A walk through the village is not complete without little children screaming "WHITE MAN! WHITE MAN!" until I wave and call hello. The novelty wears off pretty quickly, and I get downright irritated when the "greeting" comes from adults. In my less tolerant moments, I stubbornly resist the callers, pleading semantics as my excuse: I'm not a *man* thank you very much! But when I can put a smile on the kids faces by waving and saying hi, it's nice to oblige. Most kids are either thrilled or unconcerned by my white skin, but there's the occasional one who bursts into tears of terror.

It's reassuring, I suppose, to provide such amusement for children simply by existing. On the other hand, it's terribly depressing to frighten them by the same token.


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