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Old 07.04.2018, 12:09
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Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

This thread is a copy of Dougal's Breakfast's asking about England, here, https://www.englishforum.ch/leaving-...nd-anyway.html
except that the question here is about South Africa.

We keep hearing the negatives, and they are certainly not to be denied, yet people do move TO and not just AWAY FROM South Africa. Why do they do it?

I'm particularly interested in real experiences, your own or annecdotal from your closer circle, please.
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Old 07.04.2018, 12:11
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

Easy!
Nothing. Topic closed.
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Old 07.04.2018, 12:21
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

wines
grapes
and
.....diamonds?

But I get your question. It was an immigration destination a while ago (not the most popular, but a bit more accessible than others - even in Europe), but for some reason it lost its attractiveness.
It remains a nice place for spending some holidays though. Probably.
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Old 07.04.2018, 12:27
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

South Africa gave us Trevor Noah, making the world a brighter place. As the news from my home gets crazier and crazier, Trevor is an antidote to the insanity and one of the reasons I'm not yet mainlining ulcer meds.

If you are a fan - or even if you are not - read 'Born A Crime', his memoir of growing up in SA.
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Old 07.04.2018, 12:30
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

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It was an immigration destination a while ago (not the most popular, but a bit more accessible than others - even in Europe), but for some reason it lost its attractiveness.
Perhaps because the white man can no longer be the big land owner like in days gone by.
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Old 07.04.2018, 12:38
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

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South Africa gave us Trevor Noah, making the world a brighter place. As the news from my home gets crazier and crazier, Trevor is an antidote to the insanity and one of the reasons I'm not yet mainlining ulcer meds.

If you are a fan - or even if you are not - read 'Born A Crime', his memoir of growing up in SA.
Probably less depressing than Coetzee? I hope so, given the fact he's a comedian. I don't know much about Trevor Noah, hope I'll come across some fun stuff.
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Perhaps because the white man can no longer be the big land owner like in days gone by.
nah, not everyone went there for land ownership. Professors, doctors, engineers, other specialists too....ask yacek, am sure he knows more about this. ;-)
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Old 07.04.2018, 12:48
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

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Probably less depressing than Coetzee? I hope so, given the fact he's a comedian. I don't know much about Trevor Noah, hope I'll come across some fun stuff.
Worlds away. BAC is a light hearted read, despite that it describes the harrowing circumstances of his childhood and young adult days. That's part of Trevor's charm.

Most things are less depressing that Coetzee.

Coetzee is a phenomenal writer, certainly. The Nobel prize was well deserved. But I can't read him in the dark days of winter, lest the mood engulf me. He's best read in the sunshine.


ETA:

While we are on to South African literary heavyweights: Nadine Gordimer and Alan Paton.
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Old 09.04.2018, 23:24
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

Oh Yes the wines are good and the grapes are simply the pill version of these good wines. The awesome diamonds were never really accessible to the normal people(still aren't) and it was a beautiful country with abundant wild life and stunning beaches.

The sad reality of modern day SA is that the crime is ridiculously high, the fraud and corruption have removed all the stones so none could be left unturned, clean litter free beaches are hard to find and all but a very few wild animals have been poached onto the endangered list.

Sadly SA is simply following the same route other Southern African countries have gone (Northern Rhodesia, Southern Rhodesia etc.) and I can only feel sorry for the good people still living there with no way out.

Life in CH has been financially challenging and it was a large adjustment coming here from SA and trying to start a new better life for the family, but it is a much better life and no more financially challenging than it was in SA.

At the end of the day. I grew up in Southern Africa and lived in SA for 34 years and I can honestly say that given the changes in SA and the way it is now, I am glad we left and I would never return.

Many people(from SA) have said to me "you did the right thing by leaving", none have ever said "you were mad to leave"
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Old 09.04.2018, 23:30
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

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Perhaps because the white man can no longer be the big land owner like in days gone by.
Obviously not an ex South African, you probably learnt the one sided outside world propaganda version of what SA was all about in the old days.

"The poor oppressed people living under apartheid rule" if only the world knew both sides to every story
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Old 09.04.2018, 23:50
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

Nice music

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Old 10.04.2018, 01:03
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

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If you are a fan - or even if you are not - read 'Born A Crime', his memoir of growing up in SA.
It was a birthday present from my OH last month.
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Old 08.06.2018, 11:35
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

I've recently emigrated to Switzerland from South Africa.
I left SA not because of the social, economic, or political climate. I left because i was curios.
What i love most about South Africa is 1. it's diversity and 2. opportunities; Let me briefly discuss 2;

Opportunities:
South Africa is a developing nation and there are endless opportunities for those who are willing to stretch and reach out for the fruit. Development is happening at a snail's pace in rural South Africa but at a frantic pace within the business and financial hubs in urban areas. There is a booming middle class as people who were previously excluded from the economy are now joining and contributing to the economy. As a result, there is development and construction everywhere - new cities are being built to accommodate the migration into urban areas, local and international businesses are recognizing this opening up shop in these areas. There is a workforce of young energetic people who are looking for opportunities to grow.

