This reminds me totally of Hawaii
We landed in San Juan, Puerto Rico and were ready for our tour. We had left K on the ship while we were going to head out to do some ATV riding through the rainforest and protected natural habitat. I was really looking forward to it until I got on the bus and had the “pleasure” of sitting next to a 50something couple who proceeded to have a dialogue, out (very) loud about the “similarities” between Puerto Rico and Hawaii.
While I get it, both are tropical and both are an island—but um, really? Neither of these people could remember if Hawaii was a state or a territory. They were so surprised that they didn’t need their passport or go through some sort of immigration process when getting off the ship.
This is the trail of the conversation that put me over the edge. “This totally reminds me of Hawaii. Well, minus the signs not being in English, and why is that, I mean, c’mon. And they all have some pretty heavy accents. And well, it’s really hot, just like Hawaii, don’t ya think?” I had to tune it out at that point. No, really, I had to.
Your Family Looks A Lot like ours
There were several transracial families on the ship. clearly, when there are white parents, white siblings and/or brown siblings—I like to ask. I never assume, but I like to ask. K and a little brown boy (about 2 years old) were playing in one of the pools and his mom came over to ask home something. I mentioned, “Your family looks a lot like ours does.” She smiled and asked where K was born. Once I told her, she said something to the effect of, “we may look like your family, but our son was born domestically.” She grabbed her sons hand and didn’t let him play with K for the remainder of the cruise.
That bummed me out.
Glass Bottom Boat
Trying to explain to K about what a school of fish was—yeah, mommy, I see the school and that big fish right there—that’s the teacher.
Walking back from dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe, K and I saw the home where Lincoln died. I used it as a teaching moment to talk about how all brown people were originally born in Africa, but that mean people brought them here and treated them mean and…well you know where this conversation is going…
Homeless Man: Hey lil man! Your ole lady teachin’ you about slavery?
K: My name is K. Nice to meet you (shakes hand).
HM: (looking at me) He from Ethiopia?
Me: Yes. He was born there!
HM: I can tell. Them Ethiopians got THAT look.
K: I don’t have a Daddy!
HM: (Looking at me) Well that is a shame! How about we make a deal!?
Me: Thanks, but um…
K: Hey Mommy, he’s brown like me!
HM: Yeeaaahhhhh Mami! I’m brown like him. I can tell you down with the brown guuuurrrrlllll!
Me: (Shaking my head) Have a good night!