Not Even Coffee

It was the Friday of Memorial Day Weekend, and I was headed to New Jersey to spend a few days at my friend’s beach house for her birthday, and to celebrate the start of summer. On the way to the bus at Penn Station, I stopped to get my friend a birthday Cinnabon and decided to get an iced coffee while I was there. “Regular iced coffee or Cinnabon iced coffee?”, the cashier implored.

“Cinnabon! Why not?!”, I responded.

What I didn’t know was that I had just ordered heaven in a cup.

It literally tasted like coffee ice cream, but was the consintancy and caffeination of iced coffee. Just. Perfection.

So, I happily traipsed to my bus terminal and lo! It looked like a bus was waiting there! The peppy bounce in my step was deflated slightly when the dark-skinned (possibly Kenyan) ticket taker looked at me incredulously, “You don’t plan on drinking on da bus, do ya?”

“Drinking? What? My coffee?”, I asked in clarification, wondering if he thought my drink was alcoholic (and being a youngster heading to Jersey for the long weekend, I was happy to clarify, as I understood that it was likely).

“Ya, dere is no drinking on da bus.”

“Not even coffee?”

“Not even coffee.”

“What time does the bus leave?”

“Seven.” I looked at the clock, it read 6:58. I looked back at him with a pleading look. He gestured to the barrel nearby.

Distraught, I went over, chugged as much of the delicious concoction as I could and tossed what was left. I threw back one last longing look as I trotted out to the bus, where the still-suspicious man waved towards the bus, finally granting me permission to board after scanning my person to ensure I wasn’t smuggling any other banned substances.

As I stepped onto the vehicle, I heard my new buddy say cockily, “See? De sign up dere. No drinking on da bus.” Shocked that he felt so compelled to follow up, seeing as I had complied, I stuttered, “Yeah, no, I get it, I just, I didn’t know, I’m sorry.” And headed back to my seat after meekly smiling at the bus driver in response to his sympathetic look.

What I wish I had said was, “Sir, I’m sorry if my face displayed something you mistook for defiance or judgement, when it really was just horror at the thought of wasting what was not only an overpriced and very necessary coffee, but also the most magical substance ever to have graced my lips. If my eyes rolled dramatically as I headed toward the barrel, it was simply an expression of ‘it’s just my luck, having found what very may well be a beverage made from unicorn tears, and not be able to enjoy the whole of it’. So I’m sorry if I offended you, but please understand the traumatic experience I was enduring. Have a wonderful weekend.”

The end.

~ by Valerie Anne on 07/24/2012.

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