That Day of My Childhood – Yemisrach Reta

I always thank that day, what day? It was the day I joined Sunday School. My brother was 12 years old, and he is 6 years older than me. That day was Sunday morning while he asked me to go to the church with him. I was very excited to hear that because he was a Sunday School student, so he went by himself before. Even if I wanted to go and sing the spiritual songs with him, I always went to church with my grandma and waited for her until she finished her prayers. I sat with her to hear preachers in got sleepy and bored while they preached for adults. However, that day, he told me that the Sunday School leaders asked the members to invite their friends and siblings. For all that, that day made my childhood a very interesting time and it is a milestone for my present and future time to give a service for the church as a member of Sunday School student.

That day, after the program completed, the leader asked the newcomers to register to learn Bible and prayer, and to serve Sunday School. At that time, I was so happy and I registered to be a member. Day by day, I was practicing every activity that the Sunday school students were doing, and I was wishing every day to be Sunday to go to Sunday School and to sing on the stage and learn the stories from the Bible. When I was at home, I was always listened and sang with spiritual singers on DVD player. Throughout practicing, my voice was going smooth and attractive to the listener, so the leader chose me to sing on microphone. I was so excited when I thought of singing in front of my friends on microphone. When I grew up, my activities were increasing. Teaching girls the Bible, teaching boys and girls the spiritual songs and showing them how to use Orthodox musical instruments, and also leading them while they were singing during religious holydays was all my activities. On our holydays, when I finished singing in the microphone, the old people were blessing me, and some kissed my chick and some traditionally kissed my shoulders. I was so glad at that time in every activity of our church. Even, in school my classmates were usually asking me to sing in our break time, and I have never said no.

In a like manner, there are many Ethiopian Orthodox Churches here in Colorado. Every Sunday in the morning, I go to the St Trinity Church which is nearest to my home. As a matter of fact, at this time, I am very busy, so I cannot serve a church just like before. Even if I work a part time job, I have a lot of activities to do in my home. Such as, taking care of my daughter and managing our home. Additionally, there are many Ethiopian in my surrounding, so I have a little social life with them. Furthermore, going school are making me very busy because I am taking full course load. Actually, when I go to the church on Sunday, I sing spiritual songs with Sunday School students and listen preaches as much as I am possible to do not forget the Holly Bible and the spiritual songs.

When I think about my future, I always remember my childhood how I did my responsibilities as a Sunday School member, so I really wish to serve our church by my talent that God has gave me. Once I finished the ESL and LPN courses, with no doubt, I will have a little free time to study the spiritual songs and the Bible with the Sunday School students. Moreover, in the future, if I have a little free time, I want to learn the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido language (Geez). After that, I will teach Geez for the kids of Sunday School.

To sum up, I cannot forget that day my brother took me to Sunday School, and being a part of it in my childhood goes through my life, and will continue up to the end of my life. Although, now, I am busy in going school, taking care of my daughter, and working, I cannot participate in Sunday School even if there are many Orthodox Church in Colorado. However, I always wish to be a part of Sunday School and start serving the Church in the near future. Hopefully, in the will of God, I will serve him again.

I always thank that day, what day? It was the day I joined Sunday School. My brother was 12 years old, and he is 6 years older than me. That day was Sunday morning while he asked me to go to the church with him. I was very excited to hear that because he was a Sunday School student, so he went by himself before. Even if I wanted to go and sing the spiritual songs with him, I always went to church with my grandma and waited for her until she finished her prayers. I sat with her to hear preachers in got sleepy and bored while they preached for adults. However, that day, he told me that the Sunday School leaders asked the members to invite their friends and siblings. For all that, that day made my childhood a very interesting time and it is a milestone for my present and future time to give a service for the church as a member of Sunday School student. That day, after the program completed, the leader asked the newcomers to register to learn Bible and prayer, and to serve Sunday School. At that time, I was so happy and I registered to be a member. Day by day, I was practicing every activity that the Sunday school students were doing, and I was wishing every day to be Sunday to go to Sunday School and to sing on the stage and learn the stories from the Bible. When I was at home, I was always listened and sang with spiritual singers on DVD player. Throughout practicing, my voice was going smooth and attractive to the listener, so the leader chose me to sing on microphone. I was so excited when I thought of singing in front of my friends on microphone. When I grew up, my activities were increasing. Teaching girls the Bible, teaching boys and girls the spiritual songs and showing them how to use Orthodox musical instruments, and also leading them while they were singing during religious holydays was all my activities. On our holydays, when I finished singing in the microphone, the old people were blessing me, and some kissed my chick and some traditionally kissed my shoulders. I was so glad at that time in every activity of our church. Even, in school my classmates were usually asking me to sing in our break time, and I have never said no. In a like manner, there are many Ethiopian Orthodox Churches here in Colorado. Every Sunday in the morning, I go to the St Trinity Church which is nearest to my home. As a matter of fact, at this time, I am very busy, so I cannot serve a church just like before. Even if I work a part time job, I have a lot of activities to do in my home. Such as, taking care of my daughter and managing our home. Additionally, there are many Ethiopian in my surrounding, so I have a little social life with them. Furthermore, going school are making me very busy because I am taking full course load. Actually, when I go to the church on Sunday, I sing spiritual songs with Sunday School students and listen preaches as much as I am possible to do not forget the Holly Bible and the spiritual songs. When I think about my future, I always remember my childhood how I did my responsibilities as a Sunday School member, so I really wish to serve our church by my talent that God has gave me. Once I finished the ESL and LPN courses, with no doubt, I will have a little free time to study the spiritual songs and the Bible with the Sunday School students. Moreover, in the future, if I have a little free time, I want to learn the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido language (Geez). After that, I will teach Geez for the kids of Sunday School. To sum up, I cannot forget that day my brother took me to Sunday School, and being a part of it in my childhood goes through my life, and will continue up to the end of my life. Although, now, I am busy in going school, taking care of my daughter, and working, I cannot participate in Sunday School even if there are many Orthodox Church in Colorado. However, I always wish to be a part of Sunday School and start serving the Church in the near future. Hopefully, in the will of God, I will serve him again.

Yesenia, An American Mexican Immigrant

My name is Yesenia Martinez, I was born in Denver, Colorado. I am 20 years old. My story began hard when I born and my father was in prison. My mother had to take care of me and live with my father’s family. They weren’t nice with her. She was a young and strong women, but she didn’t want to leave my dad. My father’s family gave her the opportunity to be free of me and run way. She decided to stay with me because how she told them one day “ She is mine and I will never leave her”. My dad was in prison for 2 years. Those two years were so hard for my mom because my father’s family didn’t want her. She supported a bad treat because she loved my dad and didn’t want me to grow up without my dad. Probably it was a bad decision but it was her decision and nobody couldn’t change it. I won’t say a lot details because this is something that I don’t want to remember, but I will say that she had some people to help her a lot. It wasn’t easy to live in a different country where you do not know the language or even be legal.

This something the should change, a lot of immigrants come to US everyday. They are looking for a new life and the opportunities that this country offer to them is going back to their country. Not all people come to do bad things, most of them just want to work and get a better life. For example part of my family live in Denver and they came and left their home just because in Mexico the possibility to get a better life it’s so small. Mexico is a beautiful country but the problem is that this country has a bad government that takes bad decisions to affect the level of life of all Mexicans. Things like violence, crimes, insecure, bad education and not enough jobs make Mexicans to decide to find another place to live.

