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THE INNKEEPER’S WIFE

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Innkeeper’s wife: (Lady comes in with cleaning rag and apron, muttering to herself as she begins to clean.)
I’m so tired of all this cleaning! Seems like all I ever do! (Phone begins to ring.) I’ll never get finished if this phone doesn’t stop ringing. (She answers phone.) Hello, Bethlehem Inn, may I help you? Oh, hi, Mable. Terrible. Just terrible! Hardly got any sleep last night! Why? You mean you haven’t heard? Well, you know Caesar has passed this amendment about taxing! I just don’t understand this government—it’s such a mess! That’s right. Because of all this, so many folks have been traveling—we’ve just been packed! You should see the parking lot—it’s full of camels and donkeys! And you know what a mess they make! Yes, David has been sick and the girls gave up their room to some travelers. Why, we even had folks sleeping in the hall last night, and you know what a fire hazard that is! Well, Joe had to cut some more wood, so I had to get all the kids in bed and check in the guests. Got ‘em all to bed, fixed Joe some supper, and finally got to bed myself! Yeah, uh-huh. Along about two o’clock there was this loud banging on the door! I nearly flew out of the bed with heart flutters! Oh, goodness me! That was so frightening. Uh-huh. So Joe goes down to the door and I peeped out the window. Couldn’t believe what I saw! There was a young couple on a donkey and she was pregnant! Yes, uh-huh, real far along! And out in that cold, too! I heard it got down to ten below here in Bethlehem last night. NO! We didn’t have a choice! Every room was packed! They said that every inn for the past two miles had been full, too. Yeah. Well, Joe gave them the key to the barn, so they could at least get out of that wind, and she looked like she could have had that baby any minute! Uh-huh, uh-huh. By that time the kids were awake and fighting over the pillows—Man, did I need an Alka Seltzer! Uh-huh! Just barely got back to sleep and heard some more noise outside. Looked out the window and saw more camels! People looked kinda like shepherds—I figured they could just find their way back to the barn, too. Yeah. (starts to look at her watch) Uh-huh, uh-huh. Who? Oh, yeah, she had the baby all right. I found out this morning. A king after Caesar? Sure, Mabel, you’ve really lost it this time! I’m sure a king is going to be born in a barn. Well, I don’t care who it is! I’m not going down there to help after all the trouble they’ve caused me! I’ll just be glad when they’re gone. What? Mable, I’m sorry! We just didn’t have room! (looks at watch) I just don’t have time! I’ve got lots to do here. I’ll probably be the one who has to clean up all this camel mess! Yuk! Yeah, uh-huh, I gotta go! Bye! (hangs up and mutters) Some people just don’t understand! I’ve got work to do! (exit)

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