Francisca Alvarez

As Interviewed by Alexis Ramirez, March 14, 2019
"After I failed to cross the border twice I thought to myself third time's a charm!"
Francisca Alvarez

Introductory Profile: About Francisca Alvarez

My topic is immigration and I am interviewing my grandmother, Francisca Alvarez,(dad’s side of family) whom suffered from the horrors of immigrating. She is very kind to those close to her and loves agriculture since her days in Guatemala. From an early age she had always been at work and constantly supporting us even at her lowest she always managed to cheer us up. Though I didn't meet her until I was 3 my parents attempted to retell how she got here. They would always just say that she had to suffer of thirst and that was it. When I finally did meet her she was about 50 and decided to move in with us. This was weird at the time and kind of difficult as my parents finally had to start working full time. By the time I actually met her she looked young and healthy and didn't seem to fit the description my parent had told me of a suffering person.

Right around when I was 6 or 7 my grandma finally told me a different story after I asked how she had to suffer of thirst. She immediately started laughing and told me an hour long story of her first trip and to me that was the first time she had ever told probably me or my siblings anything else other than a story of a coke. In her story she told me that the desert is both an unsafe and scary place. She recalls seeing many people, who played hundreds even thousands of dollars for a guide, give up and just kind of wait to die because they have no guide to lead them back to where they had come from.she also recalls herself from descriptions of her past as both fit and in great condition.

My grandma very deeply wants to forget about these memories because to her they are a dark period in her life and to her greatest ability she has only been able to cope with them. To her retelling this was a tiny bit hard for her. In specific she had to retell witnessing a resting skeleton on the side of a pond that made her reflect on how lucky she actually was to survive that. To my knowledge she had only talked about her first and last trips.