Spring is in the Air!

Well, it is starting to feel like spring here in Cape Town, and it is about time!  However, the weather definitely has some bipolar issues as the weather is very unpredictable and from what the locals say, it is even more so this year compared to normal.  We had a very mild winter and for most of it, there was little rain… definitely not an ordinary Cape Town winter, but I was pleased with it!  Despite being mild most of the supposed winter season, winter decided to show up the past few weeks, bringing with it cold, lots and lots of rain and just dreary weather in general.  But, the weather is always changing, literally.  One minute, it can be raining and cold and the next be bright and sunny… like I said, pretty bipolar weather conditions.  But anyways, the past few days have been gorgeous—I’m getting ready to break out the spring dresses that have been packed away for far too long!  In packing for my trip, I was pretty naïve to how cold it actually is able to get here and I kind of had the mindset that hey, I’m going to Africa, it won’t be cold, right?… wrong!  So, I am glad that most of the clothes that I packed will finally be able to be put to use!

I also recently realized that I will have three successive spring semesters…  a little bit crazy to think about!  I am certainly missing all of the hype and constant news at home about football however… hands down my favorite part about the fall semester.  Fortunately, with Nebraska switching to the Big 10 conference this year, the Big Ten Network streams all of the games online so I have been able to watch both of the games so far.  Unfortunately the time change isn’t always so convenient though.  For instance, this past week the game started at 6 pm at home… which means 1 am here.  I was pretty tired by the time 5 am rolled around and the game was finally finished—despite a Husker win, I wasn’t looking to celebrate but rather looking for my bed!  But, I can’t complain because I’m able to watch the games which is certainly better than nothing!

Since we just went back to school, the homework load has been pretty light the past few days so we have taken advantage by exploring a bit of town, going out to eat, making dinner, and having movie/hangout nights… experiences that I rarely get while at Creighton, so they have been very enjoyable!  I was able to catch up with all of my IES program friends who went to Krueger over break and it sounds like they had a phenomenal time.  It was also pretty ironic when we figured out that a girl in my program named Spencer has a best friend who is studying abroad in Rome this semester.  Her best friend happens to be in the same program as my best friend, Becca.  Not really sure how we figured this out but what a small world!

Other than that, I did my weekly volunteering tonight at SHAWCO and I am continually amazed by the opportunities and experiences I have each time.  You never know what you’ll see at the clinic which certainly keeps things interesting.  As I have been consistently going week in and week out, I have gotten to know a few of the medical students and have learned so much from them in such a short amount of time.  The experience is invaluable as I would never get this much patient interaction being an undergraduate back in the states.  I have been taking patient histories, blood pressure, heart rates, and working with the medical students to try to figure out the patient’s problems.  They have literally been asking me my opinion on things so it has certainly been a great learning and unique opportunity.

I’ve gotten a few responses in regards to my last post about students doing drugs in front of the professors, questioning whether drugs were illegal or not here in South Africa… they are definitely illegal but often overlooked.

Well, life is still fabulous here in Cape Town… I’m enjoying the spring weather, and looking forward to adventuring more around the city.

Also, shout out to one of my best friends, Ryan Hafner, who’s 21st birthday is today!!!

~Susan

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