I have a talent for discovering nice cafes. Everywhere I go, I always need to find at least one place with the right feel to it, a haven of harmony where I can unwind doing something as mundane as drinking some tea or coffee. A place where I can imbibe the atmosphere and read, write, chat or just relax doing nothing.
The newest addition to my list is the only existing cafe in this godforsaken rural agglomeration of the Japanese south. I discovered it by deciphering a sign during an evening stroll and talked about it to my hostess who took me there immediately, probably sensing the urgency.
I think it is genetic. This penchant for cafes. I must have inherited it from my grandmother who has always looked forward to treating me and my sister on a cup of coffee on our visits, happy over the fact that we shared her interest, unlike our grandfather.
My grandmother is a small-town girl you see, with a childhood impregnated by the smell of freshly baked bread and pastries. Not only was her mother an excellent cook, but her grandparents and uncle used to own a bakery. Maybe that explains her sweetness.
I can imagine her spending time at the family bakery cum cafe after school on an early winter afternoon, eating a cinnamon roll and drinking hot milk stained with coffee, maybe in the company of her favorite cousin.
Local people coming and going, popular tunes on the radio and my grandmother, a little girl unaware of what the future had in store.
She would maybe be thinking about school work, a quarel with a friend, an interesting fact from a book or something that had tickled her fancy.
A little girl, in a family-run cafe, in a small town in the sleepy countryside. Back at a time when I was not even so much as a fragment of a thought…