On “Others”

February 21, 2024 | Leave a Comment

When I was growing up in Ethiopia, I remember becoming familiar with the term ፈረንጅ or “ferenji.” The term refers to foreigners, especially white Westerners. But more importantly, it signifies an outsider, someone who doesn’t belong. As a child, the concept of ferenji seemed abstract, so different from my own Ethiopian identity and culture. But […]

The Meaning of Home

February 6, 2024 | 1 Comment

On the left side of the shelf connected to my desk is a wooden box with an icon of the Virgin Mary and her Child. This box was a gift from a friend I barely knew then and now consider almost a stranger. Yet, in the first month of college, he saw the homesickness I […]

Digital Diplomacy

September 9, 2023 | 3 Comments

There is a proverb that says it takes a village to raise a child. In Lancaster Pennsylvania exists my village. And yet if I told this to most people from the United States their first response would not be to object to the fact that I called Lancaster, a county of almost 1,000 square miles […]