Metro Kids South Africa- Our Visit to Guguletehu

Re-posting as a reminder not to forget to donate to Metro Kids!  I'm sponsoring the beautiful and intelligent teen leader, Anathi!  Tamron and Johnny are sponsoring several children as well. I hope you'll join us! 



On our latest excursion I took more than a couple hundred pictures to try to convey the magnitude of what we were experiencing first hand.  Poverty on this scale is like an ocean- it's vast, it's wide, it's deep.  It isn't, however, hopeless.  But I'm getting ahead of myself.  Let me explain.

Hubby and I have this tradition where we select our next international destination prior to leaving the current one so that our departure back home is a little less bitter-sweet.  So back in Spain, probably over cocktails with Captain Alvaro, we decided South Africa was next.

Since we touched down last week, we've been anticipating the arrival of our friends, celebrity stylist and Artistic Style Director for L'Oreal, Johnny Wright and correspondent for NBC News and NBC's Today Show, Tamron Hall #Flawless.  Also, so Tamron is officially the first African American woman to co-anchor the NBC Nightly News! #ThatHappened #SoCrown #BowDown


But I digress.

You may recall the fabulousness that is Johnny Wright from the EPIC NYC Turn-Up session with Tracee Ellis Ross.  Johnny has been to South Africa 4 times this year alone so of course I texted him to find out (1) who we know locally for the TurnUp  and (2) what to eat/see/do/don't.  He inquired about the dates and the next thing I know, it's a party.  #VacationWithFriends

Read On!>>>

'Just Hold On, I'm Coming Home' (and a giveaway!)


Congrats to our winners!!!!
Nylse
naturallysweetkandi

send me your addresses to [email protected] ASAP! 


The crew is gone, y'all!

*ugly cry*

Read On>>>

Tamron Hall's Natural Hair!


SURPRISE! Tamron's natural, y'all!

Lion Cubs and Calves, Oh My!


The final day of our African Safari Adventure was all about the babies (as well as my unwillingness to pack and vacate the premises)!  And since the experience transcends words, I thought I'd share ALL the pics- 

Meet Sam. He along with a female elephant (Tsotsi) were to be culled from Zimbabwe, but were ultimately rescued and brought to Botlierskop.  Here, they mated and along came super-adorbs Tshima which means 'surprise', because he truly was!  The staff had no idea that Tsotsi was preggers!

 Tshmia was HUNGRY!  


Walking With Lions

Winners-
MotherEartha
BreandaP
Email me at [email protected] with your addresses! Thanks!!!


So look at who we ran into on the way back to our tent...

#Wild #JohnnyTamedThemTho

Glamping- Our African Safari


so this happened. 

We woke up at a disrespectful 5am and drove across the tip of Africa from Western to Eastern Cape to visit the game reserve Botlierskop, located about 12 miles from the Indian Ocean. 'Astonishingly beautiful scenery' aren't even the words.  Imagine the landscapes of California, France and Montana in the same place. This land is absolutely beautiful and enormous.


Tamron Hall, Johnny Wright, Moshe, Hubby and I made the four-hour trip in two rentals, on the wrong side of the road, with completely new driving rules (like passing on the right). Fun times. In this short period of time, we drove across mountains (into the low-hanging clouds), through valleys, and across plains.  Hubby with his lead foot had my pressure up, but he got us there safe.

Read On!>>>

Happy New Year's from Cape Town! (and a giveaway!)

And our winners are...

Shannon Branch and Janel21!  Email me at [email protected] with your mailing address ASAP!

Congrats!



You haven’t lived until you’ve brought in the New Year in Cape Town, South Africa. After an amazing dinner, we hit the streets to join the masses for their first ever ‘World Design’ celebration. Tamron insisted that we fight the crowd of more than 80,000 to join the special Mandela celebration just adjacent to the beautiful town hall building. This place was everything…lasers, flashing lights, music and dancing in the street, we turned up and got our entire lives… #AllNightLong #MakingItRainFreedom

Read On and See Pics!>>>

'You're Gonna Need a Bigger Boat.' (and a Giveaway!)

and the winners are-

please email me ASAP to [email protected] with your addresses!

**********************

So today was an easy one... for me.  While Tamron and I were #TurntDown on the beach, Hubby, Johnny and Moeshe were turning up with Jaws.  

Peep our two totally different views- 

Warning- Penguins Will Bite. (and a giveaway!)

#SoCrown

So after a night of shenanigans and dranking, (#PourItUpPourItUp #DrunkInLove #WeBeAllNight), we rented a car because there is so much ish to see and none of it is in walking distance, nor within budget to rent a cab everywhere. After we gathered ourselves and headed down to the garage to check out the car we had delivered, Hubby took a minute to prepare himself to drive on the other side of the road. It's a bit disorienting, especially with the hint of a mild hangover, but after a few practice laps he was beasting these streets!

Read On!>>>

Meet Your South African Sisters!

and the winner is...


 Email me STAT ([email protected]) with your address! 


Hola Chicas!

Yesterday I met with a few members of #TeamNatural here in Western Cape.  We descended upon Jamaica Me Crazy at 1:30pm, for lunch.  But why was it after dinner time when we left, tho?  This movement is really and truly a sisterhood... never have I ever, EVER met a curly-headed stranger. #NeverNotNever

Most of the ladies that attended the lunch didn't know one another and plan to keep in touch and hopefully reconvene in the near future.  We're bringing folks together, y'all!

