Speed Dating, Namibian Style

One evening I visited a popular bar located about two blocks from Chameleon Backpackers. It’s a cool place called the Warehouse, and it features live music and cheap beer.

On a Friday night, I visited the establishment, and when entering, I noticed a poster advertising a “Speed Dating” night the following night. I’ve never been to a speed dating event before, but thought that it would be fun to go and meet locals in a unique environment.

The next night I showed up, paid my admittance fee and proceeded to have a fun and interesting evening.

The event was set up so that twenty women sat at twenty small cocktail tables. The men moved from one station to another at the sound of a whistle when three minutes was up. While there was a list of recommended questions for the shyer folks of the group, I was able to hold my own in getting to know these twenty women.

To be fair, I made it clear to each woman that I was an American passing through on holiday, but I still had some very nice (but brief) conversations with a number of them.

It turned out that there was a huge shortage of men, and the event was delayed while the women present were encouraged to call male friends of theirs to persuade them to come to the shindig. The event started about an hour-and-a-half late, but we were able to get a quorum of men and then the event commenced.

Problem was, there were forty women signed up, so we ended having the men do two rounds. The event ended about three hours later than planned, but I had a wonderful time and met some very nice women.

There was also a reporter for The Namibian, the nation’s premier newspaper who attended the event. She writes for the weekend section and had a number of interesting observations about the event, her first experience of something like this. I had a chance to get to know her a little better (beyond the three minute time limit) after the event, as she is friends with some of the people I hit it off with.

Her column came out about a week after the event, but wouldn’t you know it, yours truly got a mention:




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