Monday, May 30, 2011
Day 15. No Master for Margarita
The Tale of the Eternal Breakfast
Dangling booze puppets hanging on tangled strings, as can well be imagined, the Swedes and I arose hungover and hobbling.
Ringing through our heads, the strobe-like recollections of misspent nocturnal mischief; returning to haunt us from the eve now gone.
Our lives were reverberating on thin and shaky lines, though somehow, our general demeanour was cheery, rambunctious, and above all, hungry.
We had awoken collectively, though in far separate beds, in our home away from homeless;
Paid-for, ready made for the brain to lay beds, at the sleepy hostel with the princely moniker of The Trouble You’re Inn, or something equally ominous.
The bunks, steel soldered to the walls in rows, were lined like army barracks; and the resemblance brought something of the psychotic soldier to Broken Bjorn’s behaviour.
“Come on, you cretinous creek walkers!” he marched the aisles wearing half a full metal jacket. I slid back under the womb of my covers as he continued his bombardment, “Let’s go get some breakfast! This ain’t no Mickey Mouse show!”
“Those Swedish certainly aren’t neutral.” I decided as the bombs went off in the basement. “Those bastards are hooking me into their own holocaust.”
And I was right.
In a seizure of synchronous teeth shaving, pant putting, and combing the lice from our eyelashes, the trio were instantly ready to hit the hub for breakfast.
Two Swedes and a Seed.
But we had to start somewhere, and the reception bar seemed the likely outlet for any advice opportunities.
“I know a great place.” Our hostelian suggested optimistically. “Margarita works there this morning. Remember her?”
In a flash of red hair, sparkly teeth and summertime all over, we all recalled in bliss.
“Yeh, yeh, I think we do. So how do we get there??”
Without a hint of the doom she was encasing us in, our master of disaster drew a line for us on a hostel map. It appeared to be a normal map.
It was more technical than a winding, gaping freeway leading beyond the crust of the earth, but it may as well have been- or just a spiralling arrow which looped around and around and a-yep, you guessed it-round.
Because that was the destination we were heading to.
And man, were we getting hungry.
Finding the restaurant was no real issue. A couple of backward steps, a mountain of Swedish slurs, but nothing abnormal in a mid-morning fast breaking search party.
And there it stood, beckoning: sucking us in, the gravitational beacon of the black hole of an art gallery limb, which sprouted flower-potted tables and lulling Lithuanian music, all in the guise of a friendly, folky establishment.
It didn’t SEEM like a bad decision. Just yet.
We took our place between the corpses and the sky, scraping out chairs to wait for a waitress. Waiting for a waitress. Waiting. Waiting.
And the clock hands began to crumble.
“What outta earth is Margarita doing? I asked for the coffee twenty minutes ago, I’m about to disintegrate!” The Swedes had already begun to combust.
And then she materialised; robed in a backless dress, and harbouring a mindless smile, Miss Margarita shot us a sorry.
“I didn’t get enough sleep last night. I’m making up for it now.”
A stunner on regular occasions today something appeared askew.
She was pretty in a clueless way, clueless in a demented form, and demented in a format which made me wonder if the menu I was reading was not my own last will and testament. For to ask Margarita for an omelette this morning, seemed like offering her all I had left.
And the numbers spilled from the face of the clock, splitting in a racket against the linoleum.
“Pleeeeease Margarita, could we get our juice now? And where are those omlettes? We’ve been sitting here an hour!”
Margarita filled our gullets from strawberry juice, to help sweeten our raw deal.
But it was all too late.
The atmosphere had solidified. We could pick at it, fumble it around and reassemble bits of the thickened air.
The Swedes were swapping heads to wile away the infinite.
“LOOK! I CAN SEE MY WORDS!” They floated stagnant in front of my frightened brow, as I tried to pick at them from dire starvation.
A distant amplifier droned an endless single cymbal crash.
The Swede had kept his promise and was inhaling toxic vapours while in mid-disintegration…when the rebel red-head burst her head back in the bubble.
“Hey! Your salad’s ready-edy-edy….” her echo sent the mystifying statement bouncing around the walls of our time cavern.
“Salads?? Margarita, we ordered omlettes!”
“It’s all part of the procedure-edure-edure…” and she faded to invisibility, all but for her off-centred smile, a cheeky Cheshire kitten.
“This is ridiculous! We’re going to miss the pig racing!” Of course, it was my complaining which was ludicrous, as a thousand hogs painted in the Flags of the World glided past, whimpering Napoleon bareback jockeying the leader.
A giant clam pulled them into its jaws like a succubus.
The Swedes had completely disassembled now, their goatees wavering on parched brick, while their arms smoked cigarettes in puddles by their panting tongues.
I too had succumbed, shattering into lego blocks, levitating one by one in the image of an arc.
The clock was but spew dripping down the window now, burping out spontaneous ticks and colossal tocks at random intervals which each made our molecules quiver.
“Hey, sorry it’s taking so long!” Margarita stuck her embarrassed features in through the time curtain.
One of the Swedish issued a squelch of his ear against cement in retort.
I simply started bleeding from my belly button.
“It’ll be here in a minute! It’s taking so long because it’s made with love.”
At this comment, a Swede burst into flames. I was seeping at the sockets, and a feather boa was all that remained of our third.
Suddenly, a tiny door upon the ceiling creaked open. In a shudder, a vacuuming cave wrenched everything off its bolsters, tables, legs, fur coats, underwear, it all flew into the doorway like confetti, the universe swept into it, suck, suck. And spat it all out to nowhere, the middle of vacant space, the twinkling void- all there which could be distinguished was a laughing mouth, and red hair, all else gone and twisted into obscurity…
“Here are your omlettes! Sorry they took so long.” She thrust the circles with the food lying on them upon the rectangle carpet zones nearest to each of us, equipped with cutting utensils, to which we could reach from the stools we were perched on at a restaurant.
Well, they don’t look so great…but it’s alright Margarita. Just keep up that summertime smile and I swear the universe will restore itself after all.
But do you have any salt?
”Yeh, of course, I’ll bring some back in a second.”
And the clock hands curved into caterpillars, and snuck off together through a crack in the concrete.