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Though Jack said that he would speak to Mother, I was not about to take chances. Though very poor, Mother was a proud woman. She would rather have us starve than borrow or worse, accept gifts, especially gifts of meals. Mother was in the communal kitchen – the large kitchen area with several wood-fired stone stoves that all the tenants in the house shared. I sneaked to the backyard with my mug of coffee (you know, the lousy coffee) and the coconut-filled bun.

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*** Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2011 ***