I hope you all enjoyed the weekend and especially watching the Pats win the Superbowl! I still can’t believe that amazing comeback in the second half into OT. These days, I time my breaks as we are getting busier each day. I can’t work non-stop for multiple hours and be productive, so managing my time is crucial to being efficient – not only with the business, but at home, too.
Over the weekend, on one of my timed breaks from managing our mounting client workload, I went to for a pedicure to my usual spot in WPB. The technician who helps me is a really sweet lady from Nicaragua, I’ll call her Luisa for this post.
She is always so kind and welcoming and just makes it that much easier to get a pedicure, which to me is more of a grooming chore as relaxing as it may be for others.
So, at one point after initial pleasantries had been exchanged, the conversation had died down naturally. I was reading the news on my phone and Luisa was going about her work and it was very quiet. All of a sudden she let out a sigh, and I looked up to see if she was ok. Then, without having to ask, she broke the silence and shared with me an experience she had last week.
Apparently, every Sunday Luisa goes out with her family for a weekly get together in order to catch up with everyone on their news. Two Sundays ago, she and her daughter, who is in her twenties, went to a local WPB Bar and Grill for lunch. As they were chatting away happily in their native language, a middle-aged couple behind them was getting annoyed, because they thought Luisa and her party was being too loud.
At that moment, the wife of the couple took it upon herself to tell Luisa to “Shut up” twice. When Luisa asked why, the woman said it was because she was speaking Spanish and was way too loud. Hurt and confused, and embarrassed since her English is broken, Luisa asked the woman why she was being so rude. After all this was a bar & grill and noise was normal.
And the woman looked at Luisa with contempt and said, “Oh, don’t worry honey, the Wall will fix all of this.”
Shortly after that, it seems that the manager came over and tried to smooth things out by not taking a side (vs. kicking that rude couple out of the restaurant, in my opinion).
Luisa was so upset as she was recalling this incident. She said it was the first time she was spoken to in such a manner. Her daughter, who speaks perfect English, was also present and witnessed her mother being insulted, further adding to how upset Luisa already felt.
What I gathered from the story is that Luisa is an honest, hard-working lady who came here for a better life for her family. And for that she was not only viewed as an outsider, but also treated in a manner I’ll call inhumane. The more we are divided in this political landscape, the worse off we will all be.
In fact her story sounds very familiar to me with respect to my grandparents. Are we back to those days? Are we back there now, where ignorance leads to empowerment with insults?
Specifically, what struck me was that we had never talked about politics with Luisa, so she didn’t know where I stood. But she still found the courage to share with me this sad and horrific story.
We read about these incidents in the newspaper and on social media, but hearing it happen from someone you know really strikes hard. I left Luisa a tip four times more than the usual amount, and wrote in the envelope that I hope she chooses a more welcoming place for lunch next time.
I’ve been writing more heart posts lately than food and heart ones lately… Anyway, I think there was a reason this incident was shared with me… it has made me think a lot of ways to help, and I’m channeling my anger positively. More than the story itself, the way Luisa shared it, with such hurt and pain, stayed with me and has inspired me in many ways.
Monday motivation is well underway for me! More recipes soon.