I watch the sunlight from the dining room at the Krempinski hotel, where I had a $9 breakfast after a $1.25 cab ride across town in the deserted 8:30am morning. I awoke on my own at 6, three hours before the seminar. Last night I did what my dad does, stir fry veggie soup with eggs to offset a day with no protein then three bottles of beer. The stores were all closed, even the bakery, though the sign on the door said open and it was 8am. "A 9 o clock city" was how Tom Briggs described it. I spilled coffee on myself by sitting it beside an open window behind me yesterday so my jacket was home drying wrinklishly from the wash. It remains to be seen if insisting on not paying out for laundry service was smart, since the manual washer-spinner I use tears my clothes apart. At least they dry in a flash here, in Indonesia they never did. I'd rather awake with coating on my tongue and a loogie that tastes like sediment than never have dry clothes.
The hostess and black and white dressed busboys remind me of the restaurants where I worked. And catering. And getting fired from catering. And I was thinking of him and her too, of Linda telling me that heartache fades longly and unceremoniously in fits and starts and returns. A couple Saudis had some breakfast, and an old white guy sat across from me at the other table-for-one.
The taxi had lace on the seats. For the first time here, I rode a taxi alone and the driver did not tell me I was cute, and if I was married or how old I was.