A cappuccino a day keeps lethargy at bay

By Priyanthara Murali

October 16, 2018

 

The clouds encircled the peak and appeared like smoke blown from a giant invisible cigarette in the sky. The view was soothingly tranquil and invigoratingly beautiful. I finally gathered the courage to tell the story of the Herculean marvel that turned out to be everything a good boyfriend should be. A source of encouragement and support for starters. My mom fell in love with the fresh mountain air each time we visited the Nilgiri mountains, the summer getaway spot for us proud residents of Coimbatore. I never connected with it before but it finally caught up to me. Or maybe I caught up with it. Everything built up to this moment. This one moment that birthed multiple daughter hours of nothing short of ecstasy.

santuario de café

Quiet in an almost stealthy way this cafe proved to be a haven for those days when nothing seemed to cheer me up. I never studied at home because it brought to mind a lot of bitter moments. Conveniently, this shop was in a mall where everything from ice cream to stationery was within my reach.

My mug dripped with coffee and welcomed me in its most seductive manner. My consumption rate was on a steady rise at first. It reduced over time so I wasn’t too critical of myself. I was indeed a heartbroken woman who fell in love again because she saw her high school sweetheart out of the blue. Such was the impact of the mountain.

cognizance of  Mind:

One day I decided to sit at a table that was close to it. However, I couldn’t study before its mesmerizing, almost alluring aura. I glanced up from my notebook constantly so I shifted to another table where I couldn’t see it. I was filled with lust and on a mission to satisfy my thirst for a glimpse of greatness. For that was what it was. Numerous lectures from my parents couldn’t impose the importance of studies on me but the mountain did. It made me push myself farther than ever.

My indulgences extended to music as I explored the capabilities of my new pair of headphones. Waves of excitement went on a merry-go-round through my blood as the beats filled my ears. I walked in circles around the table at the centre, first in clockwise and then in anti-clockwise, whichever comforted the music. For slow songs, it was a small circle and for fast ones, a large square. Mouthing the words of the songs, most of which I knew by heart, having listened to them a thousand times.

Observing the birds in the sky change formation, a new pattern every few minutes,  I watched the cars that drove into the parking lot that was visible from the balcony. People who walked there felt the breeze that blew in their direction as if it wanted to be in the picture as well. Electricity crackled in the air and with it, my inherent enthusiasm got a boost. A few cell phone towers stood erect in the distance. They connected people all over the city who longed for the affection of everyone but those who sat by their sides.

People arrived with their friends to celebrate birthdays. Students needed a place to hang out and couldn’t have asked for a better location. Smiles decorated their faces as they sang ‘happy birthday’ in unison. Coffee mugs whose hot beverages came painted with cute little artworks on the cream made couples extremely happy. Hour long conversations later, they walked out hand in hand.

Smart men and women worked tirelessly all day. They ensured I was comfortable and always felt at home. I liked my coffee without sugar. Soon they learnt not to keep the sachets on my tray. I was late one afternoon. They were having a conversation at my usual table. As soon as they spotted me they arose and cleared away their bags. The few crisps and crumbs on the table were wiped clean. I asked them to remain seated but they didn’t seem to hear me. That really warmed my heart.

I said hello on arrival and waved goodbye when I left. Friends could be found anywhere, I decided. My best mate was the lady who smiled and greeted me each time I walked in. She was the reason the place was spotless tidy. I always forgot to eat my lunch. She made it a point to tell me every day and that was when I ran to get food. My favourite was the tandoori paneer sandwich. Simply delicious.

It had to be a cappuccino. Every time. Not because it was the best offered there but because it was the cheapest. One mug was all I needed for it chased sleep away in no time. A surreal experience. A paradise of a million heavens. In simpler words, the cappuccino was nothing but an affair. One I had in broad daylight for all to see. Perhaps it all came down to this. Or perhaps, coffee was my one true love all along. Life wasn’t so bad, I decided. More than a month of music, sketching, Shakespeare in the glow of the twilight sky and occasional shopping sprees. It certainly wasn’t bad at all.

Cafe Coffee Day,
Prozone Mall,
Coimbatore.

About Priyanthara Murali

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