Category Archives: Bafana Bafana

December 7, 2009, 3:45 pm

Letter From Johannesburg: Bafana Bafana

We arrived in Johannesburg yesterday and, although we did not visit the City Bowl on our first trip to Cape Town three weeks ago, for the first time since we came to South Africa it feels like we are in the Big City with Big City People. We are staying until tomorrow at the Crown Plaza Rosebank, which is in a suburb (think Westwood in LA or Park Slope in Brooklyn, rather than an American-style suburb) developed in the 1950s, as the apartheid regime was in the swing of creating separate living zones for “Europeans” and “non-Europeans.”

On the way into town from the airport I asked the driver why the South African football team is called Bafana Bafana. He replied, “`Bafana’ means a little guy who fights and win against the big guys. People started calling them that because in apartheid we could not compete with other teams around the world so we fell behind. So now we are …

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