Quickly the night has vanished and it’s a new day, the smell of Suavitel is breezing throughout the whole block along with those old folk ballads on full blast that make some cringe, cry, scream or in my mom’s case clean! Kids are playing, birds are chirping, dogs are barking and all of a sudden the horn of a van follows with a loud scream for: Huevooooos! Huevooos! Eggs! Fresh eggs delivered right to your front door like in the old rancho. To some this might seem like a disturbance but in our neighborhood it’s our wake-up call, our call for a new day, that for me starts for off with some huevos rancheros with a mix of ketchup, Tapatio, maybe some Tabasco or a chile verde on the side. Call it bien ranchero but this is my Eastside treat inside a fresh tortilla made fresh daily just a block away over at Gloria’s Tortillas where when I was 4 I got lost or stuck in a daze staring at the tortilla machine going round and round and never made it home until my mom’s went back and pulled me by my ears all the way home. Damn. Now I just ride my bike round the block, pick-up a pack, ride back, flip the switch and cook. 11 year old style. Dripping, dirtying and lots of burning but always learning.
On the east side we grow up quick, we experience life quick, so we live quick. Products of our environment. Barrio princes who clean, cook, wash, love, hate and are too young to be pulling the trigger. Street warriors who shout their respected corner like a Main Street vendor. Chile for the power, strength, passion, respect or just to hide the little prince our mom’s raised us to be, singing old folk ballads…”ya lo pasado, pasado…..” stays in the past because we live way too fast.