I hear this phrase often whenever I meet new people and I give them my name… Or when they read my card:
Jenny P. Yrasuegui
(blah blah blah à depends on which card I hand out.. more on what I do later)
How do you pronounce your last name?
Where are you from?
Is that Japanese/Persian?
Pronounced like this: EE-RA-SE-GI…
And the name is Basque… (Spanish)
So… no, name is not Japanese or Persian…
When people see me, a lot can’t figure out my mix either. Well, many get that I am somewhat part Spanish, but I have been asked if I were Russian, Japanese or Half-Indian - Russian by other Russians who see me with my Russian friends (they start speaking to me in their language and I’m just like What?!), Japanese because name looks Japanese to them (if there’s a hint of Japanese in my features, please point it out!) and half-Indian by some people who see me hang-out with my Indian friends…
Ahhhhh… The power of association…
But, if you ask me where the hell did I come from, answer is very simple: I come from the Philippines!!! And I’m Pinoy!!!
Name and look may not be ‘typical Filipino’, but what is a ‘typical Filipino’ anyway? All those years of occupation from various races – Spanish, Americans, Japanese, etc – left us with so many ‘half-this’ ‘half-that’. But I have lived in the Philippines all my life, and this is my home. This is where I am from.