Immigrant Life Essay Traditionally, immigrants face a number of problems in the new community, when they arrive in a new country. To a significant extent, these problems are predetermined by a variety of factors, which can be basically summed up as economic and socio-cultural. In fact, immigrants have to get integrated in the new society that implies the necessity to change their traditional lifestyle, habits, learn new language and cultural norms and, what is more, get a stable financial position. In this respect, it is worthy of mention that often economic and socio-cultural factors are closely interrelated, though sometimes they are objectively independent from each other.
Mark Kramer Immigrant Stories Most Saturday afternoons, you can find Martha Vasser performing an Ethiopian coffee ceremony at Tana Ethiopian Cuisine for a handful of Pittsburgh diners who know little to nothing about her home culture.
And coffee comes from the region Kaffa, K-a-f-f-a. Therefore, the name coffee. Some Saturdays, she wears a traditional Ethiopian dress, pale gossamer linen with loosely hanging cuffs, neckline and hem striped in green, red and yellow, the colors of Ethiopia's flag. Carletta, an African-American woman with straight hair and a deep but deliberately honeyed voice, precedes Martha, taking orders, filling water and tea glasses, and delivering platters of food.
Then she distributes the coffee once it's brewed. Seifu, the owner, greets customers, works the register, checks on the kitchen. A stereo plays Ethiopian music, replete with trebling voices complementing electronic percussion.
Each table is glass-topped and padded by white cotton cloths decorated with traditional bunna embroideries, symmetric loops that form subtle Coptic crosses. That's when you get the opportunity to bless the house in which the coffee's being served.
Martha still refers to Ethiopia as "home," though she's trying to make America work for her. She went to college here. She opened her own business.
She married a Pittsburgher and had two kids and tried to do the PTO and "whole super-mommy thing," she says. She tried to help her children integrate into Pittsburgh so they wouldn't be as rootless as their mother. Ever since leaving Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, two decades ago to attend college in the United States, Martha—even now, as a wife and mother—has been befuddled by her inability to reconstruct a sense of home and belonging.
She used to fight it, her desire to live in that sweet spot, that secure, communal, familial place in which loved ones—by blood or by choice or even by circumstance—look out for one another.
She thought she had to fight it to blend into this new place. But Martha no longer fights her desire for home. Instead, she tries to recreate home here at Tana, here in Pittsburgh, because she trusts that if she spends herself thinking of others, she'll have enough people thinking of her.
Saturday afternoons, she describes the way Ethiopians welcome neighbors into their homes for coffee and conversation, the natural, vivifying hospitality you may well find in the kitchens and living rooms of today's Pittsburgh homes, though likely less so as neighbors become increasingly temporary.
Incense smoke, wafting from a clay holder on the floor, caresses Martha's words with mood and gravitas, as if this restaurant space were no longer just the secularity of wood floors and wainscoted walls, but, like one of the myriad Orthodox churches in Ethiopia, a sacred space for praying over aspirations.Jun 26, · But I am still an undocumented immigrant.
And that means living a different kind of reality. It means going about my day in fear of being found out. It means rarely trusting people, even those closest to me, with who I really am.
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for me of the trip because it was the time that would determine if the voyage was a waste or not. We were going to be examined for any illnesses or diseases that would keep us from entering America.
My Immigration Story The story of U.S. immigrants in their own words. Everyone has their own immigrant story. Kelly CA. When you realize how much your life is going to change in such a short period of time, you can only miss and mourn about the past, .
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18 Essays About The Immigrant Experience You Need To Read. These stories illuminate what it takes, and what it means, to uproot your life in one country and begin it again in a new one.