California Here We Come


“Pa, put yer clothes on. We’s got company.”

“Who the tarnation is here this time a night? It’s darn near after 8 o’clock?” Pa was putting his pants on just as fast as he could.  He got both feet in one leg. When he stood up he started to walk and fell flat on his face.

Ma asked,” What ya doing in there? It ain’t time to be trying to lure me into the bedroom. I said we have company. Now get your rear end out here.”

Ma tried brushing her hair with her hands while the company sat and watched. Ma gave them  her biggest smile showing two teeth missing and one grey one. She chewed on her fingernails and then it popped up in her head to be neighborly and offer some nice refreshments.

She excused herself by saying,” I’ll be right back. Just gonna step into the kitchen and make some fresh coffee.”

The visitors looked at each other and shrugged their shoulders. Visitor one said,” I think we got ourselves a nut case here. Did you see those missing teeth?”

Visitor two replied “I sure did and did you get a look at that hair? I think we must be in the wrong house. I don’t think we are going to find anything of value here. ”

“I hate to admit  it, but I think you are right. I say let’s sneak out of here while the old woman is out of the room.”

The two started to rise to leave when Ma came back in with something resembling some type of cookie. Was it cookies or maybe stale biscuits?

” Here you two, have some cookies. I baked them last week but they are still just as fresh as if I made em today”. She stuck her finger in the middle of one trying to prove her point. The cookie broke into pieces and some popped into the air. “Ah don’t worry about the mess. Old Duke well he just loves old table scraps. He’ll come inside in the morning and clean this all up.”

The visitors raised their hands to gesture their refusal. ” Uh no, thank-you mam. It hasn’t been that long since we ate supper. I just couldn’t eat another bite.” Visitor two showed he agreed by patting his belly to show he was full also.

Ma sat down putting the cookie plate on the TV tray. She took a cookie and took a bite of it and then remembered the coffee was probably done cooking now. She jumped up dropping her cookie to the floor. ” Please excuse my manners. I almost forgot the coffee. Either of you want sugar or some milk? The milk’s real fresh. Came from our old cow Bessie just this morning.”

Visitor one said, ” Well, I guess I could handle a cup of fresh brew. Just make mine black.”

“Me too, same thing, black” Visitor two said.

While Ma was in the kitchen pouring the coffee Pa finally made his appearance.” What? What the hell are you two doing here? I seen your pictures in the newspaper just yesterday. You two are bank robbers. Ma, call the police. We got ourselves a couple of criminals in here. Dial 0 on that phone right now”.

Ma came walking in with her company’s best tray. As she sat it down on the table the visitors noticed it was the darkest, muddiest brew they had ever seen in their life.

“Pa, is that anyway to treat our guests? I just made some fresh coffee and even gave them a couple of your cookies.”

“Ma, did you hear what I was a telling ya? Theses two here are bank robbers. I saw their pictures in the newspaper down at the barber shop yesterday. Get in there and dial the police. Don’t be arguing with me now.”

His wife listened and while she was  using the telephone, the visitors moved quickly. They drew a gun out on the old man. Visitor one said, “Old man put your hands behind your back and just sit down on that chair”.

The other visitor pulled out some rope from his coat and proceeded to tie Pa’s hands in knots. The other visitor was taking the extra rope and he was bent down tying feet. Ma came in and saw what was happening to her poor husband. She sneaked back out into the kitchen and got her best frying pan.

It was cast iron through and through. It had some grease still left in it from supper. As she picked it up two cockroaches scampered out of it and away. Ma didn’t waste any time walking back into the living room.

She tip-toed to the two guys and one by one she hit them in the back of the head. She threw the skillet down hitting the toes of her beloved. ” Oh Pa, are ya ok? I didn’t mean to hit you too. Can you move your toes for me. Wiggle them harder. Let me see your slippers move.”

Pa was breathing heavy and trying so hard not to cuss. He said.” Woman I don’t know what I am gonna do with you. I just can’t figure out why ya make some of the dumbest mistakes ever of any woman I know. Now help loosen these ropes.”

Together the two took the ropes off. The men on the floor were beginning to stir. Ma picked up her skillet and konked  them each one more time. “I called the police Pa. They’s on their way here. Do you think there is a reward for these two? Do you think we will be like our cousins Jethro and Granny and maybe move to Californy like they did?”

Pa was rubbing his achy feet. He stopped and looked at his wife. ” Now that you mention it I did read something about a reward being offered. I’ll watch these robbers and you go pack our suitcase. California here we come!”