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The Coffee Pub

Joshua

New Member
It's not quite finished, but I'd like some feedback. :)

'The Coffee Pub'

Sitting undisturbed and mindless to my surroundings, I was lulled into a sense of security by the smell of rich, pure Colombian coffee. The smell of coffee invades my nostrils like the cold bitter air does on a winter morning. I sit silently looking over my notes. I like to think of myself as an aspiring author. I come to the coffee pub to escape the cluttered and hectic confines of my own home. I've been working on a project that describes the study of human interaction, it's quite intriguing if I may say so myself. Only when the waitress lays my piece of hazelnut cake on the table am I drawn out of my sense of security, I thank her and she leaves.

I take the next few moments to absorb my surroundings. The building has a warm homely feeling to it. There's a palm tree in the east corner, a tall oak grandfather clock by the front doors with evidence of having been cleaned just a few hours beforehand, there's a young couple sitting across the aisle, three seats away and there's an elderly couple sitting directly to the right in the booth beside me. There are three staff members working - one male and two females - dressed in the same outfit. A grayish-black polo with black dress pants and black dress shoes. It gives them the appearance that they are dedicated fully and wholeheartedly to their task of pleasing customers. This coffee pub seems friendly and family oriented but there are no children or families to be seen. The majority of people I see inside the wonderful walls of this coffee pub appear to consist mainly of married couples, girlfriend/boyfriend couples and single people with different reasons for spending time alone at a coffee pub.

Putting my notes aside I glance up in time to see the young couple arguing. The young man is wearing a red polo, blue jeans and black runners. He's talking to who I assume is his girlfriend in a calm tone, I can't hear what he says but I assume it's the beginning words of a more heated argument, yet to come. The woman I assumed to be his girlfriend is wearing a black vest over a white turtle neck sweater, blue jeans and black dress shoes. She appears to be shaking, I assume with anger. She's talking using her hands now and begins to point accusingly in his face. I almost wish I could hear what they're saying. It's none of my business, but the emotion she is putting into the hand movements piques my curiosity to the point of not being able to look away. I notice the young man look over at me with a puzzled look on his face, I turn away hoping he didn't notice me staring.

I blame the burning curiosity on aging, the older I get the more interested in other peoples business I become. It may be that I find my life dull and boring when in actual fact I do more than my fair share of exciting activities. I play squash on Sundays. I'm part of the local book club that meets at various restaurants around town. It hits me like a tonne of bricks. When I'm not with the book club or playing squash I spend my time at the coffee pub. It's become like a second home to me. I find it unbearable to write at home and often times I'm unable to write at the coffee pub because exciting drama is a consistent distraction.
 

Joshua

New Member
Looking back at the young couple I notice that he has his hands on hers. They seem to be talking in a more orderly fashion now. It doesn't surprise me. Young couples often get into quarrels and reconcile a short time after. I've seen it on numerous occasions; the young man is a little too friendly towards another female, jealously takes over and she confronts him. I've seen it from the males perspective as well. The woman refuses to go to a basketball game, one he even went so far as to plan as a surprise for her. She doesn't want to go because she would rather go out to a fancy dinner and drink champagne. He refuses to pass off the tickets. He goes to the game and returns home late and intoxicated after spending a few hours after the game, out with friends. She gets upset, he spends the night on the couch and in the morning it's as if it had never happened. It's the small quarrels in life that make relationships interesting.

I find a coffee pub is similar to a bomb shelter. Why? It's simple really, when you're in a coffee pub it's like the only things that matter are inside the four walls that surround you. There's no outside drama, problems or worries. The drama that's going on inside, worrying about whether or not you will finish enough pages of your novel, meeting with a friend for a cup of java or a small meal to catch up and discuss how you've both been; these are the things that truly matter. I admit I don't live a stressful life and it's because I choose not too. I have friends who are so stressed they are barely themselves. Once they enter the confines of a coffee pub the change is drastic. It's like the whole world has been lifted off their shoulders. I find myself pitying them more than anything these days. I can't help but feel that I'm part of the problem, it's because of everybody that they work so hard and are so stressed. They strive to be great at what they do so that in the future they can work for us. They're the chartered accountants, business owners, bank managers, restaurant owners, teachers and many more professional trades of the future. They're all going to be people we rely on, heavily.

There's one special lady in particular. Her name is Jacqueline. She's a feisty mild-mannered young lady in her second year of university for accounting. It saddens me when I look back on how strong our relationship once was. I barely see or hear from her, these days. She's one of those people who will always hold a special place in my heart and that place is empty when the absence in interaction becomes too extended. She's tall and thin, her long blond hair flows with the color of the sun, her eyes, are as green as emeralds. She's a true definition of beauty when it comes right down to it. Her personality is the epitome of what one would look for when they want to be with someone who understands them and will listen to their problems.

Drawn out of deep thought by a commotion by the front doors, I glance over in time to see a young woman entering. She's a local, that's for sure. There's something about her, something about her appearance that makes me wonder where I've seen her before and then it hits me, she attended one of my conferences on human interaction at the local university. If I remember correctly, her name is Sarah. She's quite different from Jacqueline in many ways. Her personality is a strong one, she doesn't back down from a fight and I believe wholeheartedly that she loves to spite people just for arguments sake. She's slightly shorter then myself - I guess around 5 foot 8 - with long brown hair and blue eyes. She's got sweats and runners on with a waist length pea coat, her hair is in a rough pony tail. It appears as if she had been working out and got the urge to abandon fitness training to relax and enjoy a nice cup of warming coffee.

