“The road from appearance to reality is often very hard and long, and many people make only very poor travelers. We must forgive them when they stagger against us as if against a brick wall.” —Franz Kafka

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Table for two


San Jose, Costa Rica.
 

It was a dark and stormy night after a dark and stormy day after a dark and stormy night and in the morning it rained. But that did not stop Enrique. He dashed across the wet branches, leapt onto a banana tree, crept down its hard green hand and peered at the table below. And waited. Finally he came, the big man with the shaved head. Enrique curled his sharp black claws into the fruit. His tail stiffened and twitched. He narrowed his liquid black eyes and whispered, "Buenos dias, mi amigo."

The man sipped his coffee then settled back. "I know you are watching me, Enrique. And I know what you are planning but I warn you. This buffet is not for filthy little thieves like you."

Enrique dashed down the tree and out onto the railing beside the man's table.

"¡Panqueques! ¡Panqueques!"

The man poked his fork at the squirrel but that did not stop Enrique from leaping onto it.

"One bit and I will go, Señor."

"¡No bites and you will go, Cabrón!"

They locked eyes. The man smiled and slowly lowered his fork to the plate, stabbed a slice of pancake, ate it. Still staring at one another as he took another bite and another then again he poked the fork at the squirrel, this time also waving it in his face.

Enrique smiled. And launched.


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