Nomagungqu. (A mouthful of Glori)

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“Gungqu” is a xhosa word for round sweet. When we were younger and visiting my mothers village, amagungqu amnyama (more commonly known as nigger balls) were one of our favourite treats.

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I was given the nickname “Nomagungqu” because of the way my cheeks pop when I smile. (And because I’m a sweet thing 😉 I, Nomagungqu am a growing brand based on a smile and all the nice things behind it.

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You know that smile that makes your eyes wrinkle, light up and sometimes water all at the same time?
That warm, fullfilling feeling somewhere between your belly and your chest. You get it from the good stuff in your life. Teaching a child how to make something from scratch. Making your deadline with an impressive product to show for it. Having a good night with your family. Being awarded for a job well done. Getting a new recipe right the first time around. Figuring out how to overcome something that’s been challenging you.

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Being happy isn’t just about money. Its not just about your relationships and your background. The imperative is NOW. The messages you emulate. Beyond just the company you keep. Music.

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Its about loving yourself and making sure that regardless what your circumstances are, your life is fullfilling. More than satisfactory. Food. Conversations. Fashion. Comfort and progress. Sometimes it’s about calling someone out or being “selfish” to preserve your “gungqu feeling”. Those moments when you have to say Niks mapha nge gungqu lam (you can’t have my gungqu)

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Taken by Liam Lynch

Group growth. Sharing. All this and more are what I consider (really) nice things. Things that give hearts smiles. A lifestyle that promotes connection and ubuntu.

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Nomagungqu is a brand about a smile and all the nice things behind it.

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Hate < Celebrate

SA Mzansi Ballet recently produced a wonderful rendition of Don Quixote; A love story based in Barcelona.
The show was held at The Johannesburg Theatre and a good friend of mine, Keke Chele,was part of the production.

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Something that stood out for me was the young dancers that performed during interval. Harvard University had used SA Mzansi Ballet as a case study and one of the suggestions given was this, a platform for young up and coming performers to present in a professional set-up. They get a taste of the backstage energy and take one more step towards realising their dreams and SA Mzansi Ballet gets to further tribute to the development of young potential legends.

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Now, id like to be completely honest with you.  Ive been struggling with this post because initially my approach was so negative.
My opening paragraph was on the racial statistics in ballet and how out of place I felt when I took a moment to absorb my surroundings. I even went as far as referencing a report by The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education http://www.jbhe.com/news_views/58_cultural_divide.html

Before I continue, im well aware that this is an American study but I was on fire and I wasn’t sure who to call out first. To say we cannot afford to be at the theatre once or twice a month is absolute hogwash as I know most of my peers (all around the world) are out thursday to Sunday partaking in all sorts of yolo activity. Why don’t we attend these sort of events? Almost immediately my response to my own question was “live and let live! Not everyone WANTS to go to the theatre to watch Ballet of all things.”  I think my concerns are from a place that wants everyone to have a fair shot at life and happiness. you know, true fulfillment. Will we be able to be parents that teach their children that they can be anything they want to be? Will we remember to expose them to ALL the possibilities. I think most of us realise way too “late” in our lives that the trick is to focus on a combination of what you are good at and what you love. As parents,guardians, brothers and sisters, I think it is really important that we keep reminding ourselves and those around us that the possibilities for success are endless. Part of this is challenging our perspective. Trying to avoid dwelling on the negatives of the reality but rather appreciating. Let’s broadcast the nice things too. Anyway that’s my 2 cents worth. I look forward to finding more nice things to write about.

Nomagungqu