Behind a picture (4): Glenda and Emilio

Most of the time, there is no great technical skill or breathtaking scenery. In some cases the value of the image is simply in the story, and having gained the trust of the owner of the story /

Glenda y Emilio

Harrisonburg, Virginia, July 2017 /

Glenda and Emilio are from El Salvador, more precisely from San Miguel. When he was only 15 years old, Emilio fled from the poverty that struck his country. That was 30 years ago. On hiw own, he started off towards the United States. After the coyotes crossed him, he was received by relatives who had already made the same hard journey. Then, the usual story: work any job, wait a long time, present papers and celebrate the residence that allows you to leave, return to your native country and re-enter without problems. In the case of Emilio, there were 16 years of waiting.

Glenda has been in the United States for two years, since Emilio, her childhood neighbor, proposed her on one of his sporadic visits to El Salvador. Now both of them work in a pork BBQ restaurant.

Emilio is already used to it. He has been away for 30 years and doesn’t know what nostalgia is. But Glenda… She is excited to talk about El Salvador, her family and her papusas, a typical recipe from her country. She holds on because she has a good job and she can help her large family back in the far away El Salvador. In addition, she works alongside her husband, and useless to say, the atmosphere in the restaurant «Ranch Bar B-Q» is much better than the one in her first job. It was a poultry factory, and her job was to bend and tie the legs of thousands of chickens a day, over and over. She had a single 30-minute break for lunch, which was also the only time allowed to go to the bathroom.

In the photograph, besides the pigs, there are elements representative of the ever present North American nationalism, such as the two dolls on the left and the flag on the right, which can not be read in full, but I assure you that it says: «Proud to be American». Then Glenda and Emilio in the center of the scene, surrounded and trapped by the fate of being born in a poor country that pushed them into exile.

Technical details:

Camera: Canon 700D
Lens: Sigma 17-50mm F / 2.8 DC OS HSM
ISO: 400
Speed: 1/100
Aperture: 4
Lighting: Natural.
Editing: Lightroom. Only basic exposure values and contrast were changed.

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