Café de l'Echat

November 13, 2002 - 7:00 p.m.

The waiter here has an underbite and talks a bit like Marlon Brando in "The Godfather." This whole neighborhood seems like an industrial wasteland of hospitals and housing complexes -- there doesn't seem to be any other cafés for miles around. This one is nice enough, though.

I was given a spoon with my espresso but no sugar, and when I went up towards the bar I saw all they had were tubes of the powdered variety, so I sat back down. You see, normally I wouldn't put anything into my espresso. But if sugar cubes are available, I can't help myself. It's just plain fun to dissolve sugar cubes into one's espresso. I don't know why, that's just the way it is. If sugar cubes didn't exist, I would drink my espresso without any sugar and try to enjoy the natural flavor of the coffee.

The tables here are smooth shiny brown, some kind of artificial substance composing the top. The chairs are white-painted metal with wood seats and tacked-on brown seat cushions. My black plastic ashtray says "Since 1912" and "U.S.A." and has a little crest with a "C" in the middle.

When he stands behind the bar, the top of the server's long head is hidden behind the wooden panelling above the counter. The wood that makes up the bar counter looks like closed shutters and gives the place a fleeting saloon-like quality.

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Café de l'Echat
Metro: Créteil - l'Echat

Price of an espresso: 1.70 euros
Sugar: tubes of powdered sugar

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Copyright © 2002 David Sadegh.
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