Sunday, March 22, 2009
Hapa in Honolulu: Homecoming?
This photo pretty much sums up my return to Portland this evening: blurry, empty, blue.
Coming home is supposed to feel like a relief. It's supposed to feel comfortable and welcome. Something like how it felt for me to arrive in Honolulu. Not like my return to Portland.
I walked through the terminal towards the exit, and I kept looking around, expecting the people around me to turn around and look like me. Or be Asian. Or at least not pale and white. But my expectations were not fulfilled.
But I don't need to dwell on the negative right now. Instead, I shall give a little preview of what's to come in over the course of the next week on this blog:
The "Hapa in Honolulu" series (that's right - I'm doing a "series," and it even has a cheesy-yet-catchy name to it). Most people go to Hawaii for sun and beaches - I went to relax on a more spiritual level (the relaxation of finally letting my guard down a bit and "blending in," phenotypically-speaking).
In just one week on Oahu, I was filled with probably a couple weeks' worth of posts about identity, racial politics, American government, immigration, and my own place in it all. I received a blast of inspiration to write like I haven't felt in quite some time (essays as well as lyrics). I walked with my head held high, pondered things big and small and just thought and lived in a way that I haven't really been doing in recent months. So I'm going to let it out in a slow trickle (or maybe more like a couple downpours) over my next few posts.
So that's what you all have to look forward to. If you're mixed like me, I'm sure you'll enjoy it, but don't worry - I've got plenty of thoughts that should keep all you monoracial folks involved, as well.