43 minutes ago
And I felt...nothing. For so long I’d associated the flag with the extraordinary; with famous movie stars and businesspeople who spoke Aaron Sorkinian dialogue through office floors; with award winning novelists and politicians who dotted the international news stations every night; with the logos sprawled across billboards and shoes and phones—made in anonymous countries but created, always, in America.
Yet I ended up traveling much farther past the patriotic suburban homes near the Seattle airport. I moved here, lived here, for two years. I made friends here, laughed here, learned here and cried here. I grew used to the initially charming yet vacuous small talk you make with strangers. I learned that people did not really want to hear how you were doing when they asked you as such. I learned how to tip, to say lift and not elevator, to use food delivery apps like it is my job. I learned how to talk about racism without mentioning the word race. I learned how to say yes to the seemingly endless opportunity around me. I learned that strangers that own guns sometimes want to steal your phone; I learned as a grown woman to once again be scared of the dark. I learned not to correct people when they assume I am from this country—my American accent a sad lament to the roots I forgo, yet, in all honesty, a point of pride. I learned to sit back and soak in the feeling of finally, at last, belonging.
To be continued...(2/3)