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Explorations in Windhoek

September 4, 2016

 

 When we landed in Namibia a little over two weeks ago, our time in Windhoek was short-lived as we headed straight to Okahandja where we would begin training. Yesterday, we got to head back to the big city to get a little more history on this beautiful country we will be calling home for the next couple years. We started the day off early, piling onto a bus with our LCFs for an hour ride. We were treated to throwback music videos from MTV and some new and interesting African videos on the ride.

We headed to Heroes’ Acre first, which is about 15km from Windhoek, a memorial for all those who have fallen for the independence of Namibia. It is an impressive monument, with a large mural depicting the fight Nambia went through to gain independence. There is also a LARGE statue of Sam Nujoma, the First President of Namibia. There is also a great view of Windhoek from a look out at the top of many stairs. While up there we sang the Namibian National Anthem, which we now realize we know most of the words to thanks to our morning assemblies.

Next we went to the Independence Memorial Museum, which was also at the top of many, many stairs. It was three floors of exhibits on the history of Namibia, its people and the fight for freedom. We spent time going through each floor and answering questions that had been given beforehand.

Maerua Mall was the next stop on the tour. The majority of us were starting to get hangry since we had not had a tea break. (I’m telling you, tea breaks should be an international thing! We have come to be so used to having a mid-morning snack and tea/coffee that when we miss it, we get hungrier much faster.) We wandered the mall in search for food that was within our budget, which was not an easy task. I ended up getting an avo & bacon burger with a side salad. That salad made my day, as I have been missing my veggies. I also shared a piece of caramel chocolate cake, which was totally worth the 36 NAM dollars we paid for it! (I’ll be eating PB&J for the rest of the week to make up for that cake… but it was still worth it).

 

Our last two stops were the 1959 Heroes & Heroines Memorial Grave, where we briefly stopped to get a few more snippets of history and Single Quarters. Single Quarters is a market where you can buy things like vegetables, coolies (cold drinks), mopani worms, and fat cakes. However, what they are most known for is kapana meat, which is beef that is butchered and cooked over an open fire right there and then served with spices. You pay by the piece and it is served to you in a piece of newspaper. I didn’t get any, because I had filled up at the mall, but I wandered the market and got a coolie for the ride home.

It was a good day excursion to Windhoek, with lots of history, some veggies and a lot of stairs (but I only tripped 3 times). I’m excited to keep exploring this beautiful and contrasting country.

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