The Right Balance

*This was a profile piece I wrote in my first year Journalism class. 

She sat across me, legs crossed as if we were still sitting in a school hall but yet her eyes showed the eagerness to answer my questions. She loves how diversified the university is and how the town is university-orientated which allows us to be “close-knit”. Her discovery was that university is more academically focused than high school. She noted that the main difference between High school and university was the vast amount of freedom we have now and this freedom forces us to find our own balance. She added that some people have already found their balance yet others are still battling to do so.

She values the people in her life the most as they form an integral part of who she is. She also values the friendships established during o-week and the tight bond she has with her fellow residence members. Her main concern is finding employment after obtaining her degree as she is aware that a degree doesn’t guarantee a job. Her biggest challenge and issue is that she is Black yet she cannot speak IsiXhosa or Zulu which stemmed from her having been adopted by two white parents which society has had an issue with. This uneasiness from society is something she has become accustomed to and has in turn, learnt to embrace.

Her main goal is to achieve happiness without having any regrets. She wants to completely enjoy the university experience and graduate saying, “Wow! I’m really glad I did that.” Comfort is something greatly sought after by her, which is why she is generally in comfortable clothes, eyes whizzing through pages while consuming rusks and a warm cup of tea. Music has also been found to be very therapeutic for her. She is a social person who would much rather meet people for coffee at the Kaif than watch a movie with them so as to maintain that social element to being around people. She has a great interest in growing, enriching herself and gaining a greater perspective of social issues. When asked what she thought the purpose of university was, she said, “The product (a degree) is great but there is so much more to it. It is about challenging yourself and getting to understand people better which is knowledge you will acquire outside lectures.”

Like everyone else, she aspires to be successful and to maintain her DP. The two greatest threats she has identified is the threat we pose to ourselves. Another threat is once again the freedom from parental guidance. The strength of the university is the sense of community one feels when walking around campus or attending lectures. Yet amidst this sense of community, there is a sense of isolation from the rest of the town.

She wishes to change the way we ,as students, perceive each other and therefore tends to make friends with people who are accepting, have sound morals and values, who are protective and wish to encourage one another. The characteristics she wishes to acquire in those around her are the qualities that define her. She is a lady who isn’t necessarily spiritual but who is more morally bound than most religious people.

Conducting this interview was one of the most at ease moments I have had because I felt like I was interviewing myself. We both share similar views on various issues and found it extremely easy to open up to one another.  We barely interrupted one another while speaking but found that we completed each other’s sentences, which is rare for someone whom you haven’t spent more than three hours with. Interviewing her reassured my faith in humanity as I realised that some people are simply naturally good at heart.


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