All In A Day's Work

By Jose P. Oquendo
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All in a Day's Work

Jose P. Oquendo emigrated from a small town in Puerto Rico to New York City when he was four years old. He soon started his first job: cleaning the bathroom to his stepmothers standards and babysitting himself. After that, every day was a workday. From shining shoes to washing dishes and making deliveries, Oquendos youth was spend earning money, which his father promptly took for the family or for savings.

After earning his GED, Oquendo joined the Army. He was soon shipped off to Vietnam, and there he had his most memorable job of all. Trained to kill by the government, his experiences in the war left a lasting, haunting impression he has yet to be able to shake.

When Oquendo returned from the war, his homecoming was bittersweet. He found no heros welcome. Rather, he and his fellow vets were shunned, and many ended up homeless and unemployed. Oquendo managed to find work, but his personal life was less successful.

Dealing with all this somewhat philosophically, Oquendo maintains its all in a days work.

About the Author

Jose P. Oquendo currently lives in the Bronx, where he is employed as a security officer. He is a divorced father of one.

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Published: 2010
Page Count: 32