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‘Cuando la vida’ gives you tomatoes

December 3, 2018

Iba a ser el birthday de la Grama Cuca. Ella estaba toda excited porque she was going to be eighty years old. She wanted que este cumpleaños fuera something memorable. Grampo Caralampio had even promised to darle un party para celebrar este día especial. Canutito estaba en el bedroom secretly contando todos sus pennies to see if he might have enough de esos realitos para comprarle something very special a su grama. When he counted up all his cents, halló que he had exactly dos pesos. He began to wonder qué podía comprar with only two dollars.

Con todos sus coins jingling in his pocket, caminó down the road pa’la tienda de Mano Ramón. Perhaps he might be able de jallar algo en baratillo there that he might buy for Grama Cuca. He looked por todos los shelves de la tienda and he finally spotted algo that might be nice to buy para su grama: He had found ocho jarros de stewed tomatoes en una cajita. Quizás these eight cans de tomates might make un buen presente para darle a ella.

Mano Ramón wrapped up la caja que contenía los ocho jarros de tomates en papel de un newspaper viejo and tied them con un pedazo de cordel. Puso la caja en el counter and he watched mientras que Canutito counted out all his pennies uno por uno until he had two dollars. Mano Ramón decided que no le iba a cobrar tax. Canutito thanked him and took his heavy box embrazos and he sneaked it debajo de la cama dónde su grama would not be able to find it. Cada can would stand for every ten years en la vida de su grama.

El día del cumpleaños de Grama Cuca finally arrived. Many of her vecinos came by to wish her un happy birthday. Todos ponían sus gifts arriba de la mesa in the kitchen. Grama Cuca hugged her neighbors y les daba las gracias for coming to celebrate with her. Her neighbor, Mana Maclovia gave her un plato con gold trim that she had gotten en una box of oatmeal. Su vecina, Mana Fulana gave her una towel que había venido en una caja de laundry detergent. El Pite y la Rita gave her half a box de dulces that they had already started eating en el camino.

When Canutito saw todas esa cosas suaves that everybody was giving his grama, le dio vergüenza because suddenly he felt que sus ocho jarros de stewed tomatoes no eran such a nice gift para ella after all. He felt poco cheapeh. Why hadn’t he wrapped them, más que fuera en Christmas wrapping paper en vez que en papel de un newspaper viejo? Canutito lowered his eyes cuando vio que Grama Cuca estaba unwrapping his gift next…

When he looked up, vio que Grama Cuca was crying. Primero he thought que ella estaba toda disappointed pero then she came over to where he was y lo abrazó saying, “Éste es my favorite gift of all! ¡Gracias, gracias, m’hijo!” she sobbed happily.

Canutito estaba un poco confused porque he couldn’t figure out por qué Grama Cuca estaba contenta. Then he heard her explicándoles a todos allí que these eight cans were like having eight ready-made meals. She could combine them con carne y alverjones to make a Mulligan Stew o hacer spaghetti con ellos o podía usarlos para hacer salsa or she could even put sugar en ellos and eat them para desert. Los possibilities eran endless.

Grampo Caralampio had been looking at them desde el corner de la cocina. Ahora he came forward and picked up uno de los jarros de tomates saying: “I can think about another way como usar dos de estos cans of tomatoes. He took un jarro over para el counter donde Grama Cuca tenía un blender. Canutito watched as he turned them into juice en el blender y luego he took una botella de vodka del trastero. He blended them together y los echó en unos glasses con hielo y una stick de celery.

“Ahora sí podemos tener un party!” he announced. “Cuando la vida gives you tomatoes, make Bloody Marys!”

Canutito no tenía la menor idea what Bloody Marys were pero he could tell que todos estaban feeling good. Ahora he was happy con su presente…

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