* A man named Danny returns to the shabby district of Tortilla Flat in Monterey, California, after serving in World War I.
* Danny learns that he has inherited two houses from his grandfather, and feeling the burden of home ownership, drinks almost a gallon of red wine, resulting in his arrest.
* Danny gets out of jail when he and the jailer go out for more wine and Danny encounters his friend, Pilon, and invites him to live in his house for $15 a month rent.
* Pilon moves into the smaller of Danny's houses and cleans squid to earn rent money, which he spends on wine.
* Pilon encounters Pablo Sanchez one day, and after drinking and telling stories, Pilon invites Pablo to live in the house for $15 a month.
* Danny is interested in a woman named Mrs. Morales because she owns her own house and has money in the...
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