Taste, or, My Shoe

First bath since I got back, back in a hotel room, sunset across chilly Oxfordshire through window, after first walk through countryside. (Am I a writer? Yes. Do I need to prove nothin’? Naw.)

Culture shock Sunday hit me hard. Gorgeous drive through more English countryside. Lovely dogs. Well dressed, well spoken folk. No one is sweaty so we all seem more…civilised. What does that even mean? Our belief structures and cultural training – our meaning-making – all of it is loaded. I hear and see the things which reinforce what I want to believe. I think.

What is it like to be the only person of colour in a room? Ah, yes, that’s it. Does everything have to involve skin or gender politics? I find it depends on who you’re with. I could do more to protect, no, fortify myself. How does one do this without becoming defensive or inaccessible? Fighty, fighty, fighty.

Today I’m grateful for early mornings. An empty table seat on a train. My hands. The increase in awareness and care around mental health. Apps and smart phones which connect me to the world and help me with structure and morale when I don’t have access to Real Live People. People who care, who make, who persist with beauty and delight. Delight. The seasons. My beautiful wool scarf.

Where do I want to be? Why? Does it matter?

2 thoughts on “Taste, or, My Shoe

  1. This piece aside from being beautifully written (yes of course you are a writer and a dam fine one) so deeply resonates with me personally and professionally. I have been struggling of late (more so than usual or for quite a period of time) with the very same thing – the little matter of skin colour, of how other people identify with me or identify me in order to have some excuse to engage with me. I think am I being too hardy with them and myself? At the same time being proud of being British East Asian and all that that entails but at the same time I’d really rather not have to carry that label about my neck.

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