Wow, it seems like it has been forever since I’ve written just because so much has happened in just the last two days! Sunday afternoon I moved into my house… yes, my house!!! At Creighton, we’re required to live in the dorms for the first two years so this whole having my own place (and even my own room) is completely foreign to me but I’m definitely loving it! I was the first to move in which was nice as I had some time to settle in and get situated before everyone arrived the following day. Lu is my R.A. who also lives in our house and he is completely awesome… super down to earth, fun, and let’s just say it’s going to be a fantastic semester at the house! Yesterday, pretty much everyone else moved in. We had a choice of either living in an apartment or in a house… obviously I chose the house but it’s really nice as the apartments and our house are practically right next door to each other so it’s going to be very convenient for everyone to meet and hangout and such. Through our study abroad program, we have a smaller group this semester as there are only twenty of us… this certainly has its pros and its cons. The house I live in is actually the only IES (my program) house and the rest of the people are living in the apartments so I have a feeling that the house is definitely going to be a hub for everyone and probably the hangout place… as it already has been the past two days. I live with four other students (two guys and two girls) and our house is actually pretty big… much nicer and bigger than what I expected anyways. We each get our own room (which is decently sized) along with a common area, kitchen, and bathroom areas. We also have a really nice backyard area that will be perfect for braais (barbeques)!
Like I said, the past two days have been jammed packed with a lot of bonding time… so far everyone has meshed perfectly and everyone gets along really well and we’ve definitely had a lot of fun already! Yesterday was a “get acquainted and move-in” day so essentially we hit up the grocery store (as we’re on our own now… however we are provided with most of our meals during the two weeks of orientation… score!) and checked out the neighborhood and such. There is a cute, little park right across the street from our house but I guess it’s pretty sketchy… it’s called Syringe Park and there are quite a few homeless people that live there at night so we’ll stick to hanging out in the park during the day! We also have a guard that watches our home and literally three locks (the front gate, the gate in front of the door, and the door itself) to get inside… so obviously safety here is an issue but it seems like they’ve taken the measures needed to ensure our safety and they haven’t had a problem in the past so we’ll just hope and pray that this is still the situation once we’re done here! Because of the multiple gates (all having different keys) it took us about twenty minutes to just leave the first day as we had to figure out how to use all of the buttons and all of the different keys just to get out… we were pretty sure that anyone who could see the situation was probably just laughing at us as we literally couldn’t figure out how to get out of the place and we were locked inside our own home… I think we have the hang of it now though!
We have definitely had a lot of bonding time already… which has just been a whole lot of fun! There is some nightlife within walking distance, making it very convenient. We hit up a bar last night and wow… alcohol here is so ridiculously cheap… like ridiculous. A 750 mL beer or Smirnoff Ice is R16… so just about $2 and a bottle of Coconut Rum (equivalent to Malibu) is $4… for the entire bottle… like I said, ridiculously cheap. Tonight was kind of funny as we headed to a dance club called Tiger Tiger just down the main road… well, it turns out that this club (which is a supposedly a nicer club) is literally in a mall… so we walk into this mall and on the bottom floor is a bowling alley and on the top floor is a club… just very, very strange. Well it’s a Tuesday and the club is open every night except for Monday… and tonight for some reason… so we ended up at a bar and what is on tv… ping pong… random… but it can definitely lead into some great, hilarious conversations! So we’ve certainly had a lot of fun, bonding time here with the group and the group seems to have a good “vibe” (they use vibe here a lot… something I’ll surely have to get use to).
Today during the day was our first day of IES orientation so we learned all about the “rules”, school stuff, etc. involving the program. Everyone is really laid back and fun though, even the directors and such, so it seems like it will be a great semester… certainly different than any semester I’ve had at home. I don’t sign up for classes until next week but I’m really hoping to take African Dance… so excited! The whole day of orientation was at a local, traditional Cape Malay Restaurant where we were provided with lunch and dinner and oh, it was fabulous! We also had a fun, interactive cooking lesson where we got to make our own samosas… deep frying them and all! It took a little bit of practice to get the folding down but they turned out delicious! The restaurant was situated on a hill and we had a perfect view of Table Mountain… it is still so surreal that this is home for the next few months!
I’m certainly getting all settled in here in Cape Town and loving every minute of it! I absolutely love the house setting and it has been a ton of fun bonding with everyone!