Fairy hands for schoolchildren

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Will we have school uniforms or not on time for students before September? Many Mayabeque families were wondering, especially those where there are new students in the different teachings.
The answer screams in the colors yellow, red and white that already appears on the shelves of the units of the retail network, stocked with the garments of those who will start preschool and basic secondary.

But the task is inconclusive, because seven lines are in the process of elaboration, among them the blue uniforms, because the fabric arrived late in the country.

However, it can already be taken for granted that all students will wear new uniforms in the coming school year (the two that correspond to them), and that certainty flashes in the hands of the fairy-seamstresses who work without pause in the twelve textile workshops of the province.

In one of those factories, the number 17 “Víctor González” of the Popular Council Tapaste, in San José de las Lajas, practically lives to fulfill that promise a dozen women who transform the fabric into hope.

There received me, without prior notice and as if she were a very close relative, María Domínguez Esponda, better known as Cuca, who erased, in a two by three, my doubts and concerns.

“The uniforms go, I would have to be dead, and not even that way.” And to show that she is, above all, a woman of action at 76 years of age, she offers me the rumor of the machines and the bent bodies of the workers she commands.
The most surprising thing about her group is the tremendous spirit of old women like Julia Hernández and Sinesia Domínguez, 80 and 85 years old, who are still attached to the seam as if their own breathing depended on it.

They, like Cuca, began in that world as girls, they were eleven or twelve years old, they say, and while they evoke pieces of their lives, I recognize that thanks to their passion and perseverance that workshop lives, moves, remains.
Of the remaining ones, almost all of them exceed 60 years, but summoned by Cuca they made fun of the electricity failures in days gone by, starting work from four or five in the morning.

This strategy was multiplied in the remaining textile units of Mayabeque where there are less than 10 thousand garments to be made, before closing July, it was underlined by Engineer Ernobel Collado Vázquez, director of the UEB Tropical Confections, of the National Company Confection Textile Boga.

The manager highlighted the good work of Tapaste seamstresses, and as for Cuca, she adorned it with several well-deserved compliments, one of them being the longest-standing and best-working woman in the position of administrator in the Light Industry from Cuba.

“Here I do everything,” Cuca warns me, corroborating what I knew beforehand about its virtues. “The same eyelets, candelilla that fixed a machine, look I fixed it yesterday when the power went out and now I’m going to try it.”
And she went from saying to deed at the speed of light, starting the ancient artifact, while her face shone and her companions looked proud, with the tail of the eye.

I provoke her by inquiring about her statistics and then she takes out the notebook where she takes the production to pencil, and when the assault with very technical questions, she answers quickly, “to make a skirt, 19 operations are required and for a blouse, 17. What else? Do you want to know? ”

To finish the uniforms is a redundancy, I tell you. Who can doubt that they look on the bodies of our children and young people very soon, if that is a work that depends on people like Cuca, a unique fairy of the thread and the needle, but in textiles I assure you, it is not the only one.


Translated by Ada Iris Guerrero

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