I promise to #TurnTheHellUp later, but first I want to share the stories of these gorgeous curlies!

What I Wore-
Neo-Asian Sun Dress gifted via ROMWE

#WeTight

'Better Than Good Hair' on Deck!  #TeamEdges  #HarperCollins #BestSeller #ThanksYall



the weather was warm and sunny and the view was everything!

Meet (some) of #TheCrew 
Meryl is a South African diplomat working for the Department of International Relations and Cooperation. Originally from Cape Town, she is currently living and working in Pretoria, Gauteng.  She's been natural since the age of 16.  She shares, 'always having had crazy, curly hair, and a mom with the straightest, 'easiest' hair, it's been a battle getting control of my hair. Once I got old enough I started wearing it natural and eventually did the big chop in 2009 and I've been natural ever since.'  She said her friends and family absolutely loved it and that her only difficulty has been finding products locally in Cape Town.

Cindy is a Financial Analyst in Cape Town where she was born and bred.  Natural for 6 years she shares, 'I can thank my sister for getting me on the natural path. So I chopped off all the "unnatural, treated" hair and haven't looked back since. About three years ago I went very short, yet pretty curly'. When asked how her family and friends and responded to her new situation, she responded, 'well I'm generally known for doing weird things, so chopping my hair off and keeping it natural really didn't come as too much of a surprise. And truth be told, it looks real good on me!'.  She shared that over the last 3 years in Cape Town the natural scene has increased in numbers but it's still pretty small compared to other cities in South Africa.  Like  Meryl, she said the product choices are limited and mostly come from Johannesburg or even over seas.

Yasmin is in finance in the non-profit sector.  Originally from Ghana, she moved here from New York after her husband found a job in Cape Town.  She Big Chopped and has been natural  for 4 years.  When asked how she was received by fam and friends she said, 'still not happy with my hair. I'm in braids when I go back home to Ghana'.  I later learned from her and others that your hair isn't deemed appropriate in Ghana unless it's neat and tidy in braids.  She shared that the natural scene in Cape Town is difficult because she hasn't found a salon or a credentialed stylist, which is devastating because she's a lazy natural.  She too can't find products.  She shared that while she sees lots of locs and even quite a few loose naturals, 4c afros are quite uncommon.

Melissa is a masters student in chemical engineer. Originally from Zimbabwe, she's in Cape Town for her studies.  Melissa has been natural for two years and seven months after a transition in which she micro trimmed every month.  She currently uses anything that works right now... Vo5 for co-washing and lots of finger detangling.  She shares, 'I love applying henna to my hair. My mother is from Zanzibar and my grandmother grows henna in her backyard! My hair loves all natural, homemade henna.'  She said her mother was happy when she went natural and her only complaint is the dry Cape Town weather.  She shared that it can result in dryness and breakage so she's looking for the right product to remedy that situation.  She's excited to see so many women in Cape Town embracing their natural hair.


Kayla is a student and originally from Cape Town. She's been natural all of her life and likes to wear a curly bob.  When asked how folks in Cape Town view her curly hair she shared, 'some love it. And others just don't understand it. But it's me and I ain't changing'.

Nozuko Poni is a Customer Services Consultant, Freelance Stylist and Columnist.  Originally from Cape Town, she has been natural for four years.  She did the big chop after the relaxers thinned her hair.  She loves huge Afro Extensions (pictured here) and box braids.  She said that while her family are fans of straight hair they supported her during her transition.  She shared, 'while natural hair is more popular now, it's still stigmatized. People still associate it with poor grooming. And it's seen as backward (result of colonization).'

Pfungwa Nyamukachi is a Business Development Manager.  Originally from Zimbabwe, her father was a diplomat posted in Cape Town.  When her family left, she stayed and 15 years later and she still considers SA her second home.  She Big Chopped four years ago and rocked a bald/shaven head for a couple of years and LOVED it!  Her family and friends loved her new look immediately.  When asked what it's like being natural in Cape Town, she responded, 'it's becoming more and more the in thing. However it's still rare-ish. It's hard to find good hair salons that cater to black, natural hair. So I do my own hair. What's interesting though is the different type of guys I 'attract' when I wear my hair 'au naturalle' vs. when my hair is braided, lol!'

Foundry Road Swag Factory

This contest is now closed and Jackie H. is the winner! Congrats chica!  Email me ASAP ([email protected]) with your address! 

Twenty-four hours and four delicious inflight meals later (international airlines have bomb food and the wine flows like water... so maybe I was faded... the food was good, tho) and we made it, y'all!  We touched down in Cape Town late evening and although I'm not sure if it's yesterday or tomorrow, I'm chilling.  Everyone from the flight attendants to the cab drivers to our host, has been tremendously helpful and friendly and have made what could've been a trying journey, almost fun! I even met a CN reader in the Johannesburg airport during our short pit-stop there. #HeyBoo

Curly Cultural Mission: South Africa


Hola Chicas,

It's the day after Christmas and I'm on an 18 hour flight to Africa! For the last few years I've been working with women over seas to tell the stories of curlies around the world.  Together we've raised the profile of several non-profit organizations and educated folks (myself included!) in the process.   I've partied with Jamaican curlies living in Tokyo, and have been welcomed into ethnic neighborhoods in Rio De Janeiro. This time we're headed to Cape Town, South Africa.  #CurliesWorldwide #OneCurlOrder #ShesYourQueenToBeeeeee

Read On!>>>

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