Updated: Oct 29, 2021
The Green Mamba they like to call it. Your South African anchor and your South African curse. “I’ve got the Green Mamba”, they say, “there’s no way out for me, I’m stuck here”. They talk about the corruption and they talk about the looting. Load-shedding and Covid are topics of their daily discussions. “Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse - it does”, they say; or an, “ah what can you expect, we live in South Africa”, when things don’t go according to plan.
Eventually their negative comments begin to weigh on us, their words infiltrate our dreams and their prospects of immigration seem enticing.
Are we making the right decision we wonder? Should we stay or should we go?
Yet here we stay. Why?
HOPE as a verb is to, “expect with confidence” and “to cherish a desire with anticipation”.
The hope of the South African nation is an intangible aspect of atmosphere. It’s found in our people like a personality trait that cannot be measured. It is something we have in abundance and through it all, it remains, despite the relentless challenges we have endured time and time again.
I have seen this hope. I see it on a daily basis. This hope is seen when I watch the little school girl crossing the road to school every day, with an optimistic smile on her face and her hope for the day that lies ahead. This hope is seen when I watch the twinkle in the eyes of my friends, my brothers and of strangers watching the Springboks score the winning Try. This hope is seen in the tears of pride of strangers for Tatjana Schoenmaker as she breaks the world record. It’s the feeling of home that bubbles at the bottom of your stomach when you hear a South African accent in a foreign country.
Like a golden thread that ties us together, so the hope of our nation unites us every day. It is said that, “when the going gets tough, the tough get going”; and that could not be truer for South Africa and its people. These events and challenges we face today will always remain; whether they are entirely different challenges or similar ones to those we face today. Yet, when we take a moment to find the hope that surrounds us, we are once again overwhelmed by the opportunity that lies within our South Africa. Our people have the potential for exponential greatness. Our hope in our country, our hope in one another and our hope for our land is what continually sets us apart.
So, the Green Mamba we can call it, our South African anchor and our South African hope. “I’ve got the Green Mamba”, I say, “there’s nowhere else I’d rather be”. I talk of our history and our resilience to overcome. I talk of our natural beauty and our inspiration that can be found in our people - these are topics of my daily discussion.
“How lucky I am, blessed beyond measure”, I say, “ah what can you expect, we live in South Africa and the best things in life are often unexpected”, when things don’t go according to plan.
Eventually our positive comments will begin to lift them up, our words will infiltrate their dreams and their prospects of immigration will seem uninviting. “Are we making the right decision?”, we will never wonder. Because if we take a moment to look around, the hope of the nation is seen all around us and this hope outweighs any challenge that lies ahead.
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