“Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature… Life is either a daring adventure or nothing! Copy?” you said, giving me a sidelong look.
We were standing outside the coffee shop, deciding if it was appealing enough to enter.
“Who said that?” I asked.
“Helen Keller… do you read her stuff?” you asked, holding the door open for me. I liked that you were such a gentleman about some things.
“Yeah… all the time”, I lied, as I entered.
Thankfully, you didn’t stick to the subject.
The smell of coffee was as enticing as being in that coffee shop with you. The moment was as perfect as the raw clatter of coffee beans shuffling together, the savor of bitter-sweet caffeine, and the warmth of a hot mug.
You sat the same way you did everything else… ‘Lazily’. I smiled. You were growing on me. Millimeter by millimeter. Inch by Inch. I had known you a few months now, and never once seen you lose your cool or your easy confidence. I was clumsy compared to you, immature and tactless.
Coffee was served. Yours, of course, was a black espresso. To this day, I don’t understand your fascination for something so bitter. I looked outside, but there seemed no chance for rain. I remember thinking that rain, coffee and your company would make a day perfect.
“See, this is not so bad”, you said. “It’s just coffee!”
I said nothing, as I took a sip of cappuccino. It didn’t feel like ‘just’ coffee to me. But I wasn’t about to let that on.
I remember that we sat in comfortable silence for a while, and then you spilt the coffee all over yourself. It was a funny sight. Your (till now) inscrutable expression changed from surprise to horror to dismay in 2 seconds flat. I began laughing.
You were standing now, hands on your hips, looking at the mess that had been made. The waiters came quickly for damage control, but they were too late. Your shirt was well and truly ruined. You sat down with a heavy sigh and a look of utter disappointment on your face.
I was still grinning, as I said, “its okay. I’m sure you have more shirts at home.”
“It’s not okay.” you said. “This in all respects is a date, whether you like it or not and now you’ll always think of me as a klutz who lost his cool over spilt coffee!” you shook your head in frustration.
“And by the way, I don’t know anything about Helen Keller, either. The quote was on TOI this morning”
I grinned from ear to ear. You swore, and surprisingly, I did not flinch at your choice of words.
“Such an Off Day!” you said, teeth grinding.
I wonder if you would’ve felt differently had you known.
It was the day I fell in love with you.