Latte No. 1
Latte No. 1
Yadira records Whatsapp audio messages to friends in rusty Arabic through her (faux) gold-plated iPhone, which a friend engraved with the flags of Cuba and Qatar. Dr. Yadira spent two years in Qatar through a program that offers Cuban doctors residencies at the public hospital in Dukhan. The physical therapist arrived in her mid-twenties, getting a crash course in English to pass a three-week certification. It was her patients who taught her Arabic.
At the end of her tenure in Qatar, Yadira and a few other Cuban doctors flew to the United States instead. Yadira asked a friend to call her family, so that her grandma wouldn’t hear her cry. “My abuela was raised during the revolution. She was not happy.”
Yadira almost quit two days into training as a barista. The coffee world is so meticulous that it felt like she was starting her career over. Now she’s a coffee shop manager, and quit her second job at a fast food restaurant to work there full-time. She loves it, though she can’t wait to practice as a physical therapist again.
The day after this photo shoot, Yadira received her U.S. green card in the mail.
Words by Victoria Bouloubasis.
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