She lowered the newspaper from her face and gave him a gentle look above her reading glasses, “I do,” she said and smiled “that was the day we first met.”
“Well, it really wasn’t.” He turned to face her with a cup of coffee in his hands, a light steam coming out of it.
“I’m pretty sure it was. I remember it so well. Jake and you were discussing something about the last football match and that was when Daisy brought me to introduce us.”
“Because you were doing a thesis on the 18th century architecture and she thought it would be a good idea for you to take an architect’s opinion on it. I remember it too.”
“Then you remember that you mumbled on 18th century churches and we ended up talking about Jake and Daisy’s wedding?”
He gave a short laugh, “That’s not the point.”
“The point is, that was how we met.”
“Then how did we meet?” She took her glasses off and crossed her arms over her chest, giving him a mocking yet sincere look.
“Two years before that,” he said and sat a chair, facing her. He took a long sip from his coffee as she kept looking at him, wondering. “We met at Becky’s.”
“Becky’s the coffee shop?”
“Becky’s the coffee shop.”
“The one two blocks away from my university?”
She looked puzzled but she didn’t intend to give in so easily, “Go on.”
“For a project I had at the time, I was doing sketches of that Victorian Church, the one right-”
“Right across Becky’s.” A wide smile started to spread on her face; she knew where this was going.
“And there you were, sitting at a table in the front corner. You were reading Hume.” He paused, staring at his coffee; he looked as if the memory was playing in his head. “And you looked so beautiful through that glass window. I couldn’t help but stop and watch you for several minutes… Until you reached for your coffee and looked up. You saw me, standing there, watching you. All I could do was to smile clumsily. Then you smiled back, for an instance, no longer than couple of seconds; but it was there, lingering on your thin pink lips.”
She didn’t want to admit but the words seemed to escape from her mouth, “I don’t remember that.”
“I know,” he said and smiled at her.
“On the other hand, that doesn’t mean we met, does it?”
“Well, I wasn’t finished,” he explained and continued “When you lowered your head to read your book, I went into the shop and sat at the table right beside you. I asked you about Hume and you started telling me all sorts of things. Philosophy, literature, architecture… Then you realized you were talking too fast, and that you were talking too fast to an absolute stranger; so you put out your hand and told me your name, I told you mine and we shook hands, while laughing much too loud due to the tension. That’s how we met.”
She was staring at him with great amazement, “That never happened.”
“But it did.”
“I think I would remember something like that.”
“I don’t think so.”
“It’s because you weren’t exactly there.”
“What does that supposed to mean?”
“All that while, you were inside Becky’s, reading Hume; and I was outside, watching you,” he said, putting his hand on hers, lying on the kitchen table.
She held his hand and gazed into his still-sparkling eyes, “After all these years, do you really think it matters?”
“No,” he said, caressing her hand “but that’s how we met.”