For the third time this week, I’ve had the same vivid dream that I’m in this old style cafe in Soho. The tables and chairs are shoved together, like an old furniture store. It’s dimly lit, so much so that I have to blink repeatedly to get used to it. I’m sitting in the corner and a pretty, young waitress skips across the room and asks me if I prefer Chopin or Mozart to which I smile and shrug and order a cappuccino with almond milk. A policeman slouches against the wall outside, smoking a cigarette and reading a book of poetry by Rupi Kaur.
When I awake, I get up immediately and decide to walk the streets and take in the early dawn and the autumn sun starting to glint off the beautiful buildings.
When he will come in again, my Ikigai? My reason? He said he would tell me which one he liked best from the poetry book I suggested to him. I’m guessing the one where she bites the heads off the wilting flowers and eats them. I hope so
I turn the corner and start to run, as a solitary cloud hovers above and starts to threaten and then instantly delivers an unexpected heavy shower. Bumping into a policeman, I knock a book out of his hands as he throws them skyward at the sheer inconvenience, letting the raindrops blur the damp words. When I look up I find myself in the dimly lit café and the pretty young waitress rushes up to me and impatiently demands to know which one I liked best.
I hand him a small box of macarons and tell him to take care of them as they are delicate.
“Like eggs?” He says.
“Like hearts,” I say. “Easily broken.”
I wake suddenly and realise I’ll be late for my shift at the cafe.
My suit is ruined.
© Ash Cheyne – September 2018