Published: 24th August 2018
Kasi memories - experiencing Soweto
Mofolo Central – it’s where my memories live!
I was Reminded recently that the Soweto Street Cookout is happening on Saturday 27 October 2018 brought back a flood of “growing-up-Mofolo” for me!
I was raised at my maternal grandmother’s house in Mofolo Central. It’s a five-room house with two bedrooms and a visitor’s toilet outside in a very close community where everyone knows each other.
Growing up in boarding school meant I would always look forward to mid-term breaks to catch up with family and friends. My best memory in Soweto would be when all my siblings and cousins came to visit, and we had to find a way to accommodate everyone which meant others would sleep on the kitchen floor and in the dining room. Every day was like Christmas during December holidays, as my grandmother would cook up a feast every single day.
I’m looking forward to seeing if the young chefs at the Soweto Street Cookout (SSC) put a new spin on Mofolo Gran cooking as we gather in my hood with some big name musicians, fab fashionistas and dancing in the spirit Soweto is famous for!
As youngsters, we’d play on the streets with other kids and walk the ten minutes from my Gran’s house to Mofolo Park for some fun with friends. The more mature crowd would always attend shows at the Soweto Theatre or events at the nearest parks or stadiums – but Soweto was always buzzing, a hotspot of activity for all age groups.
The older I got I realised that I had to be aware of my surroundings for safety reasons, which seems a pity. Still, I like to attend events at the now world-famous Vilakazi Street, including the street market and African cuisine at Wine Bar.
While my work these days keeps me too busy to participate in community events as much as I’d like, I’m thrilled the SSC is coming to my very own part of this vibey place we call home. Hoping to get some dancing on with friends at the event and particularly keen to hear some of the artists – like Samthing Soweto and DJ Kent and especially to taste the cuisines that represent all 11 cultures or languages in South Africa, namely Xhosa, Tswana, Zulu, Sesotho, Sepedi, Venda, Tsonga, Ndebele, SiSwati, Afrikaans.
Like anyone born and raised in Soweto, my favourite thing about my kasi is the diversity of culture. This is one place I know where all ethnic groups from different backgrounds are represented in a township.
So, when asked the one word I would use to describe my Soweto – it would be “GANGSTA”!
Hope to see all of you rocking this safe, open market environment, with what organisers promise will be non-stop entertainment for adults and kids. Take a ton of selfies and Tweet #SSC2018 or #SowetoCookout for more Mofolo memories.