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As we headed outside of Windhoek, we saw what real life was like for some Namibians.  Some looked pretty normal for us.

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Normal things were going on.

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And then the further we got from downtown Windhoek, the more we saw the lingering effects of colonization (from the Germans) and apartheid (from the South Africans).  It’s a reminder that Namibia has only been independent for 25 years and even though it has made great strides, there is still much to do.

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Poverty is a real issue here.

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The buildings in the picture above are images of people’s homes and some shops.  Yes, people live in these structures.  With no running water or electricity and dirt floors.  That is a part of the reality of Namibia.  It’s a sobering sight.

But the really fascinating thing about these images is what is not in the picture – trash.  Even though people are poor, they aren’t trashy.  That’s a lesson for any of us to learn.  The poor aren’t treated as trash here.  And they don’t see themselves as trash either.  I don’t have any evidence or data to support this statement but here goes – I think the level of trash that lies around the streets, especially in poor areas (regardless of what country) is an indication of how the people in that community are viewed and see themselves.