Tuesday, November 13, 2012
I am aware that it begins to seem as though I spend my life swanning from one cafe to another. Good, because what I am actually doing most of the time is negotiating paralysingly difficult circumstances surrounding the mater's recent operation and the aftermath thereof. I would rather live in what seems, and this out-to-lunch moment with the daughter in a local cafe so cool it would not be out of place in trendy Broadway Market fits the bill nicely. Yes, life is a bowl of perfectly-sizzled hand-cut chips, and a bacon burger with "onion marmalade" on a wooden block. If burger-on-the-block conjures up unsavoury resonances let us push them aside.
Well, that was yesterday. And today I went to another place - the community centre cafe which operates three days a week from the old village school. The people that go there are mainly old, infirm or with small child, the cooks and waiters are volunteers and the food is best of 1950s and cheap. The cafe is held in what used to be the school assembly hall - all they have done is put a kitchen at one end and get tables and chairs. On the wall facing the large windows there is a mural, a collective effort by many children, called Our Village. There are bookcases full of paperbacks to buy for 10p and small glass vases with little fresh flowers on each table. It is one of my favourite places and if I get to heaven any time soon I will organise a welcome party for the volunteers, when their time comes.