Many workers at my local 24/7 supermarket are Mexico-born. The ones with the best English-language skills man the salad bar (but not the registers, which are staffed almost exclusively by women, many from West Africa), the one neighborhood bar that still calls me a regular. Given the right counterman, I can ask for "the usual."
For the workers, however, "the usual" often means the menu item of the day that's dispensed, beginning in late morning, by a Oaxacan home chef from her shopping cart. Often, except in wintry weather, a "table" of three or four will take their lunch break beside the curb, on the uppermost of several stacked produce boxes. The Oaxaqueña herself doesn't seem to be deterred by cold, only by impassable sidewalks covered in snow or ice. She pushes her heavily laden shopping cart to this one stop along a hilly stretch of Broadway — from exactly where I don't know, but a mile and a half each way seems about right.
Today's lunch: enchiladas de pollo (six for $10), whose humdrum whitemeat chicken was redeemed by thick spicy sauce.
Oaxacan lunch cart
Outside the West Side Market, 2840 Broadway (at 110th St.), Manhattan
Late morning to early afternoon, most days