Thursday, November 26, 2009

Cafe Du Monde

Too many people. Perhaps I can stand it for a while. Cameras flashing. Clinking cups. Waiters whisk by in paper hats. The brick tile floor sweats with dew from the cool morning air. How do the waiters move so quickly without falling down? Four women enter to sit at the table in front of me. The blonde in bright red notices me – clearly one of the bird people, whom I know are imaginary but who occasionally still find me when I least expect it. Across from the blonde sits a dark haired woman with short hair swept back in wings above each ear. She wears a long sleeve black t-shirt. Next to the dark haired woman, sits one with short brown hair in a camouflage top with a military hat. I cannot quite see the last of the foursome, but it looks as if she has dark brown hair and is wearing a sweater with horizontal blue and white stripes. I scan the foursome carefully and furtively (as furtively and carefully as they scan me?). Red and blue top wear slacks. Black top and camouflage wear jeans. They entered the restaurant in pairs – jeans and slacks, jeans and slacks, what is the secret code here? Lights flash continuously – please let it be cameras. I eat the beignets and drink the coffee. Finishing, I rise and stand as tall as possible. I breathe deeply. I march slowly from the cafe and out to the street. Perhaps I look strange. Perhaps I AM strange. I no longer care. I am free to travel and drink coffee anywhere; even in the Cafe du Monde - the Cafe of the World. Perhaps this freedom will be taken from me some day, but that day is not this one.

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