Have a Nice Weekend

By Serge Skudaev

In Russia, most people keep their cars in cooperative garages. Typically, these garages are some distance from one's home. As with most things, this has pluses and minuses. On negative side, you have to walk a long way to get to you car. On the other hand, this provides an excellent excuse for husbands to step out: "Honey, I have to go to the garage to work on my car." In fact, men use the garages as a meeting place where they talk and drink.

On Saturday I stopped by a friend's house. His wife opened the door and said, "He went to the garage to work on the car."

I bought a bottle of dry wine and went to the garage. When I got there, I realized my friend had been working hard on his car. His jacket was open, his hat had been tossed in a corner, and he could hardly stand.

"Hi there," he exclaimed. "Do you have something to drink?'

"Sure. I shook my brown bag.

"Well. Then I'm glad to see you." He smiled.

As we were walking to his area he invited everyone we met: "Come along with us. We have something to drink."

By the time we got there, we had a dozen men with us. He opened the door and we went in. As we did, I pulled the bottle from the bag.

"Just one?" he cried out in disappointment.

"Do you have a corkscrew to open it with?" I asked.

"Corkscrew? I don't need a corkscrew. I can open your bottle without one."

Before I could react, he seized the bottle from my hand, turned it upside down, and smacked the bottle hard with his palm. Immediately, the neck broke off and the precious liquid spilled out on the floor.

For a while we all remained silent. Saying we were devastated is nothing compared to how we felt.

Slowly, we all went outside. I looked at my watch and said to my friend, "Come on . I'll help you get home."

When I brought him home to his wife, I said to her, "Forgive him. He is very tired. He worked too hard on the car."

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