When, almost three years ago, I found out that my husband and I had to move to New York, I couldn’t believe it. It seemed like a sign of destiny to us. There is a common thread that ties us to the United States.
A week ago, I started talking to him about his new routine. He didn’t know what it was about, but I was very happy and impatient to see this day arrive. The day before, I told him that tomorrow would be a great day, not only for him, but for us. He gave me a smile. The next day, I woke him up early, gave him his bath, dressed him, and made him sit on the bed so I could talk to him. I blessed him and told him how happy and proud I am of him. My joy was immense because, for me, it was the beginning of a beautiful story: Learn, make friends, and converse.
There are days that we are in good humor; there are days that we have humor from hell. This week I traveled by car to work. I had time to see the landscapes. I love the feeling that comes from looking through the car window. I can’t imagine how blessed I am.
Swimming—I hadn’t heard that word for almost two decades. My family members and friends were prohibited from mentioning any water-related activity. It is unbelievable that a girl who lived near the beach wouldn’t allow this. How could this be? Very surprisingly, I was scared of the water. This brings up one unforgettable event.
Usually, I don’t like buying into unreasonable consumption. Since my husband and I moved from Korea to the U.S., I have stopped buying any decorations for our homes because it doesn’t help make the weight of our carriers lighter. When Christmas was coming, Americans started looking for a tree. The culture sounded cool, but, as always, I wouldn’t follow the vibe.
Since I came to this country, flat and round copper angels have been following me around. I call them angel dimes; they have been my emotional support. I don’t remember exactly the first day that I had my first encounter with one of these beautiful pieces of copper. All I know is that every time I find one, it is always on the reverse side.
For me, wearing shoes symbolizes the possibility of walking and beginning new adventures. Of course, we do not need to walk to do great things. Frida Kahlo, the famous Mexican painter, who could not walk for some time, wrote, “Pies, para que los quiero si tengo alas para volar?” (Feet, what do I need them for if I have wings to fly?) Indeed, we do not need feet to do great things.
It was a sunny and peaceful day in Washington, D.C. I was walking from the U.S. Department of State building to the hotel where I was staying. Suddenly, I heard someone calling my name, “Hey, Vusala!” I stood and tried to find where the sound was coming from. Then I heard my name again from very close to me. I was shocked. It was a surprise to me that someone recognized me in Washington, where I was visiting for the first time. I looked where the sound came from.
I like the view from my window. You can see pretty trees and the sun’s rays through the branches. You can hear the birds singing as they sit on the branches. It’s nice to see the nests that they build for their babies. I can also see the kids playing and walking their dogs and my neighbors jogging and working out.
Since I arrived in New York City, I have enjoyed having coffee outside. What a nice array of wonderful coffee places! My husband and I immediately embraced the NYC coffee culture. Every year, we would go to the New York Coffee Festival, and we would buy the new edition of The New York Coffee Guide. We were always strolling the city to discover a new coffee spot.
The house where I grew up was in an urban area, but it was a very large house with four rooms and a backyard that was also really large. My mom loved animals, but at one time, things got out of control.
Some like it, because it owns beauty. Some avoid it, because it is straightforward. Some even want to break it. I look in the mirror thousands of times before I go out. I adjust my makeup on my face so many times. Why can’t I get the look I want? This could ruin my whole new day. What you see in the mirror is your shadow.
I love Africa. I do not remember when our relationship was born. I grew up watching documentaries and reading encyclopedias. I viewed images of famine, Mandela free, and I was transported and dreamed, thanks to the magic of landscapes, colors, music, and chants. My native Mexico has some people with African origins, but we do not talk about it a lot. I was so happy to meet and learn more from the African people after my arrival in Paris.
When it appears that we are already on the trail that will eventually get to the farm, I open the car window, disregarding the flies that will enter the vehicle. I want to smell the green of the plants that only exist there, the smell of cow curd, the aroma of the rocks that appear …
At this moment, everybody knows what happened to Notre Dame de Paris. The Paris cathedral burned for 12 hours. American television followed each image for more than five hours. All the people around the world consider this event a tragedy, and it was one. I was shocked and saddened. I watched French and American television. …