In the picture is the fountain in Adderley Street. No chance anyone could miss that we are hosting the 2010 Soccer World Cup here in South Africa.
The marketing folk have used local phrases and customs which may leave visitors a bit confused. Here is a quick guide to some of what is going on.
Eish means wow or disbelief.
Ayoba means cool or great.
Gees means spirit. The g’s in Afrikaans are gutteral.
Mzansi means South Africans or people of the south.
Toyi-toyi is a dance often done during protests.
The Diski dance comprises a selection of moves based on local street soccer.
Gumboot dancers slap their rubber boots and stamp their feet for sound effects. Gumboot dancing is said to originate from Morris dancing and it developed amongst miners in South Africa.
I remember the praise singers as a child when my father used to be a judge at Zulu dancing competitions. The praise singer would shout how great his team was before a match to impress the judges.
If you are in Natal, grab a Bunny Chow which is curry in a hollowed out half-loaf of bread. Who needs a plate here? Gatsby’s are a really large French loaf with fillings found in the Cape. A boerie roll is our version of a hot dog. Slappies are hot chips. South Africa is rich in words and customs from all sectors of the population. Enjoy.
Photo courtesy P Gillespie