Unwell

In which we see something uncomfortable


People kept coming in and alerting the staff, taking one aside* for a quiet talk. Not quiet enough not to be overheard, though. “Can’t you call the police or something? Can’t you call 999? She’s obviously disturbed.”

We were in Starbucks on the corner of Jameson St; it has a large outdoor area spreading out into the wide, pedestrian street. Given the April weather, it was empty, aside from one woman with her back to the shop. An empty coffee cup was on the table in front of her, but she never made to lift or touch it. She was slumped forwards, her head hooded and curly dark hair hiding her face. Every so often her shoulders would shake, as if in mighty sobs.

After the third or fourth person came into the cafe, one of the waitresses went outside to talk to her. She bent down to chat to the woman, and I assume the woman replied. Before long, the waitress returned inside.

We left the cafe not long later, and the woman was still there, shaking slightly. I turned as we left, to see her face, but whatever angle as we passed her face was hidden behind her unruly hair. I wondered how long she would be there for, and who, if anyone, would come to scoop her up.

* I flatly refuse to use the cod-Italian barista. It is fake Italian, isn’t it? Any genuine Italians to reassure me?

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