my Water Bottle

I waited my turn in line, holding my water bottle. There were two people ahead of me. The businessman placed his water bottle on the counter and said, “full please.” The clerk slipped the bottle into the cradle and water began to flow. Ever since the extinction of dolphins was blamed on the floating pile of trash in the Pacific, disposable water bottles have been banned. Now everyone brings their own.

The man paid and moved away. The next man handed his bottle to the clerk. The clerk lit up, “good afternoon Mr. Jonhammer. We are pleased to have a distinguished Hotel Honors Silver member with us tonight.” The clerk filled the man’s bottle. “As always, Hotel Honors members receive free water.”

“Thank you,” replied the man as he took his bottle and started to move away.

“Why do they get free water?” Asked the woman behind me in a surly tone.

“It is a benefit of being a member of the Hotel Honors,” responded the clerk, with obvious exasperation that he would have to explain this to anyone.

“Another example of the privileged 1% getting life handed to them! I want to be a Hotel Honors member.” Retorted the lady.

“To become a Hotel Honors Member, your ancestors must have purchased their status and transferred it by will to their descendants. You must check your family tree.” Explained the clerk.

As the exchange died down, I stepped up to the counter handed over my rugged 20 once water bottle. “I don’t understand the fuss, really.” I said. “It’s just water.”

The clerk looked at me askance as I handed him a $20 bill. His hand still held put, he said, “with tax the total is $22.50.”

I passed him a $5 bill and he gave me my change. I turned and strolled away. Still considering the exchange between the lady and the clerk.

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