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Our readers write from Evans Community Adult School, Los Angeles

(Thank you to teacher Joyce Mancini for sending in these and other stories.)

My uncle's positive influence

by Chang Sheng Xu

My uncle, Bao Xu had an incredible influence on my life. He taught me many good lessons as I was becoming an adult. For example, 20 years ago I went to my aunt, Num Xu's party. I met some new relatives there, but I did not greet them. When my uncle saw that, he came to me and told me that I was not being polite. I should have greeted my elders. I realized that I was wrong. From that time on, I have always greeted my elders. Additionally, my uncle was very helpful and taught me how to be generous. When I was in high school, my parents could not pay tuition for me. When he heard this, he called me and told me that he would support me until I graduated from high school. Also, my uncle is a successful businessman. He guided me when I was trying to run a women's clothing store. He explained business competition to me. "A businessman should be smart, friendly, patient, and hardworking." he said. In 2008, the economy in China was not good. My uncle encouraged me to keep my business. In conclusion, my uncle changed my life.

Inside the warehouse

by Achim Maradiaga

The clock is running and the doors of the warehouse will be opened by me. I work in a warehouse as a database manager and also I'm charge of the shipping. The company is called D.K. Drapery Hardware. It is an interesting place inside of a square building. There are metal racks loaded with boxes. On the racks are tools and machines for making wood traverse rods, roller shades, blinds and motorized traverse rods. There are three areas in the building, so I walk to the different areas most of the time. Each area has a different sound and smell. Some more than others. In the area where wood and motorized traverse rods are made, I hear the sounds of saws cutting wood, aluminum tracks, people hammering nails and occasionally I can hear the drills. The people in this area are always talking. The smell is a combination a burned wood and glue. The area where blinds and roller shades are made is always silent. In this area there are only two workers. Here machines do not make any noise. The smell is of wood, faux wood and fabric. The painting area is located at the end of the building. There is a big difference in sound. In this area I hear only the air compressor used for painting and music at low volume. My coworkers in this area don't speak too much because everyone is focused on doing their job. The smell of the paint and paint thinner is strong. My main job is inside the office and this is a different place. People are talking and phones are ringing a great part of the day. The smell in early morning is of brewing coffee and croissants. In the evening the office smells clean. Each area has its own environment.

A little tour of the Los Angeles Flower District

by Enializ Guerrero

A few weeks ago my friend Maria told me that she wanted to buy a bonsai tree, called "The Money Tree". She heard that this plant was used to attract good fortune. I told her about the Flower District, a place where she could find the little tree, even cheaper than in other places. We decided to go there last Wednesday because that day was my birthday and I wanted to buy some roses to celebrate. After class, we went downtown and ate sushi. Then we walked to the Flower District which is a big flower market. The weather was perfect. It was partly cloudy and a little cool. Inside were a variety of different live flowers. There were flowers and indoor plants that we had never seen in our lives. They had strange names, and distinct textures, and fragrances. The place had a distinctive fragrance of the flowers. I bought my roses and my friend purchased her Money Tree at an incredible price. Everything was amazing, but the only thing that we didn't like was that around the streets of the Flower District, there were many people living on the sidewalk and the streets smelled of urine. It was a contrast with the Flower District where everything is clean, organized, and smells very good, but the streets around there are dirty, unsafe, and unhealthy.

My home

by Maria Eugenia Frixion

I live in a nice home located in a quiet and pleasant area surrounded by parks. Near my house is a huge tree providing us with shade. My front door is green metal which matches the green frames on my building. My home is probably twenty eight years old. In the living room, different works of art are on the wall. Some were given to me as presents. Others were made by me. One is a portrait of Patzcia. She was from Chimaltenango, Guatemala and is wearing typical Maya colorful clothing. I embroidered this portrait. I enjoy my coffee in the dining room. There is a wide window balcony where I can see outside a lot of poinsettias and red and white geraniums growing happily. On the upper level of my home are two bedrooms. My lovely home is a blessed shelter for my daughter and me.