Finally, when my father got of out of prison, he was reported to go back to Mexico and my mom followed him and took me with them. I was 2 years old when I went to live in Mexico. I grew up in a ranch. When I was 3 years old my parents gave me my sister and a year later my brother came too. The life in a ranch is simple and quiet, it doesn’t have a lot things to do.

My father used to work so early and into the night. His job was constantly changing. He worked in the farm or taking care of animals. His job was always outside. My mom was always working at home. She cooked, cleaned and talked care of me, my sister and brother. We lived in my father’s parent’s house. My grandmother was so lovely and my grandfather was a hard man to talk with, but I know that he loved us too. I was going to school when I met one person who became my best friend. I used to play with her almost every day. I remember how I played for hours without toys and just using my imagination to become some old stuff into the best toys ever. I loved to ride my bike in the sunny days. I walked to beautiful places. I relaxed looking at the sky and I liked to play in the evenings with my friends and talk about horror stories that did not let me sleep in the night. My mom and dad loved me a lot and my life was fine.

This sound like a normal lifestyle, but what made me grew up quickly and learn that life wasn’t easy? It was when I started to see the real world. My father drunk a lot and my mom and him fought for it. He was a different person with all the alcohol in his body and I cried when he becomes in this another person, always saying bad words to my mom, always spending his money, always going home so late and my mom praying and crying for him. Sometimes when my father came drunk, I hide myself from him because was afraid of him. I did not like that and I tried to explain him what everybody felt seeing him acting like that. He never heard me. He started with economic problems, but my mom never leave him. When I saw this life I thought “ I will never marriage “. Parents can have a big impact in the way the kids can think. I am thankful with all my parents for all they gave me, either if it was too much love or bad memories. Everything had a purpose in my life.

Through the years were passing, I was looking the style life of the people around me. What I discovered was that all this people had a similar lifes. They did not go school and were working so hard in farms and stuff like that. They did not have dreams or goals. Man were looking for a wife to take care of them since they work. Women were looking for a husband to bring all necessary for home since they take care of them and have kids.

You can change yourself and do not have the life that others have. Always research for your happiness and do not follow to other people life style. Dreams are so powerful and are fuel to you in bad situation. Do not stop yourself and you will see what can you do and get.

 

I wanted to be different and have a good life. What was my solution? What could make a difference? How I could change my life? I start to dream and got golds. What was the correct way to follow? I decided that school could change my destiny. I was trying to always be the best students of my classes and I got a lot diplomas that in Mexico is the way that they recognize that you are a good student. I used to study so hard and didn’t have a lot friends. I was so shy and it was difficult for me to talk or even make friends. I was kind of weird. The other kids were not cool with me, and it did not help me to be more expressed. I decided that I did not need friends and that school was the most important thing for me, but I got a best friend and she was so funny, nice and weird like me. We had a lot things in common and she was a support for me. Now I can say that friends are that family that you can choose and they can help you a lot, even if they do not know your problems and make you laugh or even tell you that something is wrong. All this little things can make a big difference in your heart. They can become in someone special for you. The secret is find the correct people like my friend, she is beautiful outside, but the most important thing is how beautiful is she inside, and that’s what I see before someone became my friend.

Do not forget how do you feel when your grades are just A and B. It can make you feel proud of yourself and when you see all people who support you, it is like this feeling that you want to be better and better. School is the stairs that can help you to research your dreams.

Finally, I was 15 years old and I had to leave my parent and live in the city with my mom’s parents because it was the only way to go to high school. I was scared and sad because it was the first time that I was separate from my family. I am happy because when my father told me “ if you want study tell me now”, my answer was “YES”. It was one of the best decision of my life.

I started the high school and I was lucky because two of my friends from my old school went to the same classes that me. Everything was new for me. The school was big and I had like 7 different teachers the gave me a lot of homework and made me learn new things like how to use a computer. Yes, it’s true that when I was fifteen I did not know how to use a compute, but it was because my old school was so small and we didn’t have a lot stuff to learn or use.

Sometimes the life give you opportunities that can look impossible to do, but you may be interested in how you can find the way to take the opportunity and change your future like I did when I leave my home.

Well finally everything was going good and it learned a lot. When my first semester was done, I got good grades and I was feeling comfortable because I did something good for my future, but life had another lesson for me.

Everything changed when my father sent me to California to live with an aunt. I was afraid, because go to another country when you do not know the language or the culture was something really important. I went to California and was in high school for like 3 months. I did not speak English or knew someone. I had to work double to get an excellent grades, but all my effort gave me a reward. What is the mean of it? It is that if you really want something, you can have it, but it won’t be easy. Another thing is to have an open mind to learn something new.

The saddest thing was when my aunt sent me to Mexico and I lost a whole year!!! I was so hungry and sad, but I decided to restart the high school in Mexico and still working hard like I was doing it for all my life. Now I was 17 years old. In Mexico I was in high school and I was going to another school in the evenings about English. I should put more attention in learning English, but I had to much to do. That is why I say learn everything that you can because you do not know how your life can change. I did not know that was going to live in US and learn English. Take the opportunity that looks scared and probably you can feel like you are not enough strong to take can change your life like it happen with me.

After two years in Mexico I went to Denver with my uncle, it was just for vacations. One of my mom’s friend offered me to live with her and study here. I stayed. Everything was good, but someday she told me to go back to Mexico after I had a month in school. It made me feel that I took a bad decision and I was sad for that, but my uncle changed it. He and his wife opened their house’s door for me. This little thing made a big change in me. They gave me the opportunity to be more.

I was attending to school, I got a job in the weekends. So it means that I was in school 5 days and working 3 days. I started to pay rent and learn how hard was to get you own money. It was another lessons for me. My uncle’s family were so nice and helpful in everything. Living with them I found myself and started to be my real me. It sounds like I become in another person, well not that all. I stopped to be shy, and did more talk. I started to learn English and got new experiences.

Probably for some people this is not important, but for me the most important thing in my life was when one of aunts took me to church. In there I found my biggest support, God. I learned from the Bible how everything was important for each person and that is what make us differents and specials. This thing made me change and become smarter.

I graduated from high school with honors. I did not start college into I bought a car. On the began of 2016, I had a car, a good job, I got God in my heart and great people around me.       Finally I started the college at the Community College of Aurora. This is just the beginning of my career and I know how school can be good for you. I have a long way in front.

Why do I decided to share my story of life? It was because I want to see another people growing up and I wanted to help others with my life as an example of successful. I had more to say but for now is good with this.

I had a bad situation and experience that could made me lost my dreams and probably do not get my goals. I know that other people had a harder life than mine, but that’s why I think that every single experience is something that make you be different and better, that is the way that God teach us. Do not let something break your soul. You can be different and the rewards will come after a big effort. Life is not easy and it requires to be strong. Things like values, respect each other and try to be a good person are fuel for became a strong and nice person at all the time. Be different and change the world is my principal dream.

My name is Yesenia Martinez, I am 20 years old and my this is just the beginning of my story.

