#2 – a cultural KALEIDOSCOPE called johannesburg

I live to see the day when Africa sheds its artificial boundaries and unites its people. I spent the day today in downtown Johannesburg looking for clothing material to make a wedding garment. To be clear, I am only going as an invited guest. When I was looking for a spot to park my car it was a gentleman from the Democratic Republic of Congo who came to my rescue with an available slot.

I then walked into a corridor of dresses, suits and skinny mannequins. In the end I had three items. One from a shop owned by a Nigerian entrepreneur, one from a store belonging to a Beninese (person from Benin) individual, Mohammed and lastly an item from a store owned by a French speaking male whose origins I couldn’t place.

This experience allowed me to take out my phone and google Benin. I learned that the country has 10 million inhabitants and that its capital is Porto-Novo.

Happiness in Africa means learning something new and rubbing shoulders with my brothers and sisters from across the continent.

#97 – Xolani Mthombeni, DJ,Radio Personality, Voice Over Artist, Johannesburg, South Africa

Xolani, known commonly known to his fans as DJ Xtremme, is from Benoni, South Africa. He is on YFM every weekend.

Xolani was introduced to radio early on in his varsity career. He is now a weekend DJ hosting a breakfast show, Morning Made, at one of the most prestigious youth radio stations in Johannesburg, YFM.

He is a family man who after thinking about the legacy he will leave behind decided to start a company of his own. In his entrepreneurial career he uses the skills he has acquired in the media business to push the business forward.

He is a thought provoker with big dreams. He believes strongly in the art of working for all you get, and he has a lot in store for his growing fan base.

Twitter – @xtremmedj

Instagram – @xtremmedj

 

#96 – Stacey Holland, TV Presenter and Wellness Architect, Zimbabwe & South Africa

Stacey was born in Zimbabwe, lived in Swaziland and Belgium, but is now based in Johannesburg, South Africa. She is thus, a keen traveler. She has had many life changing experiences that have led her in different directions along her path. She has worked in sports marketing; banking; NPO-and ultimately television. She is now the energy that fuels https://livefitwithstace.com/.

Stacey has developed her brand in the fitness industry after having had a complete personal fitness transformation. Stacey now owns a golf experiential marketing company and a creative firm. She is clearly a multi-talented individual who has been and still continues to explore all that she possesses in her mind and abilities.

In this episode Stacey gives a master class on how to lead a well balanced life. We talk about Oprah, Tim Ferriss and some books that have shaped (pun intended) the person she has become.

Twitter – @StaceHolland

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/StaceHolland/

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/staceholland/?hl=en

 

#10 – Reconnecting with old friends

There is something wonderful about reconnecting with old friends. Having recorded 100 episodes for http://www.1000africanvoices.com over the last 2 and a half years we decided to check in with some of the voices that left a long lasting impression on our listeners. The conversations have been graceful and hearty as we learn what the voices are up to a year and in some cases 2 years after being part of http://www.1000africanvoices.com.

With the show having been accessed in over 130 countries during this period I am proud to be a small part of this team and this village we’ve come to know and love. Africans are such wonderful, open minded and giving souls. I am glad I can call all the guests we have had, my brothers and sisters. Thank you for being part of this amazing journey.

Happiness is reconnecting with old friends and realizing how much time has passed. We have but one life. Ours is to live it fully.

#9 – Watching 100 Movies in 10 months

Today I made a commitment to myself to watch 100 movies in the next 10 months. 10 movies a month. Its hard to justify spending 12 thousand minutes on such a seemingly meaningless pursuit one could rationalize. I have in the past wanted to read the Top 100 most influential books of all time. With this commitment I didn’t get far. Most of us go through life wanting to chase some seemingly meaningless but somewhat deeply rewarding experience. In the month of February I have watched The Irishman, Equalizer 1, Equalizer 2, Flight and the Big Short. That’s 5 in one month. Not a bad start.

