This is a picture that has Obama and somebody who is clapping for him. Also, there is someone who is not paying attention to him. Personally, I think it is very difficult to be the president. Nonetheless, he is doing it. I admire him more than any other previous U.S. president. I also admired Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton. He was a very good president. After his term, he left the country very rich. Then came George Bush, and he spent all the money and transferred all his problems to this guy, Obama.
Security and authority
Why am I here?...It’s because at my age in Mexico it’s a lot more difficult to find a job because there is a lot of youth. And here even if I am old, maybe not full time but you can still work. In Mexico if you go to look for a job and one is younger than me the other person is the one who is going to get the job. Here it is true as well but less.
In Mexico, I only did elementary school. I came here and I didn’t know what was going to happen here. I had no idea they spoke another language. That was the first thing that impacted me, the way of life… it’s very different. But I liked it, I liked the way of life, so that’s why I stayed.
En México sólo hice la escuela primaria. Vine aquí y no sabía qué iba a pasar aquí, no sabía que se hablaba otro idioma. Eso fue lo primero que me impactó, la forma de vida, que es muy diferente. Pero me gustó, me gustó esa forma de vida, y por eso me quedé.
What I want to say with this picture is that here in the United States I learned that there are laws that are clear. If you break the law, you have to pay. This is a sign when you get on the light rail, and if they catch you without having paid the ticket it’s $125 fine. There is no way out of it. I like that it works this way not just for me but for everybody.
All along the wall on the other side they have strong lights that illuminate everything. This picture is around midnight and they still have all those lights on, so it looks like daylight. That means we cannot cross at night because it is just as if it was during the day.
A todo lo largo del muro, al otro lado, tienen luces muy fuertes que iluminan todo. Esta foto es hacia media noche, y todavía tienen esas luces, así que parece que fuera de día. Eso quiere decir que no podemos cruzar de noche porque es como si fuera de día.
This is where I reached the wall. This was the first time I touched it.
I left home with the vision of getting to the U.S. and when I got to the wall I just wanted to cross it over and jump over right away and stop thinking that I was on this side. There is a border patrol car right there at about a hundred meters and they’re watching the whole time. But I felt really good to be there, I even said I’m going to take a picture of myself here by the wall and the desert is in the background.
What do you fear of crossing over?
Oh, it’s really the thieves and the gangs. That’s what we’re afraid of. It’s not so much the cold or the heat, it’s the crooks, the thieves… because we can fight against nature, but to fight against the crooks and thieves is a lot more difficult. You can find water for the desert, but you can’t really do much when you have a band of crooks that comes on you with guns.
¿Qué te da miedo de cruzar?
I get up at 6 am, and I get the kids ready to go to school, and then my work starts at 7. I cook for the migrants who come to the Comedor. Sometimes it’s eggs with chili, or zucchinis, rice, beans, whatever there is to make, because everything here is from donations. I do this with love because everybody who comes here after being deported
reminds me of when I got here after being deported. I was one of them. I was and I still am a migrant here in Nogales, but I’m now established here. We now live here and work at the Comedor.
Armando: Well this is where I’m taking the kids to school. That is the routine that we have now. We get up at 6 or 6:15 in the morning, 6:20, and Mariana gets the kids ready, gets them ready for school and makes their lunch box. And I bring her, drop her off here at El Comedor, and I take the kids to school.
Do you take them in the car or do you walk with them?