January 21, 2006

Silence is Golden.

The Butcher'sIt's my second gloomy day today -- the weather, not my mood -- though it looks as if the sun is now peeking through and pushing the fog away.

I had a pleasant early morning experience at the café. Despite a couple of odd moments keeping a couple of forward men at bay earlier this week, I have generally enjoyed watching and meeting the locals there.

This morning, since I missed the bus to Citta' della Pieve by five minutes (it left at 7:25 a.m.), I sat down to a pastry and a cappuccino -- after a shot of espresso -- to read (currently, Door Wide Open, the letters between Jack Kerouac and Joyce Johnson, though I'm also in the middle of Pulitzer Prize winner The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon). An elderly couple walked in. The gentlewoman slowly moved to the table next to me and sat down while her husband approached the bar. She reached into her pocket and pulled out a red and white checkered napkin which she carefully unwrapped, revealing four slices of melba toast in the middle. Her husband, meanwhile, had ordered her cappuccino, and upon receiving it, he added the sugar and brought it to her table. Standing, he snacked on a pastry bought at the bar, while she slowly dunked each piece of crostini into the coffee, enjoying her breakfast. He finished and waited for her, on his feet the entire time. As soon as the last piece of crostini disappeared, she wrapped up the napkin and wiped the table; his cue to start out the door. They didn't exchange a word the entire time. It was sweet to watch.

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