I interviewed my father about why he left his country, El Salvador. I was wondering about the reason he left.
After I interviewed him, I found the reason why: “I wanted a better future for my sons and there was a civil war going on so it was dangerous to be there.” He also told me he came here to earn money.
“It was very hard to come to this country”, he told me. “I went from El Salvador to Guatemala by car. Then I went to Mexico also by car. I then went to Tijuana. From there I went to the outskirts of San Diego and got driven to Los Angeles. It took me 14 days to get to Los Angeles from El Salvador. I stayed in Los Angeles for one year and then I got a plane ticket to Boston, Massachusetts. My brother who was living in Chelsea, MA picked me up from the airport and took me to Chelsea. After living here for 9 months, I brought my family from El Salvador to here.”
Even though he’s been here for a long time, he has mixed feelings about going back. “Everyone wants to go back to their homeland. However, I’ve been here for a long time and made a home. To return is very hard.” He misses his family back in El Salvador. He still goes to visit his family but not to stay there forever.
He told me he took risks coming over here. He told me it was because of the civil war that was going on in El Salvador. He said, “Back then, life didn’t matter to some people. People died left and right for no reason.” So because of the war, he could have died if he had gotten close to the fighting while he was leaving El Salvador. He told me that he got here in March 1985.
Back in El Salvador, he had a job sewing pants. I asked him what was his first job that he had when he got here. He told me that, like in El Salvador, he had a sewing job but here he sews all clothes, not just pants. I asked him how he would see his life in 5 years. He said, “Older and wiser. I would love to have a job that I know how to do and get paid well so I could support my family.”