Most great achievers always say that the key to success is to have the ability to start something and more importantly to keep going. My countdown has started and its looking promising. By the way, from the aforementioned list, I would highly recommend the Irishman if you have 3h30min to spare. Its already a classic in my book.

Happiness is being able to commit to a goal and pursue it with gusto.

#95 – Zola Nene, Celebrity Chef, Author, Food Stylist, Cape Town South Africa

This episode features Zola Nene, who is best known for whipping up hearty meals and sharing warm laughs with some of South Africa’s brightest stars across 13 episodes of her own cooking show titled Celeb Feasts with Zola which recently aired on Mzansi Magic (DSTV Channel 161).

She found her calling while at varsity and has never looked back. Having worked in England, she returned to South Africa, expanded her talents and used her skills to make a career being a media chef. She enrolled at the Institute of Culinary Arts in Stellenbosch. During her studies she worked with well known chefs.

After graduating, she moved to Johannesburg and worked in a large catering company as a Catering Manager. She was then offered a job on Expresso when the producers were looking for a food stylist. In February 2016 she released a cookbook called Simply Delicious.

In 2017, Zola joined the BBC Lifestyle reality competition series, The Great South African Bakeoff for its third season as a judge.

Twitter – https://twitter.com/zola_nene

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/zolanenechef/

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/zola_nene/?hl=en

#8 – What the hell is game of thrones?

While at a flea market this morning, I ask one of the merchants if she had a Game of Thrones t-shirt that I could purchase. She looked at me inquisitively and said, game of what…? Needless to say this took me by surprise, after all Game of Thrones for about a decade was the biggest show on the planet. The problem with widely successful shows and their fans is that we think each one of the 7 billion inhabitants that call earth home would be familiar with Jon Snow and his wolves. It turns out not quite.

Happiness sometimes means being reminded that there’s more to life than TV shows, that somewhere in Africa and in other parts of the world people are going about their days without a care in the world about some made up Westeros.

#6 – my african Rainbow

There’s something magical about rainbows.Wikipedia defines a rainbow as a meteorological phenomenon that is caused by reflection, refraction and dispersion of light in water droplets resulting in a spectrum of light appearing in the sky. This definition does not do justice to what I saw this afternoon. Following late afternoon rain I looked up to see the most perfect rainbow I’ve seen in recent times.

I do recall growing up that this was a common phenomenon. In more recent years, I have very few memories of witnessing such a beautiful natural spectacle. I think a lot of their scarcity is as a result of me having an office from which I am meant to add value to the world economy. From time to time we get to look outside our modest office windows in bust metropolis. If you are lucky you can see beyond 100m. The outside has become somewhat of a luxury. As kids, being outside is all we knew. Under those circumstances, coming across a rainbow was an inevitable certainty.

Happiness is when you stumble across the most beautiful rainbow as a timely reminder of the beauty and colorfulness of life.

#5 – Behind suburban walls

My perimeter wall collapsed today. With city living, a collapsed wall brings with it a deep sense of anxiety. Suddenly my neighbours are able to peek into my suddenly ‘naked’ material possessions. After a few hours of this urban nakedness, you go through Elisabeth Kubler Ross and David Kessler’s famous 5 stages of grief, denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

Once I had accepted my situation, I struck a conversation with a gentleman who was helping rebuild my wall. An hour later I had learned so much about business ranging from construction, auctions and energy conservation. Besides the cost, I’m glad that my wall fell as it led me to discover a lot more about life. A few months from now I won’t remember that on this day my wall collapsed, what I will remember is that through the fallen wall I was introduced to Garth.

Happiness is getting a free lesson on business from a total stranger expecting nothing in written.

#4 – Evil eye – audiobook spectacle

From time to time you come across a serendipitous discovery. Today, deep in Africa, I came across a 90 minute audiobook called Evil Eye written by Madhuri Shekar. Audiobooks tend to be anything between 5 and 10 hrs. Since I only had 2 hours on the road with an inexplicable need to complete something I came across Evil Eye. This is not a typical audiobook, its easier to think of it and consume it more as a play. The author found a beautiful way of telling a deep, supernatural story using tech. Although the ending is predictable, the experience of listening to the audio is so immersive that it actually doesnt matter.

