Yesterday my mom gave a me midnight call…. (Well.. midnight for me..but 3 am for her!)
Me and my mom normally talk every lunch time – even if for two seconds – but due to the time difference and my commitments in Kenya it is rather difficult to continue that routine.
Anyhow, so she called me, and we caught up on everything and everyone. She asked me about my work, my lodge, the food and all…. (being the mother ofcourse…)
So when I told her I am spending a lot of time outside in the sun and taking the motorbike to and back from work each day she teased me that I will be so tanned that I will be as dark as the locals…
I laughed and said I am rather glad that I am blending in so well..
But it really got me thinking… how the perception of skin colour is different in various cultures and societies…
Now let me remind you .. I am a simple person with very limited brain capacity. All big controversies and issues around the world like race, religion, politics etc are usually beyond me..
Even English is too complex for me! And I find it difficult to get my head around English words..
For instance I don’t really understand how the word ‘light’ or ‘fair’ got it’s positive connotation from, whereas somehow ‘black’ or ‘dark’ ended up with negative meanings associated with it.
We say things like “Black magic” to refer to something bad… whilst “White” is all about light, goodness, innocence, purity, and virginity. It is considered to be the color of perfection. White means safety, purity, and cleanliness. As opposed to black, it is a positive word.. 🙁 But did you ever wonder why?
I am no linguist and have limited knowledge about this but I still think somehow it is such usage of words in languages that has given birth to racism. Or could it be the other way round?
Darker people are being considered inferior to the fairer ones and I wonder could it simply because of the words used to represent? Statics prove how the standard of living and pay scales can differ based on skin colour only!
I know nowadays there are campaigns like “dark is beautiful and all that.. but why are we even needing these campaigns in the first place?
Why is colour a factor in determining a person? And how, when and why did ‘black’ became inferior , ‘white’ superior and ‘brown’ just mediocre?
So as I was saying earlier.. that conversation with my mum left me thinking all these and more…
Will me becoming few shades darker in the sun will mean anything to anybody??
I am pretty sure I live in an environment and among people to whom it will not matter at all.
I am guessing that most people will not even notice.. Or maybe someone will notice it and will wonder…how ‘dark’ Rubaiyat is now!!!
But have I really gone ‘dark’ or is it ‘light’??
You look at my skin and you see a darker Rubaiyat. But look again… into my heart and my soul… what do you see? Looking within myself I see more light…I have found more light in this darkness than many other places.
I am dark so I am enlightened…I am dark so I am now privileged and experienced. I am now better… with the knowledge of a new country, new culture, new people, new working environment and also a new me – who knows she can adopt to any changes and with anyone around her…
So when you see me next – I wonder whether you will see the darkness or the light within?
Remember that the word ‘dark’ is not necessarily dark…. Within this darkness hides a lot of ‘light’….
Today I am 50 shades darker. And yet 100 times lighter….