It became more evident as the students returned to classes. They were all excited to see a seven football player. That was the first time I felt like a novelty, a freak at a roadside carnival. As a matter of fact, they freaked me out because I did not know who the hell they were. I remember flinching every time someone walked up to me with silly grins on their faces. I always smiled, and spoke back to them, but all these strange people making a fuss over me were quite unnerving.
One of the incidents that has stuck in my memory most is a comment a student made. I was in the library studying with a European student and about four good Christian students, all white. They asked her questions about her country, the culture, the politricks, the educational system, and of course the religion – you know academic, intelligent questions. This one girl wearing her church girl dress, and that painted on smile, turned to me and asked, “Do you still eat people in your country?” I was stunned. The whole bloody library went quiet as they held their breath; you could have heard an ant walking across the floor. I did not know what to say at first, but then I leaned forward, looked the young lady in the eyes, and I almost smiled as I said, “Only the women, but they seem to like it, because they keep coming back for more.” There was a collective gasp as my offensive response permeated the holy-minded room. The young woman tuned fire red and I thought her head would explode; a new thing I learned about white people: they turn red when embarrassed. Her eyes shifted between me and the others in the room. She almost said something, but instead she swallowed. Hell, I heard her swallow from where I sat. Without saying a word, she turned to her book. Someone cleared their throat, someone giggled somewhere in the room, but no one said a word to me. After that day most of the Christians were weary of talking to me, except those who thought I was an uncivilized jungle beast that needed to be saved.
I am a Dirty Immigrant.