While I was in Bolivia, I “knew” the United States through the movies and the news. I had an image of a very violent place where anybody can have a gun, a place with many drug users and drug dealers, and place with a high level of promiscuity of its youth; consequently, it was not in my plans to come to the U.S. , instead I always wanted to go to Europe or Australia.
Twelve years ago, my dream to go to Europe became a reality; I went there, and I lived in Germany for two beautiful years. Unfortunately, I could not stay there any longer because of the loss of my German fiancée by a car accident (it was very painful to remain in Germany without her). Then, ten years ago, in my way back to Bolivia from Frankfurt, I stopped in Chicago and Miami for three weeks. The United States that I “knew” in Bolivia from the movies and the news I realized were very different, in fact, I felt safer in Miami than in some Bolivian cities (La Paz, Cochabamba or Santa Cruz). While staying in Miami, I decided to pursue a MBA degree in the U.S. (at that time I had already a Bachelor’s degree in Economics). After those three weeks, I continued my trip to Bolivia. I stayed in my country for a month making arrangements for my next trip to the U.S.
In the U.S., I lived in Illinois (Champaign and Urbana) for the first five years; there I made many friends with whom I traveled for many states in the East and the Midwest (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, New York, Connecticut, Maryland, and Washington D.C). I was very lucky to have English instructors who were very kind and helpful. I adapted easily to my new environment. Now, I feel at home here in the U.S.
In 2008 I was accepted to the Masters in Spanish program at the University of Oregon. In August of that year I came driving from Illinois to Oregon, it took me three days to reach my destination, but I enjoyed the scenery of the states that I passed by (Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, Utah, and North of Nevada).
In 2010, I moved to Salem, here I started working as a free-lance medical/legal interpreter; private Spanish instructor for health professionals and attorneys; and private Instructor of algebra, calculus, finance, statistics and Spanish for middle and high school students, as well as, college students.
While in Oregon, I visited almost all corners of this beautiful state, during this time I went also to Seattle, Hawaii, Las Vegas, and North of California.
Here some pictures of my life in the U.S.