By Esmeralda Santiago
“…On the way home Mami kept asking what had happened, and I kept mumbling, “Nothing. Nothing happened,” ashamed that, after all the hours of practice with Mrs. Johnson, Mr. Barone, and Mr. Gatti, after the expense of new clothes and shoes, after Mami had to take a day off from work to take me into Manhattan, after all that, I had failed the audition and would never, ever, get out of Brooklyn. …”
Over the past year I wondered why there was never a Latin American Section in bookstores. I love reading and decided to start reading Spanish authors. But where to find them? I subscribed to Latina.com, a magazine that also has a website with good reads. On occasion they post their top 10 books to read for the summer and I finally got the push I needed to start on my quest.
Esmeralda paints a beautiful picture of the role of the mother in When I Was Puerto Rican: A Memoir. I’d like to think that her mami’s strong spirit got rubbed off on Esmeralda; molding her into the young strong girl who has a happy ending. In this life we need more happy endings. To know that despite everything that comes our way, the worst in life is only temporary and can change in the blink of an eye. Those changes are a result of the things that WE DECIDE to change.
Keep that in mind on this lovely Saturday morning