I am always very aware of my whiteness when I'm in El Paso. It is right on the border (you can see the Rio Grande from the interstate), and I'm guessing about half the population come over from Mexico every day to work in and around the city. I double checked that the car doors were locked when we pulled into the Valero station downtown, and held tightly to both kids' hands when we went into the convenience store.
After we had picked out our drinks (orange juice for Sophie and Gatorade for Xander - they were super pumped), we were standing in line to pay and this woman behind us started cooing at the kids. I don't know Spanish, but it sounded like, "Awww, what cute kids!" She reached out to touch Xander's white-blond hair. This happens all the time when we are out and about down there, so I let it go. Plus, I was used to the same thing happening to me as a kid in the Solomons.
"Um, that's his penis, Sophie," I said, trying to keep my voice normal. We use the anatomically correct words for body parts in our household. I glanced over at a young couple standing a few yards from us, hoping they weren't cued in on the conversation.
"Oh!" When Sophie gets excited, she gets loud. "That's the daddy elephant!" She looked quickly over to the other one, her forehead wrinkled in thought.
"LOOK, MOMMY!" Sophie shouted. "THAT ELEPHANT HAS A VAGINA!!!"
I about died.