My name is Yesenia Martinez, I was born in Denver, Colorado. I am 20 years old. My story began hard when I born and my father was in prison. My mother had to take care of me and live with my father’s family. They weren’t nice with her. She was a young and strong women, but she didn’t want to leave my dad. My father’s family gave her the opportunity to be free of me and run way. She decided to stay with me because how she told them one day “ She is mine and I will never leave her”. My dad was in prison for 2 years. Those two years were so hard for my mom because my father’s family didn’t want her. She supported a bad treat because she loved my dad and didn’t want me to grow up without my dad. Probably it was a bad decision but it was her decision and nobody couldn’t change it. I won’t say a lot details because this is something that I don’t want to remember, but I will say that she had some people to help her a lot. It wasn’t easy to live in a different country where you do not know the language or even be legal. This something the should change, a lot of immigrants come to US everyday. They are looking for a new life and the opportunities that this country offer to them is going back to their country. Not all people come to do bad things, most of them just want to work and get a better life. For example part of my family live in Denver and they came and left their home just because in Mexico the possibility to get a better life it’s so small. Mexico is a beautiful country but the problem is that this country has a bad government that takes bad decisions to affect the level of life of all Mexicans. Things like violence, crimes, insecure, bad education and not enough jobs make Mexicans to decide to find another place to live. Finally, when my father got of out of prison, he was reported to go back to Mexico and my mom followed him and took me with them. I was 2 years old when I went to live in Mexico. I grew up in a ranch. When I was 3 years old my parents gave me my sister and a year later my brother came too. The life in a ranch is simple and quiet, it doesn’t have a lot things to do. My father used to work so early and into the night. His job was constantly changing. He worked in the farm or taking care of animals. His job was always outside. My mom was always working at home. She cooked, cleaned and talked care of me, my sister and brother. We lived in my father’s parent’s house. My grandmother was so lovely and my grandfather was a hard man to talk with, but I know that he loved us too. I was going to school when I met one person who became my best friend. I used to play with her almost every day. I remember how I played for hours without toys and just using my imagination to become some old stuff into the best toys ever. I loved to ride my bike in the sunny days. I walked to beautiful places. I relaxed looking at the sky and I liked to play in the evenings with my friends and talk about horror stories that did not let me sleep in the night. My mom and dad loved me a lot and my life was fine. This sound like a normal lifestyle, but what made me grew up quickly and learn that life wasn’t easy? It was when I started to see the real world. My father drunk a lot and my mom and him fought for it. He was a different person with all the alcohol in his body and I cried when he becomes in this another person, always saying bad words to my mom, always spending his money, always going home so late and my mom praying and crying for him. Sometimes when my father came drunk, I hide myself from him because was afraid of him. I did not like that and I tried to explain him what everybody felt seeing him acting like that. He never heard me. He started with economic problems, but my mom never leave him. When I saw this life I thought “ I will never marriage “. Parents can have a big impact in the way the kids can think. I am thankful with all my parents for all they gave me, either if it was too much love or bad memories. Everything had a purpose in my life. Through the years were passing, I was looking the style life of the people around me. What I discovered was that all this people had a similar lifes. They did not go school and were working so hard in farms and stuff like that. They did not have dreams or goals. Man were looking for a wife to take care of them since they work. Women were looking for a husband to bring all necessary for home since they take care of them and have kids. You can change yourself and do not have the life that others have. Always research for your happiness and do not follow to other people life style. Dreams are so powerful and are fuel to you in bad situation. Do not stop yourself and you will see what can you do and get. I wanted to be different and have a good life. What was my solution? What could make a difference? How I could change my life? I start to dream and got golds. What was the correct way to follow? I decided that school could change my destiny. I was trying to always be the best students of my classes and I got a lot diplomas that in Mexico is the way that they recognize that you are a good student. I used to study so hard and didn’t have a lot friends. I was so shy and it was difficult for me to talk or even make friends. I was kind of weird. The other kids were not cool with me, and it did not help me to be more expressed. I decided that I did not need friends and that school was the most important thing for me, but I got a best friend and she was so funny, nice and weird like me. We had a lot things in common and she was a support for me. Now I can say that friends are that family that you can choose and they can help you a lot, even if they do not know your problems and make you laugh or even tell you that something is wrong. All this little things can make a big difference in your heart. They can become in someone special for you. The secret is find the correct people like my friend, she is beautiful outside, but the most important thing is how beautiful is she inside, and that’s what I see before someone became my friend. Do not forget how do you feel when your grades are just A and B. It can make you feel proud of yourself and when you see all people who support you, it is like this feeling that you want to be better and better. School is the stairs that can help you to research your dreams. Finally, I was 15 years old and I had to leave my parent and live in the city with my mom’s parents because it was the only way to go to high school. I was scared and sad because it was the first time that I was separate from my family. I am happy because when my father told me “ if you want study tell me now”, my answer was “YES”. It was one of the best decision of my life. I started the high school and I was lucky because two of my friends from my old school went to the same classes that me. Everything was new for me. The school was big and I had like 7 different teachers the gave me a lot of homework and made me learn new things like how to use a computer. Yes, it’s true that when I was fifteen I did not know how to use a compute, but it was because my old school was so small and we didn’t have a lot stuff to learn or use. Sometimes the life give you opportunities that can look impossible to do, but you may be interested in how you can find the way to take the opportunity and change your future like I did when I leave my home. Well finally everything was going good and it learned a lot. When my first semester was done, I got good grades and I was feeling comfortable because I did something good for my future, but life had another lesson for me. Everything changed when my father sent me to California to live with an aunt. I was afraid, because go to another country when you do not know the language or the culture was something really important. I went to California and was in high school for like 3 months. I did not speak English or knew someone. I had to work double to get an excellent grades, but all my effort gave me a reward. What is the mean of it? It is that if you really want something, you can have it, but it won’t be easy. Another thing is to have an open mind to learn something new. The saddest thing was when my aunt sent me to Mexico and I lost a whole year!!! I was so hungry and sad, but I decided to restart the high school in Mexico and still working hard like I was doing it for all my life. Now I was 17 years old. In Mexico I was in high school and I was going to another school in the evenings about English. I should put more attention in learning English, but I had to much to do. That is why I say learn everything that you can because you do not know how your life can change. I did not know that was going to live in US and learn English. Take the opportunity that looks scared and probably you can feel like you are not enough strong to take can change your life like it happen with me. After two years in Mexico I went to Denver with my uncle, it was just for vacations. One of my mom’s friend offered me to live with her and study here. I stayed. Everything was good, but someday she told me to go back to Mexico after I had a month in school. It made me feel that I took a bad decision and I was sad for that, but my uncle changed it. He and his wife opened their house’s door for me. This little thing made a big change in me. They gave me the opportunity to be more. I was attending to school, I got a job in the weekends. So it means that I was in school 5 days and working 3 days. I started to pay rent and learn how hard was to get you own money. It was another lessons for me. My uncle’s family were so nice and helpful in everything. Living with them I found myself and started to be my real me. It sounds like I become in another person, well not that all. I stopped to be shy, and did more talk. I started to learn English and got new experiences. Probably for some people this is not important, but for me the most important thing in my life was when one of aunts took me to church. In there I found my biggest support, God. I learned from the Bible how everything was important for each person and that is what make us differents and specials. This thing made me change and become smarter. I graduated from high school with honors. I did not start college into I bought a car. On the began of 2016, I had a car, a good job, I got God in my heart and great people around me. Finally I started the college at the Community College of Aurora. This is just the beginning of my career and I know how school can be good for you. I have a long way in front. Why do I decided to share my story of life? It was because I want to see another people growing up and I wanted to help others with my life as an example of successful. I had more to say but for now is good with this. I had a bad situation and experience that could made me lost my dreams and probably do not get my goals. I know that other people had a harder life than mine, but that’s why I think that every single experience is something that make you be different and better, that is the way that God teach us. Do not let something break your soul. You can be different and the rewards will come after a big effort. Life is not easy and it requires to be strong. Things like values, respect each other and try to be a good person are fuel for became a strong and nice person at all the time. Be different and change the world is my principal dream. My name is Yesenia Martinez, I am 20 years old and my this is just the beginning of my story.

