Giridhara looked on, as he licked the froth off his made to order latte. Coffee gave him the kick, an affirmation of status of age, of company and of life. Coffee that stank its bitter way down his tracts.
He looked on. The coffee shop was full as usual, with people. People who dunked their expensive mugs to the last drop, writhed in the mysterious warmth of the fluid and talked and guffawed till the waiter looked on for his possible tip and chuckled at their brown and smelly tongues. Forked. And they still talked.
And he looked on. The mug was empty now. The cup clunked onto the saucer and the waiter turned. Trained. He rushed to the table with his nose held high. Rushed.
“Would you like something else, Sir?,” rang out the unnaturally gruff voice for anything his size. Rehearsed.
Giridhara stared on.
He chuckled as he sent the waiter away with a “No, thanks.”
The waiter left with a bow to fetch the bill, possibly disappointed at his probable under-tip. And Giridhara looked on. The tongues were still brown. And the guffaws were still loud.
But something still kicked. Coffee highs, he thought, as he tongued his teeth…
The waiter was back. He had to “harrumph!” his arrival. There wasn’t another way that Giridhara was going to notice him…Giridhara paid him.
The waiter beamed and his eyes went “kintchuk!” at his usually occasional 12 percent and left with a “Thank you, Sir!”
And Giridhara looked on…
The guffaws grew louder. And suddenly, solitude wasn’t exactly bliss any more. He wanted coffee. He wanted a brown tongue. He wanted to wag it at people and guffaw until they could smell his coffee-d tongue. Gossip highs…
He summoned the waiter again, who rushed back with the same gleam and the menu. The menu that had small-fonted the cheap fifty-rupee espresso. Giridhara had never seen it. He’d never see it. No one had.
He turned the page and ordered his latte again.
The waiter grinned and left, as Giridhara stared on.