Quite often I find myself nodding my head as I read a post but I seldom feel a connection to what the writer is expressing. Today however I found my way to a lovely blog written by a lovely man ( think) via a comment on a friends... well you get the picture.
This is the post and if you look on the right under the fabilicious section you'll find his link. Give it a read and let me know what you think. Both locals and foreigners alike.
I think that the reason it resonates so deeply with me is because I too am now straddling 2 identities, that of being South African and now a mother to British (Welsh) born children and wife to a Northerner. Also, I live in an area of Britain where there are very few people who weren't born or raised here which makes me stand out a fair amount.
Mostly I don't care - being different is nothing new to me. I grew up during the apartheid era, but went to a multi racial school. I was an advocate for change, as was my father. At the time people were wary of this kind of white rebelling, so being different comes naturally. Sadly though, being South African means that the 'different' that people assume is one entrenched in South Africa's dark past. I am a white South African, of an age where I would have benefited from the practices of the apartheid government (whether I advocated their rule or not) and because of this association some people assume that I should continue to pay for the sins of the past. Some are racist themselves and therefore assume that offensive jokes of this nature would be perfectly acceptable in my company (they're not) Worse are those South Africans who can't accept that change is uncomfortable and that I believe that there has to be some back lash against white people before true equality can emerge.
I guess this is something common amongst foreigners, which in itself is a comfort.