold over 100 bags, and everyone was SO excited. Some people in the community walked over 20 min each way just to buy popcorn and not even see the movie. As I started my taxi-ing home with children screaming singing in the back of the cruiser, the ones who remained played Bingo, for the first time. They loved it. This weekend ladies are going to do a popcorn and community Bingo afternoon without me, because I am heading back for a visit to India! And here's hoping no one else breaks into my translator's house to do more witchcraft. (Photo: popcorn & a movie ala generator)

Posted byValerie at 2:08 PM  


Malina said... July 1, 2010 at 10:01 AM  
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