September 24th is Heritage Day in South Africa. It’s a public holiday to celebrate the rich and diverse melting pot that is the Rainbow Nation. Unofficially, it’s also dubbed National Braai Day. Many families and friends certainly use the day to get together a chuck a boerewors on the braai*.
The braai is serious business here in South Africa. It tends to be a huge step up from your average soggy-sausage-British-barbecue. Many homes here come with built-in braais and just take a look at this supermarket section.
The lettering on the wall looks like a permanent fixture. There is clearly a far higher level of dedication involved than with similar barbecue activities elsewhere in the world.
The Braai is only one of the bazillion aspects of the complex cultural make up of South Africa. I’m always keen to learn more about my host country, especially as Mr Incredible and therefore our children have some ancestry here. In fact watching the rugby the other night (the calamitous and nail-biting SA vs Japan match), Pickle kept talking about ‘our team’ – he didn’t mention ‘our team’ when we watched the England vs Fiji match on Friday.
On the theme of learning more about South Africa, today’s cultural enrichment outing is to Lesedi. A Cultural Village promising replica traditional dwellings, dancing demonstrations and other cultural treats.
Yes, I suspect it’s aimed at tourists and yes, I expect that there could be a certain degree of cheesiness and inauthenticity involved. Nevertheless, essentially I am a tourist and I am greatly looking forward to learning a bit more about some of the African peoples that make up a large part of South Africa’s DNA, just in time for Heritage Day tomorrow.
I’ll let you know how it goes.
Find more information about the National Braai Day Movement HERE.
*Boerewors = farmers sausage – a traditional spicy sausage
*Braai = Barbecue