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Digital Subscriptions > Travel Africa > July-September 2019 (87) > MY BOTSWANA


Who are Batswana? What makes them tick?

There’s a myth in the village where I live that my husband, a boxer who was in the first group of Batswana to attend the Olympics, won me in a boxing match and that’s how I came to be in Botswana. The real story about how we met is unfortunately far more pedestrian — we met at a party in Mahalapye, where I still live.

Nevertheless, our meeting, our marriage, my life here, is all a bit mythical I think sometimes. I was a girl from a working class family in the United States. I never could have imagined the life I have here in this country of my heart. It occurred to me just now that I’m writing this only a few days before the thirtieth anniversary of me, a young woman who’d never travelled anywhere, setting foot on the soil of a country that would change me forever. July 14, 1989 was the day. Now, three decades later, I’m a Motswana, a citizen of Botswana, a country that I was sure would be just a stopping point on my journey, but is now the only place in the world that I call home.

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