They say that all black people look the same, I just proved today that that’s how we feel about white people too. I just went to give information to the wrong person, I am sure there will be a little bit of a bitch fest about me not being able to distinguish people (or remember the names of) in the office. Welcome to my world that’s all I can say.
There are a handful of black folk in my office but from the little I know of them, well put it this way, whereas I ticked “Black African” on the equality section of my application, they probably ticked “Black British”. I am very proud of my heritage and I am proud that for 6 years I called Ghana my home (even when folks gave me reason not to). I certainly don’t see myself settling back here for too long (simple reason, it’s too cold), I am not your quintessential black British rose and I stick out like a sore thumb.
I remember after being caught doing an illegal U-turn on the Tema motorway, I was berated by a police man “ignorance is no excuse to break the law, if you saw that other cars were driving off a bridge would you follow them”. He was right and I didn’t argue (for once) because ignorance is just no excuse, especially from people who I would expect should know better. My colleagues, as nice as she puts things, has managed to insult me and my people in every way shape and form, They probably haven’t met anyone like me, and I don’t mind educating you, but please don’t make assumptions and look at me to verify them, it’s really not a good look. Here are some examples:
- On the subject of respect, I explained that Ghanaians are naturally respectful people, so my manager says, “so you were given respect without having to earn it” – no, I was given respect and gave respect because it is give and take not one person’s God given right.
- I was asked if we played Rugby in Ghana, I said we are a footballing Nation, the response, I guess you can even play football anywhere, Rugby means playing in a field – no we don’t play Rugby because getting your head bashed in while chasing a ball just doesn’t do it for us
- Further on the subject of Football, the comment was passed that “even a third division Premiership player would be a millionaire in Ghana” – Now where do I start. Firstly, we have millionaires from all walks of life, secondly, when was the last time England moved passed the first round in a World Cup??? As much as I support the England team in the world cup, 1966 was in the last century. I am just saying.
- After asking me where I am from originally, people keep telling me that they know someone in Kenya, South Africa and have friends from the West Indies – Thanks for the information, I don’t know what to say about that. However if you want to know about Ghana, it’s in West Africa, not East Africa or the West Indies.
- I have been asked if I speak French – It’s a former British Colony, I think that answers that question
- I had mentioned that I had a house out there, is it big I asked, does it have a yard? – No, it is on a tree, like seriously, I think my little 2 bedroom is probably larger in space than your three up two down.
- Do I eat Jamaican curry I have been asked, I guess every black person must eat Jamaican curry? – Well I have though
- Do you eat spicy food – now I do, but I cannot speak for the population of my people, I think the Irish man across the road from me likes spicy food as well, does too, does that make him an African?
They are nice enough people, but it’s hard work and better to stay quiet, because it appears little old me is representing a whole nation.
3y3 As3m oo….
3y3 asem indeed. I haven’t stopped laughing at your experiences. Am not laughing at you. Am laughing because I’ve been through it and continue to go through it and wonder why people think the way they do. I’ve come to a point where I don’t explain anymore but tell them to Google. Am loving your blog so keep it coming.