We’re exactly halfway through the World Cup 2010 and although the vuvuzelas aren’t blowing 24/7 anymore, I still Philip (and feel it).
I took my parents to the first match at Cape Town Stadium, which I found a little soulless, but the pre-match festivities along Somerset Road were fantastic. Dad, being an old school English footie supporter (Tottenham Hotspurs – yes, I know), had his ear plugs ready of course. Mom, being an avid acquirer of Chinese knick-knacks sold by Zimbabwean vendors, was kitted out in the SA Flag x 100. Earrings too.
We watched the SA-Mexico match at Cafe Sofia before heading to the stadium, as I didn’t want the old people to be too overwhelmed by bright lights and loud noises (hi Mom). It was a great day.
In the past two weeks I’ve met Norwegians, Americans, English, Australians and even an Icelander on the fan walk, in the city and at the CTICC fan fest. I’ve seen Fatboy Slim live again. People I don’t know have hugged me because we were wearing the same SA hat. I’ve had conversations with total strangers when stuck in traffic and food queues.
Everyone has said it a hundred times, but damn I’m proud of us. There will be a hangover, there have been issues, some fucktard from NZ called Joburg a dump (he’s probably from Auckland – aka Armpit). But in the end we have done what we set out to do and hosted a mind-blowing event. And we managed to pull it off while the rest of the world walllowed in a recessionary misery.
The last word: Never underestimate South Africa. We love proving you wrong. Failing that, we’ll blow a vuvuzela outside your window at 5am.