Emily spent the night with me, after a wonderful dinner prepared by Gail, her host mom. Dinner was with Talia, her home sister, Gail and us. Armien, the dad was away on business.
We started the morning having breakfast in the hotel then asked the shuttle driver to take us to Green Market Square.
Crafts person at Green Market Square
After the market, we walked toward the Jewish Museum and on the way found the Slave Lodge.
The building which houses the museum now was originally a building where slaves lived.
It was enormous. Such a sad story.When we walked out we saw this sea of humans on the street in front of us. We started asking people what was going on but, what I discovered was the protest was just starting and no one really knew. We walked closer and found some police man who said they were protesting over housing issues.
We hung out for 15-20 minutes so I could take photos and video (having a hard time posting video) and then went on our way to the Jewish Museum. What we found out later was that this protest got completey out of control. The people were protesting to get "proper" housing. They are living in informal settlements without running water or electricity and they want the government to provide these bare essentials.
The building that houses the Jewish Museum was the original synagogue and when the congregation grew they needed to build another synagogue, which is across the courtyard and currently in use.
This is the bimah in the museum:
Jill was born in Cape Town and a member of this synagogue. She told us the history of the building and how it was designed by a non-Jewish architect who fashioned it after visiting synagogues in Europe. When Emily told her I was a photographer she said she would allow me to go upstairs, not normally allowed for tourists, to take photos.
When full, the synagogue holds over 1,000 people. Jill invited us to come this Friday night to their once a month "Sushi and Scotch" shabbat. Really. What an interesting combo.
The stained glass windows on the bottom floor were just recently done by a local plastic surgeon who recently lost his wife.
We were hungry by this time and Jill told us to eat at the restaurant in the courtyard. I ate the local Baboodie, a veggie version made from lentils with cooked egg on top. It was delicious.
Our travel back to the hotel was quite a nightmare. We phoned to be picked up and due to misunderstanding, roads closed because of the protest it took the driver nearly an hour to collect us. It was mostly a concern because Emily needed to be at her dance rehearsal at 6:00 p.m. All was o.k. though.
Emily had a short rest and I went to the gym in the hotel for some exercise. On her way to rehearsal she dropped me at her favorite restaurant, the one she took me took when I arrived, Coco Wah Wah, to sit and write.
Not that the day wasn't full already when Emily came back for me we went to one of her friends house for a party to raise money for a 12 year old girl who is battling cancer. The kids decided to dress up for Halloween in honor of this little girl.