Tuesday, December 19, 2006

The Cafe

The drought entered its sixth week. Dry air scorched the uncovered skins of Kuchingites as they go about their daily business. Having taken care a previous appointment of mine, I was now waiting in a restaurant in Padungan. Anxiously I scanned the doorway for any sign of the person that I was supposed to meet. Several people filed by in the past minutes, but there is still no sign of her.

At last, the door opened. She was as exactly as I have last seen her three years ago. The length of her hair, the enigmatic smile, the petite size. She spotted the table I was sitting at. I nodded. She returned the nod, approached the table and sat down. Not a word was exchanged between us as the waiter took her order.

"So you will be leaving."


"Perth ain't that far. Think I should drop by? Got some friends over there."

She laughed. "Sure, why not. I'd love a visitor from home. But make sure you bring something that I crave for, or else," said she, waving her fork threateningly.

Grinning, I said, "I'll be sure to keep that in mind."

The rest of lunch was filled with conversation, laughter and a few moments of silence. Without knowing it, it is time for her to leave.

"Say hello to Mark for me."

"I will. Goodbye, Matthew." And then she left. I sat there for a moment and leaves with a sad smile on my face.

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