If you could go on your dream vacation, where would you go? Jamaica? Bahamas? Africa? That’s right, the Motherland! Ashley Lowe went to South Africa!!!
Born in Peoria, IL, currently residing in the DMV area. Ashley is a mother, first, a licensed social worker, a published author, and an entrepreneur (Hustle! Hustle! Hustle Real Hard!!!)
As long as Ashley can remember, she has always had the dream of traveling to Africa. Not only is Africa the Motherland but it is the mother of all nations. Ashley’s trip was to Johannesburg and Capetown, South Africa. It took a total of 11 days including travel to and from.
Ashley’s most unforgettable moment was her visit to Constitution Hill. (So amazing!) Constitutional Hill is where various political groups meet to fight for various causes. It is also the site of their courthouse, where various cases are tried and it is the site where the jail used to be located. The jail is now a historical site, where hundreds of tourists come yearly to visit.
Ashley was able to see and hear stories about the mistreatment of the detainees and it was heart breaking. Furthermore, Ashley learned that many of these detainees had not really committed crimes. (This is so terrible!)
During the tour, she visited the solitary confinement section of the jail, which SUDDENLY shifted her mood. At that moment, Ashley stated that she literally felt the spirits of those that experienced the cruel punishments. Many of those that were housed in solitary confinement were starved, treated unfairly and eventually lost their lives, due to the harsh punishment that they endured while in solitary confinement. (Heartbreaking)
Ashley felt like it was agonizing to learn how the jail functioned daily; it was just sad and unfair. Her tour made her understand how and why Apartheid took place and why Mandela was such an influential individual to many South Africans.
During her trip, Ashley experienced cultural shock that totally made her trip an unforgettable one. Ashley observed how class system operates which is very different from her home country. In America their are 3 separate classes based income levels, lower, middle, and upper class. In South Africa the class system is operated by skin pigmentation which affords many Africans opportunities. The darker your skin, the lower you are in the class system and the lighter your skin complexion the higher you are in the class system. Also, many of the homes are not suitable for living; these homes are informal housing units called slums.
“Upon my return to the U.S., I felt rejuvenated and prepared to make sure that I do my part. Their is an old African adage, Sankofa “Go back and fetch what is in the past in order to move forward.” It is my responsibility to learn my history, to know my history and to teach what I have learned, so that we as a people can move forward and continue to progress. I feel like my profession and life goals are intentional, it is my God-given responsibility to fight for what is true and what is right. I feel like my driving force is to pursue God’s purpose for me on this earth, and whenever my expiration card is pulled, I want to be empty because I decided to allow God to use me and pour every single gift and talent inside of me to impact and the lives of others.”
Ashley has the following advice for anyone planning to go the Motherland, “Limit Social Media and enjoy every moment. Talk to the people and have fun!!!
Africa will not be Ashley’s last trip, as she has many more trips planned for the near future! To learn more about her future trips, be sure to follow Ashley on:
Until next time….
“Boss Up and Be Blessed”
☆BossUpMag |•| 10.29.17☆