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I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

1095 words - 4 pages

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Julie and I were sitting on a hill on campus, watching the students hurrying by. I was picking at the grass absentmindedly, when out of the blue my best friend blurts out, "they're officially announcing my engagement in two weeks." I stare at her, waiting for the words to register into my brain. It finally hits me like a ton of bricks- oh my god, my best friend is getting ENGAGED!! I realized I hadn't asked her much about her fiancée, I didn't even know his name. I guess I thought that if I didn't talk or think about it, maybe it wouldn't happen and then things wouldn't have to change.My family moved here from Tanzania, East Africa in the summer of 1995, and I was a young teenager thrust into a whole new world with a completely new culture to learn and become a part of. It took a while for me to get used to and deal with the vast differences in culture.I have been friends with Julie for five years now, and she is the only person (apart from my parents) that I would trust my life with. She was the first real friend I made in Minnesota. I met her through our mosque. I still remember when my cousin introduced me to all the younger girls, and my first impression of Julie was "ohmygod what a geek!" She had braces, and was into wearing clothes that could fit ten of her in there.It was easy for us to relate to each other because we were both Muslims growing up in a western culture. The biggest problem our mosque faces today is the youths losing the traditions and values that our parents were taught and used while growing up, and passing it on to us. It's hard to try to fit in, and still keep your values and religion intact, because where do you draw the line between the two? We have been through so much together "" venting to each other about dealing with parents who still have such backward thinking, through her Nirvana stage with the accompanying black lipstick, when things got so bad at home that Julie was contemplating running away from home until I talked her out of it. There have been many good times too- our own language of inside jokes that no outsider can enter, when Julie came over and helped me get my outfit together for prom, when she got her new car for her birthday last year, and we took our first ride in it. I started thinking about all these memories we had together- through high school, and now we were going to university together, and I started crying. For like five minutes we both sat on our sides of the grass, crying silently. I finally looked up, and she started laughing"¦ Handing me a mirror, she says, "damn"¦ You look like crap!" I peered at my reflection and was a little shocked. My eyes were puffy and red with black streaks streaming down my face from my mascara, and my makeup was pretty much nonexistent.Louise Kendricks and Maya had a similar relationship in the book I Know Why the...

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