I love days like this. I spent part of this beautiful day at a local cafe, a place where Iain and I go nearly every weekend, before we do our grocery shopping. The cafe is owned by a couple, one half of whom is a Greek immigrant, Dimitri, and the other half of whom is Puerto Rican. Their son and daughter, who work there, call themselves Puerto Greekan.
I was there today with my friend Ms. A, who is Venezuelan. Her father, whom I'd never met even though Ms. A and I have been friends since high school, was visiting from Venezuela. Her sister and her boyfriend, who is Portuguese, were also visiting from Portugal.
I said to Ms. A it was unfortunate her husband, who is from Mexico, and my husband, who is from Scotland, weren't there, too, just to add a few more accents at the table.
We were there after the normal lunch hour, and it was quiet. Dimitri brought us Greek frappes, which are not on the menu, and a special Greek drink his father makes and brings when he visits. He sat with us at our table, and talked about Mediterranean cuisine, and being an immigrant to the US. It is, the table agreed, a great country full of opportunity, and a country too focused on money, to the detriment of quality of life.
I was the only one at the table who was born here. I sat and listened, and thought what a privilege it is that I have so many opportunities to see my country through the perspective of people who chose this place as their home, and people who haven't.
For a few hours, I forgot all about Mitt Romney's contempt for people who are not like him, because I was spending a beautiful day with people who understand the country of which he wants to president better than he ever will.