lifestyle: two extremes

No, this post is not about style or beauty, but it is about a lifestyle with two very different sides, and the beauty of a country and its people even with the insurmountable number of problems that exist within its borders.

I’m often conflicted during my days here in Stellenbosch. This wealthy little South African town has a plethora of beautiful shops, delicious cafes and an extremely laid back yet upscale vibe…it’s made me realize that I love the lifestyle of constant sunshine and afternoon lunch or drink outings with friends.

However, there’s also the poverty. South Africa has the highest rate of inequality within racial groups in the ENTIRE world. I volunteer in Kayamandi, a nearby all-black township, on Fridays with the preschool children, which I know has changed my perspective on life forever. I still love shopping and spending as much as the next person, but there’s so much more to life than just indulgence. There’s helping, there’s caring, there’s thinking about the world and the people…now I don’t know if Cosmo is my ultimate career goal, or if there’s something more meaningful to do with my journalism major…

I have yet to decide how to balance my love for fashion and all that goes along with my home lifestyle with my newly found desire to partake in something meaningful and for the good of people in the situations I’ve seen here, but until then, here’s a glimpse of the two sides of my South African lifestyle…

There’s one side…

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Then, there’s the other side…

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a shack in Kayamandi. photo by Makeeva

…and my preschoolers in Kayamandi:DSCN2204 DSCN2209DSCN2179

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