In Africa, your Senior Year or Grade 12 is called your Matric year. We have two young men in our Branch who are in their Matric year. Africa's school year goes from January until November since we are in the Southern Hemisphere. A major event for the Matric students is their first formal event in their teenage life. It is considered a stepping stone. The dance is essentially held to bid the class farewell and it is very similar to America's Junior/Senior Prom, and graduation night combined. The perfect dress, a new suit, a classy car for transportation, and food. We were informed that it is held this early in the year so that the students are not distracted by their studies when it comes time for testing.
Sibongiseni Ngcibi is on the right. He is a member of our branch. We were invited to attend the pre-dance festivities. I was not feeling well, and so unable to attend, but President Wheeler went "stag".
Imagine President Wheeler's surprise when he was asked to give a speech. Evidently, because it is a "rite of passage" so to speak, ALL of the members of the family come and their are tributes and toasts to all. He is casually mingling with all of the guests when he hears his name called out to give a speech. In America, you should "never leave home without your American Express Card." In Africa, you should never leave home without a speech in your pocket. I love this country and their traditions. The righteous ones of course.
Sibongiseni and his date.
Sibongiseni and his mother on the right with Canny Nobebe on the left..
The spread of food.