£8.99 Away from Here

He walked aimlessly wearing a fleece in the middle of August.
He paced between a couch and a front door, murmuring:
“anywhere, but here… somewhere, not here…”
Grabbing his wallet, he left his house with determination.
Under dark low clouds, he hurried his way into the center of the town; cutting through chilly wind and waves of tourists.
As he entered the restaurant, the aroma of coriander, jalapeno peppers, and sweet smoky beans swept his entire body—instantly transporting him to a foreign land, probably Mexico.
He quickly took off his fleece jacket, folded it small and hid it underneath his chair—out of his sight—as soon as he was seated.
Pleased to be surrounded by warm yellow walls, fans on the ceiling, tropical decors and a small palm tree, he opened the menu. Even the menu led him into further exaltation—Three Bean Chilli, Enchilada, Tacos, Fajita…
He called the waiter, and humorously ordered his pick by reciting word-for-word: “I’ll take Enchilada. Tortilla shell stuffed with three bean chilli & served with brown rice. Optional Cheese. With the optional cheese, please.”
The waiter made a polite laugh and took the order.
After a short wait, a steaming Enchilada arrived in front of him. He delved into the dish, and the smell of exotic spices sent him to a far, faraway sunny place.
The entrance door swung open, and a drift of cold air swirled around his feet. He glanced over to the door and saw a group of people coming into the restaurant. Soaking wet umbrellas moved past the small—now fake—palm tree, and droplets of water left a trail on the floor.
He left £8.99 on the table, and slowly put on his fleece jacket.
He walked along the trail of water to the door and to the outside —this time to home.

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