Still Here

October 28, 2011
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“Mmmm...” the sound slipped involuntarily from her lips as a flood of delicious scents hit her nose.

She slipped off her mittens and hat and meandered over to her usual spot near the big store-front window, luxuriating in the warmth and cheer of the little cafe.

She felt the expected feeling of release as she slid into her chair, a smile spreading across her tired face.

“The usual, miss?” inquired the familiar, perky waitress as she bounced up.

“Yes, thank you.”

The girl dashed off, leaving her alone again. She slowly traced the swirling pink pattern of the table top while she waited, impatience bubbling within her. Fortunately, it only took a few minutes for the waitress to return; undoubtedly, they had begun cooking the dish earlier, knowing that she would come.

“Will that be all?” asked the waitress, already knowing the answer.

“I think I’m good, thank you.”

She leaned down, eagerly inhaling the rich, heady aroma. It was him. It was a hundred other Sunday lunches like this one, it was his hands on hers, his quizzical smile, his warm brown eyes, his calming presence, his quiet strength.

She took the first bite, the rush of flavors filling every fiber of her being. He was here now, she knew. Back to the familiar old place, to have one more meal with her, to share one more conversation.

She couldn't feel his presence at their old house, or in the park they used to walk, or by that da**ed headstone, but for one Sunday a month, if she sat in that cafe, at that table, eating that dish, he was there.

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