I’ve talked before about how easy it is to pick out foreigners in Karakol, particularly the backpacking tourists. We aren’t backpacking or skiing tourists, but we know that we don’t quite look like the locals. We don’t fool them. They can easily pick us out in a crowd. But, maybe, just maybe we are able to fool the other foreigners!
Scott and I were walking through the bazaar this week and I noticed two young American (I think) girls standing by a shop to our right. One girl said to the other, “Look, they’re American”, clearly talking about Scott and me. I looked at the girl without a smile or an acknowledgement of my understanding, and then heard her say, “Oh, no they’re not.”
I can’t figure this whole thing out! What did we do to make her change her mind? Was it because I didn’t smile at them? Or was it because I didn’t confirm her suspicions that we could relate to her? Or was it more about me not speaking English back to her? So interesting! Do people (particularly Americans) find an automatic affinity with each other when they meet on the street of a foreign land? Do I want an automatic affinity with every American I may happen to run into in Kyrgyzstan? I’m not sure!
While I ponder these things, I can’t help but be delightfully amused and pleased that we were able to fool these girls!