The restaurant was under the train tracks, and the facade was worn and ashen. The couple in front of us stopped and looked at the menu. We stopped two steps behind them and peered in the window. They served Irish breakfast. Was it the right Irish breakfast for us? We looked up again at the building, turned, and looked at each other. We only had one shot at this.
There was another couple seated inside. At the very least someone, or two other someones, had been compelled to choose Rashers for breakfast. Impatience and empty stomachs made the decision for us. Our fellow breakfast seekers who had been looking on and off at the menu followed suit.
We’re going in.
We chose a seat at a round table nestled into a corner halfway through the restaurant. The lighting was warm and bright, the windows were large, and the heavy hardwood floors had been witness to many a hungry customer. The waitress was at our side within minutes with a smile on her face and menus in her hands.
“Two full Irish breakfasts, a coffee, and a tea please.”
We were left to watch as more and more people streamed through the doors and were seated. In came groups of two or three and some of five or six. The restaurant was quiet, but the chatter was lively.
Out came the two Irish breakfasts, butter, tea, coffee, and sugar. As the waitress walked away, we looked at each other. She had forgotten the milk for coffee. With only a look, we agreed that we could ask her later when she was less busy. We already had a table full of food to occupy ourselves with.
The waitress had gotten wind of our silent conversation and whisked away to the kitchen. No less than thirty seconds later, she was back at our table with a small ceramic pitcher of milk. It was the smallest of gestures, but my face was flushed with gratitude and appreciation at the thoughtfulness.
We dove in.
First, the black and white pudding. Next, the grilled tomato and a sip of tea. On to the buttered toast, the breakfast sausages, and the thick cut bacon. We hadn’t eaten out for breakfast in almost a year. Another bite of bacon, then toast, and white pudding. More tea, and tomato, and sausages.
We took a pause to soak it all in. Another sip of tea, a slow gaze around the room, a smile of contentedness, and several tears of gratitude for the kindness and warmth of our surroundings.