In Kindergarten, this question was easy, I lived in that blue house by the convenience store; if, the teacher wanted more details my name tag was right there on my bag with my full address on it. There was no doubt in the answer, and the audience was satisfied, because they themselves lived in the red house, or the big house or the small house by the lake.
‘Where are you from?’ was not a complicated question. Why then, twenty odd years later, I stumble on it trying to analyze what exactly the question is referring to, as though it was asked to me in latin? Yes, moving to a different country as a child certainly had something to do with it and so was the world becoming global. It was no longer as simple as the blue house, but where are you from could imply many different things…your home town, your country, your ethnicity, your language, your religion, your political party…in short, a question by which one could safely categorize you and create a “pin it” board of you in their mind. Many before me have grappled with this question in their quest for identity, and have found a place for them in this diasporic sentiments of their mind.
At twenty-eight, my answer to Ubi es would be I am from that blue house by the convenience store, I am from that red house and from the small house by the lake, I am from the hometown of innocence, I am from the country of kindness, I speak the language of love, and I am from a world of colourful dreams beyond the capture of any pin it board.