It’s Possible I’m Getting Worse at This

Maybe my fear of never writing again is what keeps me from attacking these last few days with more gusto. I crack me up.

Phone cables, electrical lines, and other wires stretched above the street turned bazaar and footpath. Some dried clothes near the plasterboard structures lining the way. Others hung heavy with pennant flags and beer ads. Still others ran the several meter gap empty and wondering why. Together they choked the sky and forced Drake’s attention back to earth.

Somewhere in this jumbled alley there had to be the best place in Goh Bhutin to serve a cup of coffee. He’d find it.

Last night the concierge had given him directions to the place and told him the name, but Drake had forgotten it almost immediately in the effort to recall all the twists and turns of the route. After dinner in the hotel’s lounge, Drake set out to find the place so it wouldn’t take as long in the morning when he was sleepy and hurried. In the evening the place had been lifeless and still. He didn’t even recall noticing the clutter overhead.

This morning people huddled so thickly around the entrance he wasn’t sure where among the mopeds, potted plants, and cases of beer he was supposed to dive in. A young woman shouldered her way out past a handrail that may have been a turn-stile at one time. Then a grey-haired man threaded his way into the that gap. Drake skipped and angled his way in after the man hoping to draft him through the crowd. The man was gone, but in his place a second young woman headed out after the first. Drake checked her to the tile before he could pull his momentum back.

Like an animal acting on instinct, the crowd withdrew. He and the girl took up the center of a circle of on lookers. Drake bent to offer the woman a hand. He thought he was apologizing when a hand from the crowd snatched his away from the woman on the ground and propelled him roughly into the surrounding circle.

270 words on day 982