Saturday, 24 December 2011

It doesn't rain but it pours

In yesterday’s blog I opened by saying how distinctive Africa is, and how you are on the continent as soon as you land at the airport. Well scratch that. Flying into Johannesburg is just like flying into any other airport around the world. It doesn’t smell of Africa, it isn’t dusty, there are no crowds of people, and we didn’t even have to queue at emigration. Did I board the correct plane? Being white doesn’t make me stand out as a tourist, though I’m yet to decide if that’s a good thing or a bad thing. One thing that’s the same though is that nobody knows when the buses leave, or in fact any are travelling today.

It turns out that the last bus from the airport to Potchefstroom (Potch) left at 1pm, and I need to take a taxi to the main station in Johannesburg and hopefully catch a bus from there. It turns out that I get the last available seat for 3 days! I joke that it’s the luck of the Irish – something that maybe I should learn to be less reliant on.

The trip to the bus station was something of a disappointment. Again, there is nothing of the sort of chaos that I would have associated with a major African city, especially not one as notorious as this. In fact, it seems quite a safe and inviting city. But perhaps there in lies the danger.

I can’t tell you much of my trip to Potch; I slept the whole way. And I arrived in a massive thunder storm. As with the rest of Africa; when it rains here, it sure knows how to rain. Familiarity at last!

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