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You know it’s the holidays when everyone wants to meet at Phippe’s or as those from East Los and myself call it Philippè’s. In the way we enjoy our heritage and our food we are also very particular about how you pronounce our lifetime eateries of choice. Maybe it was because when I went away to college I would die for my DoubleDip Pork, and since I’ve now grown a bit iron deficient, have had to go back to #Beef win win! Philippè’s is history, it’s childhood, it’s sameness, it’s a place to call home and of late it has been our post Protest hub. I love that I can rest my weathered bones after uniting over just causes at a place that hasn’t changed since 1908. A place that has surpassed 100 years of operations, while maintaining its deliberate and tasteful homages to the past: a place like Philippè’s gives me hope. Having separated from our protesting group for the day we made way for sustenance.

Downtown and the Union Station area truly do hold the keys to a lot of untold stories. After eating, we walked towards Olvera Street and it sounded like we were being beckoned by drums from the distance. Of course, as it turned out we were. We saw the same Native dancers who had protested with us at the #NODAPL protest the week before, and I loved watching the young ones learning as they practiced the sacred dances outside in the Sunshine. Literally, strapped to daddy’s chest as he danced in full head dress; now that’s dedication. Honestly though, it was as if Unity was everywhere. People on the street were giving me high fives as I passed them by, separate from the protest and I felt somehow honored by it.

We took the time to walk down the streets of Olvera, which had been too long since I’d gone down but I’d petitioned to save when the landlords were unlawfully threatening to evict the quaint tenant shopkeepers that give the small block its character and life. Everything still felt the same, in fact, I couldn’t help but stop for a cup of hot Champurrado, and if I wasn’t already full, I’d have crammed in as many Taquito’s as humanly possible. The Champurrado was of course too much but I didn’t care it was my Nina’s OG xmas parties in #BoyleHeights in a cup or just the memories of my parents and me running around Olvera Street in the 80’s in my cowboy boots.

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