The overall highlight gained from the trip was the willingness of total strangers to go out of their way to help us. This is a lesson in trusting people and also if you want to experience a place in its’ entirety outside of the tourist route it is advisable to meet with these people and ask them to show you the place as they know it. Much of the difficulties, as with all international travel, stemmed from language and cultural barriers. This may lead people who are traveling independently to be obvious targets for people wanting to take advantage of them. While on the whole people are kind and helpful, it is advisable to keep your wits about you. We overcame these by, on the whole, keeping our wits about us and treating people with respect so that they in turn respected us. These then became our local guides, allowing us to avert many dodgy situations. Planning is also paramount. Even if you would like to experience a place in all its’ spontaneous and free-form nature, it is still advisable to plan for all eventualities. The most important thing is to keep the links established alive. Many of the people we met wanted to come and experience South Africa, especially for the upcoming Soccer World Cup. In this way, while they have local contacts for that, we have established relationships that can allow our dream of information and skills exchanges in trans-continental projects to take place. In the interests of promoting travel within the continent, it is advisable for other artists to experience the continent from the perspective of the ordinary people of the countries that they visit. Perhaps then, some sort of system to be introduced where the use of public transportation is also recognized and subsidized.
Grant Year : 2009
Participation in Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF). The trip, while challenging in many regards, was overall exhilarating. It was refreshing to meet new people and learn new cultures outside of our frame of references. Coming from largely Western Christian influenced South Africa, the exotic blend of Tanzania, and especially Zanzibar was quite an experience. From Arab influenced ablutions, to the island style attitude and cooking, it was all a once in a lifetime trip.
Type of Project
Departure : Johannesburg, South Africa
Destination : Zanzibar, Tanzania (East Africa)