Living in a heavily Latin populated city like El Paso, I've never really felt like the odd one out. Mexican restaurants, culture, and Spanish speaking people make up the majority of the place. Although, it seems like only this town can shield me from rude comments that arise thanks to my dark hair and olive colored skin.
This past May my big family and I made the biggest road trip of our lives. We traveled to Houston in order to see my cousin graduate with his doctorate degree. Somehow, my cousins and I were excited to be traveling in a little van for 12 hours! As we got closer and closer to Houston, it was obvious we were not in El Paso anymore. The people seemed to become more Anglo speaking with accents that I think of when watching western movies.
We had almost arrived at our final destination stopping at a gas station in order to get some clarity on our Google map. The gas station had two men attending the front, both of Anglo descent. I felt their stare as soon as my crazy family and I walked in speaking in Spanish. Since my parents are the only ones that can speak English, they approached the men to ask their questions. I went up with them picking up a pickle I was determined to purchase. Crazily enough, they were the first to pose a question as we arrived in front of them. "Were are you guys from? Mexico? Are you guys even legal?" They pondered even more ridiculous questions as my parents became infuriated. I tossed the pickle behind as we all quickly left the store.
Although it was my first experience like this, I'll never forget it. I was angered, but I also realized how lucky I truly am. I would hate to be part of those people that go through this on a daily basis. But it taught me a lesson, I will never stop being proud of who I am! This is me and I won't change for anyone!