I am an African. I was born in Zimbabwe and have lived all my adult years in South Africa. I hold an African passport. I have been to Europe once for two weeks. I am not looking to live anywhere else. I am an African. Call me a ‘white’ African, if you must, or a pale native, but I am African. As a human being born in America is American, so I was born in Africa. My heritage may be of European descent, but I was born, and will most likely die in Africa.
My Kenyan host expressed intrigue at this statement, as did her husband. “We always think of people like you as having some other place to go,” she said honestly, as she realised that I have no desire to go elsewhere and no roots on any other continent. I do not have one foot in Africa, and one foot elsewhere – this is my home. I am proudly African.
I believe that our problems, locally in South Africa, and in a larger context of the continent, are our own. We need to take responsibility for them, and find the solutions that are in our hearts and minds, seeds waiting for the water of confidence in ourselves, as people created in God’s image and called to serve our communities.
Yes, I am pale. Yes, I burn in the sun. Yes, I sometimes may seem out of place for reasons that would require another blog to mention. But I am home.