Diversity:
I come from Johannesburg in South Africa, specifically Johannesburg North.
Joburg North is the melting pot of diversity - since the mining era in Johannesburg people from all over SA have been migrating to Johannesburg for opportunities. This is still the case today. There are people from all over the world in Joburg and my experience has been that its people are the friendliest of all the places I've traveled. People leave their homes and move to Joburg seeking out a better life - they arrive in Joburg open minded and willing to experience and build relationships because it's what's needed in order for them to survive; As a result, the culture of Joburg is social, friendly and open - all of these attributes can, obviously, only be experienced if one chooses to look at Joburg from this perspective - as with anywhere else.

Aside: Cost of living is quite cheap in South Africa.
In most urban areas for CHF80 you could have an A-grade steak and a craft beer for breakfast, lunch and supper - all this at a 3-4 star restaurant.
Most upper middle-class households enjoy the privilege of having a domestic worker who takes care of the home and earns them time back to enjoy life at a relatively low cost due to labour being inexpensive.
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Old 08.06.2018, 11:48
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

Great post, wayway.
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Old 08.06.2018, 11:57
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

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Diversity:
I come from Johannesburg in South Africa, specifically Johannesburg North.
Joburg North is the melting pot of diversity - since the mining era in Johannesburg people from all over SA have been migrating to Johannesburg for opportunities. This is still the case today. There are people from all over the world in Joburg
I get what you mean, but ...

The cynic's interpretation of the above says that one of the nicest things about South Africa is that there are people not from South Africa.

I'm sure that's not what you meant.
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Old 08.06.2018, 12:50
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

The weather and the food?
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Old 12.08.2018, 12:14
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

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Probably less depressing than Coetzee? I hope so, given the fact he's a comedian. I don't know much about Trevor Noah, hope I'll come across some fun stuff.


nah, not everyone went there for land ownership. Professors, doctors, engineers, other specialists too....ask yacek, am sure he knows more about this. ;-)



Agreed. We left UK in 1975 to go to South Africa to get away from the 29% inflation and other negative aspects impacting on our daily lives. We were met with kindness, hospitality, generosity and have nothing but praise for both English-speaking SAs and Afrikaans-speaking SAs.
However, everything has changed since that time : the unemployment level has risen drastically, crime is a huge problem, but one of the members of our international club here left to go to SA two years ago, and although as a single woman she has to be very careful when she is out and about, it seems she has settled well in the Cape Town area {Somerset West for anyone who knows it} and enjoys the wonderful sunshine, food, multi-culturalism et al.

Having said that, we personally would not go back to the Johannesburg area as it is rather dangerous. Unfortunately many of our friends have felt the necessity to leave over the years - mostly going to Oz or Canada.
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Old 25.08.2018, 14:12
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

https://www.goodthingsguy.com/busine...ly-abled-spar/
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Old 25.08.2018, 14:52
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

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South Africa gave us Trevor Noah, making the world a brighter place. As the news from my home gets crazier and crazier, Trevor is an antidote to the insanity and one of the reasons I'm not yet mainlining ulcer meds.

If you are a fan - or even if you are not - read 'Born A Crime', his memoir of growing up in SA.
Very moving book indeed- I'd recommend it. OH was not 'Born a Crime' he became one at the age of 2 - which is why his family left to come and live in UK. We have recently met all his family in the Cape- wonderful people- and found out so much about the disgusting reality of Apartheid and the huge difficulties they have encountered- as Cape Malays they have all done really well, doctors, business, heads of schools, etc- unlike most of the black SA from the Cape flats. We visited District 6 and the Slave Museum, and BoKaap with Malay guides. What an incredible story. Others in the family are issued a few generations back from black slavery- carrying the Boer owner's name. Oh's grandad was British- so they were able to go back to UK. Just like the Windrush generation- the children were not registered as British on arrival- so OH found out he was still SA in 1971- when he applied for papers to get married. It took just a few weeks to get naturalisation, but what a shock. Had he not done so at the time, he could have found himself in the same position as some from the Windrush who arrived as young kids- grew up and were educated in UK, and the UK being the only thing they ever knew or could remember.

People still go because it is so beautiful, you can get amazing properties for very little compared to Europe, get cheap staff, maids, gardeners, pool cleaners - for very little money. As long as you are prepared to live behind electric fences with 'trespassers will be shot' and '24/7 armed response'. We can't wait to go back to the Cape and visit family again, but live there? No way.

Black people still live for the most on the Cape Flats- awful conditions, very poor. Most of the black people who work in restaurants and Hôtels, shops, etc- are not from SA but from Zimbabwe. One day, the whole thing will explode - big time.
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Old 11.09.2018, 03:17
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...change-drought
10 September 2018
South African agricultural land prices drop
South Africa Land Prices Drop 32% on Land-Reform Change, Drought

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...rming-industry
10 September 2018
How Land-Seizure Talks Have Hit South Africa's Farming Industry

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...h-african-gold
10 September 2018
'Will I Come Back Dead?' Human Costs of South African Gold
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Old 17.09.2018, 15:14
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Re: Experiences: what's so good about South Africa, anyway?

Doropfiz, you can add Die Antwoord on your list. ;-)

I was checking my FB account today and found out they played at Zurich Openair this summer...my lucky bastard ex-colleagues had a real good time there.
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