Two hearts

I walked into my local café with a friend.  Reggae played and that lovely atmosphere of authenticity and enthusiasm emanated.

‘Hi P, where have you been?  We haven’t seen you for ages!’ said M from behind the coffee maker.  ‘Well, I went on holiday and, I don’t know, I’ve been around but not had a chance to come in’, I replied.  V appeared – ‘Hey P, how are you?’  ‘Great thanks – how’s your head today (V usually goes out on the tear on a Monday night – it was Tuesday)?’ ‘Oh, not so bad, but I have been breaking into cold sweats a bit’.  ‘Yeah, she’s useless when she’s in this state’ M said.  V and I chuckled.  C appeared.  I noticed he’d grown a handlebar moustache.  ‘What’s the moustache about C?’  ‘Hey, I had this before you left; I guess I just tweaked it up at the corners a bit more’.

‘So, where were you?’ M asked. ‘Corfu’, I replied.  ‘And, by the way I had the best frappes ever over there.  Do you know it was once the most popular drink in Greece?  I mean it’s only made from Nescafe – but even so – they were absolutely delicious’.  M, he of the moss drawing talents and extreme barista skills, looked up from his coffee making: ‘Hmm’ he said suspiciously.  ‘What can I get you?’  ‘A flat white please’.

The chat continued. I was introduced to Bob – a new recruit. ‘He’s new here by three days but not new to coffee making’, M said.  Bob had the café style written all over him; a trusty beard, an intelligent face and clearly other stuff going on besides being a barista.

My coffee appeared. ‘Oh wow, M!’  He’d produced a flat white with a lovely big heart on the top and branching off that – a beautiful little miniature heart.  He beamed at me.  ‘Take a picture, E, take a picture!’ I said to my friend.  ‘Oh no’ E replied. ‘You should never have done that; she won’t talk about anything else all day now’.

We took our coffees and departed.  Although it was only a short visit, the experience of conversation, music and camaraderie generated a warmth that stayed with me all day.

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