Me no speak Americano

Walking down the hallways of Hamilton High School, USA it was clear that there had been a school dance the night before. The eye makeup that girls had been too tired to wash off was now smeared around their tired eyes and even the usually energetic jocks slumped lazily around the hallways. Personally, I had never felt better. It had been six weeks since I’d first arrived in Hamilton as the exchange student. Being the new kid at school is hard enough, let alone when you’ve come from the
other side of the world, have a funny accent and are going to a school of less then 200, where most of the people have known each other since first grade. But after attending the ‘Winter Prom’ I was finally
beginning to feel like I fit in. I’d gotten dolled up, danced the night away and drank beer from red cups at the after party like any other ordinary American teenager. I had finally stopped getting into the car
on the wrong side and the other students had stopped asking if we rode kangaroos to schools.

My two closest friends - Mandi, Chantel and I were crowded around my locker gossiping about the events of the night before:

“Oh my gosh. Can you believe she wore ‘that’?”
“Apparently the votes for winter prom king were fixed!”
“I totally danced with him for five songs. Wait was it five? Or was it six? I think it was six!”

The bell rang for first period . We arranged to meet for lunch and my friends walked to their classes. Just as Chantel reached the other end of the hallway I remembered I still had her shoes in my locker. I’d borrowed them after sleeping at her house. I yelled out to her down the crowded hallway:

“Oh Chantel! Remind me to give you your thongs later! They’re in my locker from last night!”

The hallway fell silent. Chantel’s face went as red as the crimson dress she’d worn to the dance. Then the hallway erupted with laughter.
Who ever said Americans and Australians speak the same language?

N Akib

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