Tarryn Harbour's Tribute
When I graduated from the University of Pretoria last year, Mandela was there. It was his grandson’s graduation as well. No-one knew he was coming; his arrival was very quiet and unassuming. We were waiting in the auditorium, everyone talking and laughing, when suddenly someone whispered, “Why is Nelson Mandela at our graduation?” I turned to look and there he was, shuffling down the aisle with his usual smile. He and his small party, there were just four of them, settled into the front row. One girl, when her name was called, walked forward past the podium to edge of the stage where she smiled at Mandela, clasped her hands together and said, “Thank you.” The rest of the audience, slightly surprised, started clapping. I think many of us graduates secretly wished we could do the same thing. It was a very special occasion.
Added 1 decade ago