It would be hard to find two more contrasting venues: the Black Impala nightclub in Port Elizabeth and the Rondebosch United Church in the suburbs of Cape Town.
The Black Impala throbs with life. Its Facebook page gives something of an impression of the place.
Outside the smartest cars fight for space. Inside the music hits you in the chest.
The women wear very little. Their eyes roam the room.
Men – some with expanding bellies – are there to be found. Some come to dance. Others to eat. Still others are ‘blessers‘. It’s not hard to see what they are after.
The meat is delicious – but its almost the only food to be had.
This is life in the raw. Fast and furious; lived to the full.
In Rondebosch – just down the hill from the University of Cape Town – its another world.
Sixty or seventy are gathered together to hear a discussion. Most are white men, but there are a scattering of people of other ethnic groups.
The topic? Can a white, male South African enter the kingdom of heaven.
It takes the most painful discussion over more than two hours before the conclusion is finally arrived at: well, perhaps. This is mainly a dissection of the past – of old wrongs, and present errors.
It is as sorrowful and introspective as the Black Impala is exuberant and extrovert.
Old South Africa failing to encounter the new? Perhaps.