5 months of editing, organizing, learning final cut pro and digital editing, toning, more editing, audio narrating, writing, recording voice-overs, and still more editing and rearranging, the project came, sunday and monday - and - went. rather quietly. not one reporter or photographer made any comment about the completed project. Or what they liked or even learned, or disliked. The only thing that was expected were the negatives responses from mant members of the community. There were postings such as, "why don't they spend that money here," (which they do btw like everyone else) and "cheap advertising for some of the wineries," one wrote. This one didn't even make sense: Cuba is just like Mexico, referring to sending money home. Well, let me tell you: No, Cuba is not like Mexico. Cuban-Americans from Miami cannot sent money to family Cuba. And money spent in Mexico is also spent here, and even at the local churches. They are citizens. They are homeowners and college graduates who have children playing sports or on the cheerleading squad with your children. In fact, you might be drinking their wine or have spoken english to them. I'm beside myself -- do these bloggers even read a national newspaper? Have they ever left Napa to visit the outside world? the story of the immigrant is as old as this country.
why do i read those stupid comments that ultimately make me sick in the
stomach knowing that Americans, the people in this community that I
cover for the newspaper, really do think that way, hiding behind a
screen name. I feel like I havent' done my job well enough if they still think that the majority of Mexicans living in the Napa Valley are illegal. In fact, the migrants are a minority. The story is about Mexican-American immigrants giving back to their hometowns. I don't know one single ethnic that does this. My mother and her family purchased a mausolem for our ancestors in China. But they didnt' contribute to building a plaza or reconstructing an old church. This level of grassroot support really is about family bonding and staying connected despite the miles apart.
for me, this was by far the most liberating project I've done for a newspaper. I, for once, was a journalist. And I did it against the odds of a budget, or lack thereof, or knowing how to do multimedia, yet somehow I discovered the vision while crafting these videos from scratch, all the while still shooting assignments, maybe not everyday, but enough. I got over my reluctance of shooting video and had fun; same with the neck cramps, puffy eyes, low confidence about will this ever work, is it interesting, does it look professional, the grief from my boyfriend for spending Christmas without him, missing the holidays and my family, and the why can't i write a storyline to get me started!!!
My brother called me today to wish me a happy birthday. its my 32nd. And he gave me the greatest compliment that assured me that what I did was good. He got it. He heard it. He read it. he said that it was like NPR. Now THAT is cool.
Earlier this week George, Reese and I made took a trip out to Dillon Beach, a stretch of beach the hugs the Sonoma coast and eventually leads you into Sharks Alley and Tomales Bay. Here are some pictures from that day. I miss living at the beach, and I esp. miss surfing every day.