John escaped the confines of the Plymouth Barracuda’s front seat and stretched. It’d been a long hot ride from San Trope.
“Thank’s ‘65.” His nickname for the old gal who sputtered and coughed but never died on him.
John raised his arms straight in the air and stretched, wiggling his fingers in the process. He bent over and touched his toes.
He walked into the cantina feeling a bit more limber. He could already taste the Cerveza he was about to order.
“Johnny Pickelton!” A man yelled out at him as he came around the side of the building. “What are the odds of that?” He took off the straw cowboy hat and smacked it against his leg as he spoke. “Whoo…wee! You are a sight for these eyes. Ain’t seen an American in these part in days, and when one does arrive…well, I’ll be a monkey’s uncle don’t I know ‘em.”
“How you doing, Corey?” He reached his hand out to shake the other man’s. Corey grabbed his hand and pulled him in for a hug.
“Great, man. I’m doing great.”
“Let’s get a beer.”
“Holy shit, Johnny. You still driving that old gal?”
Corey ran over to the car. “She don’t look a day older than when you got ‘er.”
“My bride and my pride,” he responded. “Come on, that beer.” Johnny didn’t wait any longer. He walked into the cantina and was met by a beautiful mexican girl of about 17 who led him to a table. Johnny waved his hand back and forth in front of her and pointed to the bar.
“Nos sentaremos en el bar.” Corey said behind him.
“Si.” She walked them to the bar.
“Dos cervezas.” Corey said as he sat down. The bartender brought them two brown bottles, condensation dripping down from the bottle’s neck. White foamy bubbles slipped over rim of the lips when they hit the bar top.
“I’ve been dreaming of this for the past four hours.” Johnny said.
“To you brother.” Corey said.
Johnny picked up the cold bottle and held in below his nose and breathed in slowly to take in the smell of grains and a hint of orange peel. He pursed his lips and set the glass at a tilt and tipped. The amber fluid rushed into his mouth. Each of the different tastebuds picking up distinct flavors and signalling appreciation before letting it flow down his throat. He took another swig. Half the bottle was now his.
“Damn, that taste good.”
“Okay. Partner, what on God’s green Earth are you doing in this shanty town?”
“Same as you, Corey, same as you.”