Here to Stay! / by Ngoc-Tran Vu

     After long months of drafting, meeting, fixing, tweaking, the mural finally made its appearance. On a windy Saturday, October 1st, a small portion of the community came together to set up the big day. Groups of people carrying and lifting boxes up and down. Trash and garbage were being removed. Balloons are getting blown up, pinned up, and then popped in the wind. Tents were coming together and so was the event setting.

     As time reached closer to the start of 10, the wind continues to blow, guiding people into the event. Time hits 10AM, and volunteer got to their stations. Audience start to gather by the mural's veiling, hoping that the wind blew hard enough for people to take a glimpse. Luckily, the veil was tight enough it didn't catch wind to fly away. People started to mingle, scouting for food. Little people and big adults gather to get cotton candy, snacks, and drinks. People brought the sunlight under this cloudy chill day. 

     Local news reporter, and interviewers pick their corner. This mural was the talk of the town. Members of the project gets pulled in from every corner. Interviewer asking about the process of its making, the meaning behind it, the reference made in the mural. Some hard question, some easy questions. Long answers, short answers. All interviews pulled hours closer, by then, time hit 11AM.

     Waiting, waiting, and then it's finally time... Unveiling. People moves to the center, in front of the veiling yet again. Volunteers pull away from the booths, and redirect all attention. Our local translator and Tran starts off with thanking people within the crowd. They speak of how the mural came to be. One to the other, more and more people were pulled up to bring their input of the project. Then, finally, the biggest thing people were waiting for... 3... 2... 1... *drop*

The mural is finally unveiled people to see!

The mural is finally unveiled people to see!

     The sun fell out, some people clapped and cheered, others were in awe. Audience gathered closer for a picture of the mural, of themselves with the mural. Drones were flying across the sky, scanning every panel. Next thing you hear are people congratulating members of the mural. Some people were thanking as well. Reporters ask the team to get together to get a photo of recognition in front of their piece. 

     Long after catching up, seeing the unveiling, the mural and all, people start to pick up and leave. The community knew that the mural isn't going anywhere, and that people can come back to see it anytime. Volunteers clean up, audience leaves, and the team head out to eat for celebration. Everyone leaves the mural's site because they knew that it's here permanently, and here to stay. Just because the community in action mural is done, doesn't have to mean it's its last, but there is no promise to keep. We hope to grant the community an understanding that they may do project that is just as similar and different. As of now, the community will take one step at a time, and a reminder that it is here to stay!

Till so, the team would like to thank everyone who got involve to help make this mural happen. Top row; left to right: Tony, Cuong, Tam, "Duoc", "Hung" (Names in quotes, are people who weren't originally in the picture) Middle row; left to right: Tommy, Joan, Tran, Kim, Susan, Justin. Bottom row; left to right: Grace, Kimberly, Michelle.

Till so, the team would like to thank everyone who got involve to help make this mural happen.
Top row; left to right: Tony, Cuong, Tam, "Duoc", "Hung" (Names in quotes, are people who weren't originally in the picture)
Middle row; left to right: Tommy, Joan, Tran, Kim, Susan, Justin.
Bottom row; left to right: Grace, Kimberly, Michelle.

Want to see it in person, but have no idea where it's placed? No worries!
Come check it out at 1370 Dorchester Ave., Dorchester, MA.

- Kathy Le