My Life in Puerto Rico

I came to the Island of Enchantment at the end of May of this year to stay this time for good. As I aimed for a radical change in my life, I got rid of all my belongings in Atlanta where I lived for almost three decades. I only brought with me my personal things, and I started here from zero.

By Jerry Valentín

It hasn’t being easy getting used to my new life. A big piece of my heart stayed with the people I love. When I compare my native town, Aguadilla with Atlanta, sometimes I feel I am living in a third world country. However, a progressive town like Atlanta has never overwhelmed me like the magic that resides in the Island of Enchantment.

Besides the government imposing an absurd bureaucracy, its limitations and the devastating effects of hurricane María that are still shaking our economy, I realize there is not another place like Puerto Rico in this world.

By Jerry Valentín

It is such a pleasure to hear my people speak with the silvery singing of the puertorrican accent. As I observe them express with their hands the music that emanates from their joyful bodies, I get sucked in by their vibrant energy.

When I listen typical phrases, such as “ay bendito”, “mija” “válgame Dios”, and Spanglish words like “janguear” and “parisear”, I enjoy the gleeful rhyme that highlights our tongue. The hospitality of the puertorrican complements the generosity of the Taíno Indians, inspiring me to give my best.

After hurricane María, puertorricans united their hearts to offer comfort and support to those who needed it. Submerged in total darkness that covered the country, the shinning light of their spirits intensified the brightness of the stars.

Some people claim this island is not safe because of the high level of crime. Others plead that puertorricans are lazy and opportunists. And now, our government has lost its credibility upon the eyes of the world. ¿What is going to happen to us? I hear some people cry out with worry in their eyes.

by Jerry Valentín
by Jerry Valentín

Regardless of the political corruption that haunts us, the integrity and the humanity of puertorricans should never be doubted. While some people see danger and crookedness, I can travel the entire world knowing I will never feel in any other place what I feel in my homeland.

I was born here, and I hope to die here when the time comes. As I stand in my beloved land, embraced by its magic that vibrates with the stars. Each day I will rise up with a grateful heart for my precious island. I will give thanks a thousand times for its refreshing breeze cherished by the ocean waves. I will also thank Mother Earth for the miraculous recovery after hurricane María. For the glorious songs of the birds, happily flying among the branches. For the wonderful preludes the coquís compose after a rain shower. For the heavenly sunsets, sometimes gifting us bewitching rainbows. And when someone dares to tell me I am crazy for wanting to live in Puerto Rico, I will declare with all my heart that this is the best delirium of my life!

By Jerry Valentín
by Jerry Valentín

2 comments

  1. Jerry, I like what you shared! I am ready to embark on a similar journey back to the island and will be going to Aguadilla For a while also. Perhaps we can meet. I will be there in Nov. If you have a FB page please request my friendship so we can meet after my arrival. Diana Aponte
    Thank you!

    Like

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