the simple life of a Persian Mainer

Growing up a Middle Eastern girl in New England… I know what you are thinking, “Damn! ANOTHER ONE? There are already so many!” was quite an interesting way to blossom.

I remember my friend from summer camp, Amanda, telling me that when she was babysitting my neighbors kids, being told how strange we (my family) were.

The reasons were listed as, but not limited to::

1.) During any event, i.e, birthday, a bbq, or just a Friday night, black cars (only) lined out of our driveway and up our suburban street. The lack of movement they had for a solid 2 days must have been alarming!

2.) The loud foreign music, laughter, food, and lights on till 4 am at said events, must have been equally alarming!

3.) The never-ending crazy abnormal for Maine Persian food has some of the craziest-subhuman odor, but DAMN it tastes so good!

4.) I was the main spokesman for the posse of Persians standing behind me. I took family members’ attempts at speaking with our fellow Americans and translated it to “coherent English”, basically having full conversations by myself while all the adults stared at mini-me.

5.) My PB&J sandwiches at school lunch were on pita bread, as opposed to the ever popular totally acceptable Wonderbread..eek!

6.)We were always dressed up. I have to explain, Maine is a very au natural state… housed between a rocky ocean coastline and a state of forest. My mom wore jewelry to mow the lawn.

7.) Some of my chores included taking out the trash, shoveling the stairs when it snowed before the ice set in, and organizing my mothers shoe closet, which housed over 200 pair (that part was for money of course, mom was always very fair!)

8.) Baklava in 1990, Portland, Maine, is not appropriate bake sale goodies. In fact, anything edible containing rosewater, will never abandon a childs’ taste buds from chocolate!

9.) Some of my Halloween costumes included a pre-Aladdin made by Disney bellydancing outfit (remember, this is MAINE), a military person, and the Norooz Santa Claus.

10.) I didn't celebrate Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanza. But I did get 3 days off for Persian New Year in March...

11.) Our beach/picnic/outdoor events included 40 people, all ESL, first ones there, last ones to leave, breakfast, lunch, and dinner, with our own hibachi grills, skewers with meet, Orange soda, and babies without clothes on. This is how we picnic. Its an all-day, everyone affair.

12.) Immediate family events = All Aunts, Uncles, their children, and close personal family friends. After a while, invites started just listing my name "and MOM" as opposed to the former,"Misskims and family".

Needless to say, I developed a quick wit ready to "ON GUARD!" anyone that came at me with silly names/jokes/slanders/etc....

You can thank the lovely schoolmates I had for the loveliness slash amazingness I provide you with on the daily!

Peace, love, and lobstahs...



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