Post post Camino blues

If I publish this, don’t read, just move on…

It is 03h33 on a Friday morning. I see it has been 2 months since my last entry into my blog.  Maybe I owe my 3 trusted readers an explanation.

The Camino de Santiago is one of life’s peak events. It takes you out of your normal world, and brings your whole existence back to basics. Eat, walk, pray and sleep.While eating wonderful local cuisine and meeting amazing people from around the world. the Camino is a training ground for the real walk of life.

In a sense the Camino prepares one for the difficult times that may follow.

And since my last blog post life was one hell of a bumpy ride.

I am a white South African. Afrikaans speaking. Born that way, nothing I can do about it. I live in South Africa with all it’s history. Good and bad. In a beautiful country with some of the most violent people imaginable. we have one of the highest murder rates in the world. Some people try to soften it with statistics. But in our country 57 people are murdered every day. It is just a number. Until it becomes one of your own included in that daily tally.

My brother in law was a peaceful man, who believed in the reconciliation between races with all his heart. He was a church leader teaching forgiveness and peace (as, I hope, am I…). He was a Professor in our language, and a very good poet. He played a huge role in many people’s lives, including mine.

One evening he and his wife came home after having a meal at my mother in law’s house. they live in a gated community that was supposed to be secure. They walked into a burglary in their home, by 7 armed men. They shot and killed him, and fled with a laptop computer and two cell phones.  Nothing has been heard since about any arrests. This is the daily experience of life in South Africa. Your life is not worth much more than a cell phone or a computer around here.  And through all the tears we have to keep on trying to build a broken country with hate filled people, forgiving and moving forward. Politicians argue about the crime statistics. You don’t give a damn if the murder rate is down 90% , if your family is included in the 10 %. But the murder rate does not come down, it is going up, and up, and up. I have a hard time dealing with this.

Two days later my daughter flew to China, to go and help teach English. I will see her again in a year’s time. She wrote a heart breaking post on facebook yesterday about not feeling safe in South Africa, and  being safe in a foreign land but missing home. And I miss her a lot. My eldest son is finishing his B.Comm degree, and then he wants to go back to the USA to drive combine harvesters. A farm laborer in America has a better income than a young graduate in South Africa. My second son is on a combine harvester in Canada at the moment. I will see him next (2019) December again. And the youngest is finishing high school next year.

So, dear reader- the Camino tried to prepare me for this. I just have to keep on walking through every day, just keep on step by step, till we reach a better place. But the black monster is back.  And- for the politically correct in South Africa and the USA- this is not a person with a certain skin color.

The Camino is such a lovely experience- nobody is shooting at you.

Now I must decide- delete or publish. I will probably push the wrong button…