Meet Marin. (OK, I know we met Marin in the last chapter, but the narrator wasn't quite sure of her name yet.)
The first thing we learn about Marin is that she has a boyfriend in Puerto Rico. He's unemployed, but she's saving the money she makes selling Avon products and baby-sitting to go back to Puerto Rico and marry him.
On the other hand, Marin also talks about wanting to get a job downtown so she can wear pretty clothes and maybe meet someone on the subway who will marry her and take her to live in a nice house.
Louie's parents are probably going to send Marin back to Puerto Rico because they think she's too much trouble.
Esperanza likes Marin and doesn't want her to go. Marin is her source of info on things like boys, sex, and how to look pretty.
At night, Marin is allowed out of the house, but only as far as the front yard. The kids sit with her as she listens to the radio, smokes a cigarette, and waits for the boys to pass by and look at her.