thursday: whiskey & go-go

02/09/2010 § Leave a comment

The heat is debilitating. It can un-inspire us because we can barely stomach the thought of eating. We crave the taste of crunchy air, something to bite into, to give us a zest of fresh morning, something to nourish our minds with. In a country of extremes, we have learned how to work really hard, play really hard, unable to balance in the grey. The in-between seasons are too short for that.

With the last day of the late heat wave, I look for my winter clothes, packed deep in the closet closest to the paint and tools. Time to air them out, they are dusty and have not been worn in many months.

While flapping jackets, I am reminded of two regulars that come into the coffee shop because they stand out from our typical buggy-pushing crowd. I don’t know how, but they have adopted the names “Whiskey” and “Go-Go”.

Whiskey is a long-faced lady who comes in multiple times a day to order a small double-double. I have only seen her face light up when she orders her coffee, just a coffee, and have noticed that it resumes its downward pull when she sits in solitude to observe the neighbourhood pass her by.

Go-Go is her friend that she brings into the shop occasionally. She is a quieter lady and will come to the counter to ask for a glass for some water. She will quickly return to her seat to vacantly listen to Whiskey get stuff off her chest. Both look much older than they probably are, as though a little beaten up by downward glances.

Yesterday, working with B-rent, he told me a story about Whiskey:

“One day, she just laughed out loud: ‘Ha! Looking at all these dusty people makes my stomach turn.’ Funny we laugh because she was just saying out loud what most people are thinking.”

We got quiet and got back to work.

We pack these thoughts away, but they can eat us. We can put our heads down, turn away our glances, and continue working. Sometimes, we need moments to share what we are truly thinking, like Whiskey does with her go-to girl, Go-Go.

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