“That’s $15.35 in total, please,” Pedro Viloria said through his mic. Then the cars honked. People were so impatient, but he knew that this was how people typically behaved when they were hungry. He filled the cups and stuffed the bags with food. Soggy fries are the worst. So, he was careful not to put the fries on the bottom and the boxes on top. He opened the window and was greeted by screaming children.
Viloria was still trying to figure out his future. He watched his mom work two jobs, working sixty hours a week to put food on the table for him and his four siblings. She was saving up as much money as possible to help pay for his college tuition, but he felt bad. He had good grades, but they weren’t good enough to earn him a full scholarship. However, he knew that most schools would take him in if he had the tuition money. So, after he graduated, he broke the shocking news to his mom.
A Tough Decision
Viloria’s mom had made too many sacrifices. She barely functioned on four hours of sleep. But somehow, she worked a 10-hour shift, 6 days a week. He was amazed she was able to wake up in time to make everyone breakfast in the morning, and have dinner on the table between jobs. If anyone deserved a break, it would be her. So, over dinner, he announced, “I’m getting a job.” She spoke to him for a whole hour before grabbing her purse and walking out. That part was easy. Now came the hard part.
Viloria had never had a job before, but not because he didn’t want to work. His mother didn’t want him to get one. The only work she would allow him to do was mow the lawn or paint the fences for his neighbors. She wanted him to focus solely on school, to “build a decent life for himself.” What kind of man would he be if he sacrificed her life for his own well-being? There was no way she could support the family and pay his tuition, but landing a job wasn’t as easy as he thought.
The Hunt Begins
His resume wasn’t very impressive. The only experience he had was babysitting, painting, and gardening. He had no qualifications, and his hobbies included reading and watching TV. Fortunately, he had a positive attitude. So, he put on an ironed white shirt, and started job hunting around Doral, Florida. His only companion on this journey was a briefcase he borrowed from his neighbor. But all anyone said to him was “We’ll be in touch.” Things weren’t looking so good.