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Thoughts on Being a Vazaha

vazaha (vah-ZAH): foreigner, especially Caucasian
One of the things that really gets my gizzard is when people call me a vazaha. It comes from cute little kids, posiposy drivers trying to get me to ride in their rickshaws, random passers-by, and even sometimes from my friends and students. Why does it bother me so much, you may ask? Well, that is not an easy question to answer.
When my friends in choir, or my students at high school, call me vazaha, I feel as though they don’t care enough about our relationship to learn my name. I am just another foreigner. Someone who clearly doesn’t belong.
When random people on the street call me vazaha, it comes with the assumption that I have a lot of money. On Thursday, a posiposy driver yelled at me to get in his rickshaw, when there was already someone else in it! He called me over with the expectation that he could overcharge me. He assumed, because I am a vazaha, that I am not familiar with how much a posiposy ride should cost, and that I have …

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