Day 170 - Yasmine (1st person I approached)
June 19, 2014 - Yasmine was finishing her work lunch break when I approached her. Her eyes widened when I told her I was a writer, and I couldn’t quite figure out what that reaction was. I explained what I’m working on, and wondered if she’d chat with me. She quickly said she would, but that she only had ten minutes left on her break. I set my intention on getting her story before she had to go back to work. I scored a bonus point for spelling her name correctly.
“Thank. You! No one ever puts the ‘e’ on the end!”
Yasmine’s parents are both originally from Cameroon, in west Central Africa.
“My parents met in Cameroon, and then both came to Vancouver to study. They ended up in Paris, France. That’s where I was born,” she said. Yasmine is an only child, telling me
“It didn’t make any difference to me. I mean you don’t miss what you don’t have. I had lots of friends, so it was okay being an only child.” Her parents separated when she was two years old.
“My father went back to Cameroon and my mother came back to Canada. I went to Cameroon with my father,” said Yasmine. She lived with her father until the age of six.
“My mother thought it was time I came to live with her. She had moved to Montreal, and we lived there for a while, before going to Ontario. That’s where I learned to speak English. I had been speaking only french before living there. Moving around meant I missed my friends, but it didn’t take me long to make new ones,” she said.
Yasmine and her mother came to Vancouver when she was ten years old.
“I went to a public Francophone school in Kitsilano. I’m fluent in French and English now, but here in Vancouver I speak more English than French,” she told me. I asked Yasmine if there was anything that she did in school that stood out for her, or interested her still.
“Well, I liked writing. That’s why when you came over and told me you are a writer, I thought that was cool. I started writing when I was in Grade five. I like to write short stories and poems. I write a lot of things for my friends,” she said. Yasmine is going to school part-time.
“I’m going to Langara College just now, taking Creative Writing. I’d like to go on to get my Associates degree in Communications,” said Yasmine.
“Right now I’m working two part time jobs as well. I need to be making money to pay the bills and I’m saving for school.”
Surrounded with friends who are artists, actors and writers, Yasmine would like one day to form a production company.
“I’d like to be able to work with people I know. They’re mostly all artists, and it would be great to be able to hire people I know and get them work,” she said. I asked Yasmine what she wanted to do, once she has completed all her schooling.
“I want to work in television, as a writer. I don’t have any particular area that I’m aiming for. Comedy, a series or movies. I just want to be working as a writer. I tend to think of and look at daily life as a television show. The beauty of fiction is that it heightens and highlights the beautiful moments of human life.” #notastranger