 

 

Thank You America – Xiaoyong Olsen

More than 40 years ago one morning in a small village in Northwest China, as usual a little girl went to her neighbour’s house to chat with her 60 years old friend. She told her friend that one day when she grew up she would take her to America, Great Britain… This scene had been recalled several times after the little grew up. That little girl was me, many years later I thought hard to try to figure out what gave me the clue that the western world like America was a nicer place. It was a time with no T.V. around. Radio was the only media for the people to know anything about the world outside. But what was broadcasting on the radio at that time was Chinese people mostly about the great Chinese communist party and their great leaders. All movies at that time would have been filtered to avoid the bad contents of western countries to negatively affect Chinese people. It must be from the few western movies I watched at that time telling me something different.

 

The Chinese leaders in early 1980’s decided to open the country’s door to foreign investments. After that Chinese people began to see more and learn more about the world outside of China. Starting from my elementary school years, I could hear people talking about somebody they knew successfully going to America to continue their education, but that was not something that normal Chinese like me could reach. I went to Shanghai for college, and after that I started working there. China’s friendly policy toward foreign investments and it’s cheap labor did attract lots foreign investments from Asia, Europe and North America. Those western investments provided lots of good career opportunities for young Chinese at that time. American companies were on the top of the list that young Chinese want to work for. Working in an American company was something a young Chinese could be proud of at that time, it could represent his/her high professional skills. I worked as a contract for Intel Shanghai for about two years. I could feel the love those employees in Intel Shanghai show to the company and to the American culture. Once before an American supervisor moved back to the U.S, the people in that department start being afraid that the Chinese management style would take over.” I started thinking, “There must be something really good these Americans bring, but besides the competitive salary, what makes American culture so attractive? How is it?”.

 

After many years hard working, I bought my own condo in Shanghai. I was almost 30 years old. It was good to see that how fast the city I was living was growing and changing. The future for young Chinese was not dim and gray any more, bright future was so close to us if we work hard and if we are smart enough. One day my friend and I talked about noticing people around us moving to U.S. I said, “ I may want to do that 10 years ago, but now there are enough opportunities for us to go up and get better in our home country. It is not worth to go to another country experience discrimination again; I still remember when I was in college in early 1990’s, one day I spoke Mandarin in a bus then everybody in the bus turned to look at me. That made me think I did something so bad, actually it was just because they found someone who didn’t their dialect, they looked down on me. I don’t want to experience such discrimination again.”

 

Years later, I met my future husband. I moved to U.S. and get married. After our first child was born, I started reading to her like the book we got from Swedish hospital taught, “Never too early to read and never too late to read”. We got lots of children books from yard sale, libraries. I was afraid of driving at that time and so we stuck in the house reading hours and hours each day .We had read hundreds of books together before my daughter started going to kindergarten. There are always so many children books here, for all different age groups, fairy tales old or new, rhymes, histories, science and about almost everything you can think of ; you will always find one there fits your need. I teased about my reading experience these years,” that I have made up all the reading I missed when I was little”. Thank you America for the rich sources for the people who wants to learn. In the past when talking about my failed college education, I teased that because I didn’t have a solid early childhood education; I had only totally two books before I started going to school at age seven, and that was how much reading I had at that time. For lots of reasons, there was no resources for us in China at that time. The Chinese government used to have a very strict control over media to stop its own people from thinking differently with its own thinking. The control is still there today but it’s much more loose now. It’s a different picture here in U.S., there are open sources in the libraries easily reach to the public, in the radio or from T.V. You will always be able to hear two parties that hold totally different opinions discussing or arguing, instead of only opinion from one side is allowed on the media.

 

I started driving after my daughter turned four. I started taking her to learn swimming, taking gym class… That’s the real start for me to connect with the real America world. Before that my exposure to this world was limited to our small church, and our family mostly. Surprisingly I meet so many friendly American people, we have so many good conversations; they don’t mind my broken English; they don’t try to show their super over someone who is from another country and who can’t speak English well.  In the past in China I met so many people who try to take any opportunities to push you down to bolster themselves. There are so many social classes in China. It seems that the people at the bottom will hardly get any respect, even if  their failure is caused by the something else instead their own fault. I feel so sad about that situation. Most Chinese people work hard to try to get to the higher level of that society to gain respect and more fairness. People there can be discriminated by what type of work they do, how much money they made, which region are they from. It’s different from what I have seen here and hard working people are rewarded despite what jobs they do; my old neighbor is a plumber, he and his nurse wife happily support a family of six.   Thank you America for being friendly, open, respectfulness, and fairness.

There are so much to express my thankfulness to this great country. I remember after my manager knew that I was going to U.S. he told me told me,” America is a good country, it’s better than here”. At that time I may not totally understand what did he mean and I didn’t know what in U.S could attract people from all over the world to come. After ten years having been living here, the friendly people, the fairness and the opportunities for all hard working people taught me what made this country so great. I know a lady and she is from Jordan, she is in her process to be trained to a dentist, told me, “ the political system here is the best in the world, there is corruption here too, but comparably it’s much better than other countries.” I totally agree with her. I have a friend from Poland, days ago she told me that only in this country you would see people from all over the world can live peacefully joyfully together. I agree. I know there’s still so much for me to know about this great country. God bless America!

 

