A Mighty Fine
Cup O' Coffee
Buck stopped his horse and
turned in his saddle. He looked back across the
prairie towards the herd and the other cowboys
who were driving those doggies to the railhead at
From the height of the sun
in the sky he guessed that it must only be around
three in the afternoon. They had already covered
about fifteen miles that day, however. To push
the herd further in a day would cause the weights
of the steers to fall and their prices to drop.
Buck knew this from ten years of drives on the
Chisholm Trail. His first had been when the
Abilene railhead had opened, way back in 1867.
Buck raised his arm. The
cowboys recognised this signal from their trail
boss as calling an end to the drive for the day.
It was almost as if the herd recognised it too as
they slowed to a halt and began to graze upon the
Hal pulled the reins of the
oxen, bringing the chuck wagon to a stop. The men
rode towards it, then dismounted nearby and made
their camps. Several collected wood with Hal and
helped to get the campfire going. Soon boiling
pots were suspended above the flames.
I could sure use a
coffee, said Joe, passing a tin mug to Hal.
said Hal. Dya want latte, mocha,
Marocchino, Medici, Tobio, Zorro, Cappuccino,
Espresso or something else?
Ill have a
cinnamon dolce soy latte with caramel syrup an'
chocolate syrup, Joe replied in a Texan
Hal glanced into the open
back of the chuck wagon. There aint
no cinnamon dolce syrup left, he said.
yelled. Call yaself a cook, and ya
cant even make a cup o fuckin
coffee. He reached for his six-gun.
Hal spun around to face Joe
and began to draw his own Colt 45.
Before the gun of either
cowboy had cleared its holster, the sound of a
gunshot caused both to freeze.
Put ya guns away,
shouted Buck, smoke rising from the barrel he had
just fired into the air. I aint gonna
have no more killin over coffee. We lost
two good men back at Fort Worth, Texas, in that
fight over a biscotti Frappuccino.
Hal and Joe eyed each other
with suspicion but let their guns drop back into
Buck walked to his horse
and pulled a bottle from one of the saddlebags.
He returned to where Hal was standing and thrust
the cinnamon dolce syrup dispenser into his hand.
Next time, ask me first, he said.
I always carry plenty of extra coffee
supplies. Buck had already planned that
when this drive reached Abilene he would hang-up
his guns and use the money he had saved over the
years from Chisholm Trail drives to start a chain
of coffee houses.
Hal glanced at the cinnamon
dolce syrup dispenser and smiled, relieved that
Buck had the coffee for the drive so well under
control. He looked the trail boss in the eye with
admiration. Youre a star, Buck.