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DUARTE CON PARIS

 

I was tired of the routine, so one morning I took the camera and drove to a place that I had not been for more than a decade, the streets of Duarte and Paris. This is considered one of the most active corner in the Dominican Republic, where the clutter, garbage and people of all kinds abound. It has not changed much since the last time I visited, however I have noticed a better number of Haitian and Chinese stores. Here I present some of the people who managed to develop a routine in that place.

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Brendys and Altagracia.

It is not usual for me to go to church on Sundays, but that day I accompanied my friend Gabriel because it was the celebration of the Virgin of the Mercedes*. They were already leaving when I spotted them, so without thinking I rapidly followed them and asked for a portrait. Luckily, I am a female disguised as a chinese, if not, perhaps I won’t be that lucky.

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Mr. Riango is the jolliest old man I’ve ever known. He is always content and have the funniest stories to tell, just looking at him makes me smile. Two years ago he suffered a brain hemorrhage, which left him dependent unable to perform the simplest task like picking up a spoon. He spent a year in intensive therapy and slowly recuperated becoming himself again. Now it looks like as if it nothing has ever happened, his chinese calligraphy is as impeccable as always.

壽: Longevity, life.

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Mother and Daughter

As the minimun wage failed to provide a decent quality of life for Berkys and her family, Melisa her oldest daughter of three, has started to work during the weekends with her mother by cleaning the rooms of the third floor in the Motel. Berkys is 38 or so and Melisa is 17, both of them appears to be older than their age as the hardness in their features set in over time while life failed to live up with their expectations.

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After a couple in their mid twenties left the room 302, immediately, I sneaked inside before the cleaning lady comes in and get it ready for their next costumers. According to the employers, room 302 it is now the busiest in the Motel after the incident that happened back in March of 2012. A man committed suicide by hanging himself on the TV stand after murdering his lover. It is believed that the broken mirror on the wall is caused by the lover while she struggled to defend her life. The management have yet replaced it, perhaps it to attracts more costumers.

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