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Monica Molton

Some money
under a blouse

I had a baby a year ago. Now that I have a family, I’d like to get my own house. That’s the American dream, isn’t it? I want a yard where my daughter can play and where she has room to grow into a strong woman.

When I came from Cuba to the United States I had no credit. I applied for credit cards but I was denied because they said I had no credit history. So when I needed to shop for expensive items, I would carry large amounts of cash that I carried in a money belt I kept hidden under by blouse.

One day I had bought more than $200 in merchandise. When it came time to pay, I told the cashier, in my broken English, ‘Now I go around and take money.’ I meant that I wanted to go behind the counter to lift my blouse and take the money out.

So, I put my hand under my coat. But the cashier thought I wanted to steal her money and that I had a weapon with me. She put her hands in the air and opened the register. When I took out my fat roll of $20 bills and paid her we shared a good laugh.

Can you imagine it?


own: propia
yard: patio
to grow into: para convertirse en
applied for: apliqué para, solicité
I was denied: me lo rechazaron
to shop for: comprar, adquirir
items: artículos
would carry: llevaba, solía llevar
amounts of cash: cantidades de efectivo
hidden: ocultas, escondidas
merchandise: mercadería

it came time to pay: llegó el momento de pagar
broken English: inglés chapurreado
counter: mostrador
to steal: robar
weapon: arma, revólver
put her hands in the air: levantó las manos
register: caja registradora
fat roll: grueso rollo, fajo de billetes
shared: compartimos