Oh, don Juan was terrible. He was so mean with his kids. I don’t know why, but that’s the way he was. Que Dios lo perdone. It’s not that I’m talking about him. I am not saying anything that it’s wrong, pero that’s the way he was. It’s the truth.
Anyway, the day I was talking about, I gave Elvira her breakfast first so the rest of us could eat. Because we all had to sit down at the same time, and that was it! So, when she finished eating, we all sat down to eat breakfast.
But the baby really liked ‘agüita’ – la yemita del huevo. She was walking around the table and she went up to one of the boys – Cesáreo or I don’t know which one – to ask for ‘agüita’.
“Nomach agüita, nomach agüita,” she told him. She wanted ‘just a little agüita’ from his plate. We was all eating eggs sunny side up.
Then, don Juan looks at him and said, “¡Don’t give her any! Don’t none of you give that bribona anything else. ¿You hear me? She already ate her breakfast. These kids,” dijo, “if you let ’em do what they want, they just take advantage. You have to make ’em listen and respect you. ¡Don’t give her any! She’s just a spoiled kid.”
But there she goes, asking everyone. Then the baby went with Mike and said, “Agüita, Daddy. Nomach agüita.”
“No, mija. Your mom already gave you agüita,” he told her. “Go on to your mom.” Mike was afraid of don Juan. Even if he was married, he was afraid of him.
So then she came with me. I gave her a little taste. “Váyase, mija,” I told her. “Go on.” But I didn’t pick her up so I wouldn’t make no more commotion.
Then Elvira passed by her grandpa. She just looked at ’im. She didn’t ask him ’cause she already knew how he was. She didn’t ask ’im, but went over to her grandma. She was sitting right next to don Juan. “Mema, nomach agüita, Mema. Nomach agüita.”
“No, no, hijita,” she said. “Go on now. You already had breakfast. No more. Go on.”
So, don Juan gets up. Boy! He grabbed her and spanked her two times real hard and sat her down on the floor! Dijo, “And I don’t want nobody to pick up that stubborn girl!”
Nobody? Ha! Well, he can go to the dickens! I pushed my plate and my chair, and I picked up my baby. Oh! I felt like he tore out my heart from my body.
Dijo, “Well, now. I thought I just said nobody to pick up that spoiled girl.” Then he looked at Mike, “¡Y tú! ¡You don’t say a thing!” Like he wanted ’im to scold me or something.
I was the one that said something. “¡Yes, she’s spoiled!” I felt like my head was on fire. Le dije, “But at least I don’t hit her like some people like to hit their kids. They’re really good for hitting.” I was so mad, I wanted to die. I didn’t know what to do. Well, he hit her so hard and he sat her down on the floor without nothing. Just the bare floor, of wood. ¡Pum!
I went out with my baby, and I went down the street crying because I was so mad.
Then, don Juan les dijo a los muchachos, “You eat.” He got up and hit each one of ’em on the head with a spoon – Cesáreo and Moisés – and he told Mike, “And don’t think because you’re married I can’t do the same to you.”
They kept eating breakfast, but Mike couldn’t eat no more. He just stayed quiet. He didn’t say a word.