My hometown Johannesburg is filled with many wonderful places, people, and memories. But snowflakes and sugar cubes are two joys that we as Jozi-goers don’t get to experience in everyday life. This year I hope to discover more of these unexpected newfound wonders as I travel around the world on business, with eagerness to fit in pleasure wherever I can.
Friday, 19 April 2013
Johannesburg: Places and People
You don’t know where you’re going until you know where you have been…
I thought it apt to start with the city I have sadly left behind
For the past three years Jozi was my home. Three years might not seem
like a long time, but you don’t need a decade to make this amazing city your
Here is what I love about Jozi:
The people of Jozi
are hard-working, fast-moving, get-up-and-go people. We spend a lot of our time
on the road or at work. Even so, the friendliness and inclusiveness of the people
of Johannesburg blew me away.
The majority of
people arrive in Joburg as strangers, but are invited to events and pulled into
friendships so quickly that they are set on paying it forward. It is easy to
make friends in this city.
I am thankful for
amazing memories of “made from scratch” pasta and pizza dinners on a Saturday
night, braais with the men huddled around the fire, big glasses of dark red
Pinotage, lazy Sunday brunches at arty restaurants, house parties with loud
music and laughter, a quick coffee and catch-up, jogging or cycling on a crisp
Sunday morning, lazy afternoon picnics, sitting around for hours talking about
nothing but laughing until you cry – always with a big bunch of people; old
friends and new faces.
I often turn off the
highway just as the sun is setting behind the
mountains. Almost every time I have to remind myself to keep focusing on the
road and not stare the yellow, red, and purple streaks in the sky.
Breath-taking doesn't even begin to describe it.
Jozi doesn't have
Cape Town’s mountain or Durban’s beaches, but the weather in Joburg is near
perfect. For nine months of the year the days are long and superbly sunny, with
light breezes and cooling evening showers (with magnificent/terrifying
lightning). True, the winter is bone-chilling cold, but it’s only three pay
checks long (yes, I have counted).
My church is in a casino. Can it get any more
awesome and real than that?
We love God, we love Johannesburg, we love the people of Jozi.
Go and visit!
You’ll love it.
It’s not just the
food, crafts and clothes that are amazing.
It’s the vibe, the
creativeness, the chatter and energy, the outfits and uniqueness of everyone
and everything in this remarkable city.
Whether you are
into sports (participant or spectator), arts, or culture: If it’s happening in
South Africa, it’s happening in Johannesburg.
I loved the shows
at Monte Casino, the international bands at Soccer City (FNB Stadium),
cycling at the Cradle of Humankind, time
trials and road-running events.
You can watch a
show with song and dance or be entertained by a juggling act. You can get your
windows washed. You can buy a newspaper, a cell phone charger, a handbag, a
wide variety of toys, or flowers. And all this from the comfort of your own
The products on
display are also easily adapted based on the season: If it rains, umbrellas and
raincoats are for sale. During the winter, scarves and gloves are available.
When the sun is shining, you can buy a sunhat, sunscreen, a beach towel, bucket
and spade and possibly a swimsuit in the latest colour and fashion.
not something that’s happening in Jozi, as everybody packs up and leaves the
city for a holiday. But Joburgers work hard and play hard, therefore there’s
always a holiday being planned! My friends’ motto was to never come back from a
holiday, without having planned the next!