19 April 2017

What Am I?

I'm not fully South African. I'm not fully Greek. I'm a conglomeration of both.


I live in South Africa. But, I'm not South African. Well, I am. But, I'm not. 
My voice carries hints of the powerful and articulated accent, and my brain houses an abundance of vocabulary in Zulu, a local African language, alongside a boat-load of South African-made and cultivated memories. My eyes have bared witness to the rolling Kwa-Zulu Natal hills and my fingers have played with the mud and dirt of the African soil. I've grown up eating 'pap and wors', both which form part of local's staple diets. In my mind, the word braai stands in place of 'barbecue' and colloquial words like lekker roll off my tongue with as much effort as it would take a man to pluck out a piece of the Savannah, high veld grass- not much.
 But, I'm different. I live in South Africa, but I call myself Greek. Other neuron's pathways in my brain lead to longer, more complexly-named Grecian delicacies like Taramosalata and Spanakopita. My lengthy name an surname pay homage to a country not African. European. Where a South African may pray in English, Xhosa or Afrikaans, I pray in Greek. My religion and culture bare roots in olive oil, feta cheese and oregano herbs.
I can't be just one. I can't be just South African and I can't be exclusively Greek. In South Africa, I'm not fully South African and in Greece, I'm not Greek. When in Greece (doing as the Greeks) my pale skin and non-Greek accent give me away. In South Africa, it's my name (which is a lot longer than the average name. A lot).I've just had to accept that I'm a conglomeration- a fusion of two continents and two places housed in one person.

Many people believe that you are the nationality of where you were born. Personally? I don't. I'm a geographical fruit salad- and okay with it. What are your thoughts on coming from more than one place? Let me know in the comments.

Till next time-
Steph
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12 comments

  1. I've absolutely loved reading this! What a lovely thing to read - I think it's so lovely that you're made up of 2 different (and might add 2 amazing and beautiful) places! It must be lovely to experience and be part of such 2 diverse and gorgeous cultures!

    JosieVictoriaa // Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle

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    1. Hi Josie (P.S. Lovely name)

      I'm very happy that you liked this. It is a lovely thought to be influenced by so many different places. It's a privilege. It is definitely an experience, at times!

      Steph

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  2. This is really interesting. I have only ever lived in one place so I have never really experienced this before but it is so cool how you describe. I would say that I am American and Egyptian all though I have never been to egypt and I wasn't born in egypt. Definitely still egyption though. :) Loved this post!

    Nabila // Hot Town Cool Girl

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    1. What an interesting combination, Nabila!

      I've been to Egypt. I was there for 8 hours. Exactly. Between two flights. I was allowed to leave the airport. I saw the pyramids, sphinx and some local markets.

      I hope you get to go, someday!

      Steph

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  3. You have an original mix, maybe one day you can talk about how your parents met, would be very interesting to read!
    I am not exactly the same, but I have a similar feeling. First I put you in context: I live in Catalonia, that is a zone on Spain. Catalonia in the past was like a country, but for some political reasons now is a part a of Spain. Some catalans has a strong feeling of be a different country and independance from Spain (and some kind of hate to Spain because the govertment don't allow us to get independent, but there's also some hate from the rest of Spain)
    And here I am: my mum is from Spain (from a village next the frontier with Portugal, so very far from Catalonia) and my dad is from Catalonia. Eventhought, I'm more spanish than catalan becase my dad is half catalan, half spanish, and my mum is spanish (with some portuguese ancestry), but I was born in Catalonia and educated in this culture (to be more clear: I think in catalan) so maybe I feel more catalan than spanish, but I have very mixed feelings because I feel more than a inhabitant of the world than a catalan or spanish.

    I don't know why, but you talk of deep themes and then I have to write you long comments!

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    1. Hey Cilia!

      It is quite the mix indeed. I've briefly mentioned how my parents met in this post here (http://www.socialspying.com/2017/03/more-than-just-old-faded-photograph.html)

      That's so interesting! I can relate to your sentiments. I think one day, you're allowed to feel more from one place than another. And that's okay. If you have links to two places, that's just double the influence. To be an inhabitant of the world is a beautiful thing.

      Haha, I really appreciate your long comments. I don't mind them at all- actually, I sort of like them!

      Thanks for taking the time to write to me, Cilia!

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  4. I am born and raised in America but my nationality is Albanian. So, I totally get you.

    Life is just Rosie
    Instagram

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    1. That's a great mix! You got two very different influences inspiring you!

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  5. That must be so interesting and amazing to be part of both cultures :D I adore the way you write also, such a lovely article! Following you on GFC! xx

    elizabeth ♡ ”Ice Cream” whispers Clara
    (lets follow each other on bloglovin or instagram)

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    1. It definitely makes life exciting! Thank you so much, Elizabeth. I'm very glad you like the way I write. That means a lot to me.

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  6. I am just Irish. Nothing more to it. So even though i can't relate i find your story fascinating! Being Greek sounds so ancient and wise and south African so exotic!

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    1. "Just Irish" made me chuckle. That's pretty great! I've never thought about the juxtaposition of South Africa and Greece in the way that you put them. Very interesting- and true!

      Thanks Marian!

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