Anjali Joseph: ‘Stop trying to label me!’

From The Independent:

Anj Back in 1985, when I was seven, my family moved to England from Bombay. My father was a research scientist. He was going to teach at Warwick University. In his first week, a colleague offered to take him to the cafeteria at the campus arts centre. There were sandwiches, salads, baked potatoes, and something else, which the colleague indicated: “Have you tried these? They're called samosas. They're rather good.”

When we moved, I had never been to England, or anywhere outside India except for a sabbatical year my father had taken at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh when I was a toddler. I was, however, confident about what England would entail. I had been reading. There would be a village, and a fat village policeman; I would have friends, five or seven of them, and a dog; my friends and I would sit in a garden shed, go on picnics, or sleep in gorse bushes, and feast on boiled eggs (which I hated) and delicious-sounding tongue sandwiches. Some recalibration was required; I realised that England was no longer in the 1930s and, perhaps, even then, had not resembled life in the works of Enid Blyton, which I'd eagerly read from our local library in Bombay.

More here.