Today I am eating breakfast alone: reconstituted eggs and soggy bacon from the hotel buffet, to the hum of euphoric pop music. Epic sounding epiphanies about someone being the one. For a moment I vaguely miss the brief period of time I spent dating my husband.
We used to sit at a local café, high brow books and dark roast coffee spread on the table between us. We read in relative silence; occasionally he would reach for my leg under the table, gently resting his hand there.
A tall man in an ugly burgundy uniform brings me coffee and a glass of water. I thank him and pick up my fork. The white porcelain plate in front of me is huge, I notice for the first time. I have inadvertently piled on more food than I can eat, in proportion with its cavernous size. Oops.
Thirsty, I quickly drain my water. The burgundy man is back before my glass touches the table. He pours me more.
“Thanks,” I say again. He nods at me blankly.
I think Italy marked the end for us. We had only been dating a couple of months when we went. We signed a lease on a small two bedroom apartment, and then hopped on a plane. The plan was to move in together when we returned, along with his then two year old son.
At the time, I had imagined our trip would be all hand holding and light hearted sex, surrounded by art. I was wrong. Instead it was awkward, the weight of our sudden commitment to one another heavy on our minds. In my opinion, we never fully recovered from the trauma.
I pick unenthusiastically at my lukewarm eggs, sip my weak coffee, and drink some more water. ( The bacon is extra salty.) Again, the burgundy man tops off my glass.
More than a full serving of food sits on my plate, but I’m done. I sign for my meal, and slide out of my seat, taking one last sip from my completely full glass of water.
“My husband cooks the best bacon,” I think to myself as I head off to work. And for a moment I vaguely miss him.