Saturday, May 9, 2009

Why Africans dont travel

I know my mother has nt travelled anywhere except South Africa and Botswana, the reason is that she was born and bred in South Africa, When she finally got married by my dear late father who was also originally South Afican, they then migrated south ward to settle in a village called Makopong.Makopong is a pretty small village, some feet away from South Africa and stradles along the Molopo river in the Kalahari, small as it were, i love it so much, in Tswana they say goo motho go thebe phatshwa, where one comes from runs deep, something like that...
Why Africans dont travel is precipitated by a comment i made while studying abroad somewhere in 2005, where upon i said i intend travelling to some places if i make a lot of money during my lifetime, to which the responce from one dude was, I work at a tourist center and I have never seen an African as a tourist and i dont think there will be.Evaluating the responce later on, in part, I felt the gentleman was genuine and innocent for one he had never seen an African as tourist, secondly i assume he didnt see how an African can indeed become a tourist given the history of Africanism from where he was sitting. Studying Visual Cultural Studies then which in part deals with cross cultural communication, perceptions, knowledge production and so on coupled with my humble beginnings, I took no offence for the educated gentleman was speaking from innocence.
4 years later, I realise that Africans who have money and can indeed comfortably travel with leisure have no travel expeditions as one of their priorities in life, travel does not feature in budgets, they seem to be content with where they were born. Weedings, Burials, Social gatherings within families take the bulk of the money and I mean big time, latetly my dear brother was getting married and i suppose he will take a year to recuperate from the spending he had to make at the cost of his own community.Communal versus Individualism, how can we best balance the two, the former arrangement in my opinion worked against his will for he wanted a simple affordable within his means celebration.

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