One of the challenges of living in a reasonably sized place like Cape Town, is trying to avoid being infected by the village mentality that seems so prevalent. By “village mentality”, I am referring to the general tendency to stay within the confines of a particular community and only venture out when you absolutely have to.
Most people do get the urge to spread their wings after they leave school and they’ll typically head off somewhere new and exotic to study / work / travel / spend time in prison, or combinations of the above*. However, the excitement wears a bit thin after a while and eventually, a large proportion will reach a stage where they want to settle down. At this point, some sort of bizarre programming kicks in and one by one, they start drifting back to the old neighbourhood until it bears an eerie time-shifted resemblance to the way it used to be twenty years ago.
Maybe this is the human equivalent of salmon swimming upstream to spawn and die. It certainly goes some way towards explaining the common lament by singles about how difficult it is to meet new people in a city of millions. It may also explain why – in some areas** – each successive generation seems to be just a little bit thicker than the previous one. Urban hillbillies in the making.
* yes, I am speaking from experience
** the southern suburbs being a prime example