Noticing Sarah, the male employee steps away from the tart he was eating in order to serve her. She stands for a few moments looking over the menu. She orders a cappuccino and a piece of hazelnut cake; it appears we have a similar taste for great cake. The young man rushes off towards the preparation station. He brings her cappuccino and places it on the counter, she pays and he hands her a number card and notify's her that one of his co-workers will bring over her slice of cake. She nods and takes her cappuccino. Looking back at my piece of half-eaten cake, I start ponder questions. What if she recognizes me? Am I in the mood for conversation? I don't have answers to these questions. I've been sitting at this same booth with my notes spread out for the past three hours, all alone. Perhaps some company wouldn't be half-bad. Then comes the hopeful feeling that she will indeed notice me and approach me. Perhaps she will notice me but won't approach me at all. Should I approach her? Don't be foolish! I don't know her well enough to approach her. There's a feeling of confusion stirring in the pit of my stomach. For the first time tonight, I have no clue about my current situation. Perhaps I should ignore the feeling, finish my cake and get back to work. But as she walks I can smell her perfume, it stirs more feelings inside of me. There's a burning desire now, a desire to go and speak with her. I believe it's the perfume that makes me want to get closer to her, I've always had a weakness for women wearing nice perfume. However, it's not always the expensive perfume that I find to be attractive, it's often times the not as expensive perfume that women wear when they just want to slap something nice smelling on, before going out.

Pushing the burning desire aside, I notice that she has chosen a seat by the window. The cold air outside combined with the heat inside has made the window quite steamed up and it's almost impossible to see outside; it only adds more to the
mysterious feeling of the coffee pub. One of the female workers walks past with Sarah's cake and the smell of hazelnut catches my nostrils like a fish hook. The smell of the fresh cake causes me to glance down at my hardening, three hour old cake. I'm sold, I get up from my booth and walk to the counter. The same girl who served me when I first entered the coffee pub is behind the counter, again. She takes my order with a smile, I pay and before I can walk away she begins to speak. She asks me if I'm a doctor or a newspaper writer, I let her know that I'm not. It would take far long to explain my job to her so I give her the truncated version. I tell her I'm an author and I've been working on my latest piece about human interaction among couples and relationships. Another smile comes across her face. I can't tell if she's genuinely interested or she's smiling because she's paid to. Either way, it doesn't really matter. I thank her and drop the seventy five cents I got back from my five, into the tip cup. She smiles again.

As I'm walking back to my table I can't help but glance at Sarah. She looks so graceful taking a sip of her cappuccino, taking care not to burn her lips and tongue. She puts her cappuccino back on the table and before I can look away, she makes eye contact with me. She smiles and reveals those perfectly straight pearly whites - it's as if someone else has taken control of my body - I smile back and wave with my free hand. I take a seat at the table and I tremble slightly. What's wrong with me? I've begun to act like a youngster. I try to control the shaking in my hands but to no avail. I look up and glance back at Sarah, she hasn't moved. Perhaps we just shared a friendly greeting, nothing more, nothing less.

She pulls a book out of her jacket pocket. I can't see what it is, but it's fairly thick with a grayish-blue cover. She becomes absorbed in her book and I'm sure that she has pushed our greeting out of her mind as she absorbs the text from the pages.
I go back to examining my notes, I've got a lot of work to do and I'm nowhere near being close to done. I'm not worried though, the deadline is still three weeks away. March 31 is when I meet next with my publisher. I'm startled by who I assume to be the female worker with the cake. I don't look up but I thank her regardless. I'm surprised when someone takes the seat across from me in my booth, I look up just as Sarah finishes putting her things into the corner. It appears I was wrong about our greeting, or was I? Her perfume hits me like a tonne of bricks. I'm lulled into a sense of warmth and security, the smell is irresistible and I can't control myself. I'm breathing through my nose but not hard enough to attract attention. It smells like a midsummer morning; fresh flowers and morning mist intertwined to produce a most magnificent aroma.
After absorbing her perfume, our eyes meet. She's smiling again and her face is outlined; she's beautiful. Her eyes are bright blue comparable only to the beauty of the roaring ocean - I personally think it adds to her feisty personality - she has the cutest dimples and the cutest little button nose. We sit in silence for a few moments. Both of us assessing the situation. My piece of cakes comes and there's a brief moment of no awkwardness. The feeling of no self-control is upon me once more. I smile without warning and begin to speak. We converse for close to an hour. She tells me how much she loves my work; I thank her graciously and we move on to other matters. She gives me feedback on my work and even offers advice. It's helpful and I make note of it. Then age comes up, the question no man likes to ask a woman. But I'm at an advantage, she's asked me my age. I let her know I'm only twenty-four and she's astonished that I'm only a years her senior. She smiles again, but that smiles erased when she looks at her watch. It must be around eight-thirty. She appears to become flustered and packs her books back into her bag. She apologizes for the sudden commotion and apologizes for leaving in such a scene, but she's late for an appointment with her professor.
 
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