Happiness is stumbling across such a wonderful piece of art. Well done to Madhuri for putting together Evil Eye. I give it 3.5*.

#3 – Cinnamon buns

Very few things are better than both the smell and the taste of cinnamon. For a small price you bite into a piece of absolute nirvana. Today, the end of my day culminated in sheer indulgence in cinnamon buns. What a pleasurable experience.

Happiness is a full sensory experience that comes with such delightful creations. I give Cinnamon buns 4*.

#94 – Linda Kasonde, Legal Practitioner, Zambia

Linda Kasonde is a Zambian legal practitioner.

Linda rose to prominence as the first elected female President of the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) and for her advocacy of human rights.

She has become a well-known figure in Zambia for using her public platform as LAZ president to resolutely defend constitutional democracy, civil liberties and the rule of law. In this role, she attracted occasional controversy as government representatives felt she was overly political, especially when drawing attention to allegations of constitutional violations by the ruling authorities.

Kasonde was awarded the Epic Alumni for “Women Inspiring Women” at IE Business School. She also received the award of the Zambia Society for Public Administration’s Justice Irene Chirwa Mambilima in 2016.

Twitter – https://twitter.com/LindaKasonde

LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/linda-kasonde-4025a08

#93 – Langa Mavuso, Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Johannesburg, South Africa

Langa Mavuso, Singer, Songwriter, Performer, Johannesburg, South Africa

Langa Mavuso is a Diepkloof born singer song writer, who obtained a BA in Politics and Economics, started singing at a very young age. He started recording his EP when he returned home after his studies. Though he describes his music as Soul and RnB his audience interprets it in many different ways because his style is inspired by the Jazz he grew up listening to and studied.

His performing career was perfected performing in school growing up. That coupled with his participation in musicals helped him build the discipline he needed to be in the South African music industry.

Langa Mavuso was nominated in the Rising Star category for the annual DSTV Mzansi Viewers Choice Awards.

Twitter https://twitter.com/LangaMav

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/langamav/

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/langamav/

#92 – Mohamed Bashir, Founder of Daauus Creative Design Agency in 2015, Mogadishu, Somalia

This episode features Mohamed Bashir Osman, who was born in Mogadishu, Somalia. A young man who found refuge in the Netherlands where he studied. He never forgot his home country, as he became a board member and chairman of the Somali community organization in Nijmegen, Netherlands.

When Somalia started recovering from the chaos of war and people started moving back, Mohamed also moved back to start a business he had seen an opportunity for. He then launched Daauus Creative Design Agency in 2015.

Daauus has since won Best Marketer of the Year 2017 and 2019 Business of the Year in the International Somali Awards in London.

MB is an inspiration to many young Africans and has made his way into the list of 100 most influential young Africans.

Twitter – @MrMidnimo

Instagram – midnimo

https://www.facebook.com/mmidnimo

#91 – Derik Omari, Recipient of the 2018 Queen’s Young Leader’s Award, Ghana

This episode features Derick Omari, a native Ghanaian who has been dubbed one of Africa’s most influential young people. Derick has won the hearts of people in Ghana, Africa and the world. A very inspiring young man who was named recipient of the 2018 Queen’s Young Leader’s Award. He was chosen to win this award from a pool of over 4000 finalists.

Derick is the founder of Tech Era – a community engagement initiative aimed at equipping underprivileged children with IT skills, also helping to teach the visually impaired to use computers. He also started Berekuso Music Project, an afterschool initiative to teach pupils to play music.

Derick uses all he has at his disposal to expose the youth to things that they thought were otherwise unreachable.

https://www.facebook.com/Derricus

https://www.instagram.com/derick_omari/

https://twitter.com/DerickOmarihttps://www.linkedin.com/in/derickomari/

http://www.1000africanvoices.com