Usually the most overwhelming thing about driving past and around Oakmoor Long Distance Taxi rank in Tembisa, on the East Rand, is the lingering stench that comes from discarded innards, as well as the volume of traffic.
At least that's the Oakmoor that I know but not the one I found last Wednesday.
Part of the texture of that taxi rank is the sight of Toyota Ventures that snake across the road, making it impossible to drive past. On that day, I found them eerily well behaved.
As I drove down the road, whose name I do not know because the signs have long been taken down, I understood why.
A week-and-a-half ago, that street had been a traders' haven, with shoppers bustling in and out of different shops. A sight completely different to what I would find that day. Buildings stood as mere remainders, half burnt, half smashed but nothing like what they had been before.
The streets were quiet and awkward. I understood, with much sadness, that nothing ever goes back to normal after the kind of violence that engulfed the country in the last two weeks.
It is a different thing to experience the aftermath of these "xenophobic" attacks physically, to physically sit in the collective emotional turmoil of the community.