The Meeting in the Café

He went to his favorite coffee shop to switch off for a moment. It was a quiet place, and he needed very much to at least once a day regain his energy after work or to prepare for work. He was engrossed in a book when she arrived and said: I thought I might see you at your favorite place….. happy to see you here. She was with her little daughter and her mother. When they sat down He ordered some drinks for them. She sipped her coffee quietly and then raised her head to face her mother: You know, Mother, he is like a loving …. The last word was not clear and he thought she was saying something like “a loving father” or maybe “a loving friend”. True he had helped her, and her daughter with all that in his means and he didn’t expect anything in return. But he didn’t like to be called a father either. He thought she could have brought her mother who was now a widow to find a partner for her. This made him not only disappointed but even angry.

He was not on the same wavelength with her mother who looked very reserved now. She believed what her daughter said about him, although she was inapproachable or maybe he was more stand offish. After some time they all got up to leave and wound up on the main road, which went up a hill. Suddenly a car dashed round the bend out of the blue. Her mother was standing in the middle of the road. He was quick to push her aside and fell on her. She was shocked, hurt, started hitting him, cursed unintelligibly and tried pushing him away. The daughter rushed to her mother to stop her by saying: Mother, have you gone mad? He saved your life. She got up to apologise to him who was now standing aside dumbfounded. He didn’t want her to develop any feelings for him just because he saved her life, and even signalized that he was not interested. Now he hoped to get rid of them soon, and decided that he would go to a place not known to them next time.

He enjoyed being alone somewhere again but wondered how could a doctor treat a patient if he were ill himself. Somebody leaned over his table and said: Do you mind if I joined you. He answered quietly after looking up: No, not at all. He didn’t remember her face. She started: You know I was in one of your classes some five years ago. I moved when I got married to a different place. She sighed and continued: it was a great disappointment I must say. I am so happy to have met you again. You know I need some advice.

Bremen, 14 November 2009