And here we are, at the end of an extraordinary 2-week journey through the wonders of Botswana. It’s been a lot of rewarding work and I am thankful for being able to come here and immerse myself in what Gaborone had to offer.
Our last two days here have been probably the busiest. Friday took us for a third and sadly last time to St. Peter’s Day Care Centre, followed immediately by a lecture-performance on gender issues at the University of Botswana. The highlight of the event was by far my attempt to attain the “new Horowitz” status: I’m the new kid in the ‘hood who brings his own piano when playing somewhere. And mind you, that’s what I did. With 17,000 enrolled students, U of B does not have even a single piano, be it acoustic or electric. Luckily, David Slater had a Clavinova that we managed to transport to the performance location – two people carrying the noise-making thing makes it easier than one (thank you, Erik).
The evening of the same day found us at the Baobab School, where we had the concert featuring all of our students.
The final concert of our festival happened to be also part of the closing events of the Maitisong festival. In the first half we were honored by the presence of Her Excellency, the US Ambassador Gavin, who greeted us warmly (I seemed to have been fostered as ‘American’) and attended part of the show. What a great ending for our Botswana experience to be able to hear another fantastic choir – Wits Choir from Johannesburg, that is. It’s enough to hear and see something like this and your faith in humanity is instantly restored.
Two weeks: we performed, we taught, we lectured, we struggled for internet, and even got a few rides in the trunk. I also successfully survived the pressure of the bridal suite, the lack of pressure of the hot water, and the ever repeating breakfast menu (I surely won’t miss those cooked beans…).
I learned a few lessons that only life here can teach you, and it helped me open up my mind towards a new dimension I only guessed it existed. If everyone would spend only 10 minutes in Africa, the world would be a different place – but not for the sake of seeking compassion. Africa is a magical place that many want, but few understand. All it needs is for you to believe.
And now that work is over, time for a real deal safari. Krueger National Park, here we come!