It was August, but a cool breeze kept everyone comfortable beneath the dark wooden arches of the pavilion. Covered dishes crowded two long tables. I had peeked beneath every foil covering and inside every cling-wrapped container, and, like I do every Thanksgiving, I wondered when someone would finally decide it was time to eat. There were familiar dishes like mac-and-cheese and unfamiliar offerings, like chat masala.
(photo credit: Yahya Sami Alseiha)
Twelve heads bent over the table, seven of them covered by scarves. Sunlight poured over the space from a wall of windows. Six cultures were represented. On this day, they were making potholders: tracing a mitten shape onto colorful fabrics and liners, then hand-sewing the pieces together with strong, white thread.
Several conversations were always going, participants shifting between them without missing a word. One lady stacked her cut pieces on the table, saying, “I can sew at home by myself. I came here to talk.”
Read the stories of Knoxville's local internationals and the volunteers who have impacted their lives. Get a first-hand view of what it's like to move here and/or to serve those who've moved here from other countries. Discover how KIN has impacted life and culture in metro Knoxville.