The last time I cut the brush off this hillside, I got tired in the heat and sliced my left thumb open, running the saw across it with an overhand right.
I had to wrap my shirt around it and sit down in a shade a while to think on it. I went to get a tetanus shot and a couple stitches.
This time I stopped by Home Depot, picked up a couple Quiche Maya from Guatemala (when I asked them, they told me the towns where they were from, but I don’t remember). I was impressed by the the young guy’s open smile, and by his deference to some unwritten code of day laborers when the older guy presented himself as next in line to be hired (and the others all stepped back).
I asked if they were related; the younger guy said no, just friends.
They asked ten dollars an hour; I said very good: three or four hours.
They worked very hard so I didn’t have to, the older guy, who was not very friendly, worked especially hard, only resting when I suggested they get drinks out of the ice chest.
When we were finished, I’d tossed the bundled sticks and brush into a pile almost as high as they were tall, and piled black trash bags of leaves and debris as tall as me.
The street was clean, the hillside clear of brush; I paid them and bought them lunch. We chatted, my broken Spanish, their Quiche-accented Spanish.
I asked them if they needed a ride back to Home Depot, but they said no, they were done for the day.
They waited at the bus stop together.

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