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It was the foreign mixed with the familiar that I think allowed Tammy to elicit her clients' confessions.  Talking to her was easy for these Highland Park people.  She’d already seen them at their worst, and hadn’t left them yet.  Plus she was getting paid to stay, though they’d be the first to go.  By becoming this familiar stranger, Tammy provided these Highland Park people with a rare freedom, granting her clients the opportunity to confess their lives, dreams, past wishes, regrets, hopes for the future.  And all of this they seemed to tell Tammy freely, confessed in confidence to what they saw as an Okie half-breed – half Cherokee, half Texan – holding their hand, coaxing them back home again.  

Tammy’s Tale