49 Voices: Will Mirabel of Anchorage

This week we’re hearing from Will Mirabel in Anchorage. Will is originally from Venezuela and came to America two years ago.

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Will Mirabel of Anchorage (Photo by Wesley Early)
Will Mirabel of Anchorage (Photo by Wesley Early)

MIRABEL: I’ve been here in Alaska since July 1. I used to live in California. I was taking English courses in California for the last two years. There are many differences, no? First off, the weather. The weather is different here; it’s very cold. You can learn a lot of culture from people from many countries, from everywhere. It’s fine, and I like because, like I told you, you’re always learning about this.

In Venezuela, as a Latino country, everyone’s a little more, sometimes, noisy. In Venezuela and in South America, you can be close to everybody and talk. Sometimes in the U.S., you have to give room. Some of that culture you can learn with a couple years.

Alaska, or Anchorage in this case, is a small city. I mean, of course we cannot compare it, in this case, with major cities like Los Angeles, New York, Miami, Houston because in the other states, maybe it’s more metropolitan.

Like you say, in California, there are many Latinos. Actually, the Spanish language in California is growing up. People say that in many years, more than 50% can speak Spanish. It’s different in Alaska. For example, right now in Alaska it’s easier for me to speak English because there are not many Latinos. In California, when I was talking for two years in California, it was a little difficult because in every corner, every square, you see Latinos. When you wanted to go shopping or buy food, many people don’t help you too much, because they speak your own language, you know what I mean?

I wouldn’t say I’m a different person because of Alaska. You cannot change your personality because you are in a different place. More mature maybe, more smart about culture. That’s it, you know. Personality, I couldn’t say.

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Wesley is the web editor and web producer for Alaska Public Media. He began his job as the web editor about halfway into his internship with Alaska Public Media during his senior year at the University of Alaska Anchorage. Wesley graduated in the spring of 2016 with a B.A. in Journalism and Public Communications and an economics minor. He began working full-time at Alaska Public Media a week after graduation doing everything from web posting and copy editing to audio cutting and even reporting. While at UAA, Wesley was on the Media Board, overseeing the functions of both The Northern Light - the school paper - and 88.1 KRUA - the college radio station. He also wrote several articles for the office of UAA Advancement's Green and Gold News about an economics course he attended in China. An Alaskan since 2008, Wesley was born overseas in England and has lived in Germany, Australia, Maryland and Texas. He also has family in Montreal, Canada who he visits just about every year. wearly (at) alaskapublic (dot) org | 907.550.8454 |About Wesley