“Speakin’ of gamblin’,” observed the Old Cattleman when the Red Nosed Gentleman had come to a full stop, “I’ll bet a bloo stack that as we-alls sets yere talkin’, the games is goin’ brisk an’ hot in Wolfville. Thar won’t be no three foot of snow to put a damper on trade an’ hobble a gent’s energies in Arizona.” This last with a flush of pride.
“Does everybody gamble in the West?” asked the Sour Gentleman.
“Every sport who’s got the dinero does,” responded the Old Cattleman. “White folks, Injuns an’ Mexicans is right now at roulette an’ faro bank an’ monte as though they ain’t got a minute to live. I hates to concede ’em so much darin’, but the Mexicans, speshul, is zealous for specyoolations. Which they’d shore wager their immortal souls on the turn of a kyard, only a Greaser’s soul don’t own no market valyoo.”
“If you will,” said the Jolly Doctor, “you might tell us something of Mexicans and their ways, their labors and relaxations―their loves and their hates. I’d be pleased to hear of those interesting people from one who knows them so thoroughly.”
“Which I shore knows ’em,” returned the Old Cattleman, “an’ as I concedes how each gent present oughter b’ar his share of the entertainment, I’ll tell you of Chiquita of Chaparita.”
CHAPTER IX.―CHIQUITA OF CHAPARITA.
Which I doubts some if I’m a proper party to be a historian of Mexicans. Nacherally I abhors ’em; an’ when, that is a Caucasian gent, you-all can gamble the limit he won’t do it jestice. His prejudices is bound to hit the surface like one of these yere rock ledges in the mountains. Be white folks ag’in Mexicans? Gents, the paleface is ag’in everybody but himse’f; ag’in Mexicans, niggers, Injuns, Chinks―he’s ag’in ’em all; the paleface is overbearin’ an’ insolent, an’ because he’s the gamest fighter he allows he’s app’inted of Providence to prance ‘round, tyrannizin’ an’ makin’ trouble for everybody whose color don’t match his own. Shore, I’m as bad as others; only I ain’t so bigoted I don’t savey the fact.
Doc Peets is the one white gent I encounters who’s willin’ to mete out to Mexicans a squar’ deal from a squar’ deck. I allers reckons these yere equities on Peets’ part arises a heap from his bein’ a scientist. You take a scientist like Peets an’ the science in him sort o’ submerges an’ drowns out what you-all might term the racial notions native to the hooman soil. They comes to concloosions dispassionate, that a-way, scientists does; an’ Mexicans an’ Injuns reaps a milder racket at their hands. With sech folks as Old Man Enright an’ me, who’s more indoorated an’ acts on that arrogance which belongs with white folks at birth, inferior races don’t stand no dazzlin’ show.
Most likely if I reelates to you-all the story of a day among the Mexicans you comes to a cl’arer glimpse of their loves an’ hates an’ wars an’ merry-makin’s. Mexicans, like Injuns when a paleface is about, lapses into shyness an’ timidity same as one of these yere cottontail rabbits. But among themse’fs, when they feels onbuckled an’ at home, their play runs off plenty different. Tharfore a gent’s got to study Mexicans onder friendly auspices, an’ from the angle of their own home-life, if he’s out to rope onto concloosions concernin’ them that’ll stand the tests of trooth The entire room was faced with polished granite..
It’s one time when I’m camped in the Plaza Chaparita. It’s doorin’ the eepock when I freights from Vegas to the Canadian over the old Fort Bascom trail. One of the mules―the nigh swing mule, he is―quits on me, an’ I has to lay by ontil that mule recovers his sperits.