In between brief cloudy moments the sun shines in through the window onto my table and I am very warm, happy to be here. The patron has just propped open the door and opened one of the door-windows, and now the radio is drowned out a bit by the traffic outside. The last song was a good one, Francis Cabrel's "Je t'aimais, je t'aime, et je t'aimerai." I'm not feeling very well today, actually. Someone I know has left Paris, but I try to tell myself that nothing is coming to an end, it is only transforming into something different. Maybe not as visible or tangible, but just as real nevertheless.
In the middle of the intersection is a square island of green and flowers. Beyond that, walls are stamped in big letters "DEFENSE D'AFFICHER."
The radio station has had a good mix in general. So far there has been Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit" and the newest Alanis Morisette and Sheryl Crow songs.
The woman who works here was sitting at one of the tables when I came in, drinking something green and reading a magazine. Getting up just to take orders and then sitting down again (that's her in the picture). Since the patron has come in, she's been standing up full time, and now he is sitting down. There is a man standing at the bar with a dog on a blue leash. A little boy tentatively petted the dog on his way out, and the patron laughed. U2's "Sunday, Bloody Sunday" is playing.
My table is square, and the chairs here have minimalist black metal frames and burnt orange seat and back cushions. My espresso came in a relatively large Cafés Negrita cup with thebyline "L'ART du CAFE." The tan powdered sugar tube says the same thing in lower-case letters. The tabletop resembles the inside of a furnace; the design looks like overlapping brown flames. Eric Clapton is now accousticizing his "Layla" on the radio. There was a dirty blue plastic ashtray on my table when I sat down. It has gotten a bit cloudier outside, but that's okay, I had started to sweat a little from the sun. The weather is perfect today.
Copyright © 2003 David Sadegh.
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