The past holiday was incredibly short, so naturally I decided to travel almost as far as I could from Luderitz in the shortest possible time frame. After taking a nice hot and sweaty combi to Windhoek from Luderitz, I decided I was done with public transportation for a while. If the two children vomiting in the row behind me didn’t do it, then maybe the fact that I thought the combi wasn’t even going to stop to let me out in Windhoek because no one understood English or Afrikaans, or because the ride was wayyy overpriced for my budget.
|On the homestead!|
|The view from Alex's homestead|
After we reached the homestead, we greeted many extended members of Alex’s host family, most of whom do not really speak English. An elder man is a tate, and woman a meme. The evening greeting goes as follows in Oshindonga:
Me: Wa tokelwa po Meme?
Meme: Ee-ee. Wa tokelwa po meme?
[In Oshiwambo nawa means good!]
Anyway, after a nice dinner of some sandy pap and traditional chicken we were off to bed, pretty exhausted from our travels. We woke up the next morning and prepared for the wedding! Alex procured some Owambo traditional clothes for us to wear, which we were so excited about!
The ceremony as usual started about 3 hours after it was supposed to, and I did not understand most of it. Towards the end though someone stood up and translated solely so that we could understand what was going on, which was so nice! After the ceremony ended picture time began, and before we got a chance to slip out the three of us were asked to go pose with the wedding party, only slightly unexpected since we had not met anyone in the wedding party before. After we returned to the homestead from the church, SO many memes greeted everyone as we walked in with the traditional high-pitched cheers, waving horse-tails in the air [see video!]. We got a tour of Alex’s homestead and saw a glimpse of life in the village before it was time to eat! Something got lost in communication, but another of Alex’s host sisters told us to go check out the wedding tent. Naturally, as we went to check out the wedding tent we ended up awkwardly standing right behind the bride and groom as they were getting introduced as man and wife to their closest family and friends… the bride quietly told us to just come inside already. From there we were unsure of what to do in order to not make the situation even more awkward, and after a stress/inappropriate laughter-filled couple of moments, someone took pity on us standing next to the food table and showed us to a couple of free seats. And so we got to eat while listening to our favorite Namibian songs as well as “It’s Your Wedding Day!” a song that I had not yet heard before! Afternoon turned into evening as we walked around the rest of the village, watched the sunset in the sand with Alex’s adorable adopted host son, and danced the night away as the evening's entertainment [aka a crowd of Namibians that preferred to watch us dance rather than break out their far superior dance moves]. In fact apparently the next week almost all of Alex’s learners wrote about how they watched Miss Alex and her American friends dance after the wedding. The next day it was already time to leave and get back to site for Term 3! Well worth the three day trek back to the bucht!