If you ever tried to explain islander patois, the smells in your house, or your strange addiction to Bollywood to your friends and they gave you a nice raise of the brows, this list is for you.
1. “So, where are you from?”
Don’t ask me questions you don’t have hours for listening to the answers to. You will regret it.
2. No matter where you’re from, people default your accent as Jamaican.
No. Just. No.
3. Sometimes people just really don’t know what island you’re talking about.
They’ve figured us out.
4. Brooms are for the weak.
If you know how to spell the name for this uber-efficient cleaning tool, please do let me know. Nothing works better when it comes to cleaning your yard than this – but if you love yourself, just make sure you never get chased with it.
5. There are certain things no one makes like your aunties do.
And when you need to call for a recipe, they totally got you.
6. Summer humidity is nothing for you.
And those mosquitoes that are biting everyone up? You barely notice them anymore.
8. Seeing people with machetes in the street just means someone’s selling coconuts.
No no no, don’t scream! Machetes are scary, but coconuts are worth it.
9. You fry your own peanuts.
Shelling the skins off takes up hours of your weekends, but that crunch is so very worth it.
10. And get burned by channa.
Mama didn’t let you near this kitchen hazard until you were grown. Mine still doesn’t.
11. You have sauces of all colors sitting in your fridge.
Even though the relative differences of all these sauces is 2.5 peppers, they’re all very distinct. If you buy the wrong one at the store, you’re going back.
12. You’ve cried while your mom was cooking.
Maybe because you were really feeling the oxtail. Or maybe it was just anchar and no one opened a window.
13. When you go on vacation, your suitcases are lighter than this.
One is half-filled with your actual things, and one is practically empty.
14. But somehow you come back pushing both of them like this.
Now they’re both borderline-overweight. You’d think you’re bringing your nieces and nephews back on this plane. Honestly though, where did you get 60 pounds of stuff from?
15. Family gatherings look a little like this.
Cousins (first, second, forty-seventh) and siblings are the same thing, even if you grew up an ocean apart.
16. And you have trust issues when it comes to your fridge.
Butter is not always butter. Actually, butter is never butter. The butter is probably in the Flavorite container.
17. Sometimes you need a comprehensive dictionary for your country’s slang.
People have asked you what language you’re speaking on the phone. English, folks. I promise.
18. You may not understand Hindi, but Bollywood is still life.
Not even the language barrier can keep you away from Hrithik.
19. “Go get de ting.”
After years of practice, you don’t even need to ask what this means anymore.
20. People really need to not play “Kotch” around you.
They’re not ready for it.
21. Sometimes it’s hard being from where we’re from.
The misunderstanding is real, the history is traumatic, and sometimes you just want to sit under coconut trees and listen to chutney but you can’t because the most exotic thing they grow in your neighborhood is tomatoes.
22. But let’s be real.
We wouldn’t rather be anything else.