Pitter Patter

A day in the life.


1. I

Eventually I came to from the cold and found myself slumping into a chair outside a café. Café Vert – A Chance Encounter. I pulled from the inside pocket of my coat a copy of a book I’d studied at school. I slid it down on the ceramic table into the waitress’s pen. Sat opposite I was the waitress. “What’ll it be?” she mumbled. “What’ll what be?” I knew what she meant; I had a horrible habit of being elusive, I have to admit it. “Food, drink, you know.” “I know, I know. I don’t want anything. Do I have to pay to sit here?”, “Of course not, but it’s customary to eat at 9am”. What the heck did that mean? The waitress didn’t seem to get that. “Look lady, I get you’re doing your job, I really do, and I’ll tip you even if I don’t get anything, but right now the only thing I want to feed is my bed.” I wondered also what the heck that meant. The wind was kicking up again, and I really wished this woman would turn her heels, but it seemed she was oddly persistent on wasting food. I asked her to bring me a buttered roll and straight black coffee. I sipped at the coffee, letting it medicate my nerves, and tossed crumbs of the roll to the pigeons..
I took from the 101st page of the book an envelope. Inside the envelope was a letter. “If I had to make a confession every day, it’d be that I couldn’t feel your love anyway.” The words still rang out. Part of me let them fade out, and another shouted them back at me to hear them ring out again. It’s only when you finally say something to yourself that someone’s always been saying that you admit it. To hear the blocks of yourself be beaten down by your own hands, to know that those hands where the ones that built them; to find some reprieve knowing that as you had built them only you could bring them down.
“You look awfully down.” I looked up to see the waitress standing there, flicking her pen between each of her fingers, spinning it a hundred times between the touch of the next finger. Obviously an expert. Obviously. “You wouldn’t say that if you knew me.” “Aw shucks, why’s that?” She reminded me of a gas station lady in the deep south. I imagined her to wear work overalls and a straw hat. Maybe that’d have made it easier to deal with her terrible ostentation. She still stood there. I didn’t realise she expected an answer. “I’m never up.” “Ha, funny. You’re a real funny guy, you know that?” “I guess I do now.” She handed me the bill. A buck and a roo for the company of pigeons. I rolled the bill up into a little straw like cylinder, maybe she’d finally realise that she was meant to be a deep south gas lady after all, and left it with the cash.
I knew I’d get that coffee.
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