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Monologue by Alvaro Barragan

Barragan, Alvaro
Hamper, Ann Marie
Date of Interview: 
Overcoming Obstacles; Relationships with People and Places; Then and Now; Cultural Identification
Alvaro Barragan talks about his life in Colombia, SA and the US.
Charlotte Narrative and Conversation Collection
Collection Description: 
Ann Marie Hamper interviews Charlotteans to collect stories for a class project at UNC Charlotte.
Interview Audio: 
AB (Alvaro Barragan): Hi. Uh, my name is Alvaro Barragan, uh, ( ) excuse me, again, in small, uh, coffee plantation. Um, we had a good farm till I was about 19 years old when I have to move to the big city, big town and, uh, study too. Uh, my second year of high school I had a big accident coming from the farm in a vacation trip, uh, so all my dreams got shattered, uh, went down a hill in a bus and had a big accident and uh I have to have a liver transplant. And therefore, I end up in the United States which, uh, that was in 1970 and, uh, ever since I came to this country, I saw the opportunity to be in this country, and [pause] the, uh, somebody in life, uh, like my cousins and family in Colombia did. They are lawyers and doctors, uh, I'm not a lawyer, I'm not a doctor, but I'm a good chef, good cook. I even flew airplanes. I'm a beautician as well. Uh, I did a lot of stuff in this country, which I could not have done in my country. Uh, and I'm proud to be living in this great American country that's why it hurt sometime when some of these things going on, terrorism and all of that, trying to hurt us. Uh, me especially being, uh, American citizen since 1996, I consider myself more American than probably the pure American. And, uh, I'm proud again, uh, to be in this country. This is the land of the great opportunities. Uh, they said that, uh, there is no work in New York, there is no work in Charlotte, there is no work in Miami. There's work anywhere as long as you have the will and power. And if you want to work, you can work in this country. Uh, and I think, uh, I'm going to say little something about my family, I found a great, uh, lady. I'm married for 25 years. I have three beautiful kids one is, uh, 24, 24, the other one is 19, and my younger boy is, uh, 15. I'm proud of them, they are really good kids. Uh, hopefully someday, uh, they make me feel really more proud than what I am right now. Uh, and I just thank the country because the country have given me the opportunity to, uh, make them, uh, stand where they are today. And I think this is great again for me, for my wife, that being a foreigner and came to a country where I couldn't speak one word of English, so was my wife. And now I hope that you understand what I'm saying. I know my accent is a little heavy but, uh, I hope that you understand me. Whoever or to whomever it may concern and again, uh, have a good time. My name is Alvaro Barragan. Bye.