Goodbye, Ayoba World Cup

Part of the Cape Town fanwalk with Table Mountain in the background

It’s been fun and it’s been (mostly) exciting. And it’s united the country like never before. So for these and other reasons I’m happy we had the Soccer World Cup in South Africa. No analysis of the tournament from me today. I’m sad that the Netherlands didn’t win it. But I’m happy that they came very close and that Robben didn’t dive in the penalty area the way that many many others players would have. Maybe the better team won. At the end of the day, does it really matter?

Of course my attention is massively diverted by my upcoming Sudan trip and so I probably won’t allow myself to post more than a few words before getting back to work. But the reality of this job is that a lot of the time it’s about “hurry up and wait”. There’s nothing pressing that I need to do in the next 30 minutes for example but I know that I will feel guilty about blogging for more than a few minutes. Something to work on I guess, those guilty feelings.

But while I’m here I want to show you a few images* I took from our trip down the fanwalk in Cape Town the other day. I loved the atmosphere and the colour and the flags. I could have done with less annoying vuvuzela blasts close to my ear-drums though. I would find myself whipping around in anxiety at an ear-splitting cry from a distressed hippopotamus to find that the sound was coming from a small 12-year old boy. No doubt he was mighty pleased that he could produce such a powerful sound. My rather uncharitable wish in those circumstances was that whoever bought him the annoying plastic trumpet gets to enjoy the sound of it as much as the rest of us.

More of the fanwalk

In the jungle, the mighty jungle ...

The t-shirt in the bottom picture shows the inside of a lion’s mouth. That’s another thing about this tournament – it really brought out people’s creativity. From a marketing perspective alone, this was phenomenal since the whole country now associates the word “Ayoba!” with the cellphone provider MTN. We don’t actually know whether this is a real word or not but we all know that it has to do with parties, massive excitement and the soccer world cup. Here’s hoping that the next one (in Brazil in 2014) is equally Ayoba.

* Click to enlarge


9 Responses to Goodbye, Ayoba World Cup

  1. Artswebshow says:

    cool pics.
    have fun. lol

  2. natalian says:

    Love that t-shirt! I have enjoyed the amazing vibe that has flowed through South Africa and I am sad that it has come to an end. My eldest son is convinced he will be going to Brazil in 2014!

  3. Thanks for the photos!

  4. doctordi says:

    Great to see your photos, Pete, it looks like fun, although those vuvuzelas would have had me scurrying for the nearest set of ear plugs!! The media reports flowing into Australia from SA are unanimous in their positive opinion of the event – it’s really, really nice to hear SA getting such a huge rap – and right before the Tri-Nations, no less – amazing!!!

  5. Pete says:

    Artswebshow – Thanks.

    Natalian – Yes, it’s been an amazing vibe and I hope it hangs around for quite a while yet. I can imagine that as a mom you wouldn’t be so keen on your eldest jetting off to Brazil in 2014 but then I’m sure they’ll put on a great show as well. Funny how I associate Brazil with crime when most foreigners think the same of SA!

    Lilian – Thanks. I’m really glad I have some photos to remember the World Cup.

    Di – Yes, always good when South Africa gets a positive rap in the world press. Someone made the point that if we can get the World Cup right, then there are no more excuses for poor service delivery. As for the rugby, I think I’m all sported out for a while. NZ (or the Aussies) can win this one. I really don’t mind.

  6. blogbehave says:

    Thanks for the pictures. I haven’t watched much coverage so it’s fun to see your perspective.

  7. seachanges says:

    It’s nice to see these pictures from ‘an insider’ and I’m glad you managed to catch a tip of the Dutch flag and orange t-shirts in your last picture! It seems such a long time ago already. Good luck with your immminent departure for the Sudan and wishing you well! You’re right: ignore the guilty feelings, no one will appreciate them!

  8. Eric Smith says:

    How do I get one of those open mouth lion t-shirts. that is the coolest thing I´ve ever seen. Can you buy them anywhere?

  9. I WANT THAT T-SHIRT!! says:

    Please tell me where to buy that open lions mouth I searched everywhere I can’t find any
    PLESE e-mail me if u know where to buy
    Thnx (my e-mail:

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