I was born and raised in Boyle Heights. I’ve lived there all my life. Even though I don’t live in East L.A., that community is still important to me because of the schools I have attended there. When I entered my first year of high school, I went to Roosevelt High School, which is located in Boyle Heights. The only reason I went to that school was because my parents told me I had no choice but to attend it since that was the high school they attended. To them, Roosevelt is a source of pride because it represents the Boyle Heights community. To me, it is just like any other school.
When I attended Roosevelt, I went straight to school and straight home after school so I never had the chance to explore my own community. My sophomore year I decided to transfer to the East L.A. Renaissance Academy at Torres High School because it’s a small school where I believed I could receive more help and greater opportunities to attend college. At Torres, I made great friends, and I actually joined a sport that required standing in front of a lot of people and performing a routine. That’s something I never thought I would do since I’m not use to standing in front of a large crowd.
When I joined the drill team I had the chance to explore East L.A. with my friends. We would go around the neighborhood and organize fundraisers events to earn money for uniforms and competitions. We did the fundraisers all over East L.A., like at Yogurtland, Baskin Robbins, Wingstop, Shakey’s, and Hometown Buffet. Our favorite place to go was Wingstop. We loved the different kinds of flavors for their wings.
My family and I even go to the King Taco in East L.A. instead of the one by our neighborhood. I choose to go to that one because I feel like I know it better, and I like how I can smell the meat while waiting in line. I always see people who don’t live around East L.A. going to King Taco because they usually don’t have a restaurant like that near where they live. I’m actually surprised when I see White, Chinese, Black, and Filipinos buy food from King Taco because they only sell Mexican food.
East L.A. is important to me because it gives me different opportunities in school and outside the community. It also has great restaurants like King Taco and Wingstop, which are my favorites. I love the food they serve.