I’ve landed, but where am I? In German, to arrive, “ankommen,” is understood to be a longer process, one that could take days or weeks.
As diplomat kids, missionary kids, corporate kids or whatever else living abroad, we were expected to represent the United States on our teenage shoulders with everything that we did. To others, we were America. To us, we were American by passport, having grown up abroad.
Foreigner! I am in Shanghai, 12-years-old, the only white person on a Chinese basketball team, the subject of hilarity as I run the wrong way on the court, having misunderstood the instructions, related in speedy Shanghainese. Bun dan! the coach shouts at me, and my teammates giggle shrilly.
This culture? That culture? A fun Denizen infographic.
In my fourth sublet in Berlin in the past eight months, I am growing accustomed to another person’s things around me, to her life quietly insinuating itself into my own.
Accompanies “The white lies TCKs tell”