Monday, March 12, 2007

Come Together

I think it's easy to be cynical.

As anyone who knows me will be aware, I am passionate about my cultural community: the Goan community. I'm part of the committee that runs the Young London Goans' Society (YLGS).

It's frustrating and satisfying in equal measure, and I suppose that's what makes it enjoyable. The full range of human emotion is brought to bear with it.

It's make or break year for us as a society.

We're contacting everyone on our database to correct their details, but also get their opinion on how we can improve, is there anything we're missing and all that.

Every time I make a call and have a conversation, I'm wary that I really don't know what to expect. There are such a range of opinions out there, it defies belief. Perhaps that's because it's very difficult to define our culture anyway, making our experience growing up in the U.K. even more interesting.

This theme of being 'different' or an 'outsider' seems to appear a few times in my posts.

And yet, I'm human. I have my ups and downs, my considerations and reasons for doing things and not doing things and all that.

But coming together with my community (and actually with any community) is really nice. I think it's life-affirming. With the world around me tending towards disorder, it's nice to be part of causing something bigger than me. YLGS does that, but I've been thinking a bit more about how a similar thing happens when I'm at school.

Assemblies are really good for that. I enjoy our House Assemblies (remember Houses at school? They were an endless source of amusement and/or pain for me...I was never good enough to represent the house at football or rugby - although I made the cricket team, which was quite satisfying for a short-round-Indian-looking boy). I'm part of a house with really enthusiastic, eloquent Head of House. He has managed to embody a spirit of pride, and healthy competition amongst the all-to-easily-cynical teenage boys.

Experiences like this are great.

So when I speak to someone for nearly an hour about the intricacies of our (Goan) culture, I feel I have gained a friend.

I like to think that every conversation will forward something positive; on a personal level, on a family and friends level, but also at the level of humanity.

Use the Force I guess...


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