As some of my readers already know, I’m a fan of Postcrossing, the international postcard exchange club. This week I was given an address for Lucy in Taiwan as my next card’s destination. On her profile, Lucy suggested members list 5 words to describe their country, assuming the prospective senders couldn’t think of anything else to write on the back of the card.
I thought this was a great idea, pondered for a day or two and this is my list to describe South Africa:
4. Warm hearted
Number 1 was easy: we have natural beauty in abundance. Great contrast too, from coastal to bushveld, to semi-desert. Magnificent mountains.
Number 2 – complex? We’re an uneasy mix of First and Third World Countries, which leads to a host of problems on every level – social, financial, educational, developmental, ecological – in fact any and all levels you can think of.
Number 3 – Frustrating? Very! Try getting anything done. Mundane stuff like repairs, or renewal of licences, or a visit to any public, government institution. Unnecessarily time consuming and un- productive. Maddening.
Number 4 – Warm hearted: is there a crisis? Another fire in a shack settlement? The public rallies round for water/food for the fire fighters , and shelter/food for the newly homeless.
Number 5 – Dangerous? For sure. We have one of the highest crime rates in the world, sorry to say. Let’s just leave it at that.
Which five words would you chose to describe your country?