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Hug #44

June 5, 2011

Hug #44
Monday, May 30, 2-3 pm
Douglas Park

Hug #44 Douglas Park

Hug #44 Douglas Park

BBQ’s and families all over the park. Douglas Park is over 7000 acres. Huge. How do we even find a spot to plant ourselves? The day is so hot, and the bike ride down was steamy and exhausting. The streets are pretty bad going down there, full of holes and strange bumps and turns. We pick a spot, but then we don’t like it and decide to walk over a bridge to find a new one. We find a path near a small lagoon, a crossroads, and plant ourselves in the shade. Slow down.

No one talks to us. At one point a whole family is looking at us, obviously talking about us, but they never come near. Another family watches us and even goes over to the sign to get a flier, we hear a boy reading aloud the text. We are a strange sight here. Aurora and I end up talking about segregation. How can we not notice that we are the only white people here? I remember once my friend Dante, who lives on the south side, asked me why we never did our hugs down there. I said I thought we could. He didn’t agree. He said we wouldn’t be safe. I never felt we weren’t safe, but I didn’t feel welcome either. A strange place to be, mentally. I don’t like to think about racism. I don’t like to think that anyone holds anything against someone because the color of their skin. Maybe I am still naive. Maybe I am living in a segregated city with people all around setting boundaries that they are comfortable with and letting them become obstacles we cannot cross. I want to cross, but I don’t even know how to begin.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Carol Zalek permalink
    June 5, 2011 12:28 pm

    So few times I have been one of only two to four white persons in a store, restaurant, club, pool, or on a bus. I am always conscious of how that must make others feel when they are in the company of almost all white. I would like to think there is no difference, but I suspectt this is secretly hard for many of them, still, because I wonder if I am welcome in their midst. I hate prejudice and sterotyping. I believe we are all God’s equal creations.

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