In reply to Christiane’s blog entitled “Our mixed Heritage”, I posted a comment along these following lines:

Mixed Heritage or Metissage is the term I like. As often in nature, cross- breeding enhances the subject, when it strengthens the positive and minimizes the negatives.I for one, looking back at my ancestry, can claim French creole, and Chinese blood, and am very proud of it. Apart from the genetic aspect, I am also proud of my cultural metissage: my mother born of the union of a china man, and a half mulatto, half Chinese. My mother was raised in an environment close to the Vadamotoo family, the “madras baptises” we could say. My mother, who lived in a poverty stricken family since  her early childhood,   managed to get a good education with the help of her neighbors, the then wealthy “Madras” family who considered her as a sister. My mother later married the son of a well- to- do Chinaman, after much persuasion and numerous objections & refusals from my father’s parents. Considered as a mixed marriage by my father’s parents, their union was not at all acceptable. There were not only racial differences; in the late 40’s there were concerns of social ranking, community peer pressures, economical consideration and reputation. If it were not for the perseverance and tenacity of my parents, my brothers & sisters and I would probably never found this world. In the final analysis, my parents had a very successful married life. My mother brought into my father’s family some other values and qualities which have enriched the more Chinese values of the latter. She had to learn the Chinese dialect to converse with her mother- in- law.  Almost nearing her death , my grandma sought forgiveness from my mother for her inappropriate opposition to the latter’s marriage and told everyone around her that she had a most kind, and considerate daughter- in- law. Success is always the result of drive, determination and efforts.


A few days have passed since. Thinking back, I said to myself  that we are blessed in Mauritius to benefit from the proximities of the different cultures and customs and to have first hand experiences of them. Stephen Covey, who I believe would be visiting Mauritius soon, taught me a lesson whilst talking of his habit 6: Synergize is valuing the differences. In fact the Covey leadership center had made a film on Mauritius to demonstrate the cultural differences which, when properly channeled could bring in growth and harmony beyond imagination: 1+1 = 3 or more. I thus conclude that the cultural “half blood” or shall I dare say “double blood” is better than each of the single elements that made up the metissage. Vive le metissage!