Wednesday, June 16, 2010
South Africa Adventure. Part 3.
Johannesburg. Are you kidding me? Things at the airport did not go well. The airline figured it'd be a good idea to keep my bag in Amsterdam for some reason. So, I won't be getting that until tomorrow or the day after. After hearing that bit of bad news, I made my way to the car rental office with which I had made a reservation. More bad news; the only form of payment that they accept is a credit card, which i do not have. So, no luggage and no car. I then wandered out to the taxi station with the address that Michael had given me in hand. The first guy I talked to said he'd try to find it. He went to talk to a friend, then decided to pass it off to another guy, that passed it off to another guy named Doktor. He was, it seemed, a taxi pimp. Together, we walked up two stories to track down Joe, a cab driver in a beat up volkswagon that looked nothing like a cab. The three of us set off, as they explained that they would drive to the neighborhood and ask at a "carage," or gas station. The ride was incredible. After we left, Doktor pulled out an Amstel light and began drinking in the passenger seat. We talked and laughed about soccer and South Africa and America and qall of the festivities. They weaved in and out of their dialect and thickly accented english. I loved it. I kept saying to myself, "Holy sh*t man. I'm in South Africa," as the attempt to locate the guest house got louder and louder, the more Doktor drank from his beer bottle. They never fought, just talked over each other with smiles on their faces, as both of them tried to win me over to their side of how to go about getting to my makeshift home. I had no idea where it was or how to get there, anyway. It was late, after midnight, so the streets were quiet and there wasn't hardly any foot traffic. These guys' enthusiasm for getting me to my destination was more than enough for me to trust them. And, 45 minutes later, we found it. It's a posh place with walls and fences and Jack Russel Terriers. Jim, the owner of the house, let us in after Joe honked the horn long enough to wake him up. He was more than cordial, however. He showed me to the room and said goodnight. It's been quite an experience already, and it's barely even begun. So, here we are; no luggage, enough Rand to last me a couple of weeks, and a burning sense of adventure. Here we are. South Africa.