Rahel has come from early childhood in rural Ethiopia to becoming an intensely devoted student at a top art school in the US. She has just been recognized for her talent and rewarded with an invitation to prepare her first-ever solo exhibition.
As she is immersed in the creation process, an old friend knocks on the studio door, eager to celebrate this first milestone in Rahel’s career. But why can’t she bring herself to sign her own artwork? The old friend knows only too well where the sore point is. Rahel is haunted by her own surname, yet has a much stronger reason not to change it.
This dilemma evokes Rahel’s memories of when the old friend was her academic advisor at high school. By then, Rahel had managed to adapt to America, but not to the dark despair of being in the grip of a dysfunctional family.