A sign of beauty

I was thirteen, living in Africa, after having spent my formative years in America. “What is that on your teeth?” the villagers asked, staring at my mouth as I talked. “Braces!” I exclaimed proudly. “Bracelets? On your teeth? Why?” they asked. “To close the gap. Up, in front” I said pointing. They looked at me knowingly, shook their heads, and asked “Don’t you know a gap is a sign of beauty?”