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  • Rock bottom: Rafael struggles with an alcohol problem after the death of his father in Panama
  • "I started drinking during the day. I got into fights at the bar or with guys on the street."
  • Storyboard By: Ana, Laura, & Alex
  • “We got married in Iglesia del Carmen in front of twelve guests. [My] sister, Gloria, [my] parents, a few of our friends."
  • “My wife, Celia, saved my life. Who knows what would have become of me if I hadn’t met her?”
  • American Dream: The Toro's immigrate to the United States
  • “Both Celia and I miss certain things about Panama. It was our home for so many years. It’s hard to let go of that, even when you have a good reason for leaving."
  • We start in Panama with Rafael’s sad story, depressed after his father’s death- left motivationless and upset. He is in a bad state and he needs guidance to help him through- luckily he meets Celia. Their love grows and his priorities with it. He knows what he needs to do and he turns his life around.
  • The provider: Rafael's job as a line cook
  • Rafael meets his wife-to-be, Celia, falls in love with her, and prioritizes her over alcohol. He no longer resorts to substances and Celia initiates Rafael's transition into becoming a better man. They finally they want the best for each other and that they want a better life now.
  • The downfall: Rafael loses his job
  • "Well, what if you don't find anything?"
  • After their marriage, Rafael and Celia have two kids, Mayor and Enrique. The political corruption within Panama directly effects them after they are held at gunpoint. They decide to move to America because they wanted a better and safer life for themselves and their children.
  • Reconciliation: The Community
  • In America, Rafael lands a job as a line cook at a diner. He is a hard worker in order to provide for his family and give them a better life. His motive all along is to be the best father and provider he can be so his wife does not have to work. Rafael feels obligated to provide everything for his family.
  • "I’m a line cook at a diner, and I make enough to provide for my family."
  • The couple's relationship begins to spirals out of control as Rafael loses his job, making him unemployed, and Celia is unable to work because Rafael will not allow her to. This shows Rafael's weak and fragile masculinity, and how his ego is effected by simply switching roles.
  • "Jesus Celia!" I've already told you I'll find something!"
  • In the end of the novel, the couple bids farewell to their neighbors, Alma & Maribel, as they make their journey back to Mexico. The Toro's organized a fund to help the Rivera's in their time of need. Rafael and Celia come together to help their neighbors when they are at their weakest. This shows how a sad situation can bring the community of immigrants together, including their strained relationship.
  • I am so glad that we were able to help Alma and Maribel.
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