More than 40 years ago one morning in a small village in Northwest China, as usual a little girl went to her neighbour’s house to chat with her 60 years old friend. She told her friend that one day when she grew up she would take her to America, Great Britain… This scene had been recalled several times after the little grew up. That little girl was me, many years later I thought hard to try to figure out what gave me the clue that the western world like America was a nicer place. It was a time with no T.V. around. Radio was the only media for the people to know anything about the world outside. But what was broadcasting on the radio at that time was Chinese people mostly about the great Chinese communist party and their great leaders. All movies at that time would have been filtered to avoid the bad contents of western countries to negatively affect Chinese people. It must be from the few western movies I watched at that time telling me something different. The Chinese leaders in early 1980’s decided to open the country’s door to foreign investments. After that Chinese people began to see more and learn more about the world outside of China. Starting from my elementary school years, I could hear people talking about somebody they knew successfully going to America to continue their education, but that was not something that normal Chinese like me could reach. I went to Shanghai for college, and after that I started working there. China’s friendly policy toward foreign investments and it’s cheap labor did attract lots foreign investments from Asia, Europe and North America. Those western investments provided lots of good career opportunities for young Chinese at that time. American companies were on the top of the list that young Chinese want to work for. Working in an American company was something a young Chinese could be proud of at that time, it could represent his/her high professional skills. I worked as a contract for Intel Shanghai for about two years. I could feel the love those employees in Intel Shanghai show to the company and to the American culture. Once before an American supervisor moved back to the U.S, the people in that department start being afraid that the Chinese management style would take over.” I started thinking, “There must be something really good these Americans bring, but besides the competitive salary, what makes American culture so attractive? How is it?”. After many years hard working, I bought my own condo in Shanghai. I was almost 30 years old. It was good to see that how fast the city I was living was growing and changing. The future for young Chinese was not dim and gray any more, bright future was so close to us if we work hard and if we are smart enough. One day my friend and I talked about noticing people around us moving to U.S. I said, “ I may want to do that 10 years ago, but now there are enough opportunities for us to go up and get better in our home country. It is not worth to go to another country experience discrimination again; I still remember when I was in college in early 1990’s, one day I spoke Mandarin in a bus then everybody in the bus turned to look at me. That made me think I did something so bad, actually it was just because they found someone who didn’t their dialect, they looked down on me. I don’t want to experience such discrimination again.” Years later, I met my future husband. I moved to U.S. and get married. After our first child was born, I started reading to her like the book we got from Swedish hospital taught, “Never too early to read and never too late to read”. We got lots of children books from yard sale, libraries. I was afraid of driving at that time and so we stuck in the house reading hours and hours each day .We had read hundreds of books together before my daughter started going to kindergarten. There are always so many children books here, for all different age groups, fairy tales old or new, rhymes, histories, science and about almost everything you can think of ; you will always find one there fits your need. I teased about my reading experience these years,” that I have made up all the reading I missed when I was little”. Thank you America for the rich sources for the people who wants to learn. In the past when talking about my failed college education, I teased that because I didn’t have a solid early childhood education; I had only totally two books before I started going to school at age seven, and that was how much reading I had at that time. For lots of reasons, there was no resources for us in China at that time. The Chinese government used to have a very strict control over media to stop its own people from thinking differently with its own thinking. The control is still there today but it’s much more loose now. It’s a different picture here in U.S., there are open sources in the libraries easily reach to the public, in the radio or from T.V. You will always be able to hear two parties that hold totally different opinions discussing or arguing, instead of only opinion from one side is allowed on the media. I started driving after my daughter turned four. I started taking her to learn swimming, taking gym class… That’s the real start for me to connect with the real America world. Before that my exposure to this world was limited to our small church, and our family mostly. Surprisingly I meet so many friendly American people, we have so many good conversations; they don’t mind my broken English; they don’t try to show their super over someone who is from another country and who can’t speak English well. In the past in China I met so many people who try to take any opportunities to push you down to bolster themselves. There are so many social classes in China. It seems that the people at the bottom will hardly get any respect, even if their failure is caused by the something else instead their own fault. I feel so sad about that situation. Most Chinese people work hard to try to get to the higher level of that society to gain respect and more fairness. People there can be discriminated by what type of work they do, how much money they made, which region are they from. It’s different from what I have seen here and hard working people are rewarded despite what jobs they do; my old neighbor is a plumber, he and his nurse wife happily support a family of six. Thank you America for being friendly, open, respectfulness, and fairness. There are so much to express my thankfulness to this great country. I remember after my manager knew that I was going to U.S. he told me told me,” America is a good country, it’s better than here”. At that time I may not totally understand what did he mean and I didn’t know what in U.S could attract people from all over the world to come. After ten years having been living here, the friendly people, the fairness and the opportunities for all hard working people taught me what made this country so great. I know a lady and she is from Jordan, she is in her process to be trained to a dentist, told me, “ the political system here is the best in the world, there is corruption here too, but comparably it’s much better than other countries.” I totally agree with her. I have a friend from Poland, days ago she told me that only in this country you would see people from all over the world can live peacefully joyfully together. I agree. I know there’s still so much for me to know about this great country. God bless America!

Thank You America – Nasima Zahedi

While I was growing up in Kabul, Afghanistan, satellite television went from being a novelty to a way of life, and brought us Hollywood’s rendition of American life in the 90′s: the flashy cars, the casual witty banter, the freedom of movement available to the actors, who never appeared to be bound by national borders or constraints on their civil liberties. I, however, paid more attention to the classic Hollywood movies from the 50′s, 60′s and 70′s that were shown late at night.  Through these, I learnt that in America one could find honest bureaucrats, legal redress for any injustice, and above all, public libraries bursting with (free!) literature from across the world. For a little idealistic Anglophile like myself, America was indeed the promising land.

I never actually imagined myself coming to America, of course, though I did believe that if I did I would not be so naïve as to experience culture shock of any sort. After all, wasn’t English my primary language, and wasn’t I well-versed in the literature, classic films, and history of the West? So when I did eventually decide to travel to the States for my undergraduate education, culture shock was the very last thing on my mind. I was more worried about the kinds of courses I would be taking and whether it made sense to take as many of my books with me as I possibly could. I was lucky in that I had no difficulty with my visa or with the very long journey from Kabul to the heart of the rural Midwest, even though the searching stare of the customs officer in Denver was very unnerving. Denver Co was a fantastic, unreal sort of place, more so because Hollywood films from the 50′s could hardly have prepared me for a place that had people of hundreds of different ethnicities speaking fluent American English.

While I was growing up in Kabul, Afghanistan, satellite television went from being a novelty to a way of life, and brought us Hollywood’s rendition of American life in the 90′s: the flashy cars, the casual witty banter, the freedom of movement available to the actors, who never appeared to be bound by national borders or constraints on their civil liberties. I, however, paid more attention to the classic Hollywood movies from the 50′s, 60′s and 70′s that were shown late at night. Through these, I learnt that in America one could find honest bureaucrats, legal redress for any injustice, and above all, public libraries bursting with (free!) literature from across the world. For a little idealistic Anglophile like myself, America was indeed the promising land. I never actually imagined myself coming to America, of course, though I did believe that if I did I would not be so naïve as to experience culture shock of any sort. After all, wasn’t English my primary language, and wasn’t I well-versed in the literature, classic films, and history of the West? So when I did eventually decide to travel to the States for my undergraduate education, culture shock was the very last thing on my mind. I was more worried about the kinds of courses I would be taking and whether it made sense to take as many of my books with me as I possibly could. I was lucky in that I had no difficulty with my visa or with the very long journey from Kabul to the heart of the rural Midwest, even though the searching stare of the customs officer in Denver was very unnerving. Denver Co was a fantastic, unreal sort of place, more so because Hollywood films from the 50′s could hardly have prepared me for a place that had people of hundreds of different ethnicities speaking fluent American English.

I Love Swimming – Alember Adugna

Do you think swimming is satisfying? Swimming is enjoyable activity that provides better satisfaction and more fun. It helps to stay in good health as well as body strength. In this reason, most people love it. When I was a child, I loved swimming. Swimming was my best sport activity and it gave me a great satisfaction. Swimming always provides a good activity for our body’s cell functions. It is a popular sport in the world. I have three main reasons why I feel swimming in the past, present, and future.

First, swimming was my daily activity before two years ago. When I was in my country, I had three best friends that loved swimming like me. We went to school together, and we went to the river and swam for one hour and a half. During that time, there was a competition between schools. I won the gold twice in school competition. Swimming was my leisure time. I spent long time on it. When I did this activity, I got much satisfaction and I became a confident man. It is the best and most popular sport in the world and it has a high level of performance activities. It has high intensity fitness that includes all sport activities. For example, running, cycling, jumping, and throwing. It had a great value for me for couple of years.

At the present time, I never swim because Denver has no water sources like- rivers, lakes, or oceans. However, people usually go to cherry creek Reservoir, and it is very dirty. After I came to this country, I do not have enough time for swimming because I work a full time job and I go to school full time. I know that swimming is my favorite sport, but I do not have time to do it. Life is tough in this country especially for single person. For example, to pay apartment bill, car insurance, school bill, and, other bills. For this reasons, I stopped to swimming.

Third, in the future, I will be organizing myself, and I will continue my training. I have a plan I will be a professional in this sport activity. In addition to this, it will be increasing my performance. After many years, I will be a coach. Swimming will create good things in my life in the future. I will figure out my plan how I will be successful. Swimming is good for each individual, for example, people will spend their free time on it and they will have more fun. If everybody doing this activity, you will be successful and come professional. I hope I get a chance to swim again.

In conclusion, I have three main reasons why I feel swimming in the past, at present, and in the future. Swimming is popular sport in the world. It has a high physical fitness. People have fun and enjoy it. I will be a competitive and professional in a short period. I recommended to others, do this activity and you will get a good performance.

