the palm trees sway softly, as the warm coastal breeze travels lazily in the air.  baby blue skies and the bright glowing sun, beaming down upon us all. crystal aqua-blue waters, the soft grains of white sand surround the island. the rushing of the waves crashing ashore, the distant laughter of children playing, people relaxing. about sixty yards off the water’s edge, nestled in the sands, are a row businesses. a mix of beach bum dugouts, tourist trap shoppes and local cafes. and that’s where i am. in the open air cafe, sitting here waiting, trying to complete this sentence. this is where the locals come and go to hang out, and to get away from the circus of the season. tourists wouldn’t dare coming in here, because here, they are the foreigners, and the beach bums know that their lying tales wouldn’t stand tall.  this is as real as real can get, island living. the cafe is like a throwback to the early nine-teen forties and fifties. island yellow walls, white wooden trim. dark grey cast iron and dark wood tables and chairs and four heavily worn, red pleather booths that were in the back of the dinning area. ceiling fans circulate the sea salt air. smaller indoor palms lined the perimeter, where the walls retracted. bottles fill the shelves behind the counter, where the barkeeper cleans the glass.  i set my pen down, and stretch out my hands, cracking my knuckles in the process. and while i try to figure where this story was going, a bead of condensation runs down my glass. i pick up my pen again and start where i left off. the black ink rolls onto the parchment smoothly, as my thoughts become words. it’s getting on to be noontime, and the small cafe starts filling in with the lunchtime crowd. dressed in a white coastal shirt and a black skirt that compliments, the waitress tames her long hair, pulling it into a pony-tail. her spanish tanned skin brightens the whiteness of her shirt. she quickly tries to serve all fifteen tables, and does it with grace. a pro. and the smell of fried plantains and grilled chicken quickly fills the air. taking the last sip of drink, i glance up to see where she is, and she sees me eyeing her. not doing so in a perverted way, like i’m sure she’s use to, but just to let her know that i was ready for another glass. she delivers me a glass and a smile and i return it with a thanks. on the corked coaster, my glass rolls another bead of condensation. the diminishing crowd of hungry locals allow me to get back to the concentration that eluded me, passing forty-five minutes of people watching. each table and booth carrying their own personal story. and if you ever took a moment to think about it, each and every single individual, has their own personal book. to some, a novel, and to others, a short story. now getting to be half pass two, i look back at what i have written, the ink still not dry,  is smeared by my thumb. i set the paper down, and take another sip from my cooled glass. slowly i look up at the beauty of the landscape that sits afront of me. the breeze crawling through the cafe. i stand, and gather all my papers and file them inside my folder. i reach in my pocket and leave the money for tab and tip on the table. i grab the glass for the last time, and take my last swallow. i push in my seat, and thank the camarera. and as i walk away, i glance at the second seat that was at my table. knowing that i wished she was here. and i am directed back to the memory of her. the face, the name. but that is in  a whole other story in itself…………c.2012 BGW

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