What Happened to My Name?

This morning, after dropping off my kids at school, I stopped by Starbucks and ordered my regular tall nonfat latte.
When I pay cash or with a gift card, I always say I’m Eva. It started a long time ago, because clerks, cashiers, baristas called me Ezeline, Ezelina, Evla, Avarina, and even Beverly when I said Evelyne.
Sadly, I could have avoided this issue if I had paid attention to the question that had puzzled me when I went through my naturalization’s interview. Why didn’t I say yes to a new name? Why didn’t I understand that the immigration employee wanted to help me? He gave me a hint; he knew I would be in trouble with my first and last names that sound so French.
But because I had no idea I could, not only become American, but also get two brand new names, I declined the offer. A whole world of opportunities could have been mine. I could have chosen among so many easy American names nobody would have trouble with. More importantly, I could have chosen one first name I could pronounce.
First, I started to use Eve instead of Evelyne, but Eve became Eva so Eva it has been for a couple of years now.
But today, on a perfect California spring day, ordering my tall nonfat latte, I became, for the first time ever, Yvonne.
Yeah, Yvonne, written in black felt pen on my white Starbucks cup.
If I get it right, although I refused to change my name when I was naturalized, the Americans did change it anyway.
No offence to any Yvonne, but I’d rather be Evelyne again. Between two French names, I pick mine.

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