86/100 reasons to be in South Africa in 2010: We want to say “I was there”

I think we are fast approaching a different mixture in the sea of faces when it comes to what the players see as they look out at the fans that scream back at them with hopes for their success. This World Cup is set to go a long way to bridging the racial divide, and as fervent rugby fanatics have already proven, they can be just as vociferous where soccer boots run as they can for their teams on their own home turf. There is very definitely a moment of déjà vu happening here in South Africa, and what got black South Africans behind the notes of ‘World in Union’ in 1995, is doing the same now with white South Africans, for ‘Waka Waka’! Go on. Admit it. You love it! On a whim, this achievement would trump almost all other good news I could think of… for now.

Sure, we could really exercise the topic and talk HIV cures, the resolution of starvation, honest politicians and of course, world peace. But that’s not where we’re going with this. We’re talking today, now, moments away from ‘curtain up’ at Soccer City. We’re talking the fact that FIFA has just released another 15 000 tickets. We’re talking the fact that Bafana Bafana drew 1-all to Bulgaria. We’re talking days away from the first Gautrain expedition (June 8th). We’re talking massive property value boosts for sales and rentals alike. We’re talking widened highways and road improvements. We’re talking reinvented airport spaces to impress even the snootiest of air travelers. We’re talking things that might have been on the agenda all along, but may have stayed that way for a lot longer than a June 2010 deadline. But best of all… we’re talking the fact that many more of our own nation agree, and want to say ‘I was there’. I do. Do you?

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