Pearl Thusi married? Yes, to NYC, Uber and Airbnb
Pearl Thusi. (Photo: Jurgen Marx)
Johannesburg - Jet-setting TV star Pearl Thusi is ready to be umakoti.
"For the man I love, yes. He’s worth it, as long as we understand each other," she told City Press this week.
For the past seven months, Thusi has been playing the role of Dayana Mampasi on the US hit TV series, Quantico. She lives abroad.
In October last year, Thusi revealed how sports anchor Robert Marawa had proposed to her, but since then has remained mum on the subject.
However, in an email interview this week, Thusi described her love life in two words: "It’s fantastic!"
Asked whether wedding bells would soon ring, she refused to comment. Instead, Thusi opted to speak about life in New York.
"It has not been easy learning to be part of a new community," she said.
"I have new-found respect for anyone who takes the plunge and emigrates, or chooses to be a working foreigner in any country."
Missing South Africa
She said she missed everything about South Africa: her family, home, the weather, the food and music.
Her first week in New York was "tough" and she spent a few nights in a tiny hotel room.
Later, she moved into an Airbnb rental apartment and met "someone who I know will be a lifetime friend".
"I then signed a lease on another Airbnb and have been there ever since. With Airbnb and Uber, my life abroad has been a pleasure," she said.
"I was so set in my ways and in my understanding of how the South African system worked that when I got here I had to start from ground zero.
"I hated that at first, but then, as soon as my mind-set switched a few days later, my experience of the country changed too."
Still, she maintains, the transition was hard.
"I did not have much time to prepare [for the role], so I had lots of little problems.
"I did not want anyone to know, because the last thing one ever needs is to be premature about announcements," she said.
"Once I got here, I had to find all the things I must have taken for granted at home – a place to live, a foundation and a bank account.
"I am renting for the first time in a long time. I even have a social security number now."
You adapt fast
Living in a foreign country has been more than an eye-opener for Thusi; she has had to adapt fast.
"I have been learning to be alone and figuring out who I am without my daughter, partner, family, friends, dogs and my environment. You realise how much of what surrounds you influences how you define yourself.
"I am embracing the experience. It is sometimes sad but often exciting."
Asked whether she was expecting her loved ones to join her in the US, she said time would tell.
"The business I’m in fluctuates in every way, so I am making no bets on that until the time and planning have been pieced together."
So, is she living her dream?
"I would hate to live my dream so soon. I am taking steps towards it and catching glimpses. Living my dream now would leave me with nothing to still dream of, and that would be a shame," she said.
"My mentor, Basetsana Kumalo, always reminds me to never think I have arrived. The journey is still long and I still have a while before I am where I’ve always wanted to be."