Soweto Diary

“In judging our progress as individuals, we tend to concentrate on external factors such as one’s social position, influence and popularity, wealth and standard of education… but internal factors may be even more crucial in assessing one’s development as a human being: humility, purity, generosity, absence of vanity, readiness to serve your fellow men – qualities within reach of every human soul.” – Nelson Mandela, 1977.

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen me explore Soweto a short while back with my friend Idil while she came to visit in December, which now seems like aaaages ago.

 

We started off at 8115 Vilakazi St, Orlando West which was Mandela’s house before he was arrested and imprisoned for 27 years. The humble red brick house is a must visit if you’re exploring Johannesburg, not just because of the history but also to experience the rich culture that is Soweto.

Soweto’s vibrance comes out in how the people hang out on the street, playing music, roasting meat and talking. Children and performers give a show on the pavements with their dances and songs. There are souvenir vendors all along the streets displaying their wares at a fair price. In that sense, it’s not like Kenya where I can haggle for a better price for close to ten minutes at the Maasai Market. I truly do miss Nairobi, Nairobae as the cool kids on Instagram would say.

In some ways, Soweto does feel like home. In its realness, it’s people and the sense of community.

 

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How gorgeous is Idil?!! MashaAllah!

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On display in the house are Nelson Mandela and Winnie Mandela’s accolades, awards and honorary degrees. Most of the awards were actually Mama Winnie’s, she went on to fight for freedom while her husband was imprisoned until the last minute when apartheid was abolished.

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Courage..

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Liberation..

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We walked up Vilakazi Street and managed to get a spectacular view of Soweto and The Orlando Towers. We immediately decided, on complete impulse, to try something different from our usual art gallery, museum, chilled type of vibe and instead be crazy and go bungee jumping or free falling at the Orlando Towers just fifteen minutes away.

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They sent us videos of us free falling and it’s hilarious! You can see the exact moment shock takes over when I realized he’d released the buckle and I was falling down 100 metres onto a not so inflated bouncing castle. Unforgettable.

Hope I’ve convinced you to visit Soweto!

xx

In My Time

All those in favour of forgetting how long it’s been since I put up a blog post and instead focus on the pictures I have to share today say I!

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Where do I begin? Yes, it’s been more than three months since I wrote to you, my internet peeps. I come bearing gifts – photos, little nuggets of love and wisdom I’ve collected during my online absence.

Accepting there’s a time for everything

It seems like all the time I’ve got right now wants to be spent at school, or working. Let me correct that, not really want but need. I’ve been working overtime and weekends just trying to get my head wrapped around this thing called architecture.

It’s hard work, and we’re all about breaking stereotypes so let’s just say I will probably keep working overtime a lot more in the near future. Until I complete my MBA of course, then I’ll focus on starting a business, and settle down.

Anyone know where I can buy an extra 24 hours a day?

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Introspection

That’s certainly not a new word on this site.

I have dreams that seem waaaaay out of my reach at times, and achievable during other times. I recently turned 28 and to be honest, I had to list down all my wins to put things in perspective and remember to be grateful for all that I have, and all that I’m working towards.

I’ve learnt to accept that some things in life take more time to show their benefits than others, and in the moments I feel tested, stretched beyond my limits, I’ve found that it’s so important to lean back, take a deep breath, pick up my journal and list what I’m grateful for. Writing down ideas that excite me and that I’d like to pursue has also been a great way to stay positive and focused.

I’ve also been polishing up my writing recently, reading loads of magazines and online journals to understand what makes text interesting to read. I’m a Contributing Writer at ThisIsEssential! It’s something I’m so grateful for, the ladies I’m working with are smart, independent women I look up to and admire. You absolutely must dash over to the site and read a few articles. Here’s one I wrote recently 🙂

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I took these photos on my birthday recently in my favourite outfit right now – a copper velvet kimono from Forever 21, copper jumpsuit from H&M and gold block heels from Aldo.

Chat more soon.

xx

 

Saturday Shenanigans Seven

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One of my favourite places to hang out is Melrose Arch, an artsy precinct with cute restaurants, coffee shops, fashion boutiques, retail stores and amazing apartments, reminding me a little of Block 338 in Bahrain.

The Starbucks here has a cute vibe; the material palette, decor and lighting works so well together. I particularly loved the wooden seats outside. I make a habit to consciously collect pictures of inspiration just in case, so in the future I can execute the ideas in my spaces.

I didn’t experiment much with my food choices as I just wanted a coffee and a cute backdrop to take pictures. Had a cappuccino with almond milk, and some delicious chocolate and lavender macaroons.

Feeling so fulfilled typing this out, I just love it when I start my week off inspired.