What a crazy last few weeks it has been! School has been super difficult, so many projects, papers and tests since Spring Break. I’m definitely missing the freedom of not having any work to do, cause I feel like I’m working 24/7 right now! All of my major tests will be done by the end of the week, which is nice that I will be able to relax this weekend. Next Monday is a public holiday so I will have a three day weekend, and my best friend Carly from high school (who is also studying abroad in South Africa at the moment) is going to be staying with me for the three day break which should be fun!
To add to hectic-ness of my school work, the power has been incredibly unreliable for the past 10 days or so, a lot more than usual. I believe I mentioned in a previous post about “loadshedding”, which is the term they use here in South Africa that means a scheduled power outage. Loadshedding usually occurs for up to 2-3 hours at a time, usually at the most inconvenient hours of the day like 7-10 PM. South Africa is currently in a major power crisis at the moment, so they schedule loadshedding throughout the week in order to save power. Reminds me somewhat of what I hear is happening in California, with the major drought issue. I can only imagine how Californians would react if water was turned off periodically through the week for hours at a time! Loadshedding has been happening during my lectures, tests, and while just hanging at home. Just yesterday, I was taking a cab back from dinner during load shedding and the entire street was pitch black. Not even street lights or turn signals remain lit, it’s literally a complete power outage that goes for miles and miles. Such a weird time it has been trying to cope with this.
The past week, my friend Zell and I participated in The Art of Living Happiness Program, which is a one week intensive yoga/meditation retreat. It ran Monday-Friday from 7 to 10 pm and then all day Saturday and Sunday. It was such a weird, interesting experience and I definitely learned a lot about myself. This program is taught at all the top institutions in the world, including Google and NASA. It’s basically a program that teaches you how to breath and cope with life by meditating. I learned that I absolutely hate meditating, and how extremely difficult it is to sit still and do nothing. I was proud of myself that I stuck through a week of the program and committing to hours of yoga and meditation each day. I do believe that the program gave me a more positive perspective and valuable skills to deal with stress. You can read more about the program here if you are interested 🙂 http://www.artofliving.org/za-en/art-living-happiness-program
Today was one of my favorite days in Cape Town so far! I went on a surf lesson with my tour guide from the Garden Route (the safari my mom and I went on spring break). I had the absolute best time in the waves, and didn’t see any sharks thankfully! I was able to stand up on the board straight away, and I caught probably over 15 waves. Surfing was one of my biggest fears, and I was convinced that I was going to get eaten by a shark today. Studying abroad has been all about facing my fears and doing things I would have never otherwise done at home.
I am truly falling in love Cape Town more and more each day. I am so amazed by the kindness of the South African locals and how many of them have truly gone out of their way to make me feel at home. Time to get back to studying! See you all in 50 days 🙂