The Spaces Between Your Fingers

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Jack steps off the Boeing 747 and slowly looks around the airport. The diverse skin colors. The variety of languages. The seemingly dense yet orderly crowd. The exceptionally clear floor. Each aspect of the airport draws a stark contrast to the dusty Chinese village where he was born and the tumultuous crowd of Beijing.

“After 10 years, I’m here! In America!” Jack thinks as soon as he got over his amazement. He suppresses his urge to cry, knowing that coming to America is the first step of a bigger dream: to establish a place where his children can live without the poverty he suffered as a child. Jack picks up his luggage and rushes to the customs to verify his immigration visa, eager to start making money to apply for a green card.

Jack completes the customs check smoothly and Jack proceeds to exit the airport. Jack then briskly walks to the taxi pick-up area, where his mother, three sisters, and fiancée welcome him to America.

“I missed you so much!” Shirley, Jack’s fiancée cries as she embraces Jack.

Then his mother and sisters bombard Jack with questions. “How was the journey?” “Welcome!” “Have you been well?” “We miss you” “Long time no see”

Jack joyfully laughs and gestures towards the taxi, “Let’s get going. I’ll answer your questions in the car ride to your house. But speak one at a time. I can barely make out each of your questions.”

Jack’s family boards the taxi and continues questioning Jack about his conditions. Jack answers and asks about his family’s situation in America.

“It’s great!” Shirley exclaims, “We have stable jobs that pay much more than selling crops back in China. The working hours are shorter as well…”

Jack could only smile as Shirly and his family gush about their lives in America. He looks out the window and muses to himself, “This is America, much different from China, but my family is much happier here. I must continue to apply myself to preserve this happiness.”

First Step in America

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