Growing up, I went to schools where 95% of the population was white. My friend, Tia, in high school was the only black student in our grade. I never really thought about that until I went away to college, and became the Tia in my group of friends.
My first friend at Franciscan was Liesl from Dominica. She was friends with Palesa, also from the same Caribbean island, who became my future roommate. Liesl started dating an awesome guy named Adrian from St. Lucia, who also became my close friend. So it was a close knit group: me and the West Indians.
Then Sophomore year, I asked for a new roommate and was placed with Andie, a twin from the Philippines. Of course, her twin sister Mandie (how cute is that? Andie and Mandie!) became a treasured friend, and then Andie started dating Hideki from Indonesia. So now it was me and the West Indians and the Asians. But that's not all, we also partnered up with a real.live.African princess from Uganda named Joan, but pronounced Joanne. Princesses are picky like that. Finally, another white boy, Tristan, from the Cayman Islands joined our cultural clique and my friend Anne (American!) was given membership into the International Group and there you have it.
Now, hanging out with this group was so so so fun. They made fun of me incessantly for my naive and localized views on the world. They had travelled all over and spoke different languages and knew how to have fun wherever we went. Do you know what it's like going to a club and being the only white girl dancing in the group? A little like this:
For our Four Day break one year, we rented a huge van (ahem, like the one my family owns now...so embarrassing) and drove from Ohio to Massachusetts to stay with my family. I think the phone call home the week before went something like this:
"Umm, Mum, is it okay if I bring some friends home for break?"
"Sure, honey, we'd love to meet your friends! How many are we talking about?"
"Just my close friends, so twelve."
"Uh, okay, we will figure it out. Sounds fun."
"Oh, and can you please tell my not-racist-but-raised-in-Ireland-around-only-white-Irish-people-and-sometimes-can-be-a-little-blunt-Dad that they are all from other countries and different races. Thanks"
(Hang up quick.)
It was an awesome trip, and college experience. I wouldn't have changed a thing.
Fast forward to present day. My kids go to a school in a city where there are nationalities and races from all over. I love it. They are following in their mom's footsteps and becoming the whitest whiteys in their group of friends:
And you know what's great? No matter what race or background or color God made us...
Now off to Cari for more Theme Thursday: Black and White