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BAUEN, day 32

In spite of all the indications of the general state of the country and of the accelerated decline of the business, the workers were left in a state of profound helplessness and a certain bewilderment by the loss of their jobs. “They were taking out comforters, curtains, beds, etc., lots of things, and we were saying,”what are we going to do?” We can’t do anything. We can only go to the Trustee and tell him not to let them take any else, because they were stripping the place,” is how María Eva recounts it.

The 28th of December, workers were clear they were unemployed as of that day. The climate was one of dismay, a sadness that seemed to have no possible solution, either inside or outside the doors of the hotel. Gladys recalls that, “on the 28th, we already knew about closure of the hotel. So, I left my house at six in the morning, because we started at seven. We arrived. The head of housekeeping made us make up the rooms that had to be made up. Some had already been dismantled.” This is not very different from what Marcelo lived through, having gone to work like every day, but that “each time we finished our shift, we went by the linens department to turn in our clothes.”

The final image comes from María Eva: “We greeted the 28th as if it was just another day, and then we were gripped by sadness. I didn’t want to leave. I was on the eighth floor. I didn’t want to leave.”

The scam was consummated, the BAUEN had been stripped, its workers fired without severance or any semblance of their rights being respected. Everything was disarray and hopelessness for them, and they walked out the door of the hotel convinced they would never walk back in, and that they were beginning a very difficult stage of their lives.


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