The story of the week was the arrival of a young man with a dream.
He arrived in Phoenix on a flight from New York.
He asked to be referred to as John, and so he was.
John was born in the Bronx in the mid-1960s, the youngest of seven children.
He spent a year and a half living in the United States, eventually settling in Phoenix, where he took up teaching.
John worked in the city’s community college, worked as a busboy and eventually as a carpenter.
He returned to the Bronx as a graduate student, graduating with a degree in electrical engineering.
The experience was humbling, and it made him want to make a difference.
Phoenix’s economy is not going to recover as fast as New York’s, but it is expected to be growing faster than the national average, according to a report by the consulting firm McKinsey & Co. The economy is expected by analysts to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 5.7 per cent this year, with growth expected to remain robust through 2019.
Phoenix, a city of about 16,000 people, has emerged as a magnet for young people looking to build their lives on the American dream.
John, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said he and his wife were in Phoenix for two weeks.
He said he has had the opportunity to visit other cities and states, including the California coast, and was impressed by the pace of change.
“Phoenix is really going to change the way people think about their lives, about what they want to be, and what they are willing to do to get there,” he said.
John and his two brothers left New York for Phoenix about four years ago and moved in with his grandmother.
He said it was a tough time for the family.
He did not know how much money he made working in the carpenter shop, but he said he earned enough to buy a car.
He added that he had learned to love his work.
His family has been living in a house on the edge of town for a year now, so they did not pay much attention to how much John was making.
He worked with his grandparents at the shop, then helped with the roofing work on the property.
He did not have a college degree and was not working full-time.
I feel lucky to be here and have this opportunity, he said, adding that he hopes to someday start his own business.