Patrick is a smitten husband, as well as a caring father. He works as a foreman at the Secunda oil refinery. The South Africa of that era faces condemnation from the rest of the world for its apartheid system, and Secunda symbolises the country's self sufficiency. In his spare time, Patrick coaches a boys' soccer team. Resolutely apolitical, he toes the strict line imposed on blacks by apartheid with care.