Those of you who follow me on Twitter may remember the saga of Hickey Man – the hot dude who showed up to our second date with a hickey (note: it was not from me. Also note: He was 44. Waaaaay past the acceptable age of hickies) – and then proceeded to say things like “It’s so weird. I’m usually attracted to fat women, but you… you, I’m attracted to your brain!” or “It sucks I’m so tired because I was really planning on having sex with you tonight.” Well. I’ve had it with Tinder, Hinge, Match, etc. and I decided to go to the magical. Because at this point, i’ve given up! Meet Thabo, the Muthi Master who says my dude is coming. Note: I’m still waiting. For the full story, click here!
Twenty years after Apartheid ended in South Africa, there still exists a small town called Orania, home to about 1000 cultural Afrikaners, where black people are not welcome. Even Nelson Mandela himself would not have been able to live here. As far as South Africa has come, Orania is a reminder that it still has a long way to go.
South Africa has a hijacking problem (carjacking is called hijacking in South Africa). According to Well Aware, there are 140,000 hijackings and car thefts a year here. The problem is so bad that “Hijacking hotspot” signs have been placed all over the country along the stretches of highway that attract the carjackers.
Just a friendly roadside warning (Photo: Andrew Rothschild)
“It’s usually stretches of highways that are pretty, and people slow down or stop to take pictures,” my guide Theo Pieters told me. “But it happens in cities too. Someone tried to hijack me two weeks ago, but I saw them sneaking up behind me and just blasted on the gas.”
The first thing my instructor says to me with a straight face is that I am about to have as much fun as I possibly can “with [my] clothes on.” He isn’t wrong.
Its a weird fun fact that when you travel, if you check out a tourist from the mid calf down, you can usually guess where he or she is from. So I decided to create this handy dandy quiz to test your shoe IQ. How many can you get right? Warning: theres two in there with two right answers! Heh.
Shebeens, illegal South African neighborhood bars that originated under apartheid, continue to operate to this day under their female proprietors, known as “shebeen queens.”
Y’all know i can drink – I have drunk Vietnamese government officials under the table and even downed tortured turtle blood/gall bladder liquor. I’ve even dedicated myself to perfecting the art of drinking so much I searched the world and found the ultimate hangover cure. So when I heard about the Shebeens of South Africa I was like “I can handle it.” Then I heard they sometimes make their brew with battery acid, I backed off a bit… until I was assured that was “not done anymore” (wink).
Perhaps one of the most annoying yet smaller quality-of-life crimes of the apartheid era (especially for those of us who like a cold one on a hot day) was that nonwhites weren’t allowed to make or sell beer. The enterprising residents of Soweto did it anyway, brewing their own and hiding it under beds or in the ground when the police popped in every so often for a raid.
Click here for more on Pinky and her Shebeen… and the goat head I had to eat to cure my hangover (not nearly as amazing as the Vietnamese alka seltzer. Trust).
In this episode of A Broad Abroad, I meet the Cape Town Shark Spotters Network, a group that watches the waters off Cape Town’s beaches to warn bathers about an abundant and deadly predator: the great white shark…
Monwabisi “Monwa” Sikweyiya has spent almost every day for the past eight years on the cliffs overlooking Muizenberg Beach, just outside of Cape Town in South Africa. The former surfer and his co-workers take five-hour shifts at a time looking for one thing: great white sharks.
For years, even before the movie “Jaws,” the giant predators have fascinated (and terrified) people, and for shark enthusiasts and researchers, this beach is one of the places to go cage diving and fishing for great white sharks.
“There are lots of seals and penguins here, and that is their diet,” Sikweyiya said. “So they come to these beaches to feed.”
The dubious Dawa (medicine) man of Carnivore restaurant – the ultimate tourist trap in Johannesburg which is like the Epcot Center of South Africa (providing you and all its guests with a real, live South African experience!) … promises his drink will soothe all your pans and ills and make you happy. Which it may. If you aren’t AA or an angry drunk.
Why go: You’ve seen animals like zebra, elan, springbok and crocodiles from a Jeep, now why not experience them on your plate? Just like a real African! Carnivore, which prides itself on giving tourists the ultimate realness in African experiences, is the meat eaters ultimate Epcot center. Adding to the Epcot-ness is, at least three times a night, the servers and other staff with beat drums and sing and dance across the dining area (which, in keeping with the theme, has zebra patterned nylon seats).
Take Note: Crocodile oddly takes like fish. We’re talking fishy fish. And Zebra? Stick some slices on rye, with a little bit of horseradish mayo and that would make a mighty fine sandwich.
Fun fact: There’s a “Dawa Man” – dawa is the word for medicine, and the “medicine” on offer is a sickly sweet vodka, honey, lime and sugar drink. “It’s the medicine for everything,” our Dawa dude told us. “It makes everyone happy!” Unless, of course you are one of those people who are angry drunks. Or an alcoholic.