A South African Paradox

Thankfully I forget how miserable winter weather can be in the Cape – it has poured for a couple of days with such abandon that there are huge waterfalls pouring off the mountain… Today is June 16, a public holiday in memory of the Soweto uprising in 1976 – there is an iconic and disturbing image of a young 13-year old boy, Hector Pietersen, being carried after being shot and fatally wounded after young black school children rioted against having to learn Afrikaans in schools… turbulent times in SA’s history and today is now marked as Youth Day… for lunch we wandered up through the torrential rain to Rhodes Memorial which is set high up on Devil’s Peak with a beautiful (if you could see it) view out over the Cape to the distant mountains… Cecil John Rhodes, the founder of De Beers and a dyed-in-the-wool imperialist, was an important person in this country’s history but certainly not loved and adored… it wasn’t planned this way but I thought how strange to combine Youth Day with one of the fiercest colonialists to grace southern Africa..

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