Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Wolfe’s Woofer: Free


“This is a nice place you have here,” I said to Rhayburn.
“Yah, it’s a good little local bar,” he said. “I opened it twenty-four years ago and it’s kept the bills paid all this time.”
On our way back from Merida, Sherry and I arrived too late for the last flight to Ambergris Caye. We had to overnight in Corozal so I wandered downtown for a beer, where I met Rhayburn. Since Belize is such a small country, we predictably knew a lot of the same peple. While we were chatting a young man walked in.
“Mr. Rhayburn,” he said. “My mama sent me for the beer.”
Rhayburn took a case of Beliken Stout from a stack and handed it to him.
“Roberto,” he said. “Monday is your birthday—right?”
“Yes, sir.”
“I have a message I want you to take home to your mama for me.”
“O.K., sir.”
“Tell her that I have given her free beer every week for seventeen years. On Monday you turn eighteen. Tell her this is the last free beer she ever gets from me and watch the look on her face.”
Fifteen minutes later Roberto returned.
“Well, boy—what did she say?” Rhayburn asked.
“She said to tell you that for seventeen years she’s had free groceries, free meat and free rent and for me to watch the look on your face.”

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