The 24th of September is Heritage Day in South Africa. It celebrates the diversity and heritage of all South Africans. It is also known as National Braai (BBQ) day and people are encouraged to have braais with their family and friends. For the past two years we have, in fact, partaken of braais on this day (long time readers may remember the whole sheep on a spit…) but this year the weather has been so wet and cold that no one in our circle of friends bothered.
I was part of the college’s Heritage Day celebrations as the college choir sang in English and in Xhosa. The Xhosa songs brought the house down. At one stage the audience was cheering so loudly we couldn’t hear ourselves singing.
The celebrations started off with a parade of all of the nations represented on the campus. They missed a few (the Aussies, the Swiss, and the Italians) but the UK and the USA flags were carried in by their countrymen.
The highlight of the celebrations for me was the traditional dances. I took about 100 photos (a lot of which didn’t turn out because catching people dancing at a distance with a point and shoot is kind of tricky), but I thought you might like to see some of the best ones.
All of the dancing groups began at the back of the hall and made their way to the fron singing and dancing. These are the Xhosa ladies
After the Xhosa dancers it was the turn of the dancers from Lesotho (say le sue two). This is one part of Africa I really want to visit before we leave. Lesotho is a small country completely surrounded by South Africa and is extremely mountainous. It is cold there, it snows in winter, and the national costume reflects that.
With out the blankets the ladies clothes are reflective of a European influence.
This was part of the dance.
I love the Sotho (if you are from Lesotho you are called Sotho (say Sue two) men’s hats.
These guys had some really wild fighting displays with the sticks, but unfortunately all of those shots turned out blurry as they were too fast for my camera to handle.
The biggest team of dancers came from Botswana. Wednesday was cold. I was wearing jeans, hand knit socks, turtle neck jumper and a coat. Botswana is considerably warmer than South Africa, and their national costume reflects this.
Hope you enjoyed your glimpses of Heritage day.
In crafting news: Gorgeous Girl has another new dress, same pattern as before, in blue this time. Pictures when it has buttons. I made a new skirt, drafted the pattern myself from an online tutorial. Maths was never my strong poing, the angle of the skirt is a bit odd. I’m not sure if it’s quirky or just really ugly. Gorgeous Man leans towards really ugly, and I trust his advice. So I’m thinking this is going to be an around the house skirt. Once it’s washed I’ll take a picture for you.
Gorgeous Girl has been running a temperature for the last few days, hence the blog silence. I am nearly ready for my trip to San Francisco – all of the major stuff is done. Now I just need to find time for a haircut. We will not mention that the exchange rate is the worst it has been since we arrived *sigh*
Oh, and we have a new (for us) car. Pictures when it has stopped raining long enough to take them…