Today we went to a local annual Multicultural Festival - The Mela.
We're very lucky that we live in a multicultural area and I think it's a wonderful experience for my children to see people of different cultures and religions on a daily basis and for them not to think it is unusual. When I was growing up in a small village the only people I saw of a diffferent nationality were 2 black children from the local children's home (who came to our school) and, once a year on my Mum's birthday, I would see the staff at the Chinese take away in our nearest town! Needless to say, it was quite a culture shock to move to where we live now. I remember being very conscious that I spent the first few weeks just staring at everyone who went past, as if I'd just landed on a different planet!
Dd1 was particularly fascinated by the different music at the Mela and insisted on standing right at the front by the stage, in front of everybody. I didn't feel too self-conscious until the Bangra Hip Hop band, when I started feeling rather old and frumpy stood there at the front with lots of young Asian - and 'wannabe Asians' in their replica ethnic gear - getting into the groove (or whatever the Hip Hop equivalent is - hey, what do I know??). Anyway, there I was, this white middle class mother, stood in my cords and M&S t-shirt with a headscarf tied badly around my unwashed hair to stop it blowing around and getting in my face, a balloon on a stick that the kids had got bored of holding, and my pockets bulging full of hankies 'cause I've got a cold. Hmm...I really blended in with all those teens!
When the above was happening Dd1 kept asking 'When is it going to stop?'. It wasn't that she wasn't enjoying the music. It was more that it didn't follow the usual recognisable pattern of European music, so she just couldn't work out at what stage the song was at. I must confess that I'm usually more of a 'verse-chorus-verse-chorus' sort of girl, but it was still fascinating to watch and to listen to. I'm not sure what the instrument is called.
The dog finishes off Dd1's ice cream!
Don't let my balloon float away!