Only in Africa

Most of you have probably come across a Facebook page called Africa, this is why I live here. If you haven’t, go check it out, you’ll like it.

The postings there perfectly capture the spirit of its name. And, in a way, the spirit of my blog. When I still lived in Africa it was a wonderful remedy on days when I felt despondent about getting nowhere with my phone calls. And now it is a wonderful reminder of what it was that we so loved about living there – the humor, the naivete, the blunt telling it like it is.

The owner of the page put it in even better words, on the occasion of reaching 100,000 Likes (we can all only dream about that):

AFRICA IS IN US, NO MATTER WHERE WE FIND OURSELVES. When all is said and done, no matter who we are, what language we speak, where we originate from, what colour our skin or where we find ourselves in the world – the interactions between us, on this page, show how much in common we have, how we share that unique African sense of humour, we are able to laugh at ourselves like no other people.We CHOOSE to see the fun/quirky/crazy/ This Is Africa’ness of it all…and THAT is what makes me love my continent and my people as much as I do – I thank you, from the bottom of my heart for participating with your comments, your in boxes, your emails…all your wonderful contributions from all over our magnificent continent.It is YOU who make living here the amazing, memorable, rich and full to the brim life we live – I thank you.

That paragraph almost made me cry. But mostly, when I go there, I laugh out loud.

A recent look at Africa, this is why I live here made me remember that I have my own collection of “Only in Africa” pictures I’ve collected over the years. I’ve uploaded some of these to my Facebook page as “Humor of the Day” shots, but now thought I might put them together in a collection. I can’t give credit to the photographers in this case – most of these were sent to me via long email chains that make tracking down the photographer impossible (and some have appeared on Africa, this is why I live here as well).

So let the show begin. Sit back and enjoy!

There are more of these houses in South Africa than you might think. There are also less road signs.

No words.

If you live in a neighborhood called “The Governor’s Club,” thinking about your basement while looking at this picture leaves you slightly ashamed. Or envious that you overspent on that home theater, depending how you want to look at it.

I can’t quite see this in American skies…

…nor this on American fence posts (except for the part about shooting).

Found on Peter Nyaga’s Facebook page 
Very funny until you’ve been on one of those roads. 

“We circumcise… In heven you will be in a good way” is already a classic. But combined with the “tree cutters” and image of the giant chainsaw – shudder!


Lost in translation.

Keeping the precious cargo safe…

…while the not so precious cargo is put on the roof.

Perfect logic. If not perfect English.

Hello, Telkom? I haven’t had phone service in over three weeks…


Just make sure you use your blinker.

Friday afternoon – time to open the bar!

Maybe the concept of the 24 hr kiosk needs to be explained? Then again, if you count in African time, 9-6 is probably right around 24 hours. Because African Time is like dog years.

This makes perfect sense.

Great product placement. Toyotas are indeed the vehicle of choice in Africa.

Pastors get their own toilet. AND it is bigger.


…Or, if you need to touch yourself, use the pastor’s toilet from above. There is extra space in there.

Someone with a sense of humor. Or someone who had a lot of their doors accidentally smashed in.

No mincing words, telling it like it is.

Uhm… Maybe it was just that there wasn’t enough money for two sign posts? 

This is my all-time favorite. You have to read the whole letter.

If you can spare some of “your” nuts…

No relation to your nuts from the previous sign.

Maybe it’s a good thing you’ve already had an erection and your nuts turned into peanut butter.

If you manage to electrocute more than your “Willy” this is where you go next.