I was having coffee in one of those wood panelled coffee houses. One of those that somehow makes you feel excited and just a little more ready for adventure. Like those in Vienna and Prague. It may just be the thought that people who come to such coffee houses are usually of a special breed. People that have travelled, read poetry or even done some sky diving. Who knows?
As I was mulling over these thoughts and savouring sips of Arabica with simmering delight, such a special person walked in. She looked beautiful in her saffron top and with her hair hanging loosely down to her shoulders. It was someone that I had met before.
I had got to know her through her inspired writing in magazines and had been fortunate enough to meet her at a few poetry readings. Something about her had made me feel somehow close to her. I had found myself thinking about her at times. I realised that I had always looked forward to seeing her again.
I was happy to recall that she had always given me warm smiles whenever I spoke to her to talk about the poems, the evening or whatever. Perhaps she had feelings for me too. Who knows?
Somehow inspired by the ambiance of the coffee house, I walked up to her, smiled and greeted her in my most debonair way.
"Hello Hera. Good to see you again. Do you know what? I think that we should have an affair."
She gave a spontaneous laugh. It just seemed to bubble out.
"Oh. An affair? Whom do you have in mind for us, kind Sir?" I continued to look deeply into her eyes as she continued to speak.
"That's a rhetorical question, isn't it? I mean you and me? I think that you know that, don't you?"
I had seen her sudden change of expression. Was it about an inner conflict or an inhibition dying to be released? She studied a painting on the wall for some time, before turning slowly back to me.
"You and me, hey?"
She didn't smile but she did cock her head a little as she began to lean forward.
"We two, honey? You mean you and me? That so out of the blue, don't you think?" I sat down opposite her and laughed gently. I was thinking about those deep inner needs that she had so often and passionately expressed in her recent poetry.
Still leaning forward, she asked very softly.
"What will we do, dear? You and me?"
"Oh, we'll do nothing and we'll do everything."
She then sat right back and hooked her arm over the back of her chair.
"So first we'd do nothing? But I can do nothing in the park across the road, can't I."
This amused me and I smiled.
"Doing nothing with me can be a great adventure, you know. Think of souls meeting and deep thoughts bubbling out. Think of little arguments, agreements. disputes and sharing. Waves of understanding and discovery. Then finding out that we're kindred souls and discovering the wonder of the other's inner core."
"It's funny that you say that. It's really the kind of nothing thing that I need at the moment. I really do. Very much, I think."
I moved my eyes very close to hers.
"Have you ever held hands and found an electric shock passing through you right into your heart?"
"Yes, I know what you mean. It's called static electricity."
I held my hand against my forehead for a short while in mock frustration.
"No no dear one. It's not static. It's psychic power. It's the transfer of love. A quantum burst of joyful emotion."
She was now looking at me as if she had become deeply interested. Then the moment passed and her next comment was far more matter of fact.
"Could I have some more coffee please? And what about you? You've no cup at all."
I looked down at her cup. She was right. It was empty and that was unforgivable of me.
I gestured to the waiter and he immediately brought us a refill and a cup for me. As I've already indicated, I'm very fond of Arabica and I've found in the past that it usually does something for me and it was that something that I now needed.
She was the first to speak after we had each taken a few sips, in silence.
"You said that we'd do nothing and everything. Well, you've spoken about the nothing. So let's now talk about the doing everything."
"Yes let's get to that please. What would you like me to say?"
She pursed her lips as if she was thinking deeply about the matter.
"Let me see. You'll want me to parade up and down the room naked. So that you can appraise me with the eyes of a connoisseur. As if I'm in a market place? Perhaps touch me as if I'm a mango for sale."
I saw that she was looking somewhat sardonic. I wondered why. Was that something coming from deep down?
"No, I won't want you to do that. Call me quirky but a partially dressed woman is far more attractive for me than a totally naked one."
She almost spat the words out at me.
"You're lying. You're trying to kid me. You men are all the same. Look at the movies. It's there in everyone. All the time."
"Ah the movies. All that Hollywood stuff. Aimed at the lowest common denominator. No I'm not lying. I'm just being me."
"So what would you do once we're in the room. I'd like to know. You see, you've made me curious."
"Oh that? When we're in the room? I think that I'd hang up our jackets and I'd ask you to take off your shoes and make yourself comfortable. I'd take off mine off too, of course, and then I'd take you to an open space somewhere in the room.
By now she was leaning forward. She had become very interested but there was by now a mischief in her eyes.
"I don't know about all this but this is beginning to sound very funny. What'll we do there?"
"We'd do some Indian dancing. I know a few movements. It's very therapeutic."
"You crazy man. I don't dance. I thought that you knew that. Now you come with Indian dancing."
"I'll teach you. This I can tell you. It's very romantic. It's like a courtship. You know."
She had a look of exasperation on her face.
"Aren't you listening to me? I told you. I don't dance."
"I promise you that you will. And as you do, something will open up inside of you. Like never before. You'll laugh with sheer enjoyment . Like you've never laughed before."
She closed her eyes for a long long time. I had no idea what she was thinking about. With her eyes still closed, she whispered.
"And then...well that's story to be written by itself, you'll see."
She drew back hurriedly and breathed in deeply. She seemed to have been caught by surprise and her eyes still sparkled. Something had begun to really interest her.
"Will it be your story or mine? Tell me."
"It'll be our story."
She stared at me as if she was deep in thought. I wondered for a crazy if she was busy composing a poem in her mind. After a silence, she spoke softly.
"What will it mean when it's all over?"
I leant far forward and held her two hands in mine looking deeply into her eyes.
"I can tell you this. Tomorrow you'll sing as you walk to work. Where children have painted hop scotch markings on the side walk you'll hop through the movements."
"You'll wear a happy smile all day. You'll write a brilliantly romantic poem instead of working and you'll call me every hour on my cell."
I felt her hands become warmer in mine.