Sabrina Farmer, 20, Howard University student, and Andre Nevins, 20, Temple University student
Sabrina: We had to navigate living in this white section of London, and really discover black London on our own. Like, 'Yo, where can we get some oxtail?'
Andre: I was going on my own, hopping on the tube and making my way to South London to do simple things like get a haircut, find a brush, or get lotion that was actually good for my skin. When you'd get to these black spaces, it was really comforting. You feel like you have this cover over you and once you find that space where you’re comfortable, you can just take it off and let out a big sigh of relief.
Sabrina: I felt connected to the African diaspora. I'm African American, I have no current blood ties to anything that's not South Carolina. Being in Brixton, seeing so many African and Caribbean people and feeling welcomed, that was super nice. When I'm home, it's just my family. My family is very suburban Philadelphia. I felt like I was taken out of this American mindset and thrust into this space of global blackness. You have to recalibrate yourself as a child of Africa. Moments that brought me joy were when we dabbed in front of the Eiffel Tower or the Colosseum. Or any moment where we were unapologetically black in places that are super, super white.
Andre: It was weird, but it was awesome, like, ‘Wow, we don't care, because this is us.’ I don't know why in America I didn't feel that way. I don't know why I felt like I had to tone down, but abroad, this is me. This is what I do and how I act in daily life. Abroad, I never felt uncomfortable being black or being gay.
Sabrina: We were there when Kanye's Life of Pablo dropped. There were just these moments where you'd be standing there around these all these beautiful black people and a true celebration of not just blackness as a whole, but a very specific American blackness. I would just stand there thinking, 'I love who I am, I love my culture, I love what we're all doing in this moment right now in this grimy London club.'