Starting to prepare….

Hellooo. This is going to be my blog all about my preparation for, travel to, and adventures in South Africa!

I spent all summer thinking about South Africa, researching PEPFAR programs there. Now, I’m home from my internship in DC…and still thinking about South Africa. Now, I’m preparing to go!

I have my visa, my required reading for before I arrive (definitely haven’t started it though), most of the things I need, and my plane tickets.

I do not have my WHO card…because it’s at the South African Embassy. Yup, I sent it to them because it was the only proof I had of my TB test, and now they aren’t returning it…or my calls. Lovely. That could be a struggle if I need it while abroad. I think I have a fix, because I have my OLD WHO card from my Kenya trip years and years ago, and I’m seeing my doctor on Thursday…here’s to hoping, at least.

What else do I have? A schedule! I got it in my email today. I’m pretty excited for everything.

Okay maybe not everything. Definitely not the fact that a minibus is picking me up from my homestay every morning to take me to the program site…at 7 in the morning. How do you say “whatttt?” in Xhosa? Then, I’m there until 5:15 PM. When was the last time I spent a full day in class, you ask? Sophomore year…of high school.

Thankfully, I know the program will be COMPLETELY worth it. I’ll be taking Xhosa and Afrikaans lessons, a course on Multiculturalism & Human Rights, a course on Narrative Identities and Social Change, and an independent study project. I also get to stay in several locations (so my title “Caitlin in Cape Town” may be a bit misleading…), visit schools and NGOs, and go on several excursions.

Cool places I get to go:

Simon’s Town, a naval base/resort location, for 3 days

Round the Bend, a team building getaway

Bo-Kaap, a multicultural area with potentially the cutest houses ever

Aaaand way more. Basically it will be awesome and I can’t wait. But now I probably won’t update this until August 29th, when I will be freaking out about how I will be LEAVING FOR SOUTH AFRICA FOR 3 1/3 MONTHS.