Do you think swimming is satisfying? Swimming is enjoyable activity that provides better satisfaction and more fun. It helps to stay in good health as well as body strength. In this reason, most people love it. When I was a child, I loved swimming. Swimming was my best sport activity and it gave me a great satisfaction. Swimming always provides a good activity for our body’s cell functions. It is a popular sport in the world. I have three main reasons why I feel swimming in the past, present, and future. First, swimming was my daily activity before two years ago. When I was in my country, I had three best friends that loved swimming like me. We went to school together, and we went to the river and swam for one hour and a half. During that time, there was a competition between schools. I won the gold twice in school competition. Swimming was my leisure time. I spent long time on it. When I did this activity, I got much satisfaction and I became a confident man. It is the best and most popular sport in the world and it has a high level of performance activities. It has high intensity fitness that includes all sport activities. For example, running, cycling, jumping, and throwing. It had a great value for me for couple of years. At the present time, I never swim because Denver has no water sources like- rivers, lakes, or oceans. However, people usually go to cherry creek Reservoir, and it is very dirty. After I came to this country, I do not have enough time for swimming because I work a full time job and I go to school full time. I know that swimming is my favorite sport, but I do not have time to do it. Life is tough in this country especially for single person. For example, to pay apartment bill, car insurance, school bill, and, other bills. For this reasons, I stopped to swimming. Third, in the future, I will be organizing myself, and I will continue my training. I have a plan I will be a professional in this sport activity. In addition to this, it will be increasing my performance. After many years, I will be a coach. Swimming will create good things in my life in the future. I will figure out my plan how I will be successful. Swimming is good for each individual, for example, people will spend their free time on it and they will have more fun. If everybody doing this activity, you will be successful and come professional. I hope I get a chance to swim again. In conclusion, I have three main reasons why I feel swimming in the past, at present, and in the future. Swimming is popular sport in the world. It has a high physical fitness. People have fun and enjoy it. I will be a competitive and professional in a short period. I recommended to others, do this activity and you will get a good performance.

American Solder Dream – Muorwel Malual

“The people are so busy dreaming the American dreams, fantasizing about what they could be or have a right to be, that they’re all asleep at the switch, consequently we are living in the age of human error” says Florence King. As a person who was born and raised in South Sudan, a country located in eastern Africa. I had lives those American dreams, when my younger brother and I were little boys. Early 1990s I told my younger brother that in the future I will enlist myself in the United States Army because is a top Military in the world. He gave me funny look, and said to me, I don’t think so dear brother Muorwel, because you are not in America land yet to become their solder, and you don’t speak English language well. We were argued about it, then we fought each other pushing one another. After few days my brother and I we were reading newspapers about the Gulf war between the U.S Army troops and Iraqi government when it forces invaded and annexed Kuwait 1991. I told my younger brother again about my American Solder dream job. We were argued over the idea for the second time again, but our friend spurted my idea. Because of conflict in South Sudan I left the country for Egypt let 1999. I stayed there as a refugee, then I arrived in Denver 2004. Two years leader I enlisted myself in the United States Army, so my American solder dream become reality. I want to Iraq after I ended my combat zone training 2007. I stayed over one year as an active duty in Iraq, then come back to U.S and transferred the Army Receive for rest of duty. I visited my family this year and we met with my younger brother after long time. He still remember our argument about my American solder Dream back then 1990s. I personally forgot about our complex, but my younger brother learn to compensate and listen to me with respecting my ideas as well.

All in all, “A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work” as Colin Powell says. I really agree that if anyone have a dreams, and never gives up her/his dreams, but work hard for it. In the end he/she will achieve the dreams.

“The people are so busy dreaming the American dreams, fantasizing about what they could be or have a right to be, that they’re all asleep at the switch, consequently we are living in the age of human error” says Florence King. As a person who was born and raised in South Sudan, a country located in eastern Africa. I had lives those American dreams, when my younger brother and I were little boys. Early 1990s I told my younger brother that in the future I will enlist myself in the United States Army because is a top Military in the world. He gave me funny look, and said to me, I don’t think so dear brother Muorwel, because you are not in America land yet to become their solder, and you don’t speak English language well. We were argued about it, then we fought each other pushing one another. After few days my brother and I we were reading newspapers about the Gulf war between the U.S Army troops and Iraqi government when it forces invaded and annexed Kuwait 1991. I told my younger brother again about my American Solder dream job. We were argued over the idea for the second time again, but our friend spurted my idea. Because of conflict in South Sudan I left the country for Egypt let 1999. I stayed there as a refugee, then I arrived in Denver 2004. Two years leader I enlisted myself in the United States Army, so my American solder dream become reality. I want to Iraq after I ended my combat zone training 2007. I stayed over one year as an active duty in Iraq, then come back to U.S and transferred the Army Receive for rest of duty. I visited my family this year and we met with my younger brother after long time. He still remember our argument about my American solder Dream back then 1990s. I personally forgot about our complex, but my younger brother learn to compensate and listen to me with respecting my ideas as well. All in all, “A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work” as Colin Powell says. I really agree that if anyone have a dreams, and never gives up her/his dreams, but work hard for it. In the end he/she will achieve the dreams.

My Past, Present and Future – Amina Ahmed

Many say that struggles are a blessing in disguise. Struggles in life can either make you or break you. They are a test that each and every one will experience. Some find a prize at the end while others learn important lessons that will stay with them forever. In my case, I found the prize at the end with my kids and I also learned from my past struggles. To get to where I am at in life today, I endured many struggles in my early years living in Somalia during the civil war, and as a result I am able to lead a better life and plan for a better future. The following are examples of what I have endured and how my life changed for the better.

I was born in Somalia during the Civil War. Somalia at the time was in the middle of a long civil war that affected many people’s lives. During this time, many people chose to flee the country to neighboring countries while some decided to stay and meet their fate. My family was among the ones who decided to flee. It was a very tough time for my parents. At the time the civil war broke out, my mom had just given birth to my baby sister. With the country in a very unstable state and very little to eat for those fleeing, my mother was faced with the harsh reality that she could no longer breast feed my baby sister. Unfortunately, my baby sister passed away due to the lack of food and my mother hardly survived. Despite all of this, they did everything in their power to keep us out of harm’s way. During the time, which we fled Somalia, we spent a lot of time on the road. Many of the people were packed in trucks and Lorrie’s. The hardest struggle at the time was finding means to feed the young children like myself. My parents did everything to save us from starving to death. As a young girl, I did not understand much at the time, but now I understand all the sacrifices my parents made. My mom would breastfeed me and my 3 siblings having eaten nothing herself. Looking back at the situation, I can say that I appreciate my parents more for their sacrifice and the struggles they went through.

Luckily, we were able to make it through our struggles and rise above it. After settling in a refugee in Kenya where we were able to start a new life, I started going to school. After a while I finished school and started a family of my own. My first child was born in Kenya and shortly after that we had the opportunity to move to the U.S. After moving to the U.S, we faced many more challenges. The biggest challenge was the language barrier. I could not speak English when I first came here, and as a result I was afraid to go anywhere and was always home. I also had to learn how to drive, which enabled me to do more things. Now I have five kids and life could not be more beautiful. I attend college and three of my kids are in elementary school, while the other two are too young.

From what I have learned from my past struggles, I can prepare better for the future. I learned many lessons along the way. I have made some mistakes and from those mistakes. I learned from them and made sure not to repeat them. I am a better person because of my struggles. I plan on furthering my education by getting an associate’s degree from CCA. After I attain my associates. I plan on finding a comfortable job and improving my life for the better. If everything works out. I might even someday pursue a bachelor degree. I plan to set an example for my kids. I want them to see that if their mom got this far, so can they.

