A dollar experience

At Curry-For-A-Dollar restaurant (which I don’t recommend for its food) near Berkeley, we ordered and found a table in the enclosed room. As we sat down, Chris went to find a restroom. As I waited, I started looking around the restaurant, noting the decor, the 8 person table of people who came for a bday? a night after a huge project? friends?, the staff who were friendly and seemed to have fun, the chairs…

“Do you live in Berkeley?” A man at the bar turned and asked me.

He was slightly balding. Caucasian. I pegged him as early to mid forties. Possibly even late thirties.

“No,” I carefully started. I couldn’t help but try to guess at his intentions. There’s no such thing as friendly conversation anymore.

“Oakland?” he asked.

“No…” I considered just forcing him to guess and play a game. Instead, I continued, “San Francisco. I just wanted to visit since I went here for college.”

He started talking about how he went to school in the south and how he came out to Oakland. I asked if he came to this restaurant often — highlighting the concept of curry for a dollar. At that moment, Chris came back, meandering to the table.

Immediately, the guy cut me off, “Oh, I am sorry. You have company! Have a good evening.”

In embarrassment, he quickly left.

Chris looked at me, “What was that all about?”

“I don’t know. I guess he wanted company.”

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