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Making Mom a Movie Star

Creating a Documentary About My Mother’s Work in the Fields Helped Me See Her in a New Light

Making Mom a Movie Star

On a typical morning, my mother, Camelia Maribel Sanchez, drives 15 minutes from our house in Coachella, a small city in the Southern California desert, to the bell pepper fields in the town of Mecca. By 6 a.m. at the latest, she starts to pick red and green peppers. She then labels the peppers with company stickers, stacks them neatly in boxes, and gives them a quick dusting off. Sometimes …

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