Saturday, December 21, 2013

Goosebumps and a Proudly South African Flash Mob

As a South African, and a writer, and myself, I am fascinated by what people in other countries, specifically outside of Africa, perceive our country to be like. I am a Cypriot-Afrikaans South African, as well as a friend of many multi-cultural individuals, so I am exposed to many different heritages outside of the country. And let's not forget the Internet. 

I've heard the bizarre, weird and completely ridiculous when it comes to overseas beliefs about South Africa and Africa. Dear great scott, have I... I think the most common of the bunch is if lions, hyenas or elephants roam our streets, and to that I say hell no (!) and that we are a modern society -our animals live in zoos or nature reserves like the Kruger National Park. 
A friend of mine while on a trip to Greece was asked if she had a pet lion, and deciding to have a little fun, she said yes. The person apparently completely believed her! 
To that I just shake my head.
In the words of our favourite local comedian, gone international recently, Trevor Noah, 'You know what we have in our backyards? Dogs.'

My worst by far though is when I asked my one friend's cousin from England what people there thought about SA. She replied in that beautiful British accent of hers with, 'I'm so sorry, but the people in England think you live in mud huts' 

I am under no illusion that the whole world is as ignorant as these few Tom, Dick and Harrys, and I acknowledge all the people who genuinely are more world knowledgeable; but, I also cannot put aside the wide-spread oblivion to the real nature of the world that seems to be so widespread.

Now, onto the point here; I have a feeling that people overseas wouldn't think that happenings like flash mobs happen in SA. I am so glad to share that they do friends! We have lots of singing ones -many a time for proposals- dance and then also acting from drama students and thespians. Most recently though, with the passing of Nelson Mandela, the most absolutely outstanding flash mob occurred in a Johannesburg Woolworths outlet, SA's most upmarket, wonderfully fresh and innovative national supermarket, by the one and only Soweto Gospel Choir. I saw the video yesterday, and I was utterly awestruck. 

I have goosebumps every time I watch it.

Goosebumps, goosebumps...