Whether it was the stigmatisation experienced by Johnny, the mediatic misrepresentation Martins noticed or the discrimination that Malaika faced, they were all taken aback at first because they never expected to have their identities put under such an unexpected and difficult spotlight. Back on the African continent, there were other types of social issues but at least they didn’t get stared at or questioned because of their skin color. Also, who would have told them that their nationalities would be a hindrance to getting a job?
Many expats like them face similar challenges while living outside their home country. However, good is still present in this world and light will always shine in the darkness. In spite of every difficulty they encountered, they also had the opportunity to meet good people.
- “Hey, my bosses at my teaching job are really cool”, Johnny said to Martins. “I’m really comfy around them. They’re not awkward with me and don’t ask weird questions like how I came here or lion stuff.”
- “Great! Lucky you. I had problems getting a part-time because of my accent, but I managed to land on a nice one as well.”
- “Yeah. The only awkward moment was when I invited them to visit me in my country and they were like ‘hmm, no, we ain’t going far down there’. Not sure what they were imagining…”
Malaika, on her side, was quite content with her new flat. Her neighbours were a bit curious at first when they heard that someone from Africa was moving into their porsche area, but in the end they didn’t make too much fuss. They initially took her for a maid and were so ashamed later that they treated her extra nicely. Aside some grumpy ones who didn’t know better, she luckily moved by some folks who travelled a lot and were really modern and open-minded: a flight attendant, an ex football coach, a famous Youtuber and their respective families. It was just a bit uncomfortable to walk around knowing that sometimes people secretly peeked at her from their windows, but so far she didn’t have any critical issues. Maybe seeing her with designer bags or caring for Chucci, her little cat, got her their affection…
“I’ve lived in luxury all my life, and this is the first time I meet people who assume I can’t afford something because of my complexion”, she thought. “Anyway, after all the trouble I went through to get a house that suits my tastes, there’s no way I’m going to let people’s opinions take it from me”.
Next week on Episode 6: Social gatherings