Welcome to the blog site for our Elmira College travel class to South Africa. We will update this blog regularly with posts about our travels and experiences. We'll upload photos when we have the chance. Check back regularly to follow our adventures!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Saying Good-Bye to South Africa

Today was our last full day in this beautiful and fascinating country, and it is sad to have to say good-bye. We had a free day today, and everyone tried to pack as much in as possible. We had a large group of students (half the class) who went shark cage diving, getting up for a 5:00 AM pickup. All reports indicated that it was an amazing experience. All limbs appear to be intact, although apparently some of the students were pretty seriously sea-sick. We had another group of students head out to one of South Africa's best beaches, although it was a bit too cold for swimming. Reports from that excursion include climbing on some big rocks, poking at sea detritus, walking along the ocean, and, sadly, losing a camera and wallet. A third group of students went the upscale route, heading down to the Waterfront development and shopping for some nice presents for people at home (and perhaps for some fun things for themselves). I can report that quite a few lovely presents are heading home for loved ones and family members.

Most of us had dinner tonight at an African restaurant (Mama Africa's), and we all tried the delicious African food. There was live music with African drums, marimbas, sax, and vocal. We kept hearing strains of American pop songs on the marimba, which was fun. The restaurant itself was decorating in beautiful modern African art, and it was a nice place to end the class.

We do have part of the day tomorrow before we leave for the airport at 2:00. I have already heard of plans for last minute shopping for those all-important gifts. I think we are all really starting to get into the mindset that this amazing experience is drawing to a close. It's sad and it's hard to leave. But it also feels like we have been here for a really long time; it's hard to believe it has only been three weeks since we left Elmira College. What an amazing adventure we have had!

We get back to campus really late on Monday night. We will try to post more photos from the last part of the class on the slideshow on the blog within a few days.

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