Kruger Park (and Cape Town Withdrawal)

I feel like I was snatched from my home in the middle of the night, taken away from all my friends, and dropped off in the wilderness. That’s pretty much what just happened. I’m not even exaggerating. Yesterday I was in the City of Cape Town; today I’m in Kruger National Park.

I knew from the very beginning we only had three weeks in Cape Town; then it was off to study environmental science at Kruger. I guess over the past few weeks I’ve grown attached to Cape Town and that’s something I didn’t anticipate.

We left for the airport early yesterday morning. Our flight from Cape Town to Johannesburg took about two hours. Another eight hours were spent on a bus that took us from the Johannesburg airport to Kruger. We actually got lost on the way and arrived at the Southern African Wildlife College barely in time for dinner. The campus lights were dimmer than those at William & Mary so essentially everything was pitch-black. It was in this darkness that we all slowly dragged our luggage to our rooms – not seeing where we were going. In my head I was calculating how long it would take me to walk back to Cape Town.

I have a great appreciation for the environment and wildlife. After all, I’m from Southside Virginia. But unless these animals can talk and become my friends, this is going to be a long, sad week. The Southern African Wildlife College is beautiful and the people are nice, but I miss Cape Town and everyone there, especially my guys from Khayelitsha. That’s the unfortunate thing about programs like these. Just when you’re starting to feel comfortable and at home, it’s time to go.

Categories: Community Engagement & Service, Student Blogs, Study Away

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