" When I grew up in a small town in Georgia, my biggest dream was one day to be able to go to Atlanta."
Herschel Walker would certainly wake people up a little round Uckfield. He would be noticeable! Heads would turn. Mouths might drop open.
Not, in any way, that the good people of Uckfield have anything against black guys, or black girls for that matter. It's just that there aren't any. Or rather, there are so few that they are noticed when they walk down the street. We have a couple of Chinese restaurants, but that's about it.
When my children were very young, I took them down to Brighton - much more cosmopolitan than Uckfield. Most places are. There, we saw the most beautiful Nigerian woman in full national dress.
I can't remember which of the boys said it, probably Laurie, aged about three years old.
In a piercing whisper that could be heard a hundred yards away, he said, 'Mummy, LOOK! There's a lady with black on her!'
He had never actually seen anyone who wasn't white. I wished the ground would open up and swallow me.
Said lady turned round and laughed most gloriously and we chatted for a while.
Funnily enough, I don't exactly agree with Herschel Walker about it being tough to dream big when you come from a small town. I think it's easier. You have so many more and bigger things to dream about.
It could explain why one of my boys lives near Toronto and another near Vancouver...