05 July 2010

Land of the Free, Home of the Whatever. No, Really.

On our little plot of land, there are three or four houses surrounded by a lot of trees, a couple of cornfields, and...well, some donkeys. The neighbours on one side are Italian-American. We're Irish-American. Neighbours on the other side are Mexican immigrants. The kids are all citizens, born here in the last seven years or so. Their parents are working on it, in the slow and paper-filled process of the INS. Maybe someday. A little up the road is a family of big, honkin' Greeks. About fifteen of them. Actually, they're pretty much the whole rest of the town I live in.

Fourth of July weekend here means one thing that you can get nowhere else in the world: the town's "Big Fat Greek Festival" on one side, with souvlaki and balalaika music in one ear, and Tejano and salsa music in the other ear as Tómas keeps trying to teach me the words to his favourite Los Tigres del Norte song and laughing like a lunatic when I mess it up, while mucking out stalls and waiting for it to be dark enough to light sparklers for his sons and nieces. They used to have a barbecue on Cinco de Mayo, but lately they've stopped doing that unless it falls on a weekend. These days they celebrate the Fourth with us, because "my kids are American, just like you. And me? Me maybe someday too."


wildtomato said...

What a lovely snapshot of your 'hood. I can see it!

Anonymous said...

Is it weird that I'd like a donkey in my yard? (Possibly a cow or a couple of sheep, too?)