Posted 12-29-2003 at 08:04:36
[Reply] [No Email]
I finally figured out why Victor keeps popping up around here.
Victor is one of my best customers. He buys everything from pigs to goats, to roosters, and has been by here every day for the last three days even knowing that I have sold him all the roosters I am willing to sell, and the pigs I have left are small and not the size he typically buys. I figured he was stopping by just to chat. Oh Lord.
We have a system, Victor and I. He speaks to me in a form of English that has a very strong Spanish accent attached to it, and I get about every tenth word. We interrupt each other a lot, because if either one of us gets to ramblin', the other is lost. Whichever non- English speaking buddy he happens to bring along, stands there looking impressed at our ability to communicate, clueless to the fact that we are both basically floundering helplessly.
Anyway, due to the gaping holes in our typical conversations, it took me three days to figure out that he was offering to pick our grove for us. As soon as I figured it out, I was on it like a duck on a Junebug.
"I thought you were picking the Villa Grove." I said, my hands on my hips.
Dam! Why did I ask that? I have been looking for weeks for someone to pick this grove, and here he is wanting to do it. Why would I question it?
"Weel, issa naw red rite naw, issa no freesh. I gotty ting daze naw trabajo, naw weirk." He said, looking very relieved that at last he had gotten his point across.
(The grove is not ready yet, the fruit is not fresh (ripe). I have ten days with no work).
"Oh, well, can you get me fifty cents a box? That's all I want is fifty cents a box." I almost choked on that offer, as last year I made four fifty a box, but this year the prices have gone to heck and he's lucky if he can sell them for a dollar and a quarter a box, leaving him with seventy five cents. "I have grove ladders and anything else you might need."
"I gotty lattice, I no needa lattice, ing I gotty trook and tu' ming a helpless me."
(I got ladders, I don't need ladders and I got a truck and two men to help me).
"What about the price Victor, can you do it for that? I'll let the fruit rot before I'll take less than that."
He pursed his lips, characteristic of, 'I have no freakin' idea what you just said'. I knew that look, but I waited out of curiosity.
There was a long pause and then a curious look...
"Issa naw goot frut? You gotty root rut?"
"No, no, the fruit is good, no root rot..." I chuckled,and then held my hand up and rubbed the tips of my fingers against my thumb, the international symbol for money.
"Fifty cents a box, yes?"
"Oh, si'!" Big ole grin. "Si' issa goot. Si' fitty sings a box."
Ahh. We had an agreement. This morning he showed up at seven thirty with his 'trook and his tu' ming and his lattice,' ready to go to work. I may not make much, only fitty sings a box, but at least the frut will be off the trees and not 'rutting' in the grove. (grin)