Soccer Cleats

In Attire
Relationship: Im/migrant
Soccer cleats
Soccer cleats

I Step onto the field and sub in for Jacque Tunguru. I Look down at my shoes while running and stop, I see my neon orange cleats and remember my brother's story of how my uncles and grandfather have sacrificed a lot to play the game of soccer. In a sense, this sport has been a big value in my family tree for generations. From my uncle teaching my brother and my brother teaching me. My uncles grew up playing at the refugee camps. They were so captivated by this game, waking up from 5 am in the morning to play every day. They were able to play state level soccer in Nepal. Because refugee camps had lots of poverty, they played barefoot and weren’t able to buy their own cleats. Things changed for them when they were able to move to America and start their own life. They gave up the dream to play soccer, but they passed it on to my brother and bought him a new pair of cleats. He would always say that these cleats symbolize the struggles and poverty we went through and how wearing these would help him be a better person and discipline himself and be happy, etc. He would also say that soccer has been a generational tradition for our family tree and we should embrace this sport because it changes many people's lives. My brother gave me those cleats which gave me the same inspiration that my brother got. Remembering this, I jogged on the field and began to play with my friends. These cleats were so special to me; I could hear my brother cheering for me every step of the way. 

Place(s): New Hampshire, Nepal, Memorial Field, Soccer field.
Year: 2011

– Ajay Darjee

Relationship:  Im/migrant Im/migrant