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Previous Blogs: Day 1 Pretoria | Day 4 Dinokeng | Day 5 New Years | Day 6+7 Umdloti | Day 8 - DumaZulu | Day 9 Hluhluwe | Day 10+11 PE to Knysna | Day 12 Ostrich Farm | Day 13 Hermanus | Day 14 Hout Bay | Day 15 Cape Point | Day 16 Table Mountain | Day 17+18 Namib Desert | Day 19 Sossusvlei | Day 20+21 To Swakopmund | Day 22 Cape Cross | Day 23 Luderitz | Day 24 Walvis Bay | Day 26 To Windhoek | Day 27 Katatura | Day 28+29 Zambezi | Day 30 The Falls | Day 31 Chobe | Day 32+33 Going Home

Click photos for a larger image...

Today we took a tour of Katatura, the local township. Townships were created in the era of South African apartheid. That was the only place black people were allowed to live, the other suburbs of the city were reserved for whites only.

Katatura was divided into sections so the white regime could have more control over them. 1) The tribes, The Blacks and The Coloured's. Yes, Coloured is a distinct race in South Africa and parts of Namibia.

All that ended 30 years ago, but the townships remain as the primary place where black people live.

70% of Windhoek's population live in Katatura simply because it is still the cheapest place to live and only really the emerging black middle class have moved out to the previous white neighborhoods.  Translated to English "Katatura" means: "A place where people do not want to live".
This is at the main market. A whole cow will be chopped up by a group of guys. Seems like the head and hooves are discarded (unlike in Asia where everything is cooked!).  It appears however, they do utilize the cow brain.


The meat is then cooked and sold on

the spot to hungry workers.

Worms anyone? Mopani worms are actually caterpillars (as if that's any better) and are a delicacy amongst African people. I am told even though they are packed with protein and minerals they taste like crap!

While there are plenty of nice homes in

Katatura, many, many other poorer people live in  one room corrugated iron huts with no water and no electricity (or bathroom).


Schooling is free so the education level is rising. But there are still not enough schools. They divide classes into mornings and afternoons to try to accommodate all the kids. Black African families are very large with TONS of kids - it's a sign of prosperity to them.

Most people here work in town (Windhoek downtown) and the preferred transport is taxi. They are identified by the large registration number on the side and back window.

Even though there are thousands of taxis the demand is so high that often people can't find one available to get home after work.

It surprises me that the taxis here are regular cars. In South Africa they are minivans which hold many more passengers and put multiple groups of people together to make it cheaper.

Like South Africa, taxi drivers are the worst drivers in the world and you have to watch them like hawks for something stupid they will do.

Gloria was particularly intrigued by the Herero tribal women. They wear their traditional dress every day.

"Herero" means "people who throw spears",  but these days they are very peaceful people mostly cattle farmers but intensely proud of their culture.


We also went to a cultural center for the Ovambo Tribe to experience their customs, foods and practices.

There are 13 tribes in Namibia, but the Ovambo is the largest and come from Northern Namibia.

Both the former and current presidents of Namibia are Ovambo.


Wendy discovered we were not sleeping alone in our room last evening.  I am quite proud of her for not letting out a blood curdling scream when she saw him.  He is kinda cute.  But our room at the hotel IS his home and he's not leaving!! We tried to get a photo of him, but he's really quick! This photo courtesy of Google.  


And finally...

When Namibia became independent in 1990 the new government decided to rename a lot of roads in Windhoek because they didn't like the original South African names.

Well I guess you can see which side of the commie fence they were on >>>

This one is especially embarrassing now...


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