Where are you from?
Where are you from? I hate that question. I am from many places is what I want to answer. Or, I don’t really know how to answer that question because I lived all over. Why do you want to know? Ami, it’s not that deep. If I pick one place, I’ll be lying to you. If I tell you I’m from Texas, I feel like I am not being 100% honest with you. If I say I am German, well now it feels a bit closer to the truth because I am German. But what about my other half. The African half. The Senegalese half. I must mention that too because I was born there, and spend seven years there. OK so now I am German and Senegalese. That’s not too bad right. And then here comes the question: where is that? You from where? OK no big deal just answer. It’s in West Africa. You know Akon? Yea he is from there. But you don’t have an accent when you speak English. Yes, it’s because I lived in Texas for 12 years. Oh, wow you’re just from all over the place, aren’t you?! Yes I am. I don’t know why I don’t want to go over this with everyone I meet. So, I cheat myself and just pick one location. Now that I live in Italy I oftentimes just say Texas. Although I am not proud to represent the United States right now with Trump being in office. So why does this matter? Who cares? Well. Maybe no one. But maybe someone can relate. We live in a world where an increasing number of people probably share the same story as me. Is the number really increasing? I just assume it is. Why? Because I am married to an Italian-Rwandan man. And my daughter is therefore 25% German, 25% Italian, 25% Senegalese, and 25% Rwandan. Damn. What will she say when people ask her where she is from? Maybe you are from the place to which you feel most connected to. Or maybe you are from the place you spend the most of your time. Or maybe you are from the place whose culture you identify with. What if you are a mash up? I spend the longest in Texas, but I love Thiebou djen, and sauerkraut mit Kartoffel puree. I listen to all types of music. I speak German and French. I understand a little Wolof. But I am Serer. Which country or people do I identify with? A little bit of everyone and everywhere. So, where am I from? I don’t know. I’m from all over. I am a global citizen. I am a human being. I am black, I am white, I am American, I am German, I am Senegalese, I am a Muslim, I am a Christian, I am a woman. Where are you from?