Christmas in Tusuque, Introduction

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic


Introduction to 12 days of a Christmas story

Submitted: December 13, 2017

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Submitted: December 13, 2017

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"I'd like an RC cola and a piece of rhubarb pie...and you tell Otis he'd better whip that cream right, or I'll whip his ass."

 
True slapped down the menu and looked up at the waitress with a pissed off look and her mouth set. She'd waited 10 minutes and was about to get up and leave when the waitress finally stopped by, breathless and hurried.  
 
"My apologies, ma'am.  I don't have a sitter and my kids are in the car. I had to go check on them and one was missing. Turns out his brother rolled him up like a burrito in the sleepin' bag, and he couldn't move." The waitress laughed nervously. 
 
True didn't laugh back. She always strived to see the best in people, the heart to forgive the worst in them, the brain to learn a lesson, the mind to never forget, the confidence to say, "fuck 'em" and the soul to be humble about it. But she studied the new waitress with a shrewd eye. She had an eye for good horses...and bad bullshittin'. That's what you get when you're raised by an Army drill sergeant and a southern gal. Which skill she learned from each parent was a coin toss and depended on the situation at hand.  
 
True was born Tennessee Raquel Ulibarra to a New Mexican mestizo father and an Irish Tennessean mother. Her childhood was spent under the summer moon in Chattanooga and the winter sun on a ranch, 20 miles north of Tusueque. At 45 years old, her once chestnut, now long gray hair was worn in a single braid under a black felt western hat. Her hazel eyes and copper face bore no cosmetics, an unnecessary vanity in these parts of rural New Mexico. She peeled off her leather work gloves and hissed through her teeth as she flexed her aching hands. It had been a long day. 
 
True grew trees...Christmas trees on the place she inherited from her grandparents. Her days were spent cutting, pruning, trimming, lifting and hauling.  It was hard, dirty work. Her limited interactions with people had made her tough and distant and she was just fine with that. But sometimes, the promise of a piece of fresh rhubarb pie was enough to pull her out of the branches. Besides, the rush had died down and she could take a break after the final cuttings of her larger pines that adorned Neiman Marcus in Dallas, the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs and the Sante Fe Plaza. 
 
"Here you go Ma'am..." The waitress set the pie down. "...name is Cindy, and I'll be back to check on ya in a minute".  True watched Cindy put on a coat, walk outside and around to the back. She turned her attention to the whipped cream, deemed it well whipped and ate the pie quickly. 
 
True was tough and distant because she grew up in a weird house and it made her a weird kid. When a weird kid becomes a woman, they have a tendency to have to fight for things a little harder. Her core being resembled an ionic entablature, a series of horizontal bands to withstand any force. And because she was this way, it made her hyperaware. 
 
She finished the pie, left exact cash on the table, flipped off a goodbye to Otis and followed Cindy's prints in the snow to see what the hell was so important that it made a new waitress take 2 breaks in 45 minutes to check on a kid. 
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