Mandela Sets the World on Fire

Yesterday evening I arrived in Bloemfontein, a small city in South Africa’s Free State Province, with a bunch of other bloggers and photographers. It was overcast and the city felt dreary.

We checked into our hotel. Dale, our leader, suggested we go to see the Mandela statue at the top of Bloemfontein’s Naval Hill. We would get there just in time for sunset.

I looked up at the flat, grayish sky. A sunset seemed unlikely. But I was keen to see the statue anyway.

We wound up the big hill, past suburban houses and hoards of joggers, and got out of the van near the statue. The sky remained blanketed except for a small bit of pink to the west.

We dutifully pulled out our phones and cameras and walked to the overlook, admiring the view of the city and the beautiful monument to Mandela. He stands about half a storey tall, holding his fist in an “Amandla!” rallying cry position. (Amandla means “power” in Xhosa and Zulu.)

The flaming orange sun poked a tiny hole through the clouds. The hole grew. Then this happened.

Madiba flames resized

Amandla, Madiba.

This is why I love to travel.

My trip is happening courtesy of South African Tourism and the #MeetSouthAfrica campaign. Read my other #MeetSouthAfrica posts, from both last year and this year, here.

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10 Comments

  • Reply Mvschulze March 24, 2015 at 4:32 pm

    That is a powerful, beautiful picture. M 🙂

  • Reply Tenney March 24, 2015 at 6:00 pm

    Great photo

  • Reply Sheryl R March 24, 2015 at 8:40 pm

    Absolutely spectacular. Well done!

    • Reply 2summers March 24, 2015 at 8:41 pm

      I knew you’d like this one Sheryl 🙂

  • Reply Sine March 25, 2015 at 6:17 am

    OMG Heather, that is incredible! If I were you, that would be my new blog header right there (I know I know, you just got a new one and it’s really cool, but still!).

    • Reply 2summers March 25, 2015 at 6:41 am

      Haha, thanks Sine. I’m not quite ready to give up my other header but I appreciate the compliment.

  • Reply Jonker - Firefly March 25, 2015 at 1:50 pm

    Absolutely beautiful. We also had a stunning sunset in PE last night. Pity the tour doesn’t include the Eastern Cape.

    • Reply 2summers April 1, 2015 at 1:58 pm

      I need to get back to PE soon! I don’t think I’ve been there since the #PERocks trip. There’s still so much more I want to explore there.

  • Reply RossG March 25, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    Great shot Heather.I’ve learnt never to worry about grey skies at sunset as they can often offer up views like the one you captured,regards rossG

    • Reply 2summers March 25, 2015 at 7:17 pm

      So true, Ross. I should never have worried.

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