Some 35 years ago my husband took me to the Officers Club in Hawaii. When we sat down to dinner with all his friends I looked around and was shocked to my bones to see that we seemed to be the only minorities there. I wasn't frightened. Everybody was as nice as could be and tried to make me feel comfortable. But I couldn't shake this terrible feeling. My "date" seemed oblivious to my discomfort. I decided then and there that I would not go out with him again because I just couldn't cope with this feeling of strangeness. In Hawaii, I was used to feeling like I was in the majority. The "majority" being a mixture of Japanese, Chinese, Filipinos, Koreans, Portuguese, Hawaiians, etc. Needless to say, there was a second date and then our move to Illinois where I would learn and grow more than I ever thought I would.
Today, I went to our "village" once-a-month luncheon. We take turns having lunch at someone's house. We bring either a salad or dessert and somehow without any planning, it works out and we get a lovely assortment of dishes. The host provides beverages, china and silverware. As I sat with these very wonderful women trading ideas, advice, laughter, I realized I was once again the minority. Somehow, I must have grown up because I felt nothing but friendship. How very wonderful! This is not to say I haven't felt the sting of prejudice occasionally down the years but there are so many more beautiful, kind and loving people out there, everywhere. It's certainly fun to find them.