Stand Up South Africa – Update #1

Hello Friends and Family!

Please enjoy updates written by teens on our trip!

Greetings from South Africa:

The flight from New York was very long but was not too bad. Eventually we landed in Johannesburg and got on a bus to head to our first hotel. We stopped at a gas station on the way that had animals surrounding the back. Later in our drive we watched the beautiful African sun set above the mountains. We soon arrived to our hotel and were welcomed with a welcome drink (a juice medley that was loved throughout our stay here) and our dinner was a huge steak made by the owner.
-Maddie Schultz

We woke up early and headed right to the safari boats. We were served a delicious breakfast on the boat with an amazing view of the bush. While on the tour we were able to go onto the top deck and looked out for different animals. We were able to spot a leopard, which was very unlikely, a giraffe, and King George the crocodile along with many others. The river safaris really allowed us appreciate the beauty of the bush.
-Sarah Davidson and Rayna Fladell

We were given the amazing opportunity to go on a bush walk through the wild looking for animals and tracks early one morning. We went onto the bigger boat that we used for our water safari and then transferred onto a smaller one where we were taken onto land to meet with our tour guides. One really amazing thing that happened in my group (we were divided earlier in the day) was following fresh male lion prints in the sand. Although we did not end up finding him after a while, we did encounter some other pretty amazing animals such as giraffes which we got super close to !! We also learned a lot from our guides which was super cool. It was really cool and we’re all super fortunate we were able to do something like that.
-Hannah Charlip

Over the past couple of days we’ve been given the opportunity to go on Jeep tours all throughout the bush. We got to see various animals and plants, while also finding out about the history behind them. One of the Jeep drivers, Elias, continuously provided interesting information while making it an incredible experience. He truly connected with all of us in the group and we’ll all miss him because of how much he taught us and the fun that he enabled us to experience. Seeing elephants, giraffes, hippos, and so many other animals in their natural habitats really opened our eyes to how incredible nature really is.
-Olivia Galel

As our game drive came to an end, we approached a large fire, beating drums, and the Kambaku dancers. They quickly welcomed us and taught us parts of their dances. Once they finished performing, we sat down for dinner. We were served delicious food, including a variety of meats, porridge, fresh bread, and dessert! Afterwards, we gazed at the stars and finished off yet another incredible day in South Africa!
– Emily Zaltz and Sophie Goldenberg

Last night, Jeremy, our tour guide, told us a story. Jeremy talked about the dark times of the apartheid. For example, the destruction of innocent Black African homes and the brutality of the government. He also talked about his early life and making wrong choices. This gave us the inspiration to make the right choices. Hopefully during this trip we can pass that on to others and bring this mentality into our daily lives when we return.
-Mike and Noah

Today we are going to Kubu Safari Lodge where the service and WiFi tends to be very spotty. We will take this opportunity to have some time off the grid and strengthen our group as a whole.

You are welcome to follow our adventure on instagram @brhino_the_rhino

Thanks!

Brian, Emily, and Lindsay

More updates soon!

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