Johan Witbooi

Main rd., Saldanha, South Africa

2010 / 07 / 13 20:04

‘I was doing a tiling job and there where I was working I saw this guy had this bike there. They’d bought another bike so I told the guy that I need transport to get to my jobs every day because it’s up and down and a bit out of the way where I live, so I offered him R500 and he gave in and sold it to me. That was five months ago. It rides very, very nicely. It’s a very dependable bicycle. It’s changed my life since I got it - I get to my jobs and I get better jobs now, and it keeps me fit. I’m into sport, soccer and stuff. I ride to Blouwaterbaai every day - I’m not sure how far it is - then I ride to the back there, to the Diasville location, and I live here close in the first location, White City. I have friends that live in Diasville so I go over the hill every day. I ride a long distance every day. Before this bike I had a Peugeot Bomber bike. I’m busy getting it ready for the winter because you can’t ride on this bike in the winter with the thin tires, because of the mud and the wet roads. But cycling is a very nice sport, I really enjoy it. I’ll give up anything for cycling. But I’m always alone when I ride. Most people walk around here. Most people don’t have bicycles. There are lots of people asking around for bicycles, lots. I’m a Rastafarian. The life we live here... see, we deal a lot with poverty in our community - people need money, and help sometimes. We control the fruit stalls, so when people come and they can’t afford anything we let them pay at the end of the month or so. And we’re fighting against the guys who sell marijuana - it’s not part of what we do as Rastafarians. You don’t need to smoke it every day, it’s just a hype. We’re a small group here that checks that things don’t get out of proportion. Those kids that are selling on the street corners - we’re there to tell them to stop putting Rastafarians lives in danger... we’re the ones who get searched by the police unnecessarily. We don’t like that.They must get of the street, it doesn’t look good. But the police know me. They don’t stop and search me - they know I don’t ride around with stuff on me...’

Stan Engelbrecht

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