My cousin Ana Maria and I had come to spend the winter in Chicago (summer break in Nicaragua) at my aunt's house, we were 10 and as part of our entertainment we had been invited to perform folkloric dances on a children's show for the local Telemundo channel.
After our performances we sat down for a chat with the hostess and she asked Ana Maria and I if we were enjoying the city; we had been "everywhere", we said, seen "everything", but my favorite thing to see in Chicago, I said, were the buildings!
I remember thinking that the hostess was not impressed with my answer, I think my cousin's favorite Chicago moment was somehow cooler than my "I like looking at buildings"...but it was true! I loved the massive colonial buildings in Leon, the neoclassical arcades in Granada, and the 1700th century Church of Saint Anne in our hometown in Chinandega. The Mayan ruins in El Salvador and Guatemala from our road trip the year before had been, until now, the architectural highlight of my young life, but now Chicago presented me with buildings of a scale and intricacy I had never seen!
The Field Museum, Chicago.
I liked buildings and I wanted to make buildings. Back in Nicaragua I told my family about our adventures in the big city, and one of my aunts mentioned the word "architect" and how an architect creates buildings; I was hooked, there was no looking back...