'This won't change me': no rock-star life for Miss SA
Tamaryn Green vows to live by her parents' advice and not get caught up in the industry
“Remember who you are.” This was the note Tamaryn Green wrote to herself the night before she was crowned Miss South Africa 2018.
The 23-year-old final-year medical student from Paarl in the Western Cape walked away with the coveted title on Sunday, beating 11 other beauties to the crown and the almost R3-million prize package.
The morning after her crowning moment, Green’s suite at The Maslow Hotel at Time Square, Pretoria, is a celebratory scene with rose petals scattered on her bed. As the newly crowned Miss SA, there was no wild rock-star party in her suite; instead, coffee and tea were the drink of choice as she spent much-needed time with her family before making a brief appearance at the after-party.
Still reeling with excitement and adrenaline, she admits she had a “gut feeling” that she’d win, and was prepared.
“I wrote a note to myself in case I won. The note said: ‘Remember who you are, remember the people who’ve supported you and remember you love medicine’,” Green said.
This year’s pageant featured not one but two winners. Green, who was crowned Miss SA 2018, is also the Miss Universe South Africa, while 26-year-old Thulisa Keyi was crowned Miss World South Africa. Both will represent the country in the respective international competitions later this year.An emotional Green said that she was “quite anxious” about her new role. To keep herself grounded, she has vowed to carry a memento from family and friends wherever she goes.
“My family and friends gave me a book with messages and pictures in it. I read through it just before I went on stage. I’m going to carry that around with me just to remember who the people were that helped me get to where I am, where I am from, and to remain grounded,” she said.
Her prize includes a R1-million cash injection from Cell C and Sun International as well as a fully furnished and serviced upmarket Johannesburg flat for the year of reign, a Nissan Qashqai worth R445,500 and the use of designer garments for her red-carpet looks.
She wants to focus on child health during her reign.
“I don’t have a clear idea of what my campaign is going to be, but I really want to focus on child health because that’s what I’m passionate about. What I’ve realised, studying medicine, is that child trauma is very prevalent in South Africa. I want to bring women empowerment into that and educate parents on simple things like how to prevent child injuries within the household,” Green said.
But before the business started, she had to focus on media interviews and bidding farewell to Cape Town and her family. Describing the move to Johannesburg as “overwhelming”, Green said she was optimistic she would grow to love her new city and enjoy the opportunity to explore other parts of South Africa.Her sister Lauren took to Instagram to congratulate her beauty-queen sister.
“What a fantastic evening we had last night. Witnessing the crowning of My sister, Miss South Africa 2018! I am extremely proud of this young woman I call my sister, a true inspiration to all. This morning the tears hit me extremely hard, knowing that you've achieved one of your biggest dreams but also knowing I might see you a little less now also. However I'm with you in spirit and love everyday,” posted Lauren.
Her family aren’t the only people who saw the beauty queen in Tamaryn. Former Miss SA and international title holders Rolene Strauss and Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters had encouraging words for Green after her crowning.
“Rolene said she was so proud of me and she said: ‘Well deserved’, and wished me all of the best for the future. Demi said: ‘The crown is going to be heavy; just hang in there for the rest of the night.’ She also congratulated me and wished me all of the best,” Green said.
She will return to Paarl for her homecoming next month. Until then, she’ll hold onto the book from her loved ones and the advice from her parents.
“My parents just told me to always remain humble and not let the industry change me. They reminded me that I won because of who I am and that I shouldn’t change,” Green said.