They were dressed in fatigues. Three men and one woman chatted casually while their bags were checked in the Military Personnel Line at Will Rogers Airport. The private bringing up the rear was short; his dark buzz cut looked nice against his brown skin, and his posture was more swagger than resolute. The third in line was digging into her bag. My eyebrows raised when, from the depths of all manner of military supplies came a laminated zebra print bag trimmed in hot pink. She found what she was looking for, zipped the zebra print, then zipped the duffle.
When she stood up, my eye immediately focused on two small braids, one at either side of her face, approximately ½” in width, pulled up with the rest of her hair into a bun. The interaction between she and the other three was one of camaraderie. In fact, had I not seen the braids and bun, I’m not sure I would have noticed there were two sexes represented in the line for deployment.
She made a joke, walked through the metal detector, and then she and her zebra print bag were gone. Continue reading People to People in China: “Departure”