05 February 2012
On my first visit to Windhoek, Namibia, about fifteen years ago, I saw dozens of blonde-haired German children and their parents milling around this church one afternoon. African traders were lined up across the street selling tourist trinkets. I stayed in a small German hotel in the centre of the city, within walking distance of the research institute. At night I drank in the bar, next to large bearded men who downed glass after glass of white wine. I visited the luxury hotels to meet up with pretty local girls or cute-but-naive American Peace Corps women, the latter type a distressingly common occurrence throughout my travels around Southern Africa. I met representatives of the local German community, who told me increasing numbers of young Germans were coming to the country and running hunting farms for the tourist trade. Namibia sports a bleak, desolate landscape, beautiful in its spareness, reminiscent for me of Arizona and Southern California, and it occupies a special place in my memories.