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Going Offline in Africa

CT ASMP Communications Chair Goes Offline in Africa

By Kelly Jensen


Copyright 2012 Kelly JensenI found my true love!



This past July my best friend moved to Johannesburg, South Africa to teach Spanish so I naturally said I would visit as soon as I could. I booked my flight for just after Christmas, wondered if it was a terrible idea, what I would find to do for a month and just how long would it take to get used to driving on the other side of the road? (No, plenty, and about 10 minutes).


Friends and family expressed worry, and perhaps I would have worried more if I had been more aware of the scope of the violence that occurred there for the many years leading up to the end of Apartheid. There is still a lot of racial tension and inequality, but there's also hope (South Africa has one of the most inclusive constitutions in the world). I visited two townships outside of Joburg, Soweto and Diepsloot, to photograph and found a lot of the people to be very friendly as well as surprised to see a white person there.


Copyright 2012 Kelly JensenMany residents build there own homes out of found materials and don't have electricity or running water



But the trip wasn't all urban, the wildlife was incredibly cool! I went for a hike in a nearby park, and ran into herds of zebra, a giraffe, an ostrich and many beautiful and fascinating birds! We went on safari for a weekend (I rented a 300mm 2.8 with a 2x--it was the size of my leg!) and saw the Big 5 (water buffalo, leopard, lion, rhino and elephant) in the wild! I asked a man from South Africa who had been visiting Kruger since he was 4 if it was even exotic at all to him. He said no, it was just nice to get out of the city.


Copyright 2012 Kelly JensenI can't see you, you can't see me



I'm still sifting through the many photos I took, and I can't believe I had such an awesome time. I would definitely recommend a trip down there if you're looking for a cool place to visit. And they've got summer all winter can't beat it!



Kelly Jensen, Communications Chair, CT ASMP




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