Tuesday, May 3, 2011

This Ain't Your Grandfather's World

I grew up in a black and white world.  I believe most of the South, if not the nation, was that way.  There were whites and there were blacks and not much else.  A smattering of Hispanics and Asians, but that was about it. 

My buddy Punch came up for a visit this past weekend and on Sunday we enjoyed an event known as World of Nations Celebration.  Basically, a riverfront park is taken over by all of the different ethnic groups in Gatorville and they erect elaborate displays with trinkets, food, costumes and music representing their different nations and cultures.  The thing about it is, when this event first began about 20 years ago, there were maybe a half-dozen nations and cultures represented.  This Sunday, there were 35 nations represented including places such as Israel, Russia, Trinidad &Tobago, Peru, the Philippines and Ghana. 

One thing is perfectly clear, the days of black & white America are gone forever.  I don't know how much better off we are for it in some ways, but in-so-far-as music and food are concerned, we are most definitely the richer.


  1. That must've been a great day, Mr. C. I love these pictures... the one of the little girl is especially good, and the ladies with the scarves. As for that llama, well I just want it! I love llamas.

    Vive la difference. But still, I have a level of intolerance that I admit to.

  2. We have an International Festival here in Columbia that really fun to attend. from the pictures I like yours better.

  3. Last time I was in Hawaii they weren't selling Maui Wowi out in the open at stands like that! Great photos.

  4. Oh, but it wasn't always just Black and White. We are a nation of immigrants - only the celebrations of our ethnic pride were more low-key. The melting pot was always a myth, IMHO. Maybe once someone saw there was a profit to be made from our differences, it became okay to be more open about where we come from.

  5. Barbara... I too have to admit to some intolerance. I believe it's primarily driven by those who refuse to become "American" but expect America to come to them.

    BB... I imagine Columbia's is nearly as diverse.

    Brett... Yes, and the new Wowi isn't nearly as good either.

    Intelli... For me, here in Gatorville, it was a black and white world, although we have always had a strong Lebanese presence and, when a child, two Chinese restaurants. Now, there are 200 Chinese restaurants, the Cuban and Mexican immigration has found its way here and, for some reason, we have a large Bosnian, Central European, population.


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