Just north of the border. Windows front the street steamed from the moisture inside. Off to the right tacos cooked from meat that's been stretched within an inch of its useful life, rubbed with spice to mask the graying. Tortillas are homemade and delivered each morning and the cilantro is fresh and the onions sautéed in skillets moist from lard. Latin music blares loudly from speakers overhead. Constant commotion as mothers bark at children, pushing carts up and down the small aisles. Mexican Coke sweats on the shelf, ice cold and refreshing from the convection oven swirling heat outside. Its nearly a hundred degrees and only early May.
First of the month and not an open inch in the store. Government money-stacked baskets so high there's nothing left behind the glass but hearts and livers and - Oho! there it smiles - cow head. Thirty bucks and ten percent of the check is rich, but then again, so is Saturday morning barbacoa.