I’m a Black female living in the Middle East.  Believe it or not, there are a lot of us here.  However, I still managed to get stared at and asked some ridiculous questions. Some questions reveal ignorance while others express genuine curiosity.

There are two types of stares:

  • You look different than I do.
  • You look like me and I’m trying to figure out if we’ve met.

Oh, but the questions… LOL

  1. Why do you braid your hair?
  2. How long does it take to make all these braids?
  3. Do you wear sunscreen?
  4. What do you mean you’re American?  What part of Africa are you from?
  5. How do you get your hair to stay like that? Did you put jelly?
  6. What happens to your hair in the shower?
  7. Will you do my hair like this?
  8. Do you think I can get my hair like that?
  9. Are you Muslim?
  10. Do you like the Quran?
  11. While looking directly at it, “What color is your hair ?”
  12. While being a stranger, “Where do you live?”
  13. Are you married? Where are your babies? Why no baby? When you have baby? Inshallah… Now.
  14. Can I take a picture of you? With you?
  15. Will you take this money and buy a ticket for my child?

My normal reaction to the stares is a polite and cheery, “Hello!”.  The last time that I responded this way, the child called his mother.  I guess I frightened him.



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