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from Welcome to My Garden by Barry B. Wright

Copyright © 2019–2021 Barry B. Wright

Chapter Fourteen
Lunch At Zoe's

“Life’s short, eat dessert first,” my friend said to me as we perused the menu in Zoe’s Lounge at the Chateau Laurier in downtown Ottawa. Both chocoholics, our eyes had already wolfed down the lavishly decadent chocolate lava cake shown in the dessert section of the menu. We shared one of those knowing smiles that said nothing, yet everything. You know the kind—the illusion of shared mutual understanding. Did she know? I thought to myself. Could she not see it in my eyes? Is she unseeing, blind? I pretended to read the menu while surreptitiously watching her as the server took her order. Without thinking, I ordered the same as she without the slightest idea of what I had just ordered.

The wine steward arrived with her glass of Sauvignon Blanc and my bottle of Perrier.

“Something’s up,” she said, raising her eyebrows at me as the server poured my glass of Perrier. “It’s not like you, Sheila, not to have a glass of something.”

I smiled back and held up my glass of Perrier with its twist of lime hooked into its lip and said: “It is a glass of something.” I didn’t mean to b...

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