At my dear (BOSSY) sister’s request, another blog post. I don’t know when she got so bossy. I used to be the big sister, replete with tortuous antics directed at her and the ability to whoop her ass. Now…well, things have changed. She got mean at some point. She raised some teenagers, then had a baby (yes, in that order…you didn’t think *MY* sister would be normal, did you?), and now she might be the big sister. I’ll still find the ability to whoop her ass, though, if she helps Dad get any sort of international instant-messaging capability. YOU HEAR THAT SISTER? IF DAD VIBERS ME, I’M COMING TO ‘MERICA TO WHOOP YOUR ASS! Love you, sis! (Unless you give Dad Viber or my address.) You’ve heard most of this by now, but here it is, all typed up.
I used to call my husband (then boyfriend) a “dirty foreigner” while we lived in the U.S. Sure, he blends in easily (other than “kind of looking like a terrorist,” as my mother observed the first time I sent her photos of him…he does have those sketchy-looking eyebrows, and the evil glint in his eyes is part of what attracted me to him in the first place). He learned to say “praw-gress” instead of “pro-gress,” and he learned to drop the g’s from the end of words. But he was a dirty foreigner, nonetheless, no matter how much more he might know about U.S. history, government, and politics than the average American.
I, now, am the dirty foreigner. I’m a dirty foreigner twice over! I’m an American in Canada, and I’m an Anglo in the Saguenay. And, as I realized last weekend, I’m something even dirtier. I’m an IMMIGRANT. I don’t know why it took that realization so long to hit me. The husband and I poured over the Canadian Immigration website to start our paperwork. (And the very astute among you may notice that the word “immigration” has a lot of letters in common with the word “immigrant.”) However, I’m ‘Murican! ‘Muricans aren’t immigrants! Immigrants are (more often than not) brown and poor. I’m as far from brown as one can be and still be human-colored, and…well, I am poor, but I get an allowance. Still, it was a startling thing to realize that I am, indeed, an immigrant.
As for being poor, *I* am, but my husband is not. And by virtue of his promise (to me and to the Canadian government, haha, he owes the Crown any debt I incur while under his sponsorship) to support me, I am not going to go without any time soon. In fact, despite being a dirty foreigner and an immigrant, I still manage to have white people problems (I swear, though I am ‘Murican, that’s not racist; it’s a saying that basically means bitching about problems others would be all too happy to have, à la “my diamond shoes are too tight”).
My white people problem: I need a dress for a ball. Seriously some Cinderella-level shit, right? Alas, I have no band of creepily adept rodents to make prominent designers weep with their tailoring abilities. All I have is a neighbor with an ROUS (“rodent of unusual size”) living under his shed, a really fast chipmunk that may or may not reside under my deck, and a skunk that wanders through the yard every so often. A skunk I’ve been advised NOT to squirt with the water gun (more like a water sniper rifle, really). And while a bit of magic would be appreciated to help me acquire the perfect dress, the first time any of those beasts starts singing or waves a pair of scissors at me, I know I’ve got bigger problems than a ball gown. So, I have to venture out into the world, into this foreign land, and attempt to find a dress. And maybe some shoes. But I hope with every fiber of my being NOT any new undergarments of the supportive type!
I’m thankful, as I learn about this whole military spousedom thing far away from all the friends and family I’ve ever known, that I am doing this in the age of technology. Thanks to the internet, I can call my mom and sister in Oklahoma, have a skype house party with my friends in New York, and meet and get advice from people in this region. I’ve even had a perfect stranger offer to meet up with me for Dress Shopping: Round 1. (If I’m the luckiest person alive, and if I behaved MUCH better in past lives than in this one, there will only be one round. I’m not optimistic, though.) So I suppose I’ll clench my terror of dress shopping down into a tiny little ball of anxiety low in my stomach and hit the gym. I’ll do cardio and listen to Nine Inch Nails until my grip on reality loosens a bit. Then I’ll come home, get cleaned up, and make war faces in the mirror until I believe that I can actually handle this dress shopping shit. And then I’ll go to the mall. Hopefully, there will be no tears. I can’t remember if I cried the last time I went dress shopping (in a much larger city where everyone speaks English), but even if no tears fell, I’m sure I was crying on the inside.