“You are one brave man,” I told Ferret of his getting a ride with George.
“He owed me forty bucks,” Ferret replied. “I told him that if he would give me a ride down to Auburn then we would be even.”
“I’m a man of my word,” George said as he grinned from the driver’s side seat. “Get in.”
I warily climbed into the back seat of George’s dingy car after making sure he was sober and we were on our way.
“Where are we going?” I asked George looking over the back seat as we pulled out of the parking lot.
“My cousin’s house to take Ferret home.”
We pulled up front after a short ride to find Monte outside working on an old Buick set up on blocks in the front yard; a vintage eighties model.
“We even?” George asked as Ferret got out of the car.
“Yeah, we be straight,” Ferret replied as he bent over to shake George’s hand.
I got out and climbed into the passenger’s seat. George pulled off after waving goodbye to his cousin.
“That old crazy white man was asking about you this morning,” George said as we roared down 5th street back towards midtown.
“You mean Dan?” I asked.
“Yeah, that crazy old coot that’s always digging in the dumpsters.”
“What did he want?” I asked.
“Something about some Chef Boyardee,” He said as he chuckled. “I’m tellin’ ya that old white man be crazy. Says you give it to him every Monday. He wanted me to tell you to hold it until tomorrow. He hasn’t been able to come by.”
I laughed relieved. I thought something was bad wrong with Dan or he needed help. It was good to hear it was something so benign. Abbagirl made the suggestion that I start giving Dumpster Diving Dan the Chef Boyardee that my mother brings me every Monday and that I never eat. I was garnering quite a surplus for awhile there.
“We’re we headed now?” I asked.
“Big John’s package store,” George said with a broad grin. “It’s party time. They day’s work is done.”
“Just take me home before you start getting drunk.”
We roared across the river belching blue smoke as we pulled up into Big John’s parking lot. The parking lot was full with the cars of patrons. Big John’s is the only liquor store for miles around. I sat in the car as I watched one man come walking out with two cases of Budweiser propped upon his shoulder. George soon followed with a brown paper bag in his hand.
“What did you buy?” I asked as he climbed back into the car.
George slid a small bottle of bourbon out of the bag to show me.
“Gonna play poker over at Pookie’s house tonight and wanted something to take the edge off.”
I smiled. It made me think of Ferret saying the other day that something’s never change especially when it comes to George. George will always just be George.
George unscrewed the cap and took a stiff drink.
“Whoa man, take me home,” I exclaimed.
“Just one for the road,” George said as he cranked up his car and we were off across the river again to bring me back to my house.