In line with theory of exposing guests and clients to a fresh realistic life experience in stead of a stale, flat tourism tour, I have to share my last two street running experiences here. Life in South Africa is volatile, and we sometimes run the streets away from-, or in pursuit of- burglars and criminals.
As we finally found a house and an approved mortgage, we toasted in our garden and chatted excitingly about the prospect of becoming home owners. A tall order to me as I usually avoid the tiresome ideal of ownership of anything, and believe that it is at least partially a nonsensical human endeavor.
At that moment a window shattered and peeping over the wall, I saw a possible criminal exiting the neighbor's house. I grabbed my phone and called the police, and as I hastily ran after the fleeing criminal he yelled: "I will shoot you". He pretended to fiddle in his pockets as we ran down the street but it was clear he had nothing to "shoot" with.
A few streets further the agile fast criminal jumped over an electric fence and onto a roof. Perhaps his adrenaline or tik high carried him over rooftops as he scurried away from police, who were by now in the area.
The second street run came a week later, I was alerted by a sound from our own bedroom window. Carefully looking around the corner, a person was trying to force himself through our window and into our house. I yelled strong words and he ran down the street perhaps not expecting me to follow. This time the alleged intruder stood out like a sore thumb, wearing a brightly colored sweater.
Once again grabbing my phone and alerting the authorities, I ran after the suspected criminal and the man was arrested a kilometer away. I asked him why he wanted to break into my house, he denied knowing anything about it.
As the police pushed him into the back of a police van, a security guard passed by and entered the van. I heard a sound as if the guard was violating the suspect and insisted to the guard to get out of the van and away from the arrested person. I felt sympathy for the criminal.
This is not what tourists want to hear, and not the stories we would like to share. Reality is that we live in a hazardous society. Our country's president is allegedly involved in corrupt activities and police leaders are exposed one by one as criminals.
Can our democracy help improve education and work prospects desperately needed to uplift individuals from the lucrative or desperate measures of a criminal lifestyle? Can the honesty and dedication of the average policeman override the corrupt elements in the forces leadership?
Let us hope that we can indeed expose our guests, visitors and friends to real life experiences, without running the streets after criminals.