When I was three I saw my across-the-stree neighbor for the first time. He was black and I greew up in a very predominantly white area. I called across the street to him: “you’re brown!” Kids are, after all, very literal and I was stating what I thought to be obvious and interesting. Kenny didn’t think so and left crying. The next day, when we saw each other across the street he called back: “you’re orange!” No doubt referring to my red hair. I didn’t like that and left crying.
Kenny and I soon became friends and remained so until he moved to Saginaw when we were in middle school.
I had very little exposure to non-caucasians until I went to college. I am thrilled that the community in which I an raising my children is very multi-cultural and things which were so shocking to my three year old self don’t even register with my kids; they have never know anything different.