Wednesday, September 1, 2010


I have not been a student for quite some time. I got my Bachelor in Business Administration ten years ago at the University of Miami. Since then I have had many jobs and businesses. I’ve been a dairy farm manager for almost seven years and also I have owned a liquor store, an Italian restaurant, two Italian fast food chain restaurants and an alternative advertising company. So my main focus was entrepreneurship in general. Some of those businesses were good and some bad. None of them made me feel satisfied; not even the great ones. I decided to sell everything. Right now I have a Facebook application for a multiplayer card game and it seems is going to be a good business. Nonetheless, my true passion is drawing comics. So I had to close my kiosk (metaphorically speaking of course) and venture overseas to reach my “American dream” in the United States.

This did not come as easy as you might think. When you get older you gain four main things in life: 1) Experience, 2) Responsibilities, 3) Stuff, and 4) Weight.  My experience made me wiser so it helped me to realize what I was missing in life. The weight is inevitable but I think I managed in that particular area.  To start my journey I needed to get rid of most of my responsibilities concerning my job at the time, and leave behind a lot of stuff I had accumulated over the years. Most of it is trash by the way, but it is not in my character to throw it away. This process was extenuating and it took probably seven months since I decided to study fine arts. I sold my house, I moved my belongings to my father’s apartment and I am in the process of quitting my job (and the stability of a monthly paycheck) and selling the farm (because it is a family business I have the flexibility to do so while studying). Anyway, I had to tie loose ends. Not to forget the school admission and the United States government requirements. All had to be in order and finally I almost did it all. Still pending a few tasks but I am here now in New York to walk my path.

Family and true friends, on the other hand, decrease as you get older, while your affection for them increases. Its like you have an x amount of love to give and when you reduce the people you are willing to share that love with, they get more of it, although I highly recommend to make more friends :). Saying goodbye to all of them was the hardest part but I keep telling myself that this decision is not only for me, but serves as homage to them. They will be proud of me eventually.

My first goodbye was to my sister Mariella and my mother María Elena. They were the ones leaving first because my sister was going to study at the University of Miami (like his brother did!) and my mom went with her. This actually did not felt as goodbye because I did not realized at the time it was going to be the last time I saw them for a while. I miss them already. Later on I sold my house and left what had been my home for around six years.  Because of this I had to give away my dog “Pedro” to Dilia (who helped my parents in raising me). I really love that misbehaved dog that used to pee all over the house and got pissed off when we threw him out of the room.  I will miss him dearly. Saying goodbye to my nephews was the hardest thing of all. The younger one, Alejandro, did not understand that I was leaving for a long time because he is just two years old, but the older one, Oswaldo José, who is now five, knew very well the situation even before I mentioned it to him. The minute I hugged him to say goodbye neither of us wanted to let go. I would really like to tell you that I controlled myself so he could not sense the difficulty of letting him go, but I failed miserably. Both of us ended up crying and to accept that with no shame shows how much I love those kids. Finally, I had to say the last goodbyes at my father’s department to my closest friends: Gigi, Konanz, Andrea, Xavier, Gio, Daniel, etc. Xavico and Alberto were not there but I met with them two days before. Leaving my brother Oswaldo was really hard, mainly because I wanted to take him with me. We are very close and I hope I have been as much as supportive as he has been with me. I foresee my main achievements happening alongside him. We still have that pending goal to receive an Oscar together (We have not idea what is the nomination) and say a joke we have rehearsed way back since we were young. My father, whose name is also Oswaldo, took me to the airport and I hugged him very strong as farewell. Morole, my girlfriend, came along with me to New York. She is helping me a lot with this venture, and I know for a fact that saying goodbye to her will break up my heart. Sacrifices, I keep telling myself. As Steve Jobs once said: “If you follow your dreams it just gets better and better”.

I hope I did not bore you to death with my farewells, but you have to understand how difficult was for me to leave all behind. I know I will not regret it because we have to embrace life and live the way we feel like. We need to do what we love and if we have to make some sacrifices to get there, so be it. You cannot make an omelet without breaking a few eggs :(.


José Luis