We all have a place that we love to head towards time and again. A place where we can just sit and have a chat with friends over a cup of tea, coffee or enjoy a quick meal. Or if you will, sit out in the sun , basking in the warmth of the venue, but even more, the sheer pleasure of being in a place where each member of the staff is keenly attuned to your requirements and greets you like a long lost friend the minute they catch sight of you.
I've got exactly one such place and its probably where I spend the most amount of time, outside my own home. This charming little cafe is called 'Darcys' and its located at Madinat Qaboos MQ) in Muscat.
While I'm fairly engrossed in my book,, magazine or newspaper if I'm alone here, or chatting animatedly with friends or family in other situations, I do take a look around and nod at a familiar face every now and then. Most of the customers are regulars just like me and over a period one gets to know them somewhat too.
|My fave cafe|
But then there are the other faces that seem somewhat out of place and that is exactly the reason why they stay in the mind. Every other time that I'm there, I see a 35' ish local man, who has a slight limp- and if one looks at him closely, doesn't seem to be entirely normal. Now I don't know why that is so, but one generally avoids making eye contact with him, for fear of...? I really don't have the answer here, but am just sharing my thoughts. And believe me, I'm not the only one there who does this, its probably the majority of others present too.As for the staff, I've noticed that they sat him in a quiet corner where hes served a cup of tea and a small bite and after a short respite, he's off and on his way..
But last weekend saw a departure from the norm. My husband and myself were sitting outside and having our scones and tea and this man walked out.It was evident that he'd finished and was leaving. But here's the real surprise. Just as he reached the small gate which serves as the exit and entry point, he stopped, looked directly at us and waved goodbye. I too waved back instinctively.
I really don't know what it was about that simple gesture, but it touched me a great deal. For all the times, I'd thought of him as 'not exactly normal" he'd been seeing and focusing on me as a person who he'd learnt to recognise. Then one day, he actually reacted and how!
I find myself thinking of him every now and then. And have made up my mind that I will have a real conversation with him when I see him next.
Just one more reason to head back to Darcy's ...