Maria Paula Serrano
This messy mind of mine finds a release in words.
Thanks for reading.
- 22-year-old Ecuadorian living in Vancouver, Canada
A Virus Stronger than Covid-19
Last week brought a flurry of disturbing news. Not that it was necessarily different from previous weeks. Perhaps only in that it forced us to swallow pills other than our cherished Vitamin C these days. On Monday, May 25th George Floyd was killed by former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. That same day, Christian Cooper was threatened by modern day 'Karen', Amy Cooper, simply because he is a black man. Then on Wednesday, May 27th Regis Korchinski-Paquet, a 29-year-old black Canadian woman, fell to her death from her apartment balcony in Toronto’s High Park neighborhood during a visit by the police. The officers’ involvement in the scene remains unclear. Last week we were reminded for the umpteenth time that racism remains long after the abolishment of slavery, and it is sadly still the norm in many households, towns, cities, and countries.
One for the Road.
On my third journey to the mountains the road looked clearer and more spacious. But I knew the fog was still a few kilometers away.
Home is so much greater than the place you were born in. It’s both the place where you were taken care of and the place that taught you to take care of yourself. Yet, when we’re asked the classic “Where’s home for you?” we immediately spell out our hometowns. This is only natural, as these places are usually also home to our parents, our grandparents, our dogs (or cats, I’m not here to judge) and our childhood friends. But if you’re someone who’s built a life somewhere else, you know deep down that this answer is no longer entirely true.
In the New Year, a Mindful Inventory
The first days of January are spammed with social media posts of stuff like the “2000-something best nine” Instagram pictures, quotes that compile the lessons we learned from the year’s experiences, and so on. But it often takes a lot of guts to actually sit down and reflect about what worked and what didn’t: the actions that either helped us move forward or sunk us to the ground, the thoughts that influenced our outlook on life, the relationships we maintained, and the toxic circumstances we kept coming back to. As 2018 came to an end, I pictured all of the important moments I lived throughout it as different boxes stacked inside a basement, boxes I would examine as if performing an inventory. Some of these boxes I’ve decided to keep, and some I’m throwing out for good.
Drop the Expectations, They're Dangerous
I've been meaning to write this article for a whileee now. Constantly when something came up, I reflected on the topic of expectations and remembered I had a draft of this article saved on my Vocal page. So this is me getting around to it at 1:00 AM on a breezy Monday night.
Freshmen Expectations: 3 Recommendations for Upcoming Freshmen
A little past a year ago I was a soon-to-be high school graduate from Ecuador who dreamed of studying abroad, as I write this post today the last day of classes from my freshman year is about to come to an end. I lived in Washington, DC for a few years when I was a little girl and I knew from that moment that I wanted to experience things that my country and the society I grew up in would not be able to offer.
The Pliable Nature of Social Media: A Gateway or a Barrier?
Social media is one of today's most powerful tools. And although some people embrace the emergence of this tool by actively participating in different platforms, the ones who choose to cautiously observe it from a distance are onto something as well.
Justice for Those Poisoned by the 'Few Bad Apples'
On January 6th of 2002, The Boston Globe's 'Spotlight' team—formed by reporters Michael Rezendes, Sacha Pfeiffer, Matt Carroll, Ben Bradlee Jr, and Boston Globe editor Walter V. Robinson—took the first step in uncovering a decades' atrocity: the sexual abuse of children by members of the Catholic clergy. They began their investigative journey by focusing on local abuse cases within the district of Boston. Their first article, titled "Church allowed abuse by priests for years" was published on the date above, and was followed by over 600 additional stories that dug deeper into the problem and led to discoveries around the systematic abuse of the clergy in covering up the assaults.