Although life has always been rough in the past, I am thankful for how things have turned out. Everyone faces challenges, but what makes life sweet is not knowing what is going to come out of those challenges. Life is guaranteed to have challenges, but the difference in changing those challenges to a blessing is how you react and respond to them. Patience is also key to dealing with struggles in life, but all of that is learned from the challenges itself.

Many say that struggles are a blessing in disguise. Struggles in life can either make you or break you. They are a test that each and every one will experience. Some find a prize at the end while others learn important lessons that will stay with them forever. In my case, I found the prize at the end with my kids and I also learned from my past struggles. To get to where I am at in life today, I endured many struggles in my early years living in Somalia during the civil war, and as a result I am able to lead a better life and plan for a better future. The following are examples of what I have endured and how my life changed for the better. I was born in Somalia during the Civil War. Somalia at the time was in the middle of a long civil war that affected many people’s lives. During this time, many people chose to flee the country to neighboring countries while some decided to stay and meet their fate. My family was among the ones who decided to flee. It was a very tough time for my parents. At the time the civil war broke out, my mom had just given birth to my baby sister. With the country in a very unstable state and very little to eat for those fleeing, my mother was faced with the harsh reality that she could no longer breast feed my baby sister. Unfortunately, my baby sister passed away due to the lack of food and my mother hardly survived. Despite all of this, they did everything in their power to keep us out of harm’s way. During the time, which we fled Somalia, we spent a lot of time on the road. Many of the people were packed in trucks and Lorrie’s. The hardest struggle at the time was finding means to feed the young children like myself. My parents did everything to save us from starving to death. As a young girl, I did not understand much at the time, but now I understand all the sacrifices my parents made. My mom would breastfeed me and my 3 siblings having eaten nothing herself. Looking back at the situation, I can say that I appreciate my parents more for their sacrifice and the struggles they went through. Luckily, we were able to make it through our struggles and rise above it. After settling in a refugee in Kenya where we were able to start a new life, I started going to school. After a while I finished school and started a family of my own. My first child was born in Kenya and shortly after that we had the opportunity to move to the U.S. After moving to the U.S, we faced many more challenges. The biggest challenge was the language barrier. I could not speak English when I first came here, and as a result I was afraid to go anywhere and was always home. I also had to learn how to drive, which enabled me to do more things. Now I have five kids and life could not be more beautiful. I attend college and three of my kids are in elementary school, while the other two are too young. From what I have learned from my past struggles, I can prepare better for the future. I learned many lessons along the way. I have made some mistakes and from those mistakes. I learned from them and made sure not to repeat them. I am a better person because of my struggles. I plan on furthering my education by getting an associate’s degree from CCA. After I attain my associates. I plan on finding a comfortable job and improving my life for the better. If everything works out. I might even someday pursue a bachelor degree. I plan to set an example for my kids. I want them to see that if their mom got this far, so can they. Although life has always been rough in the past, I am thankful for how things have turned out. Everyone faces challenges, but what makes life sweet is not knowing what is going to come out of those challenges. Life is guaranteed to have challenges, but the difference in changing those challenges to a blessing is how you react and respond to them. Patience is also key to dealing with struggles in life, but all of that is learned from the challenges itself.

MY Live in America and Ethiopia – Abebe Workneh

I never imagined I would live in the United States. I was born in Ethiopia, and I grew up in Gondar, but my childhood was not good because my father passed away early. After my father died, my mom helped me with a lot of things, and nobody helped me except my mother. After we finished class, we played football with my neighbors and with my classmates. My first language is Amharic Before I came to America, and I spoke only Amharic. English is my second language. I learned English in high school. Amharic is the official language in Ethiopia, all media translate to Amharic. All sciences classes were in Amharic, so I had no idea, how to communicate with native speakers. I came to America by Diversity Visa Lottery(DV). On July 2014, when I came to America, the living style was different from Ethiopia. When I came to America, I could not speak English very well, I have had good, bad life in America, and in the Ethiopia.

Firstly, my problem in America was communication. I had a trouble communicate with native speakers. At the first time, I did not like America because everything was new for me, for instance, new culture, new life, new people and new environment.   I was suffering a lot thing such as finding a job, transportation, weather and adaption to food. In my home land, I learned all subject by own language. When I came to America, I could not speak much English, but I could speak a little bit. I did not focus on English when I was in Ethiopia because all people speak in Amharic. I learned all subjects in this language until grade nine because Ethiopia educational ministers declared that all students should be taught by their language until they get high school because it was a rule in the Ethiopian educational system. There were some English classes in Addis Ababa, but most English classes were taken in private. I could not pay money because no one helped me , and I lived by myself. The private English school was very expensive, and the teacher in the class did not speak English. I learned a grammar stuff. However, I did not learn how to write essay and how to write paragraph.

Secondly, now, I am learning at the Community College Aurora. I am taking ESL classes. ESL class is good for me because I improve my writing and listening skill. Every week, I go to McDonalds to buy food. It is my first time when I buy the food, I do not know name the food name. Luckily the pictures of the meal helping me figure out what I wanting to eat. I point out the meal I want to the cashier. “For here or to go,” he says. “Take away,” I reply. He asks me the same question again. That time I do not understand each other. We are frustrated. In my homeland take away means “to go.’’ Finally, a coworker comes to helping to us each other. When I take the food, I feel bad, my communication and accent was not good. I never go again because I very mad, and I do not good communication with other people. I always ask myself how to improve my communication. After the incident at McDonalds, I feel bad. I decide myself I will not come back again until my English would be better. I start English class, I watch American movies, and I read different kind of books. Now, I can speak better, I am so happy. I go to McDonald every day.

Lastly, I have a plan graduating college, and I will look a good job to make good money, and start a family. I want to start a small business in Ethiopia. I want to help my family and poor people. In my homeland, there are lot of people who are homeless and unemployed, so for this kind of people I will build a new house for them. The other main reason is in order to decrease the number of unemployment in Ethiopia. I will buy a new house and new car in Colorado. When I get my Bachler Degree, I will start my Master degree.

In general, English is the international language. Everyone knows should be able to speak American language. When come to America, should be speak English. I have had good, bad, life in America and in Ethiopia. Life is school, so I experienced many different things America which have become good memories, I learned new culture which will help me succeed in my life. I plan to graduate in University. I makes a good money, and I will start small business. I would like to suggestion anyone before coming to America to learn language. English is one of communication way for everybody. Which countries come from no matter, must be speak English language. Communication is the key for everybody.

