This weekend I had the pleasure of attending Neighbour Goods Market in Braamfontein with my friend Chane & her husband Chris. Before we left for the market Chane & Chris told me they had a surprise for me in the car. I asked if it was Rodriguez Sugarman (a musical legend in South Africa originally from Detroit). If you have not seen the film Searching for Sugarman, I highly recommend it as it is one of the most unbelievable stories I have ever encountered. What they had for me was not Rodriguez, but something not too far off. They brought me a record player to borrow for my time here! I was holding back tears! The joy was next level! I remember having to pack up my records and record player in Nashville and send them off with my family in Detroit. It was a very difficult farewell for my records and I. I cannot fathom to you the joy that this simple machine brings to my heart. It’s like a little piece of home and myself back in my hands. I am so grateful.
Neighbour Goods market was an absolute dream come true. I was overwhelmed by the options for food! Everything looked incredible and had an aroma that made you linger near the table a bit longer than one is welcome to. We settled on some of the best gumbo I have ever had in my life. I had some good laughs with Chane, Chris, and their friend Dylan. They are all such creative minds as Chane is a graphic designer here at JAM, her husband Chris works in television, and their friend Dylan is a musician.
I was telling Chane & Chris that I taught a friend back in the states the Afrikaans slang word, “Lekker,” which means, “Nice”..”Cool”..”Rad.” As my mind tends to wander into these absurd visions, I began to wonder what it would look like if Lekker caught on in America. Since the film Searching for Sugarman was such a success, I pondered the idea of creating a film called, “Looking for Lekker.” How did this word travel from South Africa to America? This is a serious possibility. Just waiting for the word to spread like wildfire. So my American friends, do your duty and start implementing this into our vocabulary.
One of my favorite finds at the market was Bamboo Revolution. I bought an incredible bamboo watch (photo below). I was so keen to support this company as this vision was a result of a postgraduate entrepreneurship program at University of Cape Town. I have such a heart for entrepreneurship, socially conscious products, and unique products. You can read more about their incredible story if you click on the Bamboo Revolution link above.
Sunday was another epic day! I started off the day having breakfast with my sweet friend Mischa and her family. They were such a kind hearted, loving family. I truly enjoyed my conversation with them learning more about how their family ended up at JAM, what their lives looked like before JAM, and their wonderful sense of humor. Mischa and I then continued on to the mall to meet with her lovely friend Denise. We stocked up for a picnic and headed to the Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens to catch the Matthew Mole & Shortstraw gig. I met both of these artists last time I was here in South Africa, but never had the opportunity to see them perform live. It was really epic to finally witness the South African music I am listening to through my headphones in Nashville firsthand here inJohannesburg.
I’ve been praying for community and with patience and trust, I know my God’s love never fails me. He has sent me wonderful, selfless, kind hearted, people that have brought so much joy to my heart. I am so thankful to have had plans this weekend! Plans that took me to places I fell in love with. Plans with people that made me laugh, smile, dance, and find joy in the simple things of life. I am so thankful for the people God has placed in my life here in South Africa. I trust that this is just the beginning!
Here’s a photo my friend Dan took. He’s my pal teaching me an Afrikaans phrase every day. Unfortunately, I accidentally told him he looks like a garden gnome in Afrikaans (Sorry Dan). If you’d like to tell someone they look like a garden gnome too, this is how you say it, “Jy wil soos n tuin kabouter”
With love from Joburg,