Indian people and Indian culture are spread across the world. From Punjabi to Malayali, almost every culture leaves an impact on those who’ve experienced it.
Aparna Mulberry is one of them.
Born to a Chilean mother and an American father who met in India, Aparna moved to Kollam in Kerala when she was 3.
She did her schooling in Kollam, and lived in the Amritapuri Ashram with her parents. All this while, she embraced the Malayali culture and spoke fluent Malayalam.
She was 15, when her family moved to the US. It was a huge cultural shock for her. A Malayali at heart, she became a part of the Malayali community during her university years in the US and recently, she started an Instagram account where she posts videos in Malayalam to connect with the community.
The Instagram account that goes by the handle, Inverted Coconut, is a hit among people and has already gained 94.4k followers.
Aparna, who lives with her partner in a French village, talked to TNM about Kerala being her home.
Home is Kerala and I try to visit at least once in six months, at least before the pandemic. When I come there, I meet my friends. Their parents invite me home for Malayali food. I spend time by the beach, hearing the sound of the waves breaking. I grew up by the beach, so it is very special for me,
During her childhood, she was the only white student in her class in Kerala. Language played a crucial role in connecting her with everyone else.
In Kerala, I’m always viewed as an outsider until I speak the language; their hearts melt and they wholeheartedly accept me. The barriers of culture can be diminished once you learn the language. Kerala is warm and giving, in contrast to the US.
You can follow her here.