In 1983 I was hired by AES, an employment agency, to do some data entry at Correctional Services. Mike was a computer consultant working for Bailey and Rose assigned to build an inventory system for the prisons. When I met Mike I noticed that he had a great sense of humour and I enjoyed talking with him. Mike was the first black person I ever met. Over time, I started to ask him questions about his life.
I asked Mike where he was from. He said “Trinidad”. He noticed the puzzle look on my face and proceeded to say further, “just off the coast of Venezuela”. Not to look stupid, I just nodded in understanding. To me I thought black people only came from two places – USA or Africa. So not knowing about Trinidad, I had to go and do some research to find out where Trinidad was.
Another day Mike apologize for not walking comfortably. He said he was born with CP; cerebral palsy. I just looked at him and said, “I thought that was just his funky black walk”. We had a good laugh over that one.