Last week, I didn’t do much because I was busy studying for exam and writing a paper for my classes. So, I decided I’m going to reflect on the first day I came to Chiang Rai.
We came to Chiang Rai on June 16, so it’s been long since I came. I wanted to talk about the reaction I saw and recicve from people because I was a tall black female. I remember when I was going to the market to buy some grocery, everyone was staring at me because I was the first black female that they have ever seen. Even as I was going into the store, the workers would stop what they are doing and just stare at me. I caught one of them staring at me and they still stared even though I was looking at them. Another store we went to, the workers and customers were talking pictures of me. It made me think of the way celebrities must feel when they go out into the public.
Anyway, this situation was very unique and uncomfortable because I haven’t been in this situation before. The thing that made it unique was I was actually the first black female most of these people have ever seen. It felt like a honor to be such a person in the mind of these people. It was also interesting to see the way that they reacted towards me. They didn’t act discriminated towards me, instead they were intrique to know more about me . I was glad to be the person that was able to answer and help them learn about black people. The things that was uncomfortable was the stares and people taking pictures of me without my permission. At first, I understand the reason for it, but I wasn’t use to being center of attention. I am a quiet and chill person that only like to be the center of attention with my friends and not with random strangers. I felt that I was being watched everytime. The only reason I was uncomfortable with it was due to the fact I wasn’t use to being the only black female in a huge homogenous population. As I was growing up, I was always surrounded with black and African people. I never felt that I was different from them, unlike the situation that I am in now.
Being in this situation, it has made me to be proud to be a African-American female. I won’t change who I am for anything in the world. When I see Thai females that bleach their skin because they want to look white and have the Caucasian beauty, I feel that they aren’t confident with the skin that they are in. It takes a lot for someone to love who they are and how they look, but I’m glad that I’m able to love myself and proud of my background and who I am as person.
Although I have been in Chiang Rai for more than three weeks, I still get lot of stares and looks from Thai people. I have kinda gotten use to it, but sometimes it can be annoying. Overall, this experience has really help me to be confident ad comfortable with being African-American female and made me realize that I’m a unique person. Also, this position I have been put in has made me realize that Thai people still consider people from America or abroad to be Caucasian or have light skin tone. I hope that when people talk and hang out with me, their perspective of Africans and Black people will change.