Last time someone asked me ‘where are you from’ was only a couple of days ago at work. It makes it so much harder as you’re there to do your job and be polite to people but it’s not a polite question and it’s really presumptuous and personal to feel so entitled to ask a person of colour that question as they’re putting us in a box. Judging us just by the colour of our skin and thinking “oh they look different they’re surely not from Australia with those curls and brown skin!”. It was a white man in his 50s, he caught me by surprise as I was dropping off some food to his table he asked me “where are you from” shocked I said “Australia” he said “no where are you REALLY from like what’s your nationality?” I regretfully huffed and puffed and sighed making it really obvious that I didn’t want to answer that question and went the long way around “my mum has a european background but is born and raised in Australia and my dad is from Jamaica but grew up in England.. but I am 100% Australian” he was very intrigued and felt like he deserved to know such a personal question. He said something like “that’s different” and I said “yeah well the whole world is very multicultural and mixed now isn’t it?” and walked off pissed off that he’d asked that question as most caucasian people unfortunately do and felt angered that I answered it but I didn’t have the energy to actually educate this ignorant man at the time. I wish I had of replied “oh that’s a very personal question!” giggled and walked off, which is probably the nicest way I could shut this conversation down in a work environment. If i wasn’t at work I would have just responded “Australia” very bluntly or not say a thing and walk off. Every time I get that question it still shocks me and can be confusing as to how to react as I know a lot of people are generally interested but it is still a very personal question that we shouldn’t have to answer. The other side of me gets annoyed as I am born and raised in Australia and have only been to Jamaica once and when I went there they called me ‘white gal’ and knew I wasn’t from there. It makes you feel like you don’t actually belong anywhere, in your own home that’s very disheartening and frustrating!