The First family arrived in South Africa on Friday night. I was just leaving the office and was hoping to catch sight of AF1 as it came in to land ( I drive past the military air force base on my way home each day) but I was too early. I tell you one thing though there were many people camped out in the cold on the boundary of the air force base's landing strip.
It felt very festive and I was amazed at how many photo's were floating around Twitter and FB and other social media. On Saturday after a meeting with our president, Pres Obama hosted a town hall meeting with young people from Africa. I was very impressed with his easy manner in talking to young adults who were clearly nervous but seeking answers.
On Sunday after a visit to Robben Island Pres Obama spoke at the campus of the University of Cape Town. I was so touched by his special references to our beloved Madiba and his passion for Africa. I might have downplayed my interest in this trip to Africa in my mind but watching him, seeing his passion and hearing his vision I am once again taken by his aura and his promise of a better tomorrow.
My "aha" moment was when he said "We always have the opportunity to choose our better history". I was inspired by this because I think for the first time in a long time I understand that my future is a choice and I can choose a better history for myself. I always feel proudly South African but when a man like Pres Obama displays such faith in us, when a man like him has hope for "Africa Rising" then I feel my own faith and hope grow to new heights.
Thanks for the visit POTUS and FLOTUS and family!!
On the downside, Pres Obama could not meet with our Nelson Mandela and that is because Tata is very sick in hospital. He is 94 (will be 95 in July) and has spent the last 24 days in the heart hospital in Pretoria. Many are praying for his recovery and to a degree I am too but experience has taught me "our will" is not "God's will" and for me it is case of giving Madiba the rest he so rightfully deserves.
My heart aches for his family and for my greater South African family because our beloved Tata has changed our history. He has made us a better nation, he has made us one nation!! If we are to say a final farewell to this kind and inspiring gentleman then I pray it will be a pain free transition for him.
I took a drive out to the heart hospital yesterday afternoon to see the memorial wall which has started to take shape. I was so moved by the messages especially those from the children of this beautiful land that I struggled to take photos. So I have sourced these from various news agencies.
We Love you Tata!!
|The closest these two were able to get to each other!|