Now I know the black experience is different for all of us, but some things unite us all I am afraid. It is not every day, are you from London? Black people LiVe ElSeWhErE you know, like me in the Midlands?
People love to remind you; you live up North. I know the train took me 2 hours to get here.*rolls eyes*
You Londoners are cheeky you know; you think Hertfordshire is up North never mind Leicester…….
Anyway, what are the differences?
Variety and Transport;
- Up North – Finding plantain up North is hard, there is plantain chips in Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury’s in the Caribbean section but no actual plantain to fry unless you live in an ethnic area, it is mostly tea and soft drink cans #sadstateofaffairs.
- London – You have Paks Cosmetics.
- Up North – Missing the bus/tram and waiting less than 10 mins for the next one and chatting to strangers is something we do.
- London – Your buses and trains come in 0.01 seconds after each other and you don’t talk to each other.
- Up North – Everyone assumes you are from Birmingham or your family is the only one in the area, your geography is moving very mad.
Shopping and Hairdressers;
- London – You have Selfridges and you can most likely find your foundation shade in the store.
- Up North – Finding a black hairdresser let alone a natural hairdresser is long AF so you watch YouTube tutorials and learn to do your hair………*side-eye* and you still end up with the same hairstyle.
- London – You have Notting Hill Carnival, a lot more events, festival season is yours and all the known and international artists come to your city KMT.
- Up North – Going to a work party (being expected to represent diversity or black history month) am I the UN?
- London – You can shop after 7pm, not all the shops are closed.
If you send me the location;
- Up North – Getting things delivered from abroad and discovering your Aunty has written Notting Hill instead of Nottingham.
- London – You live in Central, East, South, North and West.
- Up North (Read Midlands) – We live in East or West and the more you live in the ‘shires’, the less of us you will see.
- Universal – Being classed as sassy, having attitude or we are awkward in the workplace, so we play the game.
- Universal – They struggle to pronounce your ‘black sounding name’ – it’s Tolu not ‘Tee-ol-you’.
That is a few things, what other things make the black experience, different outside of London versus living in London? Let me know in the comments!
Peace until next time,
This Girl Can Write, A