The morning after the night before, which ended with going into a playpark until 2.30am in near freezing temperatures. Ah, to be young.
After a swift six hour snooze, Norah and I walked quietly to Athan’s to meet her peppy sophomore college roommate Michelle. Like the rest of the people that we met in Boston, Michelle was not a comedy friend. She was a musical theatre major. As I know Deirdre through comedy and am quite a compartmentalised person, I am always surprised to learn that she has friends outside of the context that I know her.
Michelle is the person that I most liked and related to of all the many people that Norah introduced me on my trip. She was feeling the ennui of the mid-twenties and the contradictions in trying to fulfil the creative dreams. I was never quite bold, brave or stupid enough to follow the acting dream, but I never took the young initiative to study acting or musical theatre into higher education.
Athan’s was recommended by Michelle. Like much of America, it is what it is, with very little soul. It is an empty unit that they filled with a counter and tables and very little else, but get by with their food and friendly staff. Michelle had bought a gift voucher and was planning to use it at this brunch, but there was an issue with it and we had to pay the good old fashioned way. The staff were very apologetic and remembered the buying incident. Michelle will be back.
It is supposedly a Greek-American café. The menu had little to suggest Greece, but the counter had a few vaguely Greek pastries. America wasn’t built on fact.
Michelle recommended the turkey sandwich from the brunch menu, so that is what I had. She also recommended dousing it in maple syrup. When in Athan’s, do as the Bostonians do. I have told several people about this and they were disgusted at my mixing sweet and savoury, and at having so much sugar in the morning. I am mildly disgusted at myself for the sickliness of it, but it was what my lack of sleep and mild hangover needed.
Norah wasn’t faring too well and could hardly muster half of her egg’s benedict, brunch’s most overpriced meal. She later thanked me for keeping the conversation with Michelle going. Michelle and I would be fast friends were we not to live thousands of miles apart.
Brunch was on a timer. Michelle stayed for longer than she had planned but had to scoot for an audition. She recommended us places to go for the day (a shopping street, a museum where we happened to bump into her boyfriend), and hugs all around as we exited into the great banquet of despair that is life.
She will ever remain fondly in my memory, as will that turkey sandwich.