American Gypsy: A Memoir by Oksana Marafioti

By Oksana Marafioti

A vibrant and humorous memoir approximately starting to be up Gypsy and turning into American

Fifteen-year-old Oksana Marafioti is a Gypsy. this suggests traveling with the kinfolk band from the Mongolian deserts to the Siberian tundra. It capability getting your hair reduce in “the Lioness.” It additionally capacity enduring sneering racism from each section of Soviet society. Her father is set that his women lead a greater, freer existence. In the US! additionally, he desires to play guitar with B. B. King. And therapy melanoma together with his own magnetism. All of this he confides to the lady on the American embassy, who inexplicably permits the kinfolk access. quickly they're dwelling at the sketchier aspect of Hollywood.

What little Oksana and her sister, Roxy, comprehend of the USA they’ve realized from MTV, subcategory George Michael. It doesn’t particularly arrange them for the demanding situations of immigration. Why are the glamorous Kraft Singles separately wrapped? Are the little soaps within the hotels particularly loose? How do you shield your great new boyfriend out of your opinionated father, who wishes you to marry decently, in the clan?

In this affecting, hilarious memoir, Marafioti cracks open the secretive international of the Roma and brings the absurdities, miscommunications, and unpredictable victories of the immigrant adventure to lifestyles. With unsentimentally excellent pitch, American Gypsy reveals how Marafioti adjusted to her new lifestyles in the United States, one slice of processed cheese at a time.

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Beer joints” is what I called them. There’d be a big fight start, and you had to have some protection. If you go up through there and you look, you’ll find out it’s still that way in them coal camps. You take a bunch of them old boys, they get paid maybe every two weeks, and you just happen to be in that place at the time, they’re going to have them a ball. First thing you know there’ll be a fight break out, and you’re right in the middle of it. You’re innocent as you can be, but not when them bottles come flying.

He kept us working every day. Well, Louise 38 Chapter 4 is sharp as a tack, and he taught her every tactic that he knew. All that time he was out hurt, he was teaching her. V The Grand Ole Opry I never wanted to come to the Opry. That was the last thing in my mind. I always worked up north or up the east coast from Knoxville, and I would have never come to this town with anybody else besides Flatt and Scruggs. I’ve seen guys who would give you their car to get on the Grand Ole Opry, just to say they’d been there one time.

We had three radio programs then, and we worked shows every night. They started me off at $35 a week, which was a gold mine for a kid. I didn’t own a car until I was thirty-three, but I’d walk around with a roll in my pocket. I played Dobro, guitar, mandolin, and some bass. Man, I even used to fiddle some. I got into a fiddle contest in Lexington, Kentucky, around 1949 using a borrowed fiddle. Old-time fiddlers Carl Story and Clayton “Pappy” McMichen were there, and I won it. I told Pappy that I didn’t feel right taking the prize as I knew I couldn’t beat him.

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