“Table for two” she mentioned to the receptionist.
“Give me a moment madam. Have a seat, you might have to wait for five minutes, the tables are being cleared” answered the suited receptionist with a beaming smile.
“That’s not a problem. Thank you”
Glancing at the seating area, she went on to make herself comfortable by sitting on a plush leather single sofa. Winter had set in and it became dark earlier than expected these days, but the tropics were known for that kind of climate. The location of the restaurant was a big advantage to her. It was beside her office and food was great. Every Friday she would comfort her pallet with the Chinese cuisine. A family of four walked into the restaurant and as the guard opened the door to receive them. The noise of the honks and running engines filled the waiting area. A set of two couple walked in to spend the evening. By the look on their faces and camaraderie that they exchanged, it wasn’t difficult to find out that they were part of the same family. Probably the younger were just married and had come out with either of their parents. She scanned the younger lady who wore a mauve color crop top with a cream slip on inside and shaded denim torn in parallels on the thighs. Not much of make-up, her lip gloss went well with her top; the mascara was a little too much. Fair trim and long hair, she looked good as she held her husband’s hand walking in. “Like always she muttered” reminding herself that beautiful girls don’t get good looking guys.
“Excuse me ma’am, your table is ready” said the receptionist as she made eye contact with the beautiful looking young lady, had she seen her before she wondered. “Is someone else expected?” asked the receptionist as she answered in the affirmative.
She walked into the restaurant from the lobby observing the kind of crowd inside. The main table had been packed with a group of youngsters chattering about the day’s events at work, they were way too loud spoiling the ambience. At the far right a couple sat lost in their story telling hand in hand. To her left a little boy was about to drop a bowl of manchow soup luckily his father saved the soup as well as their embarrassment. The lighting was dim setting the place for a romantic mood, the kind she just wanted. Soft music dominated by the Chinese flute played in the background. Smiling at the table assistant who showed her to the table, she sat as he provided her the menu card.
“Give me two minutes” she said.
Skimming through the menu card was a formality for her. Turning over the pages of the thick book she looked at the same dishes and circled out if anything was not yet tasted. She found that a new dish “chicken schezwan noodles” was mentioned under the “special of the day” section.
She slowly looked up to the find the waiter and summoned him. “can I have your order ma’am” he asked her.
“I would want a Spring onion soup ½, pepper fried corn potato, chicken schezwan noodles with gravy and two glasses of red wine at the end”.
“Sure ma’am” he said as he swiftly made notes and went to punch it into the machine for table number 20.
She wondered if he would like the new dish that she ordered. The soup and starters were his favorite and so she always stuck to it. She stared at the false ceiling and the mini chandelier as she awaited his arrival.
“Did I keep you waiting for long?” he said as he approached her from behind and covered her eyes. This was the best part of their weekly meeting. He would come every time in his own style and keep her guessing, once he even popped up from under the table while she almost freaked out loud. Holding his hands, she uncovered her eyes and made him walk to the other side of the table. This time he suited up well that went in appropriately with her dress. Like an implicit obedient lover, he neatly shaved his beard and trimmed his hair exactly the way she wanted, after all this moment would never come again. He had to live every bit of her time.
How was your day? He asked, “It went well and guess what, most probably they would be sending me abroad for the whole of next year” she smiled and told.
“That’s good news or bad news”
“Dad and mom will not agree I am sure, and you have to convince them for me” she pleaded.
“Will try my best, as usual” he said. That was the sentence she was waiting for. Every time he said that he would make things happen.
“But this time I will not be there to take care of you, can you manage alone?” He asked as the waiter came and put across the table their dinner. She smiled at the waiter as he left. “And for the n th time, everyone notices only your beautiful face and doesn’t even care for me, he remarked as she blushed”, she loved his possessiveness. That meant the world to her she couldn’t have received that kind of selfless love from any other person.
“The soup is great as always, once you should try making this at home” he said as he smiled at her mischievously.
“Try the noodles, it tastes great” she told taking a spoon from the table and serving it onto his plate. He readied his chopsticks and scooped some of it into his mouth. “It is good, he said chewing some of the mouthful noodles. He appreciated the choice of the maincourse by giving his trademark chopstick salute.
“How are mom and dad”, he enquired. “Their health is a bit of concern these days. Or else they both are happy.” “There is a little bit of sauce on the corner of your mouth” he said pointing to her right side. Taking the napkin from his lap, he wiped it off her mouth as he rubbed his fingers over her soft lips. She stared right into his eyes wondering if the wine had already kicked its effect even before it being tasted.
Done with their dinner both of them lifted their glasses, cheersed and took their first sip together. It was always perfect silence when they sipped their wine. Staring into each other’s eyes, their legs were in touch as they rubbed each other’s shin and moving up to the knees. That was their start to make love.
They smiled intermittently drinking their wine to the last drop.
“You want a refill” she asked. And every time his answer was the same. “No, I am satisfied with one; don’t get me drunk, you wouldn’t be able to handle me” Spending over an hour at the restaurant was more than satisfying for both of them. She signaled for the bill and paid the amount. They sat for a while and chatted about the moon and stars before making their way to the exit.
“How will you go home?”
“Will hire cab” she replied. She put her hand around his shoulder placed her head on his chest and bid him good bye, teary eyed.
The waiter was asked to clear table number 20. Food on his side of the table was untouched, even the chair wasn’t drawn out. Looking at the untouched food he stared at her, while she walked out alone weeping.