One of the most moving times of the whole weekend was actually right near the beginning, when after arriving at Robben Island, and dropping our stuff off at our rooms, we met together for introductions.
We had to go around the room and introduce ourselves and say why we were there. i had the task of following my incredibly gifted wife who has such a powerful way with words that she immediately won over the room with her talk of being the salt Elisha threw into the poisoned water in 2 Kings 2 which immediately purified the water which had caused death and miscarriages until that moment. And how she wants to be used in the same way, in this country, where waters have been polluted and poisoned…
i decided to just speak from the heart and in a diverse room of passionate people, spoke about how i see myself as African and this was an opportunity to dig deeper into the story of my country that i care so much about. Seeing my new friend Nkosi nodding, as if to say, ‘Yes, you are African. You are one of us.’ and just generally feeling a sense of love and acceptance in that small circle of people was such a powerful and moving moment for me.
i am NOT European. i was born here and have lived here for the majority of my life and this is my home and my land.
i am African. despite what some may say because of the colour of my skin.
i am African. and i wear it proudly.
a phrase i heard on the weekend, which i love and am going to adopt, is the title, ‘Man of the soil’ and that is what i am.
i am African. deal with it.