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A college student worries about what a wall may mean for her family in Mexico

January 31, 2017

Tereseta Esqueda, 22, is a student at the University of Texas at El Paso. Her grandparents live in Mexico, she lives in El Paso, and she was at the train station to send them off.

“I’m here to say goodbye to my grandmother and grandfather. I live in El Paso, and my grandparents live in Juarez. They’re taking the train to visit my aunt in another part of Texas. We are together always. It’s like we’re a part of each other. I have pride in my ancestry. Even if we are not physically close, they are part of me. My grandparents will be gone now for three months. It will be really sad to me, I’m sad today to see them go. I see them once or twice a week. I really worry about it. I’m in classes now, but probably during spring break I’ll go to visit them.

“My whole family is here today because we care about my grandmother and grandfather and we’ve come to say goodbye and make sure all will be fine.

“I just want to reach my goals in life. I want to be a graphic designer. I really enjoy all the arts. I want to have my own business here in El Paso. My biggest obstacle in reaching my goals is myself. Sometimes I’m really shy.

“I think the future of America is a big issue. It’s really scary. For example, my grandmother and grandfather, and other family in Juarez. The issue of a wall, it’s really complicated to me. It’s my family. I don’t want to be separated from them. I’m scared about it. For everybody. A wall means the division of the world. It’s not just Mexico or the United States.”

AP Tampa correspondent Tamara Lush is traveling on Amtrak as one of 24 writers for its residency program for creative professionals. During her 15-day trip, she’s interviewing people and filing occasional installments for this Tales on a Train project, as well as working on her next romance novel.

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