Khayelitsha – Stellenbosch 1-0

Him: ‘So you’ve made your choice.’

Me: ‘Sorry?’

Him: ‘I asked you, you’ve made your choice?’

The aggressive look in his face didn’t encourage a positive answer from my side.

Me: ‘Yes, I’ve made my choice and I don’t think you’re very polite.’

Him: ‘I don’t agree with your choice.’

My friend: ‘Come on let’s go, the waiter told us we needed to have an attitude when we wanted to go out here.’

Me: ‘I can punch him in the face.’

My friend: ‘That’s exactly what they want.’

Him was a young Afrikaner guy, totally intoxicated, not even steady on his feet anymore – and I doubted whether he was over twenty. My friend is a Xhosa man. We were just hanging out, enjoyed a game of pool and a beer together. A second game of pool hadn’t been so successful either, as another Afrikaner wanted so desperately to beat my friend at the game and kept on asking me: ‘What should I do, beat him?’

Stellenbosch is a beautiful place – and I really love living here, but also one of the most conservative places on the Western Cape and ‘intellectual’ birthplace of apartheid. The legacy clearly hasn’t left the town, and although you find black students now at the University, a friend of my Xhosa friend stated to me: ‘I just mind my own business.’

Interestingly enough the following day we went to a club in Khayelitsha. Although I don’t like to colour code, just to get the picture, one Afrikaner white guy, one coloured man, one Dutch white girl and two Xhosa black man. People were surprised perhaps as they stared at first, but that probably had to do more that among us was a very confident gay couple, dancing their butts off, and joined in by a guy that worked there. Giving quite a good dancing show between the three of them. I didn’t feel uncomfortable or unwelcome for one moment and we all enjoyed our time. Walking through the neighbourhood I’ve had similar experiences. People really would like to make a chat and I get kissed goodbye spontaneously.

There’s probably 40 kilometers between these two places, but unfortunately in some minds they are still worlds apart, but in the meantime though, we’ll just party on, preferably in Khayelitsha.

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