March 2013 Archives

March 2013 Archives

The Time of My Life




"Home is where we bury our dead," she uttered, "and by the looks of things, you've been tracking cemetery dirt around for some time now."


When I consider the lives of my friends who were born in this country, I often think about how lucky they are to have spent so much time in one place. I envy them for being able to effortlessly drive past the old schools and homes they grew up in, walk through the fields, parks, and ravines in which they played as children, or revisit the mundane landmarks that are made special by enduring remembrances of young love. Do not misunderstand me - it is not that I do not consider Canada to be my home, or that I do not value the insights gained from having lived in other parts of the world, but I think that things would be much simpler had I been born a good ol' Canuck.  It would save me, for instance, from having to explain to incredulous interlocutors why a good number of South Africans are not African African, or that not all of us are Dutch and British, or from insisting that among South Africa's thirteen official languages, Spanish is not counted.  But more than that, however, I enjoy the thought of sharing a common and uninterrupted history with members of a community, of being stationary long enough to gather moss. Like other immigrants living in Canada, I have assimilated into this wonderful and inclusive culture, but fear that I might forever remain an outsider looking in.


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