Identity, culture, and migration

Chavalo: I'm Here in the Meantime

sleeping area

So how do you feel about spending the night in this place that is not your home?

Well, once you’re finally there you’re okay, you relax because you’re safe, it’s in a safe place and nobody can hurt you. And then you can sleep, okay. The only thing is if you try to make noise or start a problem they kick you out.

How do you feel that this is your home these days?

Chavalo: The Room with the Chapel


Now the next ones are when we got in. That is the room with the chapel, with the chairs, so that’s where we go in and wait. That’s where we just gather and wait here before going to the dorms. So here, in the next pictures we will see more. In this one you don’t see much but on the next ones you can see there’s more people and that’s where we gather and sit and wait. So, this is the place where we gather. We take our shoelaces and our belt off and we give them to the person in charge and we sit and wait so here, this is the chapel.

Chavalo: A Dark Hall

dark, blurry hallway

This is the hall of the shelter. It is dark, like the moment we are in now: narrow and kind of dark, and of out of focus, and we don’t know exactly where to go. It is a critical moment in life that is blurry, like this picture is blurry.

Este es el pasillo del albergue. Está oscuro, como es el momento que estamos viviendo ahora. Es angosto y un poco oscuro, y está borroso, y no sabemos exactamente a dónde ir. Es un momento crítico en la vida que está borroso, como esta foto está borrosa.

Chavalo: Tears or Sweat?

man with blurred out face

Is that crying or sweat?

Not, it’s just that he put water over his head. There are these that don’t have a shirt. Oh they were gonna take a shower, so they were getting ready for their shower. 

So, is it difficult to find a place to shower? 

Yes, it’s very difficult. Not every place has a place to shower. And there, even you have to wait and line up and there’s ten or twelve people waiting and you have to. And it’s really cold water, not like the weather that we have that is really warm. Here it’s really cold in the morning.

Chavalo: A Nice Smile

man posing for camera

And this next one?

Oh, this is me. You see this is me. Yes, I asked my friends to take a picture of me.

So where are you?

Still in the same place.

So how do you feel about taking pictures of your friend?

Oh it’s really good. [Laughter]

So if you look at yourself in the picture, this is you now, how does it feel is that you? Do you feel like that? So how do you feel about being here?