Framework

Capturing the world through photography, video and multimedia

Carmen Mendoza and her daughter Nicole, 11, ride the 760 bus at the beginning of their 15-mile trek by MTA bus from their home in Bell Gardens to school and work in downtown L.A.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Mendoza and Nicole sprint to board a bus. Mendoza works in the garment district. Nicole goes to school in downtown L.A. They typically take eight or nine buses a day.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Carmen Mendoza and her children Nicole and Andy wait for their first bus of the day at 5:50 a.m. in Bell Gardens. Mendoza sees advantages in traveling together.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Carmen Mendoza and her daughter cross a street to catch another bus. Mendoza and her husband didn't finish school in Mexico. Life will be different for their children.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Mendoza drops Nicole off at Para Los Ninos Middle School Charter in downtown L.A.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Carmen Mendoza arrives in the garment district after dropping her children off at school. She works for Groceries Apparel, where she sews shirts.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Carmen Mendoza arrives at work a bit late, but her employer understands her situation and doesn't mind. Soon she'll be promoted to a management position.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Carmen Mendoza walks her grandson, Daniel, 7, from his day care to pick up Nicole at school. The three then take a bus to get Nicole to dance class.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Nicole Mendoza, 11 , has taken dance classes at Everybody Dance for several years.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Carmen Mendoza and her kids Nicole and Andy, wait for their first bus of the day at 5:50 a.m. in Bell Gardens. Mendoza sees advantages in traveling together.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

The Mendozas are often tired at the start of their commute. The city's rhythms are different from the bus.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Carmen, Nicole and Daniel make a final dash toward home in Bell Gardens after taking eight buses to and from downtown L.A.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

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Riding the bus

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Riding the bus

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It’s a grueling 15-hour day for Carmen Mendoza and her children as they leave home before dawn and trek to far-flung schools and work. But they expect a payoff someday. READ STORY

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