Señora Gloria’s Graduation – 03 June 2004

by Jim on 2014/06/03

[Jimbaux enjoyed a prelude of good regiomontano things.]

Meet my host family!  On only my third night in Monterrey, while beginning my brief studies as a student at ITESM, I attended the graduation ceremony – at the same academic institution where I was studying – of my host mother Señora Gloria.  Like many even middle-class Mexican women her age, Señora Gloria’s first priority in early adulthood seemed to be having and raising a family.  Much like my own paternal grandmother, who got a degree in nursing only after all of her children reached adulthood, Señora Gloria pursued her degree after her three children were grown.

As my “mother” in Monterrey, part of her duties were to prepare and serve meals for me six days per week (I can’t even remember if this included lunch, but, even if it did, due to the impracticality of returning to the house in mid-day when I might have needed to be on campus or elsewhere north of campus after class, I probably more often than not did not eat lunch there, but would often take a nap back at the house if I did eat lunch there), but, this evening, she made a sandwich for me and put it in the refrigerator in my cuarto.  I don’t remember how or why I was on campus in the late afternoon – working in the computer lab (i.e., communicating with people back home) and socializing with the other international students were the most likely reasons – but I ended up eating at a just-off-campus restaurant with some of my paisanos whom I had just met, and I ate the sandwich for breakfast the next morning.

Although my host family had just taken me in, and I did not really yet know them, I wanted to capture this wonderful moment.

I’m not sure in what field the degree that she received was.

At the time, both she and her husband drove Honda Civics, one several years newer than the other one.  (She drove the newer one.)  I learned that rates of brand loyalty (at least for automobiles) in Mexico are about the same as what they are in the United States.  As has been documented, I have returned to Monterrey twice (once in 2006-2007 and again in 2009-2010), and I know that the older civic has been replaced, I believe with another Honda, a company that now has a bigger manufacturing presence in Mexico.  Señor Oscar seemed to think that the older Civic was not built in Mexico but that the newer (at the time) one was.

Below is seen their daughter Leslie, who, last I knew, was still helping run her father’s glass and window business.  She was not yet married at the time, but she now has a husband and children of her own.

She, unlike Jimbaux, was smart enough to bring to the event what appeared to be a digital camera.

Below is a family picture (one of their other children and his family live somewhere in town, but the other lived in Mexico City at the time.)

I had not yet gone digital and could not check people pictures in time to make sure that all eyes were open.  It was, like with a great many things, the best that I could do at the time; therefore, it has to be enough.

The lady at right in the above picture was a family friend.

The writing on the balloon in the below picture reads “Felicidades Graduados“.

The fact that Señora Gloria spoke almost no English (she could say English words, but she could not form sentences and could barely form phrases in English) was both frustrating for communication and – for the very same reasons – a huge help in my learning of Spanish!

I was still very much getting accustomed to things, including sleeping without air-conditioning.  There were good fans in my cuarto – including the Patton brand fan that I had brought from home.  I was making friends, connections that have lasted so long and opened my eyes to so much.  Although I had yet to pay my tuition, there was little thought anymore of turning back, as I was physically at the destination – although I would make many road trips away from Monterrey – and had gotten the scariest part of the experience behind me.  The experience would continue to be bountifully educational, entertaining, and intense, as you will see for the next two months.


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Oscar E. Alanis June 3, 2014 at 12:23

Que bonita presentación sobre la ceremonia de graduación de Gloria.
What a nice report-presentation about the Gloria graduation’s ceremony.

Guardo gratos recuerdos de ti y tu estancia aca con nosotros en Monterrey.
I keept pleasant memories of you and your stay here with us in Monterrey.

Gracias por compartir y hacernos recordar esos momentos.
Thank you for sharing and let us remember those moments.

Espero estes bien de salud y de animo y que tus excelentes foto-reportajes
las compartas con mucha gente; es admirable tu pasatiempo. Dios te bendiga.

I hope you’re well health and encourage and your excelent photos and reports
you can share them with people.
Your work-pastime is admirable; God bless you.

Un abrazo … a fraternal hug !!
Adelante … go ahead


2 Nathan Kaufman June 4, 2014 at 09:16

I wish I had studied abroad. I’ve traveled, been around quite a bit, but the integration you get from a program like this is much different than just going places and seeing things.

Nathan Kaufman


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