I never imagined I would live in the United States. I was born in Ethiopia, and I grew up in Gondar, but my childhood was not good because my father passed away early. After my father died, my mom helped me with a lot of things, and nobody helped me except my mother. After we finished class, we played football with my neighbors and with my classmates. My first language is Amharic Before I came to America, and I spoke only Amharic. English is my second language. I learned English in high school. Amharic is the official language in Ethiopia, all media translate to Amharic. All sciences classes were in Amharic, so I had no idea, how to communicate with native speakers. I came to America by Diversity Visa Lottery(DV). On July 2014, when I came to America, the living style was different from Ethiopia. When I came to America, I could not speak English very well, I have had good, bad life in America, and in the Ethiopia. Firstly, my problem in America was communication. I had a trouble communicate with native speakers. At the first time, I did not like America because everything was new for me, for instance, new culture, new life, new people and new environment. I was suffering a lot thing such as finding a job, transportation, weather and adaption to food. In my home land, I learned all subject by own language. When I came to America, I could not speak much English, but I could speak a little bit. I did not focus on English when I was in Ethiopia because all people speak in Amharic. I learned all subjects in this language until grade nine because Ethiopia educational ministers declared that all students should be taught by their language until they get high school because it was a rule in the Ethiopian educational system. There were some English classes in Addis Ababa, but most English classes were taken in private. I could not pay money because no one helped me , and I lived by myself. The private English school was very expensive, and the teacher in the class did not speak English. I learned a grammar stuff. However, I did not learn how to write essay and how to write paragraph. Secondly, now, I am learning at the Community College Aurora. I am taking ESL classes. ESL class is good for me because I improve my writing and listening skill. Every week, I go to McDonalds to buy food. It is my first time when I buy the food, I do not know name the food name. Luckily the pictures of the meal helping me figure out what I wanting to eat. I point out the meal I want to the cashier. “For here or to go,” he says. “Take away,” I reply. He asks me the same question again. That time I do not understand each other. We are frustrated. In my homeland take away means “to go.’’ Finally, a coworker comes to helping to us each other. When I take the food, I feel bad, my communication and accent was not good. I never go again because I very mad, and I do not good communication with other people. I always ask myself how to improve my communication. After the incident at McDonalds, I feel bad. I decide myself I will not come back again until my English would be better. I start English class, I watch American movies, and I read different kind of books. Now, I can speak better, I am so happy. I go to McDonald every day. Lastly, I have a plan graduating college, and I will look a good job to make good money, and start a family. I want to start a small business in Ethiopia. I want to help my family and poor people. In my homeland, there are lot of people who are homeless and unemployed, so for this kind of people I will build a new house for them. The other main reason is in order to decrease the number of unemployment in Ethiopia. I will buy a new house and new car in Colorado. When I get my Bachler Degree, I will start my Master degree. In general, English is the international language. Everyone knows should be able to speak American language. When come to America, should be speak English. I have had good, bad, life in America and in Ethiopia. Life is school, so I experienced many different things America which have become good memories, I learned new culture which will help me succeed in my life. I plan to graduate in University. I makes a good money, and I will start small business. I would like to suggestion anyone before coming to America to learn language. English is one of communication way for everybody. Which countries come from no matter, must be speak English language. Communication is the key for everybody.

My Best Friend – Dora Imelda Porras

It was in the summer July 1988 when my best friend Ivette and her family visited Mexico. It was a beautiful, hot morning. My mother came to wake me up, and she said “Dora, Ivette is here!” I cleaned my teeth, face and brushed my wild, curly hair. I picked a new outfit; it was a white shirt with bright orange and green flowers on the bottom. I decided to wear a matching white skirt with a new pair of white sneakers. I looked at the mirror with a smile on my face. I kissed myself on the cheek.

I ran to her house. The house was nearby an old abandoned church. My skin had goosebumps all over every time that I passed by, but I controlled myself and ran faster. Finally, I was there knocking on the door, and there she was with her black short hair and wide smile. She was a foot taller than I was, and she said. “Hi shorty how are you?” I replied “Happy to see you again. You are grown up taller and thin, in the last three years.” That day we talked, laughed and hugged each other. I felt close to her, and we were like sisters.

The next day, we were walking at the main plaza El Jardin. The plaza was full of shops, restaurants, and blossom red roses. The chirping birds were a magical moment, and at each corner were the newsstands where you could find the outside news. One of my favorite hobbies was to check the headlines of the magazines. On the side that I never noticed was a lady selling American chocolates. Ivette bought one, she shared the chocolate with me. That was my first time tasting a delicious American chocolate. My mouth enjoyed the delightful flavor. That particular moment is when we began our conversation. Ivette said, “Do you like it?” I said, “Yes, it is exquisite!” Ivette replied “In America it is different. The schools are bigger with a lot of friends.” I asked “Do you see cutie guys like the ones in the magazines?” She responded “Oh yes a lot of them.” I exclaimed “WOOOOW! and then she suddenly asked me, “Do you want to come with us to The United States?” I responded “Can I go?’ She said, “Of course you can come! Let’s go to ask my mom. You can learn English, and come back to obtain a job in a big city.” Just the idea of knowing a different culture and language was the most amazing plan. That night, I was dreaming how fun it was going to be. She asked her parents and my parents.

Three months later, I was living in a different country with a strange family. The school had a cold feeling. I felt isolated; no friends, and classmates were bullying me. I perceived myself as a prisoner trapped in a different world. Ivette was acting strange, and her mother was even worse. I had to wake up early before school to clean the house. After school, I cooked for everyone. Weekends were laundry days. I cried every night because nothing was like the fantasy of what I dreamed about it.

I lived there for two long years. I was frustrated, mad, sad, lonely, and felt used. I learned to think twice before make any decisions, asked questions, and help when you need it. Communicate with parents or relatives especially when it sounds too good to be true. Do not believe in strangers.

It was in the summer July 1988 when my best friend Ivette and her family visited Mexico. It was a beautiful, hot morning. My mother came to wake me up, and she said “Dora, Ivette is here!” I cleaned my teeth, face and brushed my wild, curly hair. I picked a new outfit; it was a white shirt with bright orange and green flowers on the bottom. I decided to wear a matching white skirt with a new pair of white sneakers. I looked at the mirror with a smile on my face. I kissed myself on the cheek. I ran to her house. The house was nearby an old abandoned church. My skin had goosebumps all over every time that I passed by, but I controlled myself and ran faster. Finally, I was there knocking on the door, and there she was with her black short hair and wide smile. She was a foot taller than I was, and she said. “Hi shorty how are you?” I replied “Happy to see you again. You are grown up taller and thin, in the last three years.” That day we talked, laughed and hugged each other. I felt close to her, and we were like sisters. The next day, we were walking at the main plaza El Jardin. The plaza was full of shops, restaurants, and blossom red roses. The chirping birds were a magical moment, and at each corner were the newsstands where you could find the outside news. One of my favorite hobbies was to check the headlines of the magazines. On the side that I never noticed was a lady selling American chocolates. Ivette bought one, she shared the chocolate with me. That was my first time tasting a delicious American chocolate. My mouth enjoyed the delightful flavor. That particular moment is when we began our conversation. Ivette said, “Do you like it?” I said, “Yes, it is exquisite!” Ivette replied “In America it is different. The schools are bigger with a lot of friends.” I asked “Do you see cutie guys like the ones in the magazines?” She responded “Oh yes a lot of them.” I exclaimed “WOOOOW! and then she suddenly asked me, “Do you want to come with us to The United States?” I responded “Can I go?’ She said, “Of course you can come! Let’s go to ask my mom. You can learn English, and come back to obtain a job in a big city.” Just the idea of knowing a different culture and language was the most amazing plan. That night, I was dreaming how fun it was going to be. She asked her parents and my parents. Three months later, I was living in a different country with a strange family. The school had a cold feeling. I felt isolated; no friends, and classmates were bullying me. I perceived myself as a prisoner trapped in a different world. Ivette was acting strange, and her mother was even worse. I had to wake up early before school to clean the house. After school, I cooked for everyone. Weekends were laundry days. I cried every night because nothing was like the fantasy of what I dreamed about it. I lived there for two long years. I was frustrated, mad, sad, lonely, and felt used. I learned to think twice before make any decisions, asked questions, and help when you need it. Communicate with parents or relatives especially when it sounds too good to be true. Do not believe in strangers.

Abdirizak Thank you America