Traffic Lights

Relationship: Im/migrant

New Life, New Work, New YorkIn 2002, Nao was finally approved for a working visa, and she moved to New York City, the city she fell in love with when she first visited years ago. She knew that this city was the place for her to expand her potential more than her home country, Japan. “This is where I am starting my new life.” She stepped outside of JFK Airport full of dreams and anticipation.Working as a manager of a restaurant; she encountered struggle of low salary. One day, a new colleague from Japan joined her workplace. Even though she had just started working there, the her salary was much higher than Nao’s. This was because she had a green card, while Nao only had a working visa tightly stamped in her blue passport.“I must apply for green card too.” Nao twisted the cold door knob of the CEO’s office. She had hoped for her boss to support her green card application. “You need to work five more years.” That was the only reply she got. After her work that day, Nao looked up the traffic lights on Hudson Street. The energy of the city woke her from her disappointment and gave her a deep appreciation for the livelihood she had established here in her new home. Even though her income would be limited, she never thought of going back to Japan, and she felt satisfied to be living in New York City. This is where Nao had decided to settle, and this city is where she belonged -no matter how hard her struggles seemed to be.

Year: 2015

– KH

Relationship:  Im/migrant Im/migrant