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LOS ANGELES TIMES SPECIAL REPORT : IMAGES OF THE NORTHRIDGE EARTHQUAKE : Recovery : FRACTURED LIVES AWAIT THEIR BRICKS AND MORTAR

January 31, 1994

Getting back to normal.

Just days ago, normal life in Southern California too often seemed uninteresting and uninviting. It was too violent, too crowded, too superficial.

But now, as damage figures spiral upward like numbers on those billboards that count the world's population, it's hard not to feel a certain nostalgia for the once noisy, now silent mall and commutes that took only an hour.

As the sound of jackhammers replaces sirens, we have learned that normal can be an elusive, precious thing.

Photo Editors: Vanessa Barnes Hillian, Akili-Casundria Ramsess, George Wilhelm, Art Director: Kris Hofmann, Writer: John Johnson, News Editor: Larry Jones, Digital Images Editor: Mike Zacchino, Copy Editor: Edward Silver

For reprints of this section, please write: Quake Photo Retrospective, Times Valley Edition, 20000 Prairie St., Chatsworth, Calif. 91311

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