The Face Before Me Is Youthful And Stern

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The face before me is youthful and stern; his smile is sincere, and inviting yet there is a slight quiver. This may be due to the fact that we have never spoken in such a formal and serious setting. Ernesto Santiago, now 46, is a former member of the Mexican Infanteria de Marina. Ernesto was stationed in Sierra León and was put in charge of escorting Pemex employees to inspect tampered company pipelines. Whenever they escorted Pemex employees it was routine to simultaneously monitor cartel members on an open channel. During one of these routine surveillances a cartel member uttered his name. In Mexico it is common knowledge that if your name is being circulated by cartels it is because you have become a target. “En ese momento mi corazón…show more content…
They have an ambiance, yes we were poor but we were honest, the police was comprised by uncles and cousins.” In his small town children grew up with minimal education and with agriculture being the only career to look forward to. Ernesto however envisioned himself as an educated professional. “Tenia miedo de la gran ciudad, era enorme. Pero yo sabia que yo no me quería quedar atrapado en la pobreza y en la vida de campo/ I was afraid of the big city, it was enormous. But I knew that I didn’t want to stay stuck in poverty and having to work in the field.” The nearest university was located in Oaxaca, 20 miles away.
“La ciudad era de hecho enorme me sentí como una idiota y nunca estuve realmente cómodo. No me gusto que no reconocía a nadie. Todos los días había diferentes personas./ The city was in fact huge. I felt like an Idiot and I was never really able to adjust. I dint know anyone. Everyday there were different people.” The school was a sea of ever changing faces and the only people he could count on were the army officials who checked students as they entered the University. He slowly began conversing with the officials and he became interested in their profession. As academics became overwhelming and expensive he deemed it as a sign that University was not for him. Ernesto decided to then drop out of school and enlisted in the army and became a
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