The morning was cold. Windows rolled down in her maroon Camry, she lit a cigarette. The air swept into the seams of her clothes. Huntington Drive curved into Soto Street.

It was at this rise, where Huntington split off into Soto, when the tears came. The kind of strangled sobs that take a person by surprise, because the pain was a surprise. She pulled hard on the cigarette, her lips salty.

Sometimes things are over, and they take a long time to end.

Two years later, she would make her way west on Huntington and south on Soto, and there would be no tears. And East LA would be beautiful.

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