Funeral Processions -The does and dont's

Thursday, 11 August 2011

When in a funeral procession ensure that you do not do anything illegal while driving, such as drinking beer. Do not think that the police officers guiding you will let you get away with such behavior."

Unfortunately, most of us would not be surprised. Funeral etiquette has almost expired in this anything-goes age. And riding in a cortege is far too often a frightening experience as the bereaved must contend with impatient, ill-mannered road hogs set on getting where they’re going quickly _ even if it kills them.

"The basic rule of thumb is just respect," says Cheetah Lubbe, director of South African Long Distance Funeral Transport company  a website offering long distance funereal transport "One should never, ever, cut into the middle of a funeral procession."

As for those in the cortege, Cheetah says the big rule is to follow the leader. "A (funeral home) staff member will drive the lead car with close family members and will be responsible for leading the procession through traffic lights," he says.

Here are some practical tips:

All passengers should wear seat belts.

You should follow the vehicle in front of you "as closely as is practicable and safe."

No speeding. Don’t drive faster than 55 miles per hour on a highway with a posted speed limit of 55 or greater; drive 5 miles per hour below the posted speed on other roadways.

Turn your headlights on. The first and last vehicles in a procession should turn on their hazard lights.

When the lead car enters an intersection, the cars behind it should follow through the intersection "as long as it is safe to do so, even if the traffic light turns red." Funeral processions have the right-of-way in intersections unless an emergency vehicle approaches with lights or siren activated, or a law enforcement official directs the cortege to give up the right of way.

For drivers who encounter a funeral procession, the National Funeral Directors Association advice boils down to four simple words: Stay out of it.

Unfortunately, many motorists need to have it spelled out for them:

Do not drive between vehicles in a funeral procession unless instructed to by law enforcement personnel.

Do not join a funeral procession to secure the right of way.

Do not pass a funeral procession on the cortege’s right side unless the line of vehicles is in the farthest left lane.

Do not enter an intersection, even if you have a green light, if a funeral procession is proceeding through a red light signal.

Swailand, Its People and Culture

Monday, 1 August 2011

Location and Geography. Swaziland, in southern Africa between Mozambique and South Africa, is a landlocked country of 6,074 square miles (17,360 square kilometers). The terrain is mostly mountainous with moderately sloping plains. The legislative capital is Lobamba, one of the traditional royal seats. The administrative capital is the nearby city of Mbabane. Manzini is the business hub.
Marriage, Family, and Kinship

Marriage. Marriage is defined as the union of two families. Polygynous marriages were once common, but the spread of Christianity and economic considerations have made them much less common today. The production of children is seen as an essential part of the marriage contract. Marriage between members of the same clan is forbidden; this practice extends and maintains social ties. Subclans occasionally are created to facilitate marriage between members of the same clan. Divorce has increased as a result of urbanization. Since traditional marriage is governed by uncodified law and custom, women's rights are interpreted differently by different parties. Under civil law, a man is technically restricted to a single wife.

Domestic Unit. In rural areas, patrilocal residence traditionally was the norm, and a homestead would include the headman, his wives, unmarried siblings, and married sons with their wives and children. With the exception of minor children, all females within the homestead are considered "outsiders." Nuclear family residence is the norm in towns.

Inheritance. Only males can inherit. The heir usually is not appointed until the father's death. In traditional polygynous households, the main heir is rarely the oldest son. The rank of the mother, not the order of marriage, plays an important role in the selection of the main heir.

Kin Groups. The clan is the major kin group. Every Swazi bears the clan name of the father, which also serves as a surname. Women retain membership in their paternal clan, though it is common for wives to use the husband's clan name as a surname. Each clan contains a number of lineages.

Death and the Afterlife
. Swazi believe that the spirit of a person has a distinct existence. One's social place is demonstrated through the elaborateness of funeral rituals. A head of household is buried at the sibaya ; his widow shaves her head and undertakes a long period of mourning.