Prompted by my husband's trip to South Africa I posted a request on the Joburg Expat Facebook page to list essential items to bring back from South Africa. I wanted to make sure he didn't forget anything. I got an overwhelming response in just a few hours. Everyone just typed what first came to their mind, and it turned into a list both useful and hilarious.
Lawson Ricketts and Nick Geimer are two American expats who fell in love with Johannesburg and upon their return to the United States founded Ngala Trading Co. to bring luxury African interior design and decor to the North American market. Read all about the founding of their company in this feature article on Joburg Expat.
There are many reasons why people don't want to leave South Africa, chief among them the outstanding climate, the friendly people, and the laid-back lifestyle. But when you talk to anyone who's made their home in Johannesburg or elsewhere in the country and ask them what they'll miss most about South Africa one day, I'll miss Woolies will come up almost immediately.
Even though most Brits (and also Australians) I know are VERY loyal to their Marmite, even a single ONE of those jars would be one too many in our household. But it's hard to imagine that our family would ever complain about having too many Nutella jars. Here is a list of must-have things for your expat suitcase.
For the first few weeks in South Africa, most expats fight a valiant fight, flailing their arms and willing things to happen NOW, not JUST NOW or even NOW NOW. But in the end, South Africa wins, so that eventually you are totally resigned to the fact that an errand, any errand, will always take the better part of a day, if not week, even if it is ever so small.
My 2012 blog post Ordering from Amazon in South Africa is one of the most read stories on Joburg Expat. Because so many people seem to rely on it, and because it's already four years old, it needs a makeover to reflect changes since then. The thing that's not changed, just to get that out of the way: There is still no Amazon in South Africa as in Amazon.co.za.
My previous post, 19 Things to Put on your Shopping List for South Africa, proved quite popular. Everyone jumped in and had another item they wanted to add to my list, particularly in the food department. Every nationality feels quite strongly about their particular foods. So I thought I'd give you Part Two featuring all those essential reader additions.
You've gotten the job offer in South Africa. You've gotten scared by and then gotten over the crime statistics. You've researched schools and neighborhoods. Your visa is in the works, and you've scheduled to have your household goods packed and shipped. The container arrives a month from now. This means it's high time you went (online) shopping to load up on a few items!
Because I don't love shopping, I've become really good at making it efficient. Especially as a newly-arrived expat, you need to know where to buy your steaks, your chocolate chips, your converter plugs. Especially your converter plugs, if you live in a country like South Africa where all the power outlets are wrong, no matter where you've come from. Here is a list of where to get what.
Now that the new Dainfern Square has opened not far from it, on the corner of William Nicol and Broadacres Drive, I have retroactive pangs of jealousy about all the great stuff I missed out on so close to our doorstep. Thanks to today's guest blogger Debbie Spazzoli, here is a rundown of what Dainfern Square has to offer.