Julie Thomas’ long journey to dressing princesses and police officers
Julie Thomas moved to the United States in 2006. She’s from Torreon, Coahuila, about 500 miles southwest of San Antonio, in the heart of Mexico.
She came here to save her marriage. Her husband worked in the States but was largely absent. She was raising three children (now 26, 24 and 22) on her own and was both enterprising and resourceful. Julie owned her own business—she had a small commercial sewing operation and had contracts with the schools to make uniforms. She also operated a gordita cart, often with the help of her children.
When she arrived in Bishop, her first job was at the Motel 6 in Bishop. She then got a job at Subway making sandwiches. She didn’t know a lick of English.
How’s this for irony: She said the first time she went to Taco Bell, she had to point to the items on the menu because she couldn’t communicate what she wanted with the white gal at the counter.
Her marriage soon ended. For all intents and purposes, her stint in the U.S. would end as well.
“The plan was to work for a year and move back to Mexico,” she says.
But then, life is what happens when you’re making other plans.