Finding Common Ground

Diana Writes
2 min readApr 27, 2021

In Mohja Kahf’s , My Grandmother Washes Her Feet in the Sink of the Bathroom at Sears, she depicts these two worlds merging together with irritation and misunderstanding towards one another. Respect is the key when it comes to cultures crashing. The grandmother simply, “puts her feet in the sink of the bathroom at Sears to wash them in the ritual washing for prayer, wudu” (lines 1–4). The mid western female shoppers at Sears inflict their judgmental gazes among Mohja and her grandmother.

It is evident that this experience in the Sears restroom was a clash of cultures. Respect is the key when new customs interfere. The grandmother was doing no harm, therefore hateful glares should not have been targeted towards her.

When I was in elementary school, I remember my grandmother packing me lunches with traditional Romanian meals. The kids at lunch would scrunch their noses and ask too many judgmental questions. I would go home and beg my mom to buy traditional American food for my grandmother to pack in my lunch box in order to avoid the stares and whispers being passed from my fellow classmates.

It’s important to adapt and respect everyone, no matter their ethnicity, culture, customs, ideals, etc. More than ever we need to find common ground. We must understand and unite our differences instead of distancing ourselves from those that may be different.

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