Your first week in a new city sounds a little bit scary… but don’t be afraid! This is a small survival guide to help you relax and enjoy your homestay in Cape Town, while you keep discovering the city!! First step: Buy a South African sim card. Wifi isn’t always available in some homes. So, even if you are planning to keep your old number, you must get a local sim card to access the internet. EC Cape Town offers free wi-fi to all our students so don’t worry! Second: Check your address and the best way to come to school. You should also speak with other EC students and with your host family (trust me: your family knows more than you about the place that you are living in now). Third tip: MY CITI CAN SAVE YOU! Have you ever heard of it? Welcome to Cape Town. ‘My Citi’ is the most popular and safest public transport in and around the city. Even if it’s not necessary to take a bus to school, you can use it to go to the beach… to your friend’s place… to the supermarket.. and it’s really affordable! Fourth: Check the pharmacy, the hospital and the super market close to your home. Ask your new parents, start a conversation, be friendly and discover more about your own neighbourhood. Fifth and last: Relax, chill and go out to meet new people, amazing places and fall in love with Cape Town. It’s easy and take it easy!
Rafael and a few EC Cape Town students recently went to a rugby game to find out what this South African sport was all about. Rafael lives in one our homestay options in Cape Town and his host mother had encouraged him to attend … he did, and invited a few other students to join 🙂 This is how he describes the experience. Imagine a person knows nothing about rugby; this person is me. But watching a rugby game is a must-see in South Africa, like going up Table Mountain. My experience started on my journey to the football stadium, which took me back to my memories of the big football classics in Brazil. The traffic jam around the stadium, many people happily cheering for their team and the environment was so exciting. The only thing I missed was someone shouting: Coke, 20 Rands in my hands! It was funny watching the game eating popcorn and drinking a beer. At some point I thought “I’m at the cinema” When the teams arrived for the game, I was infected by the feeling of the people around me; and I remembered what my South African mom said to me: “You have to cheer for the Stormers” I am a good guy and so I cheered “Go Stormers!!!” The game started and people shouted excitedly but I saw the players were like gladiators in a vigorous game, disputing point for point. For me, a ‘Stormers’ fan, the game was dramatic because the Bulls started winning. But as the game continued, the Stormers had a strong defense and there was a turnaround so that they eventually won the game 30-22. After the game I learnt something about rugby: You can only pass the ball forward… and rugby is for strong people!
Many of our students live with host families (homestay accommodation) as they want to experience the culture of Cape Town and be sure that they are practicing their English outside of their English language classes in South Africa. David Meneghel decided to write to us to share his experience and we are so grateful to our host families for the effort and love they have shown towards their guests – this is truly how South Africans are. So, we want to say a big thank you to David for reminding us and of course thank you to the Bardien family for their gracious hospitality! This week will be my first month in Cape Town, so let me share some things about my experience, in particular about my accommodation. Although you might not know them, I live with the Bardien family. What can I say about them? They are friendly, the house is very comfortable, it’s always clean and it has everything necessary for a good stay. With permission from the Bardien family, I took some photo’s during dinners to show you Amina’s food. If I haven’t told you, Amina is a wonderful chef She makes delicious meals and I need to be alert because I am getting heavier every day. Also, during the dinner we have good conversations and good moments to practice my English with the family who encourages us to talk about our day and plans Best Regards David Meneghel
We asked one of our special host family mothers to share her experience of hosting students at EC Cape Town, one of the most popular choices for English language Centres in South Africa. It is thanks to people like Shamiela Samodien that our host family accommodation has become so sought after. A big thank you from all of us at EC! I have been hosting students for EC Language School for the past ten years. My home is situated in Bo Kaap which makes it easy for students to walk to and fro from school. I have had a variety of experiences and most of them are filled with happy memories. I was privileged to have hosted students from all over the world and the introduction to our way of life was almost always accepted , warmly. With hosting comes responsibility . Ensuring that my student is comfortable , to make him or her feel at home. To assist with homework and to spare time after school to interact with him / her. Cape Town probably has more than 10 English Learning schools. It is amazing to see so many of them walking in the streets of Bo-Kaap. They blend in and the community has accepted this new cosmopolitan look and make students feel welcome. My relationship with the administrative staff at E C has grown over the years and they are very accommodating and understanding. I will continue to host students as long as I can because it not only gives me pleasure but it offers me the opportunity to communicate with people from all over the world and learn about their culture as well. Love, Shamiela