Three of us sat comfortably beneath the old bookshop among tattered tables and chairs, a retired American and two moms from the Sudan. I skipped across the basement floor to explain what it meant to miss a beat. They laughed uproariously. They understood. Laughter brings relief; camaraderie satisfies. We counted, subtracted, added, and took the train to various parts of the city to learn how to use metropolitan mass transit schedules. Together, we were not strangers in a strange land; we were co-conspirators in enculturation.